Monday 29 July 2013

Quoth the Scotsman | Charlie Human on The Illusion of Maturity

Brace yourself for the most disgusting thing I've ever uttered in the four years I've been blogging on The Speculative Scotsman.

Are you ready?

Next year, I'm turning 30.

Horror of horrors, huh? Well, it seems as much to me at least.

If teaching children has taught me one thing, it's that anyone over 18 is, and I quote, "old." Thing of it is, I don't feel a great deal different than I did a decade ago—excepting the eye strain and the back pain. I'm the same soul, but my body betrays me. The bastard!

On that note, a quote that touches on the same subject. It's from Charlie Human's debut, Apocalypse Now Now:
"You know David Copperfield the illusionist, right? He did this one trick where he walked through the Great Wall of China. They made a huge thing of it, attached heart rate monitors to him, in case he got 'stuck' inside the stone. He walked through and the wall went all stretchy, but the whole time you know it's all crap, it's just an illusion that you want to believe is real." 
At this stage I have no idea where Ronin is going with this but I decide just to go with it. I nod. 
"Well, that's what becoming an adult is like," Ronin continues. "You think there's this great dividing line between child and adult, you're brought up believing that you're gonna do this trick, right, walk through the wall between the two, become an adult. But you get to the other side and you realise it's just an illusion, there was no wall, just some smoke and mirrors. There is no line between old and young, the only things that mark your passing are the things that go wrong—the car accidents, cancers and heart attacks." 
That's Ronin's idea of a motivational speech and strangely, in a way, it works. After all, if I'm going to die, it's good to know that most of what I'm going to be missing out on is mortgages, waiting in traffic and misunderstanding my wife. Sure, hopefully there'd also be threesomes in hot tubs, hoverboards and the singularity, by weighed against the absolute certainty of the mundane nature of real life it all somehow looks less attractive. (pp.252-253)
Apocalypse Now Now will be published by Century Press in the UK in early August. I'll be posting my review of it soon. In the interim, suffice it to say I'm a fan, man!

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