I had a terrible realisation recently. I think I might be 11. And there’s a good chance you are too. Let me explain. I remember my dad when he was in his thirties, as I am now. And I remember, very distinctly, that he was a proper grown up. He knew what he was doing. He had a business and a mortgage, he took us on holidays, could fix anything that broke. There was no sense that he was pretending to be an adult. I do not feel like that.
I remember when I was 11 and my birthday was coming up and I thought “When I’m twelve I won’t be a kid anymore.” And then nothing changed. And then my 16th birthday came up and I thought, “Finally I’ll be an adult.” I turned 16 and nothing happened. Soon I was 18. I felt the same. Now I’m 32 and wondering at what point some internal thing will click into adult mode and I no longer find fart jokes funny. Maybe it will be when I turn 40. I am still an 11 year old waiting to grow up.
I have no idea how the whole grown up thing works. From the outside looking in I probably seem like a fully functioning adult. I’m a dad, and I’m managing to parent well enough, I have a job and pay my bills, but secretly I have no idea what I’m doing. And then I thought, what if everyone else is secretly 11 too and we’re all just pretending at being an adult? What if our leaders are secretly running the country with no fucking idea what they’re doing? It would explain a lot.
And then I saw this picture on the front page of the Guardian newspaper of Theresa May and Michael Gove and I thought, “Shit! They’re 11!” God help us all.
Further evidence –
I rest my case.