Thursday 19 September 2019

Millennial Diary

Holly Willoughby
Holly Willoughby

Ciara O'Connor

Figures released last week revealed that a burrito from a Dublin establishment is the fourth most ordered takeaway dish in the world. We're not talking in proportion to the population; this is raw numbers.

According to Deliveroo stats, only a pad thai in Paris, a cheeseburger in London, and a poke bowl in Dubai were ordered more than a Boojum Burrito in Dublin. More people ordered a burrito in Dublin than ordered any one dish in the whole of Hong Kong (population 7.4 million). Little old Ireland may get overlooked on the world stage all too often; but when it comes to takeaway food, we're up there with the biggest cities in the world. It would bring a tear to your eye.

Depending on your age group, you may have questions ranging from ''What's a burrito?'' to ''Don't they get awful dicky tummies after that?'' to ''How soon can I get to Dublin to sample one these delicacies and ensure my cultural relevance?'' or ''Will you sign my petition to shame Boojum into taking guac off its menu in light of recent revelations about the sustainability of avocados? MURDER A CHILEAN FARMER AND DRINK HIS BLOOD WHY DON'T YOU?''

I have been able to think of little else than The Great Dublin Burrito Revelation of 2018. I believe there are a few possibilities to account for this seemingly anomalous entry to Deliveroo's world top five:

1) Literally everything from every other restaurant in Dublin apart from a Boojum burrito is disgusting.

2) Boojum soak their burritos in Champagne.

3) Thanks to the rental crisis, burritos are the ideal food for Dublin millennials to subsist on. We can eat them with our hands, no need for the plates and cutlery that we don't own because there's no space for them in the bedsit we share with three other young professionals.

They are hefty enough that we can eat half now and heat up the other half for breakfast in the microwave that is located at the head of our single bed.

4) Irish people, in their innocence, have convinced themselves that burritos are not a junk food and so order them with reckless abandon.

Burritos are far enough removed from the traditional Irish burger and chips that we can fool ourselves into thinking we're not being naughty: they are not entirely beige! They have a vegetable in them! There are hardly any carbs in them (NB: a carb is a thing you can put butter on, or dip in ketchup) and carbs are bad.

5) Burritos have cross-generational appeal because they are essentially a funny-shaped sandwich. If you blindfold your granny she could conceivably be eating a BLT. Burritos are a Deliveroo the whole family can enjoy, unlike mad bibimbaps (''and what's that when it's at home?'') or Abrakebabra (''Omg Mam, are you trying to kill me?'')

We might never know. All I know is that now I'm hungry.

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Holly Willoughby, Holly Willoughby. Everywhere, all the time: Holly Willoughby. Millennials, who famously have an opinion on absolutely everything, are not sure what to make of Holly Willoughby and her ubiquitous appeal.

We view her with some mistrust: born in 1981, she is on the cusp of millennialhood - perhaps it is her shiny hair which never changes length, or her many children or her lack of social-media meltdowns and general air of having-her-s**t-together that rubs us up the wrong way, makes us feel insecure, attacked.

In certain generations' apparently insatiable passion for Holly Willoughby, millennials may understand why it is that we are such unrelenting disappointments to our parents. Willoughby is the daughter every Irish mother wishes she had: she has a sense of humour (apparently) but isn't a smart-alec. She avoids irony at all costs. She is stylish, but not fashionable: no shapeless smock-sacks and aggressive chunky sandals and tiny sunglasses here. Isn't she lovely? And no-one's seen her cleavage since 2012. She has three lovely children, whom she appears to bring to work. That's the only way women should have it all!

Honestly, I'm not sure I'd actually heard her speak. I have seen clips of her on Facebook, nodding encouragingly/concernedly at various mad people on This Morning. I have seen her Instagram pictures faithfully reproduced daily on online media, a virtual paper doll on which we stick various high-necked mini-dresses, or bewilderingly priced T-shirts. Boomers seem to believe that Willoughby is representative of the youth, our hopes and dreams, or that Holly Willoughby is someone we all have in common. In Holly Willoughby's enormous eyes, I see all my shortcomings and shame. You're killing us, Holly Willoughby.

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Last week, pictures emerged of Caitlyn Jenner on the red carpet with her partner: a 22-year-old aspiring model whom Caitlyn met through their make-up artist and hairstylist.

Somehow, the relationship had crept under my radar - surprising, considering Kim Kardashian doesn't so much as fart without my finding out about it whether I want to or not.

And once I went digging I could see why. For online showbiz news outlets that manage to make huge news out of a woman in a bikini on the beach, or a pregnant woman wearing a dress, the reports of 69-year-old Caitlyn and her child-bride are determinedly unfazed. Like people who claim they ''don't see colour'', journalists don't see that the couple are both gay and trans. In a classic misunderstanding of millennial culture, presumably, they are worried about triggering the snowflakes.

The snowflakes, however, think it would be quite nice for non-hetronormative high-profile relationships to be acknowledged and celebrated. Generally.

But I can't cope with Caitlyn and Sophia at all. I know that what goes on between two consenting adults is their business and their business alone. But oh - that age difference. Forty-seven years.

Sophia, age-wise, is right between Jenner's two youngest daughters Kendall and Kylie. Luckily, the photos of the pair are not as uncomfortable to look at as, say, Mick Jagger and his girlfriends; thanks to lip fillers - that great leveller - both Caitlyn and Sophia (and Kylie and every other Insta queen) look approximately 58.

Sunday Independent

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