Friday, October 30, 2009

A snapshot of the North of England, and an inadvertantly beautiful metaphore for teenage life.

Watching this video, I can't help get slightly sentimental, and feel a certain connection with where I'm from, in a way similar I imagine to the feeling that Necro may get when he hears about someone getting raped in New York. This felling is not about the girl or the baby, but a huge sense of kinship I feel with the running kid at the beginning of the video (not the fat one holding the phone). His look of wide eyed desperation to see this momentous event, that he can tell his friends "I was there", for years to come. I also relate to his status as "outsider", or "watcher", as he tries to hurtle over his classmates to get a better view, and then get shouted at by some teacher or self appointed "bossy girl" to "give her some room" or some shit. He is neither the girl, nor (not fucking likely) the baby's father. In stead he is just a casual observer, looking for something to talk about, chilling with his early pubescant bros, before school ends and they go to intimidate the general public on a bus/fast food restaurant and then go home to dinner and ultra violent video games. They have no female friends, but the second one of them gets an extremely pedestrian girlfriend, the rest of the group will be wrought with betrayal/jealousy. And here they are, living parallel lives to this girl who is already pregnant at what can't be more than 15. She is the "in" crowd, a main character, a protagonist or antagonist to the dramas that unfolds in and around the school. The boy, and so many like him, the younger me included, are just extras. We watch, and with fascination, even though we know it is very unlikely we will ever get our own "15 minutes of fame". There is just nothing about us worth talking about. We shall probably get our first girlfriend around 16, loose our virginity at 18, too late for anyone to care/congratulate us on/spread rumours about. We just hover around the "In" crowd, letting them explore life first, taking notes, before we experiment ourselves with sex/drugs/fashion. They are the real time Soap Opera, taking place right before our eyes, while we live through tv, film and video games. TV lets us look in on the lives of more "In" crowds, with lives that have a compelling narrative. At around 16 we will probably combine with a group of girls, of similar looks/social standing/lack of charisma/lack of life experience. Together we make a new larger, more diverse mature group, and explore life together, under the radar of the wider social circle. We have good and bad times, romances are born and die, and our old video games lie largely forgotten. We feel that our lives are finally beginning to resemble TV, although no one cares by now, except us. After a few years, our group will explode, as we go to uni, and we will probably grow further and further away from each other. We never had any real connection to each other, even when we thought we were in love with some girl we dated, we just clung together because we had no one else. There is just nothing about us worth talking about.............yet.

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