28/06/2013 13:29 BST | Updated 28/08/2013 06:12 BST

Seven Ways Festival Season Prepares You for Parenthood


Going to festivals and staying up for three consecutive nights might on first glance not seem the best preparation for starting a family but there are definitely some benefits to be had from rolling around a field smelling of day old cider.

1. You are used to all your money disappearing.

When you party hard it is customary to wake up the next day with no money and no idea where your money went.

Never mind, you tell yourself, at least I had a good time and I still have both my kidneys.

And a giant pair of comedy glasses... where the hell did they come from?

When you have children your money disappears in a similar way but you have not always had a good time. Sometimes you have had a terrible time. And you have spent all your money on having a terrible time.

And more importantly you have not even been out.

You have simply spunked all your cash on nappies, baby wipes and nipple cream (which is nowhere near as much fun as it sounds).

2. Coping strategies for sleep deprivation.

Festivals are perfect practice for learning to function on no sleep.

If you think not going to bed all weekend then rocking into work on Monday morning is hardcore imagine repeating this for about three to six months.

Every morning is that Monday morning. And the boss is in a bad mood because her favourite ice cube melted.

3. How to handle repetitive conversations about boring topics.

You remember that night you spent seven hours arguing with some loser about experimental German techno?

Or all those times you tried to work out the answer to the question 'If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?' (Potatoes. The answer is always potatoes.)

Good news! Those hours we're not a total waste of time they were in fact ideal preparation for talking to a two-year-old.

What's that?

It's an old lady in a wheelchair.

What's that?

Still an old lady. Still in a wheelchair.

What's that?

An angry old lady in a wheelchair.

What's that?

OK love you're not that old.


Right we're going.

4. You are not embarrassed by people wearing ridiculous outfits.

My two-year-old is currently dressed in a pretty flowery summer dress.

And stripy knee high woolly socks.

And a hooded cardi she insists on wearing either back to front or upside down.

Basically all two year old's dress as though they are at Glastonbury. All year round.

5. Valuable experience looking after the helpless.

On any night out there is always one person who takes it too far and requires looking after.

So next time you get stuck in the corner of the field with your mate who can't walk, talk or control their own bowels realise that this is what having a baby is like.

Except if you had a real baby you would also have baby wipes to clean the sick off your legs instead of having to wipe them clean on the grass.

6. How to live in chaos.

You know those pictures of trashed homes in the aftermath of a teenage party that was posted on Facebook?

I have two small children my house looks like that all the time.

If I invited 200 drunken teenagers round it could only improve things. Hopefully they would take away some of the plastic crap and maybe, if I'm really lucky, a child.

7. You can handle the dreadful smells.

If you can use a festival toilet you can change a nappy. Both are deeply unpleasant experiences which require a liberal application of that weird evaporating hand sanitiser.

Just as there are apocryphal stories about terrible festival toilet experiences there are equally harrowing nappy tales. But to my knowledge Calvin Harris has never been found trapped in a nappy full of shit (insert your own joke here).

I'm sure there are other things I'm missing out (my memory is a bit on the hazy side) so let me know what positive life lessons you have taken from a misspent youth.