The 2010s According To Me

How do we sum up the last 10 years, we thought. “Ask Fats,” someone suggested. We wish we hadn’t…

Illustration: Joel Benjamin

This decade is 10 years old, which is very old for a decade. We must immediately bludgeon it to death to make way for a new decade. This is the circle of life, as Elton John once lovingly warbled into the soft face of a lion. It’s an odd thing to reminisce about an arbitrary lump of time, but I’m going to do it anyway because my Y-fronts are on slow spin, and until my washing machine finishes de-browning my cruddies, I’ve got nothing better to do.

The 2010s saw the invention of streaming and referendums and Pokémon, all of which definitely never existed before. Lemmy and Bowie and Prince went to their own version of heaven, which are respectively (a) a cloud of amphetamines, (b) the moon and (c) actual heaven (sorry, the Jehovah’s Witnesses were right). Adele sold so many records, production plants melted down members of One Direction just for the raw materials. In more important news, I learnt many new skills, some of them involving spoons, and the price of a Freddo bar went from 23p to slightly more than 23p. Heady times indeed. 

Electronic music has changed beyond all recognition. In 2010, you’d knock up a beat in Ableton and your friend Betty would churn out some lazy vocals about doing a poo at Burning Man. Instant hit. These days, your multi-emoji uber-tunes must fire out six billion hashtagged fractals to trend above the TikTok generation’s endless torrent of puppy-eared dick pics. I have no idea what any of those words mean. What even is a dick? I don’t understand the modern generation.

Now, I realise some of you are, er, let me put this politely, at the hopelessly decrepit end of the age spectrum. You stopped listening to new music in 1979 and are reading this column with an ear-trumpet. You only appreciate old things like Edwardians and steam trains and Radio 4 comedy programmes. Apologies, but to truly understand the 2010s, I have to poke my journalistic finger up two very recent cultural phenomenons. Phenomena? Phenomenii.

Phenom One. Although already famous, Lady Gaga won notoriety when she attended an awards ceremony dressed in wafer-thin ham. She should have clad in fat beefy shanks, which was also the name of the awards host. The decade will be defined by the sight of Gaga falling face-first onto the red carpet, her lazily-sellotaped ham suit launching into the air like a bad meaty swan. Good job she’d pre-slathered in Primula, ensuring a soft landing followed by a distinct guff of cheese and chives. 

Phenom Two. The decade will also be defined by the antics of rapper Lil Teeny Willy, whose tattooed face was all over Instagram. “Brrrp skeeeet spap spap Gucci gang,” posted Lil Teeny Willy in one of his many coded messages to post-millennials, later translated to “ed balls”. All the kids loved him because he talked into his mobile phone sideways like they do on The Apprentice. His career, which consisted of a mixtape recorded onto a single diamante-encrusted memory stick, ended abruptly when he was jailed for shooting an emoji in its tiny face. How the poor thing cried. And laughed. #FreeLilTeenyWilly trended on Google Plus for six minutes.

So there you are: meat dresses and face tattoos. That’s all the 2010s will be remembered for. I can’t think of anything else that started in this decade that’s worthy of comment. *looks at pile of Electronic Sounds* No, that’s it, that’s everything that happened. Time to fish out my soggy pants. You never know – in a decade’s time, I might wash them again.

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