The comfort of being 20 going on 45

In terms of my aspirations to become the most boring person I know, 2006 had an auspicious start. While my brother celebrated in Edinburgh and my parents were out getting drunk with the neighbours, I sat at home and dithered at length over the programme with which I should usher in the new year. Should it be the BBC extravaganza, presented by, among others, the incomparable Andrew Marr? Or would it be better to watch The Year We Won The Ashes? In the end, I went for the latter. It was only right, given that the cricket was pretty much my highlight of 2005. So, when my parents staggered in some time after 1am, they found me cheering loudly at the television as Andrew Strauss reached his century in the fifth Test. Oh, the memories. When I finally went to bed, I was still so overjoyed that England had won that it took me ages to get to sleep. Honestly, it’s pathetic.

Well, I say pathetic, but I don’t mean it. This is the year that I turn twenty-one, after all. It’s therefore entirely appropriate that I should embrace the middle aged person inside myself. Laundry is the closest thing I have to a hobby; I quite want to take up knitting, if only I could find someone to teach me. My favourite part of the day is when I sit down in the evening to watch the Channel Four news, to see what tie-and-socks combination Jon Snow is sporting.

My friends keep telling me that I need to break out of the ‘ comfort zone’. Many seem to think I should feel ashamed. “You’re not even middle-aged,” exclaimed one housemate, “you’re more like… approaching retirement!” “Ah well,” I replied, waving my hand. I have no problem admitting it. My days of careless hedonism (was I carelessly hedonistic? I don’t remember) are behind me. From now on, I’m a committed Radio 4 listener (average age: fifty-four), and proud of it.

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