Here's a turn up for the books. According to Big Brother 2.0 I need to be planning my whole life around getting sprogged up. BB2.0's analysis of my current (seeming) directionless-ness in life is that I need a 'strategy' and an 'exit plan', so that when I 'come to want children I'm in a financially secure position to do it.'
Right. Surely, if everyone planned their twenties around the possibility of wanting children in their thirties (and some people do it very successfully I'm not denying), if no-one was irresponsible then there'd be no explorers, no comedians, no Pulitzer-prize-winning writers.... no anyone interesting, actually. If everyone planned their lives around their children, there'd be no Katie Price for god's sake! What a hellish notion. Everyone would just sit around (like my dear brother) talking about their sprogs. Which is delightful at first but soon becomes mind-numbingly objectionable.
At 26 I accept that I really should be popping out the other side of unemployed, farting around enjoying myself irresponsibility but, for whatever reason, I did the settle down, commute 4 hours a day, buy a house and get engaged bit in the first half of my twenties. So here I am, pissing away the second half on (gasp out loud everyone) fun. I've just had a little bit and I intend to have a lot more.
Besides if the antics of recently-impregnated Sis-in-Law and Big Brother 2.1 are anything to go by I think I'll push my sprog plans back another 15 years. Sis-in-Law nearly knocked BB2.1 over in the street with his own BMW last week. She (allegedly accidentally) actually drove the car into the back of his knees, causing him to stumble forward and almost hit the deck. At very low speed, you understand, but still.
'Don't worry!' shouted BB2.1 to an astounded passer-by, 'It's my wife!'.
'Yeah mate', the chap replied, 'if I was you I'd rip up my life insurance'.
Is this what it's come to? If attempted murder is what I can expect from marriage and kiddiwinkles I'd like my subscription refunded please.
Me, myself? I've decided to move into a secondary phase of teenaged petulance, since I was actually a delightful, studious teenager who rarely slammed doors. Nowadays, on being asked to explain 'what I'm going to do next with my life' I am going to respond a la Kevin:
'Oh, for God's SAKE! Can we not? Can we just not???!' and then I'll flounce out of the room swinging my arms. And slam the door.
Because the thing is you see, I just don't care any more. I don't care that if I don't pack the pennies away now I might end up a shriveled, lonely prune hunched over a radiator in a council flat in 50 years. If that happens I'll just spend my pension (or grandchildren's pocket money, depending on which is more forthcoming) on smack and wiggle up the process whilst having a rip roaring good time.
Human tumbleweed that's what I'm aspiring to be, for right or wrong. See where the wind blows us. Don't worry too much about what's coming up and, more importantly, let go of things.
I, like everyone, find it terribly hard to let go of things that have meant something too me. Which is why I cried all the way back from the Ski Resort last month. Of course there was the grief. That's a whole other book. But my problem is I can't let go even if something's ceased to be a positive thing in my life. Being there with a screwed up knee was killing me. But I didn't want to leave. You cling on to the idea of things - of people.
When I was nine my Dad built me a little (well, it was quite big for a 9-year old, actually) wooden house. It had two floors – a staircase lead to a trap door into a little room with a bed and a balcony on top. It had a sink, running water and electricity. It took months to build. My Nan made me little curtains for it and a bedspread. I think I played in it for a couple of years, until I got too tall to stand up inside and discovered make-up, fashion, boys and wanking. It went to rack and ruin. And I always felt this dreadful pang of guilt every time I looked at it. And I kind of still do.
But the truth is I shouldn't feel guilty. What's relevant to a 9-year-old, to a 15-year-old to a 26-year-old? I needn't even say these are all a gulf apart.
I guess what I'm saying is, it's ok to leave something behind. To put things on life's rubbish heap. Even if you love it so deeply you think you can't live without it, after a while it just holds you back. My dear friend Laura, my long departed mother and cousins, my ex fiancee, my ex cat, my ex house. It's fine. It happened. And it's all proof that if you play by the rules life still bites you up the arse.
So, tumbleweed it's to be.