I think I’m fucking up

Green day.jpg

As the chorus to Green Day's famous song Basket Case rolls around, my hands are high in the air with 3,000 other people around me and as usual, we all change the lyrics to shout in unison - I think I'm fucking up.

Because, ‘I think I’m cracking up’ just doesn’t seem to do our angst and frustration any justice. As I look into the faces of the twenty something’s surrounding me there’s frustrations seeping out of every pore, but there’s also a reckless abandon there. An absolute joy in shouting out your failures. It’s almost glorious!

Because it feels like everything is so far out of our control, and because we're not doing it the way our parents did it, and we're definitely not doing it the way the baby boomers did it, there’s nothing much else to do but scream at the top of your lungs that you’re a mess. Whether you are or not, there’s a constant feeling of failure that follows my generation; that we’re somehow doing it wrong. All you have to do it talk to anyone over the age of 45 and you’re inundated with questions of marriage, property and babies.

Which honestly, is a joke. Most of my friends are single and we sit and laugh at the idea of getting a foot on the property ladder. We just about manage to get our toes in the door of the local butcher once a week.

While some of our generation may be buying toasters with their significant others, you’re lucky if you can find someone you can bear to sit through an awkward drink with, and even then, it’s touch and go whether they actually turn up in the first place. Either that or you’re getting freindzoned faster than you can blink and while your friends are there for you, they tend to draw the line at picking out kitchen appliances with you.

You’re basically left counting your pennies and wondering if you can push the boat out to afford lamb twice in one week, most probably as you wait for your Tinder date to turn up while you try to explain to some member of your family that a baby just really isn’t on the agenda right now.

In a world of tech start ups with painfully young CEOs, and a generation of pop stars not long out of the nursery, you watch the wealthy flit across your screen and you can’t help but wonder where the hell you went wrong. 

All it takes is a little bit of perspective and a pause on the Hollywood dramatics to realise that we're not doing too badly. Our blessings are many, and in the grand scheme of shelter, food and comfort, we're in the top percentile. 

But as we crouch beneath a few golden generations who look down on us with raised eyebrows and ask us where our white picket fences are – it’s easy to measure yourself by their standards and believe we’re not a success. Which is why it feels so good to scream about your apparent failures at the top of your lungs; head high and your middle finger even higher. 

 

Salma El-Wardany