Today is my thirtieth birthday.
It’s a little after 7.30am, I’ve opened some presents, washed up, and decided to write something. I’ve toyed with the idea of writing for a while; starting a blog or just registering somewhere where I can save things and flit between ‘I hope no-one reads them’ and ‘I hope everyone reads them’.
Over the last ten years I’ve become a very private person – or maybe I’ve been a private person for thirty years and wasn’t aware of it for the first twenty. I’m not on Facebook, never have been – bar a token login I use for moderating my employer’s brand pages. I have no photo on my Twitter bio, I’ve never Tweeted a photo of myself. To my friends and family, I can and will talk about food, music, politics, comedy, culture, radio and everything in between for hours. I will no doubt completely gloss over ‘real life’ though. If something major’s actually going on in my life, everyone I know will be the last people to know about it. Apparently I’m ‘aloof’, ‘impossible to read’ and ‘secretive’. Maybe I’m just not ‘2015’ enough for the selfie-takers, bloggers, vloggers, and all sorts of things that I can now stop pretending to be interested in. Because I am thirty. I’m a grown up.
I intend to be thoroughly honest and open on here. (Until I get wind that somebody I know has read it, then I’ll delete the whole bloody lot. It’s easy to write this when it’s just me and you (by ‘you’ I also mean ‘me’).
To prove it, here are a few snapshots of honesty;
- I had a career goal in my head of something I wanted to achieve by the time I was thirty. It’s a goal I’ve held since I was about nineteen. Today I am reminded that I’ve not achieved that goal. I have a list of people I can blame, but my name is also on the list.
- Over the last few months I have been entertaining the thought of completely blowing up my career and starting again doing something completely different. I don’t think this is related to the statement above, my passions have started drifting towards other things. Let’s see this year.
- I am the happiest I’ve ever been. There are a lot of things in my life that I’m very grateful for and very lucky to have. My girlfriend, my family, my friends, and my health. (Much like my reluctance to post photos or share anything, I’ve never mentioned my girlfriend on Twitter, I keep my life completely to me. But I’m compelled to mention on here that she is the best thing to ever happen to me, a truly remarkable person, and she makes me incredibly happy. We met next to the mineral water in ASDA, where all the best love stories blossom).
- (Other ‘honest snapshots I started to write here and then deleted included “I’ve not got many friends” and “I cheated on a very important exam once”.)
Are you bored yet? I’ve not written anything like this before. I think I started to write some sort of diary/journal when I was at primary school, inspired by reading Adrian Mole. This lasted about three days, until I re-evaluated my time and reverted to Lego.
I started typing a great big paragraph then about my work ethic at school and why I didn’t achieve more and how I could have achieved more with my life, but that’s true of everyone. I’ll save that until the day I can’t think of anything else to write. It’s a blog, not a bloody autobiography. Who do I actually think I am?
I’m thirty now. I’ve been given beautiful grown up presents, like an Italian leather bag from my girlfriend… the latest in a line of thoughtful, beautiful and more importantly ‘grown up’ presents I’ve received in the last year; a Marks & Spencer coat, a Parker fountain pen, expensive gloves. The world is forcing me to be thirty, and I’m being equipped with the tools I need to do the job. I feel ready to be thirty. I will still have flashes of immaturity and childishness (about nine hours a day by my reckoning) but I’m ready to be a bloody grown up the rest of the time. I’m an uncle, I listen to Five Live, I’ve got lots of books on my Kindle and a fine selection of knives. We have ‘best cutlery’, and I’ve not ordered a take away for over twelve months. This thirty lark is easy.