Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Colder cold feet...

I watched the first episode of the new Cold Feet last night. Somehow I managed to avoid the first series almost entirely, despite having some of it filmed in my road plus a whole two seconds when one of the male stars – I forget which one – stopped outside my house and my front door appeared on TV.

Of course this was in the nineties and maybe this tale of everyday, upwardly mobile, middle class folk rang a little too true with my own aspirations at that time, or maybe I was just being me.

Back then if everyone was loving and talking about something I would hate and deride it simply because I could. Oh, I so loved being differently the same and of course I was a tiny bit older than the stars of the show and already jaded knowing how their hopes would all shatter and turn to dust in their not too distant fictitious futures.

Only Robert Bathurst was born in the same year as I and those short ten years or so can make such a difference to the world you inhabit. Yes, I lived through the Kennedy assassinations, the Cuban missile crisis, and rickets.

Of course by the time the nineties rolled around I had failed relationships, my optimistic youth had de-optimised itself, I had a divorce behind me, new relationships to deal with and no doubt living in Manchester in a middle management, middle class, position where image was everything (what car do you drive?) made Cold Feet far too close to home. Right outside it to be exact. I guess you might call it highly uncomfortable watching for me back then.

So why, almost twenty years on, am I watching the new Cold Feet?

It’s a question I struggle to answer. But I guess one answer is for the uncomfortable comfort it gives me really. I knew back then that these wunderkind were all heading for a fall despite their aspirations drawing them to a perfect life. We are all going to fall in one way or another at some point. It’s never perfect for long and I guess that’s one of life’s big lessons; it doesn’t stand still. You can plan it, you can even begin to make it happen, but real life has this way of shitting on your head whilst you are trying to live your dreams and that tends to fuck things up completely. Ultimately a fall is coming and there’s no avoiding it.


Sometimes I think about running away and starting over. It wouldn’t take much to make me happier and, as long as I stayed away from the fairer sex, I could live a happy, peaceful and hopefully short and much fulfilled life. My chasing days are over, and if there’s anything left to chase then I’m buggered if I know what it is. What car do I drive? Who gives a flying fuck?

I watched the new Cold Feet and enjoyed watching that group of friends who have lived through the waves and storms, but don’t seem to realise that the hurricane is probably yet to come. Some of their careers have gone, some relationships have soured or become becalmed or emptied, and each character has transformed into an individual living in a world of his or her own making. It seems to me that they seem to be trying to maintain a semblance of belonging, but really they are each lonely and worried about where they are, who they are, and what is coming next.

Perhaps I was better off not watching the first time around and I suppose I really should stop watching this new series now before it poses too many questions. Even after all this time it remains uncomfortable watching and the lives of those characters echo too strongly in my own mind. Of course, I wish them all happy endings, but I can’t see it and I miss not having my future in front of me too.

I can see the fear in their eyes, the boredom, the desperation, the realisation that not very much of before really mattered and even less will matter in the future. I can feel the habit that’s become a responsibility to bother with the needs and opinions of others when really there are needs and opinions of their own to address.

Or is that just me?

What great acting it is though. By the way that’s my daughter in the picture with the stars of the show. She did work experience on the original series set; God knows how, but perhaps that is what made her such a middle class, gin-slinging, upwardly mobile, career person. She really could be a character in Cold Feet ;-)

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