ADVENTURES IN LOFTS & THE APPEAL OF THE UNKNOWN
FUCK THE WORLD CUP – GO CHECK OUT A LOFT INSTEAD
Well, with all this excitement about the World Cup and England being as terrible as one might expect – I feel that I should assist the nation with a public service. That service is to bring you all down to earth with a full and frank chat about why Lofts are great and will always be exciting to go into!
Now, on the face of it – you might think I am mad. Perhaps you think I should keep to my latest obsession of posting Lomo photographs and stick to what I know rather than delving into the world of moribund topics.
But no – hold forth on your judgements and behold some revelations about the world of lofts and other childhood places of intrigue.
Ever since I was a kid, certain places have always excited me. Whilst at the core, I always knew they would probably be disappointing – the mystery of what lay behind certain doors or up the top of certain ladders could not fail to instill a sense of wonder in my simple mind. Amazingly, now in my 30’s, this effect still takes hold! Lofts, Cellars, Disused buildings – any place that is rarely visited by human feet and is behind a closed door holds a certain appeal.
THE MOST EXCITING LOFT I EVER WENT INTO
So, imagine the joy that fell upon my simple face, when I had the chance to go into the loft above the hall at the college I work at.
This met the brief on a number of different points:
1) It was a loft
2) It was at a college (and the place I work) so held even more excitement and mystery
3) I had to climb onto the roof to get in there and as any self respecting person knows, going on a roof is a guaranteed good time.
WHAT MYSTERY LIES BEHIND A LONG CLOSED DOOR?
So was this mystery place as exciting as I had hoped? Well, no – obviously not, but that is kind of besides the point.
Up until you open the door, the sense of mystery still remains – what lays beyond it is unknown. Rarely do people go up there, so there is always a chance of finding something incredible, unseen by eyes for many decades.
In my limited experience of exploring such locations, I admit that I have never found anything exciting. A bag of cement ( gone hard) or some smokeless fuel perhaps, but never anything that could really live up to my initial high expectations.
THE GOONIES EFFECT
So what is the appeal when the reality rarely meets expectation?
Well, this is the point of my post (besides showing some moderately interesting photographs I took up there).
I blame it on The Goonies. Not just The Goonies – but that whole kids adventure genre, where a romping good yarn begins by finding something in a loft or a barn or a run down derelict property. You know the sort – kids have hard life as parents are cruel – kids want something to break the monotony of suburban existence – kids find shed/barn/building/loft/cellar and go in to look around – a few random things scare them and then they stumble across a map/treasure/hobo/alien/monster/criminal – there begins an adventure that 1) gives them some excitement 2) makes them realise their home town is great 3) makes them realise their friends are great and their enemies are actually there friends 4) makes them realise their parents are great; and sometimes 5) gives them some form of riches that set them up for life.
Now, anyone who grew up not looking for such adventures, clearly had a miss spent childhood – as building dens and going into lofts looking for maps is clearly how one should spend ones formative years rather than being stuck behind a X-station-wee-advanced playing video games.
And that is my theory. It is rather simple and a bit rubbish I know, but a theory none the less. That excitement instilled in us as children, that a Famous Five style adventure is entirety feasible and is actually quite likely to happen if you go to places you shouldn’t and explore places that few men tread, stays with us to adulthood.
Of course, I speak in the plural here, when I can only really account for my own actions. Although nothing of consequence was found during my loft adventure, part of me did still believe it was possible I would find something exciting! And whilst that belief, no matter how small, rest in your soul – child like excitement at doing rather unexciting things will remain!
Before I go, I would like to share with you a funny loft story from when I was younger. Call me a strange kid, but sometimes I used to go into the loft just for larks. No real goal in mind, just an excuse to clamber up and have a look around – after all, who knows what could be up there. Anyway, one such day, as I stuck my head through the hatch, I saw my brother. But he was meant to be at work – doing his Saturday job at the local shop. I was rather confused and slightly shocked at seeing his face staring back at me. My immediate thought was he had been sacked and didn’t want to tell my parents so was hiding in the loft so he could pretend he had been at work. I quickly asked him what he was doing, to which I received no reply. It was then I realised I was looking at my own reflection in a mirror which had been placed just by the hatch. What a fool I felt. True if not sad story!