Friday, January 21, 2011


“If you are 40, or older, you might think this is hilarious! Now that I'm over the ripe old age of forty, I can't help but look around and notice the youth of today. You've got it so easy! I mean, compared to my childhood, you live in a damn Utopia! And I hate to say it, but you kids today, you don't know how good you've got it!”
--The beginning to an odious, anonymous, “funny” email I recently received, which then went on to explain itself in sparkling, witty bullet points

Note to anonymous email writer: Hardy har har. I am over 40 and NOT amused. Kids don’t have it easier today, they have it harder. I could go on forever, but this half dozen points should suffice.

1. Back in my day, we lived in a democracy – there was at least an illusion we were all equal and no matter our socio-economic status, had an equal say in what happened (well, that is, except for blacks, women, gays, etc., ok, I guess things are better today) Nowadays we live in a plutocracy, so if you’re not born with a silver spoon in your mouth or don’t luck into some major money, good luck with access to the people who make the decisions that will shape your life.

2. I mean, when I was growing up, I had a dream that I would someday own a house! And no, despite my mother’s wishes, I wasn’t going to be a doctor or lawyer (or banker)! Do kids nowadays think they can afford a house? And even if they do, what kind of swindle/con will they have to bend over for to get it?

3. When I was growing up, I thought I could follow some simple rules (not that I did, mind you) and then enjoy a semi-comfortable life. Many people I knew did just that. Today, there are no simple rules for a semi-comfortable life. It’s gonna be a major struggle that will go on and on and on. Get used to it, kids: You’re gonna have to work harder and longer for that semi-comfortable life.

4. A lot of my friends couldn’t wait to support themselves and get out of their parents’ house as soon as possible, and they did just that right outta high school. I had a coupla years of college under my belt before I made the move, but the point is I could do it. Sure, I had to manage three part time jobs to make it, but I COULD make it because it didn’t cost as much as it does today!

5. In my day, when people tried to bully you, you learned to stand up for yourself, either with your fists, your wits, or a combination of the two. Today, the bullying is supported by technology, and is insidious, making you a fool in front of scores of people, parading your shame in front of everyone at a particularly vulnerable time in your life.

6. AND, even if you do want to face your tormentors today, you need to be armed, and I don’t mean with a baseball bat or even a knife; better go down to your local gun shop: if you’re gonna track down the bully you better show up packin’!

7. Oh, and have you checked how much money kids need to even get into college these days ?

Yeah, anonymous email writer, your patronizing, cringe-worthy list of how great kids have it today is side-splitting. Hardy frackin' har har har.

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