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I’ve noticed recently that I’ve had a tendency to write things that paint people in our age in a positive (or at least humorously silly) light, which is good because we take way too much shit from old people who were bigger assholes when they were our age than we could ever hope to be. However, I don’t think it’s fair for me to just take a totally one-sided view of my group of age-similar degenerates, especially since so many of you irk me on a daily basis. Plus, there are some things we all (but mostly you people) do on a daily basis that we really need to work on.
1. Texting real conversations
I’m not talking about the whole “these damn kids, always on their phones” bullshit. We do a pretty good job, for the most part, of using our devices during lulls in activity and putting them away during human interaction. Mostly. What I’m talking about is this insane trend of having long, emotional, drawn-out conversations via text. Whether it’s a couple having a fight or a guy/girl upset that the guy/girl they were seeing is no longer interested or two friends arguing over something important, it seems like we’re having these big, important conversations via text, which isn’t just impersonal, it’s inefficient! I’ve had so many girls ask me a super loaded question and I just groan because I know that in order to properly answer her with the proper amount of contextualization, I’m gonna be typing away for the next six hours. I’m not even suggesting that we should have all these conversations in person or over the phone because I like the idea of having the time to collect your thoughts and not say anything stupid. It also really helps if you know you’re in the wrong and you’ve gotta figure out how you’re gonna worm your way out of trouble. But for fuck’s sake, can we switch to email or IM for the big stuff, please? I have other things to do besides placate you, little miss “we went on one date that was sorta okay and now you wanna know what the deal is” lady.
I swear to God, half of the people my age have to be functionally illiterate because I can’t even remember the last person I talked to who had heard of any book ever. Look, I’m not exactly the model of a voracious reader. I used to go through more books in a month than I do now in a year, but I slightly (barely) make up for it by reading stuff online. Articles, columns, oral histories, Wikipedia, science journals, satire…anything that’s well-written and funny/intriguing, I’ll give it a go. But when I talk to most people my age, it’s like they’ve never read a thing in their lives. They have just as many opinions about things as I do, the only difference is that it’s based on “a thing my friend showed me,” or even more bullshitish, “my uncle works in [fill in the blank profession related to the debate].” I’m not saying you need to show up to the bar with a bibliography of works you’re prepared to cite and argue in favor of. Just fucking inform yourself, pal.
3. Indecision about dating
You know that feeling you used to get when you talked to a girl once and you couldn’t even imagine wanting to have a crush on anyone else? What the fuck happened to that? I swear, even the best relationships currently around me started with one of my friends being like, “I mean, she’s cool, I just don’t know if I…I get that she’s…eh fuck it, let’s see where it goes.” Doesn’t exactly make for a great story to tell the kids does it? “Hey Buster, did I ever tell you that me and your mom were just kinda sleeping together and casually doing our own thing and then one day figured we might as well give it a try, just for the hell of it?” I don’t know if it’s all the options out there (like online dating) or just a latent fear of commitment as children of a divorced generation, but it seems like EVERYONE is reticent to put a label on ANYTHING anymore. I’m not saying you have to make it Facebook official and fly her home to meet the family, but is it really that big of a leap to just go with the phrase “girlfriend”? It’s not like you were out scoring a metric ton of sweet trim on the side during this whole “unlabeled” phase of your relationship anyway.
4. Jumping to conclusions
Our generation loves having causes. I don’t blame us, really. Every other generation had one big thing to get angry about which, in hindsight, was something that really needed to be addressed. But for some reason, we haven’t really found ours. Oh I know, gay marriage, de-escalation of the drug war, lessening of global conflict, all that stuff. But we’re trending away from those issues anyway. We just have to age out the Baby Boomers first. Lock those dummies away in nursing homes once and for all and we’ll be doing much better. But in the meantime, it seems like any sort of event that even smells like a cause gets latched onto by protest-hungry young people. Take the whole Hobby Lobby thing. It happened, literally, on both sides of the aisle. HOBBY LOBBY HATES WOMEN. Well that’s just stupid. HOBBY LOBBY IS A BASTION OF ETHICS THAT STANDS AGAINST THE IMMORALITY OF OUR TIME. Definitely not. HOBBY LOBBY WON’T PROVIDE ANY BIRTH CONTROL. It’s more complicated than that. HOBBY LOBBY DESERVES TO PICK AND CHOOSE HOW THEY SERVE HEALTHCARE BASED ON RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. Also more complicated than that. What was my opinion? Don’t worry about it. See, I’m reasonable enough to hold off on making any radical claims one way or another about something until I’ve analyzed the case made by both sides, which is something I can’t say for most of you ding dongs out there. My point is, chill out on the metaphorical torches and pitchforks. I’m tired of everyone getting riled up every three weeks or so over something that’s usually just status quo maintenance. You people are fucking sensitive.