I’m in bed…it’s 10 o’clock and I’m in bed. The worst thing is I am actually tired, I could fall asleep right now and be happy. But no, I am being shamed, by myself that is. I am flicking through Netflix looking at all of the shitty American sitcoms that I haven’t seen but will inevitably binge watch at some point in the near future. My book, which is currently being used as a coaster is glaring at me- judging (well, if a book could stare…you know what I mean).
I haven’t gone mad (I don’t think) and I know books don’t have the capabilities to see or pass judgement but I still feel shameful. Like I should be reading a political commentary or a long complex novel instead of re-watching a series that I only finished a couple of weeks ago (if you haven’t seen Easy yet it’s on Netflix and it’s amazing). Why is it that some pass times are seen as respectable or acceptable and others are seen as vapid? I know in some cases that some activities are wholly pointless. I am the queen of reality television after all and I’m talking about the really rubbish stuff.
I had never really thought about the pressure we put on ourselves to spend our free time in a meaningful way until I had an argument earlier this week. Sat on the train home I was scrolling aimlessly through twitter (another one of my preferred pass times). It was my first week back after a very long Christmas break, I was shattered and just needed a bit of me time to not think about life admin, emails or deadlines.
This just so happened to be the day that Queen B announced she was having twins. I was tweeting, messaging, wriggling ferociously in excitement. That’s when the guy opposite me asked what was up. He was sort of attractive and reading the Guardian comment section so obviously I immediately planned our wedding and went shy.
I admitted that I was so excited because of the Beyoncé news and he sort of scoffed at me. That is when I knew the engagement would have to be called off- I cannot love anyone who has not accepted Beyoncé into their life. After a moment of silence I asked what was so funny and he turned and said “It’s just so vapid and sad that there is so much going on in the world, terrible things and people find excitement in a random women having children.”
Wow, so did I miss that newsflash? Are we no longer allowed to be happy or interested in anything considered low brow by a twenty something year old, hipster on a train between Manchester and Liverpool?
The worst thing is I slightly agreed with him. Yes there are so many important things happening in the world, both good and bad; the women’s march, Trumps government losing the appeal over the travel ban, increased political discussion and representation of voices. But they don’t discredit the little pleasures like the 6 Nations starting or Beyoncé having twins.
We put so much pressure on ourselves- be it at work or uni or at home. We don’t need to bring this stress and competition into our private life as well. It’s so incredibly important to be aware of what is going on but watching the news 24/7 would get pretty bloody depressing. You should allow yourself a few guilty pleasures, I know I am going to. Now, I will go back to scrolling through images of famous instagram cats and speculating what the Queen will call her offspring.