Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Generation (wh)Y

the philosophies of my generation, generation Y, do not, and will not come from the great academics or thinkers of our time. There will be no Kerouac to sum up our hopes and fears as he did in the '50s. No Orwell to comment on our political terrors as he did in the '30s. No Greer to campaign for the rights of a maligned people.

They do and will continue to come from everyday life, television, and songs.

30 Seconds of enlightenment for an accelerated culture.

In Spaced, Simon Pegg says that the family of the 21st Century is made up of friends, not relatives. and I have sat in too many living rooms, bedrooms, Pubs and fields, surrounded by beautiful people I love dearly; from broken homes and fractured families, to see this as anything but true.

A Made Up Love Story Based on True Events

These two friends, right? Teresa and Steve? This is about them finding out about love.

For the first few years of Secondary School, and pretty much the remainders, Teresa and Steve were socially awkward. A few friends, a few acquaintances, not much else.

they met during a GCSE drama class, finding themselves to be kindred spirits, out among the plastic blondes eyeing up Talulah in Bugsy Malone, the sensitive guys pining for their inner Romeo, and the stoners too dumb to have taken Geography.

they drew to each other like estranged runts from the same litter. But everyone knows popularity is an empty accolade, right?

They made sure they were together for group work, sitting on the varnished Oak floor; backs resting on the smudged and dirty mirrors covering one half of the room. It was here they discussed scripts, stage directions and roles. It was here they talked about home, jobs, each other.

They drank in each others features. Steve's overlarge shaved head and fluffy chin. Teresa's heavy set, square jaw and oblong figure; the source of so much changing room ridicule. When they talked, they would stare into each others eyes. Teresa's Hazel iris, mixed and confused, striving to be two things at once. Steve's mud brown. Yough never know what you'll find at the bottom of a muddy pond though, right?

For these few hours each week, they were the popular epicenter of their own universe. They could escape from a place where everyone else mattered, to a place where only they mattered.

some time in January, when all the Christmas spirit had been drunk dry and the New Year's hangover remained like a sick, clingy toddler, Teresa and Steve were sat on the familiar floor watching the usual circus of idiocy in front of them; Students trying to bluff their way through an audition for 'West Side Story'.

"The only way these twats could get smarter was by fucking each other, one of them might acquire a few more braincells by getting pregnant", thought Steve.

"I wish my hips stuck out that much", thought Teresa.

Their turn came, their opportunity to broadcast their talent to the dramatic powers that be. they chose to perform 'Someday', the show's infamous duet between doomed lovers Tony and Maria.

Pitch perfect throughout, their faces wrought with devotion to the cause, and to each other. Every stressed syllable and elongated vowel dripping with emotion. Two nobodies reminding each other through Leonard Bernstein's music, that someday, somehow, they'll find a new way of living. Just the two of them.

The song ends, and so involved are they in their own world, this realm of fantasy made reality, that they don't even notice that are reenacting THAT kiss. It is not until the faint sounds of not-so canned laughter ring in their ears, that they realise what is happening.

So natural was the feeling of each others sould pouring from one mouth to the other, that mere mundane ridicule was surprising enough to wrench them apart. Drained, they sat down, unspeaking, awaiting their verdict.

10 minutes go by and all the main parts have been assigned to Rugby Captains, Choristers and the downright good looking. Then the list of those who made it into the chorus line. Their names going unmentioned.

Too accustomed at being overlooked, Teresa and Steve approached the drama teacher to see if there was some kind of mistake, had they not heard their names? Impossible with the amount their ears were straining.

The teacher looked on sympathetically, and said "I'm very sorry, you'll have to try again next year"

"what was wrong with it?" they demanded.

"It just seemed a bit too..."


"Well... Fake"

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Joke's on Me

Thankyou, Jack Kerouac
for showing me
the immense damage alcohol consumption can do to your psyche

Paranoia, self loathing, crippling self doubt

You trapped in a cabin at Big Sur, is the same as me trapped in my cupboard sized room.
Going slowly insane.
At least you had a Donkey for company.

Fuck this, I'm going on the wagon.
Maybe i'll like myself then.