It occurs to me more and more lately that I’m not as young as I think I am, despite my hip dress sense and my love of modern music and extreme sports. I do like trance and hip hop music, as well as modifying my car.
In some respects, it’s a very stark wake-up call that I can’t be young forever and that I can’t do some of the things I used to do, like extreme sports, clubbing then drinking all night with my friends, racing my motorcycle, etc… all things I haven’t done in at least 7 years. I guess we all have these “eureka” moments where we realise that maturity and wisdom have finally caught up with us. While I have spent most of the last ten years refusing to get older, I’m finding a lot of things that millennial do are strange or downright weird to me, and this makes the transition into being an old(er) man a bit easier.
It’s little things that are slowly making me realise that I’m getting older. In fact, I’m starting to turn into a bit of a grumpy old man. I’m looking at the things that my children’s generation are into and thinking to myself WTF? It’s not just one thing in particular, really, it’s lots of things. The television programs they watch and find entertaining, the music they do and don’t like, the role models they have and worst of all the mentality of “I’ve got a YouTube channel with some followers so I’m going to be a famous millionaire by the time I’m 30”. That aside, let me look at these things individually and I’ll explain this grumpy old man’s take on them.
The quality of popular TV has become consistently worse. We now have an onslaught of reality-based drivel, like Big Brother, Love Island, Geordie Shore and TOWIE, which just show the younger generation that you can be a thick, talentless individual and still be rich and “famous”. I mean, really, some of these so-called famous people are so stupid, a Barbie or Ken doll (whom these celebs aspire to look like) would have more common sense.
Unfortunately, children look up to these people as role models. Surprisingly, in this day of personal computers in ‘phones, watches, etc, the younger generation who have a world of information in their pockets are not getting smarter; in fact, it’s quite the opposite. Here are some genuine pearls of wisdom I’ve come across:
“Why do women never have to take a DNA test to see if the child’s theirs?”
“Where is the 2014 Brazil World Cup being held?”
As a result of these so-called celebrities, the younger generation think that if they create a YouTube channel, and get some followers, they will get rich without having to do any hard work. This is, in part, due to social attitudes amongst their peers, but it’s also partly our fault as the older generation. We told them they could do anything, they just had to want to do it. This, alongside the “everyone gets a medal for taking part” has left us with a generation of youngsters with no motivation or drive.
As for the music, don’t get me wrong, I’m not stuck in the Brit pop and grunge era of the 90’s or older. In fact, I listen to lots of different music from The Doors and Hendrix right through to Eminem and Bring Me The Horizon. My gripe with youngsters and music is twofold: Firstly, the majority of their music is not organic, it’s manufactured – basically it’s some kids being told how to dress, what to sing, etc. I’m not saying we didn’t have that in our time, but it was very rare.
The other thing is the attitude towards older music. My youngest once said, while hearing Jimi Hendrix, “What’s this rubbish?“… well, I informed her that without this “rubbish” she wouldn’t have the music she has today. The other brilliant faux-pas was when a popular American rapper teamed up with Paul McCartney (of the Beatles). The rapper’s fans went crazy, saying how good it was to give “this Paul guy” his big break, or that Paul’s career is now going to explode thanks to said rapper. I thought it was satire but apparently not… they actually thought Paul McCartney was a newbie.
It’s after looking at all this that I realise that, as much as I’d like to be thought of as being young for years to come, I’m actually happy to be getting old. I know this rant makes me seem like a grumpy old man, but I’m a grandparent who’s moved to the coast to enjoy his later life, so I guess I am allowed to have finally matured into a grumpy old man. As someone once said, I used to be “with it”, but then they changed what “it” is, so now “it” seems weird and scary to me.
You may well laugh, but it will happen to you. Be assured of that!
Stay Safe X