They say that you spend your twenties worrying about what other people think about you, your thirties learning not to care and your forties realising they weren’t ever thinking about you in the first place. Other people are too busy worrying about their own stuff to be thinking about the ins and outs of your meaningless existence.
I saw a mate in the supermarket the other day and completely ignored him. He saw me too but it was clear that neither of us were in the mood to talk so arrived at a telepathic understanding to just walk straight past each other. It felt like the grown-up thing to do. In my twenties I would have stopped and staged a tiresome five-minute conversation, straining to be amusing about or interested in whatever the fuck he was up to in a Sainsbury’s Local on a Bank Holiday Monday. In my thirties I would have at least made the effort to pretend I hadn’t seen him.
Now I am 44 I didn’t care whether he thought I’d seen him or not.
Being in your forties is great. I mean, you still worry about bills and work and suspicious lumps just as much as you ever did. But you don’t give a shit about whether or not people regard you as cool, interesting, polite or decent. This explains why I sometimes drop the kids off at school wearing the same tracksuit bottoms I slept in.
It’s better than most other twentysomething dramas because it rinses laughs out of the bleakest of scenarios.
I watch TV shows about millennials partly to remind myself of how much easier life is for me now that I don’t feel shame or guilt about staying in on a Friday night with a curry instead of being out at a club, sniffing coke in a stinking toilet cubicle.
Please Like Me is about a group of Australian twentysomethings trying to navigate their way through early adulthood, starring the comedian Josh Thomas. It’s better than most other twentysomething dramas because it rinses laughs out of the bleakest of scenarios.
They casually show pretty brutal stuff that isn’t usually shown on TV: there’s an episode where one of the characters has an abortion. It’s not really played for sentiment. There are sad bits about it and the odd funny bit about it too. It’s just real. And it’s an experience that loads of women have to go through so why not show it for what it is?
Please Like Me also contains scenes of gay men bumming, which is something you don’t see much of on TV. It is portrayed as everyday and awkward, just like heterosexual sex has been for decades. It happens so matter-of-factly that you almost don’t notice it’s happening at all. Yep, Please Like Me is a great show.
Anyway, just goes to show, millennials might be a bit earnest and flaky at times but they are changing the world for the better with their open mindedness and militant codes of mutual respect. I’m just glad I’m not one of them.
Please Like Me is available on Amazon Prime Video