It’s All Downhill From Here
IT’S ALL DOWNHILL FROM HERE – How Fashion Is A Waste Of Time Once You Hit Forty And Why That Is More Glorious Than You Can Imagine
A Dessicated Follower Of Fashion
It’s been a liberating experience, becoming a Forty-something man. All sorts of things not to have to worry about any more. Top of this list has to be clothes. There were questions which had to be asked before selecting an ensemble from my wardrobe when I was in my twenties and thirties. Is it appropriate to the occasion? If so, what’s the likelihood of someone else wearing the same thing? Will I look like I’m trying too hard? That sort of thing. All irrelevant now.
It’d be lovely to think that this is because I have settled into my looks and am more comfortable with myself now. That I now have a firm neutral base from which any look can be launched, like some kind of sartorial chameleon. Lovely thoughts, however, seldom have any basis in reality. The sad fact is that everything I now wear becomes instantly and effortlessly styleless.
And With A Single Bound, Jack Looked Exactly Like His Dad
Cut, shape, line; all if these things are now utterly without meaning. These concepts try desperately to find purchase but, despite the fact there’s a lot more of me to grab onto than there was a few short years ago, they fail miserably and fall in a crumpled heap about my feet
A sports jacket, camel trousers and hush puppies. Unless I am wearing all of these items, I am doomed to look like I’m trying to be something I am not. Which is why I am currently wearing a pair of jeans, desert boots and a t shirt with cartoon figures of the characters from “Enter The Dragon” printed on it.
It doesn’t matter you see? I could have walked down my high street today sporting a silver topped cane and decked out like a Regency dandy, and the public’s reaction would have been the same. None what-so-fucking-ever.
But The Gimp’s Sleeping…Well Wake Him Up Then
A man of my precise age could wear a spangly silver gimp suit and make it look pedestrian. In fact, many of them do, though thankfully in the privacy of their own homes or under professional supervision in some kind of rented dungeon affair. I have become what, in my native Newcastle, is known as a Gadgee. Rough translation: any man who is, or appears to be, at least twenty years older than you currently are.
Not that I haven’t been referred to as a Gadgee before. Thing is, the boys who are now doing the referring aren’t playing football in the park and dreaming of picking up girls in pubs anymore. They’re picking up girls in pubs and dreaming of playing football in St James’ Park. They’re what the world now laughingly classes as adults.
I’m Sorry, But No One Finds You That Interesting Anymore
As a newly fledged Gadgee, another thing the world no longer gives a flying fart about is my music collection. I used to carefully edit my display of CD cases for a balance of sensitivity and sense of humour if I might be having a girl over. I don’t bother now. There’s a girl over every night, I’ve been living with her for twelve years.
Even the friends who used to scan my albums when I was on the toilet, and therefore wasn’t watching them, don’t bother anymore. Yes, I still call them albums, even though such a thing hasn’t existed for well over a decade. My friends are mostly the same age as me and as such a bit nervous of what they might find in my CD racks. As Jesus said : “Before you remove the Girls Aloud from your brother’s rack, first attend to the Michael Buble in your own”. Or he would have if he’d made it to forty and recorded music had been invented.
Were You A Brosette Or A Yondie? Bet You Were A Yondie. Loser.
All the little musical tribes have dissolved and I can now actually enjoy eclectic tastes, rather than just nervously pretending to as was the case when I was in my late twenties and early thirties. Try going back in time to 1993 and casually mentioning to your friends that you happen to think that Jagged Little Pill is pretentious, self indulgent shite. We’ve all been dumped Alanis, but we don’t all expect people to shell out good money to hear us whine on about it.
I made this point myself at the time the album came out, no temporal anomalies involved, and it didn’t go down too well. The musical tribes weren’t apparent, but they were still there under the surface. Or the reaction might have been down to feminism, which was still quite popular in that pre-Spice Girls environment. When a girl could get into the charts wearing clumpy boot and no make-up and didn’t have to act like she desperately wanted to fuck you in her videos.
The Crew Cut Is The Comb Over Of The 21st Century
Hairdryers are something I haven’t considered for quite some time until fairly recently. I adopted the traditional British No1 all over buzz cut several years ago and have consequently had no need of them since. Until now, that is.
Now, if you’re worrying that I have re-grown my lovely locks in a tragic attempt to regain my lost youth, fear not. My head still looks like a tennis ball that’s been dropped into a muddy puddle. However, I have started going the gym in a tragic attempt to re-gain my lost youth. But I’ve been doing this on and off since I was twenty seven, so I’m not too concerned about it.
Funny. I’m Sure I Wasn’t Wearing A Furry Waistcoat When I Started Showering
What I am concerned about though, is this. When I was twenty seven and had finished showering, I would towel my body down and use the gym’s hairdryer to sort out my hair. Now, however, I towel my head and use the gym’s hairdryer to sort out my body. I’m so hairy now that when I get out of the bath, I look like I’m wearing a mohair suit. Haven’t started going bald yet, but it’s got to be just a matter of time.
Ask Not For Whom The Balls Toll…They Toll For You
“Just a matter of time…” That’s a phrase that stalks the hallways of every man’s mind once he’s hit forty. Or forty’s hit him. How long before my dick stops working? Not that it’s the tragedy it once was. Viagra, Cialis, Levitra. Once upon a time these would have been the names of rubbish Italian cars.
Now they’re magic little pills. Whack them down your neck and Presto Inflato, you’ve got a boner. Though you do have to wait half an hour or so. It’ll be a pain in the arse when it I do have to resort to sex pills, but nowhere near as bad as what I had to go through to get laid when I was in my twenties.
I Fancy The One With The Smudged Make-Up And The Puke In Her Hair
Back then, getting some sex meant getting drunk. The ladies you needed to meet were all in pubs and nightclubs and they were all boozers. You had to get tanked up to shag them, because there’s few things less sexy to a sober man than a drunk woman. You had to judge how much to have yourself so you wouldn’t appear like a party pooper but still be with it enough to carry on flattering and pulling pigtails in the right proportions. And be able to perform if you got lucky.
You kidded yourself on it was part of the thrill of the chase and that you were having a good time, but it was a fucking nightmare really. In an odd way, I’m looking forward to just popping pill and watching The Daily Show while I’m waiting for it to kick in.
Scream If You Want To Go Faster. Just Mind You Don’t Lose Your False Teeth
Still waiting for my first grey pubic hair. That’s when it’s all going to kick off for me. When there’s snow on your lower slopes and no way back up the hill, there’s only one thing for it. Jump on your sledge and enjoy the ride. Just hang on tight and try to take in as much of the view as you can, because when you crash at the bottom you stay crashed. And smile in the knowledge that the young bucks dancing at the top of the piste will be joining you a lot sooner than they think.
© Copyright Michael Grimes 2013