Blog, Culture

Disappointing Things About Being an Adult

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When I was little, I was excited about the prospect of adult life. I envisaged a whole world of adventure and possibility and no one around to tell you what to do. When you’re a kid, adults seem like they have their shit together and things make sense to them and they know about stuff and I wanted some of that for myself. Make no mistake: being a kid is tough. You have to do what people tell you and no one takes you seriously and you’re really small so there’s loads of stuff you can’t do by yourself. Plus you have to go to school, which is a cruel and confusing place.

When I was a kid my parents gave me a toy ironing board and plastic iron to play with. I had a mini dustpan and brush too. I enjoyed playing with these because I wanted to do what the adults were doing. But, of course, now I know chores aren’t fun at all – they’re insanely boring. And guess which chore I hate the most. The fucking ironing. I go as far as refusing to buy clothes that need ironing because I don’t want to waste my precious time on this Earth flattening clothes that I’m going to wear and crinkle up anyway.

Now that I’m a few inches taller and I’ve been a grown up for a while, I am here to explain my realisation that most of adult life is, well, SUPER… BORING. Let me list some of the insanely boring things that you have to do as an adult:

  • Deal with the eternal heap of washing up. It is also true that the heap keeps growing even when there’s no one at home because dirty dishes clone themselves like bacteria cells
  • Write formal emails to people, particularly ones of a complaining nature. This always takes way longer than it should and one complaint email is one too many. In fact, no one should have to complain ever, everything should just work properly the first time
  • Decide what to have for dinner… again. This is especially dull when you get sick of the eleven regular meals you make for yourself. This usually leads to takeaway, which is actually way more fun but not so good for the waistline or the wallet
  • Drive around, often in traffic. I should note that some adults enjoy driving. I’m not sure why; there’s nothing fun about congestion
  • Grocery shopping, usually while wrestling an out-of-control trolley around the supermarket. Grocery shopping is so eye-wateringly boring that it has to be done on the way home from something else, because there’s no way I’m making a separate trip out for it. And it has to be done EVERY… WEEK. Or more often if you’re slack and don’t plan ahead
  • You have to chase people for stuff. And I don’t mean the fun kind of chasing when you’re a child playing ‘it’, I mean chase people for things they borrowed from you or colleagues for work that they knew should have been finished yesterday or the time I chased HMRC for four months for £400 tax they’d taken from me even though I didn’t owe it to them because they made a mistake on my earnings (they eventually gave it back and apologised)
  • Use your own money to buy things you don’t really want to buy, like toilet cleaner and bed sheets and clothes to wear to work and secret Santa gifts
  • Wonder where all your money has gone. Some of it has gone to the things you didn’t want to buy but the rest… an enduring mystery
  • Clean the oven. I honestly don’t know what could be more boring… which is why we all avoid it until there’s a charcoal mountain at the bottom and it’s making your baked goods taste like a bonfire
  • Feel tired no matter how much or little sleep you get
  • Try to fit in. The fact is, there’s a whole code of conduct that comes with being an adult and it’s boring. I’m secretly still a child inside, as are most people I think, so having to suppress this little person’s feelings is not only difficult but also a bit sad


So what’s the best thing about being an adult?

Cereal for dinner.

Nah, of course there are plenty of good things about being an adult. The daily grind of work can kill your creativity and your childhood dreams but we mustn’t let it. As a grown up you are in the best position to achieve those things. Harness your childhood ambitions and use your adult body and wisdom to do them. Life will try to get in the way but you have a choice. So many adults lose their inner child’s curiosity and thirst for learning which is a real shame. I’ve been getting back in touch with mine because I found myself in grey corporate land and the thought of my life spent there is truly horrifying. What did you enjoy doing as a kid? I was obsessed with horses. I liked to draw and make things. Oh, and I loved to write, too.

1991-1995 056


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