Of course, it would be easy to shrug and say not keeping up with the Kardashians is part of growing up. Maybe I’m just too old. So much pop culture is youth culture, and it’s easy to let The Hunger Games or Zoella pass you by with a cynical shrug. Yet some people manage it: I recently found out my great aunt is on Snapchat. Worse, last week she posted a funny parody of a music video on her Facebook page before I’d even heard of the singer in question.Oh noes! Why has this awful situation come about?
I think I am suffering from a mild form of chronophobia: fear that time is moving so fast I’ll never be able to catch up. When it comes to the tide of culture, I am not waving but drowning. And I can pinpoint the moment this started: 18 months ago, when my daughter was born. Suddenly my free time was slashed, and more often than not I chose to spend it staring into space contemplating my exhaustion. All the same, I never expected that, having dropped out, tuning in again would be so hard.Ah! Right. Now it all makes sense. You had a real job to do, so couldn’t waste time on fripperies.
Presumably, you’ve now managed to offload the kid onto a nanny and can resume your celeb-watching?
For those of us desperately trying to #stayrelevant, there are apps that tell us exactly which cultural events we are missing. The old fear that others have a better social life than I do has turned into anxiety that everyone is more up to date than me.Poor, poor you…
For me, the best reason not to throw in the towel is that pop culture mirrors our society’s values and assumptions just as much as art does, and it’s very timeliness is why it matters. Losing track of it feels like retreating from the bigger conversation about what we think is important, and why.We know exactly what you think is important, Homa.