As a thirty-five year old man, there are certain social rules that I am expected to abide by. I am supposed to have a well-paying, respectable job. My mortgage is to be paid on time, as well as any other bills I have due. My hair should be well-groomed, my shirts clean and pressed. If I wish to play a game, it should involve a little pockmarked ball and a pristine field of green grass.
As an adult, I am not supposed to play with action figures, nor am I to collect them and display them on my wall. The world will mock me if I dress up as Darth Vader and spend a weekend in a convention center pretending to Force choke random strangers. I can’t watch cartoons. I can’t play video games and I sure-as-Hades can’t get super excited when I hear the tinkle of an ice cream truck.
Why are we, as grown ups, expected to eschew all of the things that we enjoyed as children in favor of the games and activities that society has deemed more mature? Why are those that enjoy these things looked at with disdain from their peers? Is there something wrong with us? Are we nothing more than Peter Pan and his Lost Boys, cursed to live our lives in a perpetual state of adolescence, content to offer little to the world?
My answer is no. We perform the same functions as any other adults. We have families, and we hold a wide range of jobs to provide for those families. We have a plethora of opinions on politics, world events, and religion. And contrary to stereotype, many of us enjoy golf and other things the so-called “adults” prefer to indulge.
I would argue that it is the immature people who impact the world in the greatest ways. It takes a childlike mind and sense of wonder to envision the world in its majesty and all the potential it holds. We are the innovators, the free thinkers, and much of the progress this world has seen is due to those of us that approach life with youthful vigor.
I have met many adults in my three decades of existence, and I don’t care much for them. They are a boring, unimaginative lot that slog through life with the enthusiasm of an old brick in an untended field. I will take my immature, nerdy friends over them any day.
So never feel ashamed when somebody makes fun of your childish passions. Revel in the knowledge that while Peter Pan might never grow up, he will always defeat Captain Hook.
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