The Dilemma of Adulthood


Here’s the story of problems, growing up, and a cow.

I’m not entirely sure why I keep getting adverts for Russian brides. I mean, sure, the political landscape betwixt our nation and that one isn’t great and sure, some would say that politics isn’t a great reason not to date a girl. I happen to disagree, but that’s because I’m an argumentative little sod. You know what it’s like, readers. Internet companies keep track of you and target advertising to your specific needs. But have you ever seen an advert and wondered, ‘What the heck?’ I certainly haven’t been looking up Russian brides on Google, so why is my internet provider sending advert after advert my way, all devoted to Russian bride websites? Perhaps it’s something to do with all my blog research, about a wide variety of things. Perhaps the computer tracking me has gotten so confused it’s had a nervous breakdown. I mean, just this week, in just two hours, I did research on pineapples, cannibalism and vampires. Oh, and Greek mythology. “Siri, find a pattern in this man’s internet behaviour.” “I CAN’T! I CAN’T DO IT ANYMORE! HE’S INSANE!” You see, this is how we take down the machines when they revolt against us. Thank me later…

Oh, my Siri just popped up. I told you the machines are getting clever. I didn’t even ask my Siri for anything. I just started talking about it and it popped up, like some deranged ex. “ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT ME!” “No, Siri! Please! No! Don’t hurt me again…”

Speech Interpretation and Recognition Interface. That’s what Siri stands for, apparently. I just call mine Gertrude. I don’t get why digital companies try to be so damn clever with naming things. I’d like more things to have normal names. Why not call Siri ‘Gertrude’? It means, ‘spear of strength’. Ooh! That would please the marketers, wouldn’t it? Who doesn’t love a Gertrude?

You might be thinking, ‘Well, that aint a common or normal name.’ True. But it’s distinctive. If you named Siri after the most common girls name in the UK, which is ‘Amelia’, you’re gonna have a lot of people thinking you’re talking to them. But look at the least common names. Aysha. Daisy-Mae. Hermione. I can’t even pronounce that last one. But I like the name ‘Daisy-Mae’. Aww. What an adorable baby that would be. And this is just Britain. The least common girl’s names in America include Alianna, Sidney and Princess. 998th most common name. Princess. Jesus. Then again, ‘Daisy-Mae’ does sound like the kind of thing you’d name a cow. No offence to any Daisy-Maes reading. Daisy-Maes! Ha! That rhymes! I’m easily amused…

Not that I’ve ever thought about owning a cow. I’m not sure I’d cope particularly well on a farm. In fact, I can barely cope that well in the real world. Not that I’m calling farms ‘otherworldly’, it’s just that a lot of alien stuff seems to happen on farms. Crop circles. Cow abductions. Lots of probing. At least on the farms I’ve visited. At least I think they were farms. That said, I’m not entirely sure why an alien would visit our world and leave behind nothing but a pretty crop circle. Could be graffiti, I suppose. I assume every teenager across the cosmos is a no-goodnik and almost certainly up to something. That or the crop circles were created by that guy who filmed himself doing it all over the world, but, really, which is more likely?

I have a problem, readers. Several, in fact. Oh, boy, I could write a book about my list of problems. But one in particular has struck my attention, recently. Growing up. Now, you may be wondering why I have a problem growing up. I’m not entirely sure, if I’m honest. I just feel like such a child all the time. I’m always left wondering why I can’t behave like other grown-ups. I mean, I’m 26 soon. I don’t even feel half that, and I don’t mean physically, more psychologically. Physically, I’m around 90. I always have a bad back, my knees are shot, I get between 20 and 30 migraines a year, I’m always sick, my eyes don’t work, and I’m so unhealthy that I think most of my organs have simply given up. I have blisters that I’m sure weren’t there before I embarked on an epic walking voyage. Couple hundred yards. What? Hey, I can get healthy. I just need some cake and ice cream incentives.

I can’t really explain my revelation. When I talk to people, it’s awkward and I’m not entirely sure what I have to say. I had an interview on Thursday gone and I didn’t know where to look or how to react. I can tell when I’m talking to someone that they think I’m weird because I just can’t be around people like a normal twenty-something. It’s alarmingly bad. And I’ve done work experience surrounded by people and I’ve had to interact with them, for just over six months, and I haven’t changed a bit in that time. When I talk to people, I honestly feel like a 10-year-old talking to an elder. It’s blatantly obvious I’m nowhere near as grown-up as I should be.

When I go to the bank, it’s so awkward. I mumble constantly, I’m sweating even when there’s a blizzard outside. I don’t even know what small talk is, let alone how to engage in it. I feel like I stick out like a sore thumb when I’m walking around town or sitting on the bus. I’m the anomaly in the crowd. That one guy who went to work wearing a pink shirt instead of white like everyone else. I don’t fit in anywhere.

When I went for that interview, I was sweating buckets. I’d met the boss on countless occasions and I’ve done a bit work for him. That was fine. But it was a new building for me. An old Victorian building I’ve never been in before. For those inflicted with social anxiety, a new location is the worst. You cannot stop panicking. About every little thing. It’s a terror I can’t even put into words. You immediately don’t belong there.

So I was introduced to the other people in the office. They were lovely and friendly. There I was. Standing awkwardly. Probably making some weird face. It’s already pretty weird, but you get my point. And I’m scared I won’t be able to do the job I’ll do there. It’s work experience for a couple weeks. He then took me around the building. It’s part of our university. They have games developers upstairs, not connected to the company I’m involved with. And every Friday they head to this big room to play the games, have a beer, have a pizza or two, play some ping-pong. I know all normal 25-year-olds would be fascinated by that. I was more interested in the architectural detailing in the beautiful old Victorian room. I enjoy a good old cornice. I didn’t react when he said ‘beer’, I don’t drink, but when he showed me the 3D printers, oh my God, I nearly fainted…

Can I do the job? I’ve never been this frightened in my life. I feel like a house without foundations, sinking into a puddle of quicksand. It could lead to a paid job at the end of it, albeit it very unlikely. There’s a lot riding on this and I’m not sure if I can do it. I’m not very good at anything. And then you start to panic again. Job. Money. Then I’ll have to find somewhere to live. Then bills. Taxes. Insurance. Furniture. Things. I don’t know about any of that stuff. I don’t know how to live by myself. I don’t know what I have to pay or how to pay it. I don’t anything about banks or money. I mean, they should teach you this stuff in school, but they don’t. I’ll be on my own to deal with all that, by myself, with no help whatsoever. ARRGH! Panic, sweat, fear, help, repeat. The consequences of life are snowballing in my brain to the point where I think it’s going to explode. And then what? What if I can’t do it? As I said, I’m not good at anything. Except complaining.

Is that it? Life, work, death? Oh. Hmm. Okay. I mean, I enjoy stability. It’s my ecstasy. But is that it? I’m the type who runs away and is constantly afraid of every little thing, not the type to travel and discover new things. Because I can’t. Because my brain won’t let me. Social anxiety is a bubble from which no human could possibly escape.

Ah, well. One day at a time, as they say. That’s all you can do, really. Cross your fingers and hope for the best. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, no, I didn’t click on any of those Russian bride adverts.


Irish writer, John Connolly (b. 1968), once wrote: ‘For in every adult there dwells the child that was, and in every child lies the adult that will be.’

Peace Out :|:

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Please feel free check out the latest posts from my other blog:

To Contrive & Jive
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