I had Glenn Hoddle now give me Prime

Prime was the creation of KSI and Logan Paul. Image: PA
Prime was the creation of KSI and Logan Paul. Image: PA

As a collective short-term behaviour, the fad is alive and continues to be unwell. Recent stories, videos and posts about the “energy” drink Prime are a case in point. Prior to the weekly shop, parents nationwide ask their children “Is there anything you want?” and I would harbour a suspicion that, bar the odd outlier, not once has the answer come back: “Yes, can you purchase me some coconut water please, Pater?”

Yet due to two TikTokkers/ influencers (whatever that means) Logan Paul and Watford’s own KSI, that is not only what happened, but the desire for said coconut water reached levels unprecedented since the last fad.

Fights broke out in Aldi - which shouldn’t be a surprise - and usually mild-mannered middle-class folk then became obsessed, on behalf of their bairns. Stories emanated of a grand-plus being spent on a 24-crate of said concoction. And with demand already outstripping supply, the fervour grew as the story fed on itself, forcing normally level-headed individuals, such as a family member who shall remain nameless, to set the alarm for 4am, three days in a row, to travel ten miles to the nearest supermarket only to find the already long queues had set an early morning alarm call for no reward.

Bottles of the stuff were then being sold for hundreds on eBay and a secondary market commenced where empty bottles were being sold for a tenner, or £20 and, well, the fervour shows little sign of abating any time soon.

Outraged at the stupidity of such actions and a with a complete lack of understanding, yours truly undertook some self-reflection and realised that this was not a new phenomenon. It has always been, and will continue to be, due to the FOMO (fear of missing out). Don’t need it? Don’t want it? But…they’re all getting it, so why shouldn’t I? Maybe the Prime drink will give me the elixir of never-ending youth or, failing that, will add a little bit of cool to my kid’s chi come the playground on Monday morning.

But was it any different in our youth? I remember collecting Panini football stickers circa 1981, when it was literally all the rage as the got, got, need mantra played out on an hourly basis until you came across the ultimate “need”: the Liverpool FC trefoil crest of which, if rumours were true (which they weren’t) there were only 12 in existence. A frenzy would commence as you offered your 224 swapsies…and a fiver…and a promise to do the seller’s homework for the following two years to become the proud new owner. And then you’d get it, becoming the new playground don until, with that evening’s packet from the local corner shop, you pull two of the trefoils out of the packet and find the next day the fervour had peaked upon your purchase and was now only worth Glenn Hoddle and a packet of Chipstix.

And on it went, year on year: Hacky sacks soon came and went (and no, soaking them in water did little to improve one’s football ability), Garbage Pail Kids, the Rubik’s Cube, Furbys, Pogs, fanny packs (i.e. bum bags) and dungarees (of which I cringe at the thought of my Pepe ones) all went atmospheric before a sudden and catastrophic demise, and then, fast forward a few years and the new wave included fidget spinners, Pokémon and squishies, leading us up to today’s Prime incumbent.

It’s a sad indictment on society I thought as I drove around St Albans last weekend undertaking my middle-aged errands before, unplanned, ending up in Spar for a baguette and a tin of tuna. The couple in front in the queue began hugging at the till as he held aloft a bottle of Prime which he had been handed from the security of behind the counter, as I suddenly felt the fear of missing out. “Got any Prime mate?” I unexpectedly found myself asking, to which he replied in the positive and pulled two fresh bottles from under the counter as if he were a middle-class crack dealer and I walked out with a product I don’t need, don’t want, but, hell, I deserve it as much as the next man, don’t I?