Every year 8 girl thinks they can sing; like how every drunk dad thinks they’re a comedian.
Unfortunately there will come that time when the truth cracks your shiny dream. The moment happened for me, like many other deaths of my self-confidence, in the changing rooms at school.
But I’m glad it died a sweaty, post Hockey death. It would only have added to my repertoire of things I think I can do but really can’t. Like dancing. And ‘bohemian casual’.
So when I watch X Factor or the like, I can’t help but feel sorry for all the awful contestants. It feels a little like a freak show; we watch the naïve 20 Something mutant exhibit their self-delusion. And every time one of them is ripped apart by Simon Cowell, or whoever is imitating him, I’m my year 8 self again.
Now I know everyone goes there voluntarily. And they should be told at some point that they’re never going to be Madonna. And I know everyone understands they will be filmed. And they all understand they might be filmed being rejected and…yeah, yeah.
But it doesn’t stop me feeling sad for these pathetic things, trailing home with trashed dreams.
Do we really need to film this? It’s hard enough for people to form and keep their dreams alive as it is. I can’t think of anything sadder than watching aspirations repeatedly dying. Can’t we just tell our daughters that they’re brilliant, plug our ears with cotton wool, and gently encourage them to take up golf instead?