And guess what? I actually didn’t miss any of it. That was also the moment I realized I’m old. I also realized that it doesn’t really matter. The things that seem like big deals get much less so as you get older. It’s not so much that the things don’t matter, it’s just that culture gets farther from your life.
As we age we all begin the feel that popular culture is moving so fast and that everything is so disposable. But, that’s actually false. The culture hasn’t moved faster, you’ve gotten slower. The prime time for popular culture immersion is between the ages of 15-28. As you move farther away from this prime age, popular culture grows more obtuse and unwelcoming. So, culture seems to move faster, but honestly you’ve just heard about it later than you did when popular culture was made for you and was consumed in earnest.
So, what does any of this mean? It means, that the width and depth of popular culture hasn’t changed, but your width and depth has. Hopefully as we grow up our lives get bigger; family, career, hobbies, responsibilities, and so many other things take a part of your life, you gain a depth in your life. But, during this you also stop paying attention to most of popular culture. You stay interested in the things you find the most important, but the rest kind of slough off like dead skin. You keep up with your favorite teams, music, actors, but you lose track of the new artists and athletes and all the “new” in popular culture.
And you know what? It’s fine. It’s totally fine to not know all the hottest and hippest. In fact, if you’re older and a bit too much in the know, you seem like a grasper and that you are trying to hold on to your your youth I am fine with growing old and I am fine with popular culture leaving me behind. That’s pop culture’s job.