Sunday, April 15, 2012

Things I Know Just Before Turning Thirty

Having just written the title of this post, I feel confident that there must be some things I know. Some wisdom to impart, some little gems of understanding that I can benevolently bestow upon your grateful soul.

However, now that my fingers hover over the keyboard my mind has transformed itself into a barren wasteland.

Perhaps I will start with things I have learned recently, and it will almost definitely segue into some startlingly profound general life wisdom.

1. Sitting in a shopping trolley for ages in a cold supermarket will leave you with bruises on both arse and legs, even if you are wearing a tiara.

2. Disappointingly, these bruises will not be in the shape of the criss-cross mesh of the trolley wire things, but just normal bruises. Boring.

3. When it comes to it, it is very difficult to describe the shopping trolley mesh wire things. Some things are not worth knowing (see also: long division).

4. I get a surge of joy in my tiny heart whenever I see someone walking along reading a book. I love that human beings have evolved to have both the ability and desire to do such a ludicrous, excellent thing.

5. I do not mind the fact that I am turning thirty in a week.

I turn thirty in a week!

When I think about how I imagined being thirty as a teenager, it seems impossibly weird. I think I thought that in my twenties at some point I would have to experience a total personality overhaul, suddenly become someone who sported snappy suits and self-confidence, who click-clacked about in important-person heels and swept out of rooms, all clever remarks and shiny, shiny hair.

(I think, looking back on it, that my idea of adulthood was very much shaped by Ally McBeal.)

I don't wear snappy suits. My hair hasn't been cut for over a year. I own and wear high heels, but they are not important person heels (the difference is uncanny but indescribable). I do not go on fancy holidays to beach resorts or know how much wine to drink on an empty stomach. I still feel like I am pretending to be a grown up when I am carrying a take-away coffee or some keys. When does this stop? (I know the answer: never.)

Which leads me to the next thing I know:

6. Nobody feels like a grown up all the time. Everyone is faking it! This is my favourite thing about the world. It can be summed up in this glorious xkcd comic.

At the moment I am writing a funding application, planning a show for the Edinburgh Festival, working on a show with Eggs Collective, practicing for a show at the Royal Exchange, working on some songs to put online, and working on my solo show. Oh, and teaching. And applying for more freelance work.

All these things are Proper. Hilariously, bizarrely Proper. Writing it all out is nice, and makes me feel more Properer, but it also makes me feel weird, because after any meeting or rehearsal or lesson or anything I always want to ask whether I got away with it, whether I got away with pretending to be a grown up who knows stuff rather than just a seven year old in her Mum's shoes talking in a grown up lady voice. But asking gives the game away, so you're not allowed to.

(Although that's kind of what my show is about.)

7. Moving to Manchester was an excellent idea. Well done me. Ten points.

8. I can give myself as many points as I like!

9. Points cannot be used as currency.

10. I will never stop wanting to put on Dina or Tina (Carroll or Arena, respectively) and singing along at the top of my voice.

11. I will always be best friends with anyone who drops a Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy reference into everyday conversation or a show. In spite of the fact that they do not realize that they are my best friend and, in fact, might feel a bit weirded out by me if they did, they will be my best friend.

I don't have any more wisdom! My brain has started to meander like a person reading a book whilst walking down the street. I have to go and do something else before it wanders into traffic.

Here is a picture from Friday's filming with Eggs Collective. This is why I have a bruised arse. This is the last week of my twenties, and I am spending it with a bruised arse from sitting in a shopping trolley. Of course I am.

Update: check out the Eggs Collective blog for a few more pictures and news of events and general brilliance.