I KNOW I’M GREAT – JUST ASK MY PARENTS!

There was the Greatest Generation – the people who fought and died for freedom during World War II. Then came the Baby Boomers – the children of the men and women who fought and died for freedom during World War II. Baby Boomers embraced free love, LSD, and Boone’s Farm Apple Wine. Many Boomers would argue that being at Woodstock was like storming Normandy, but with better music.  Stay away from the brown acid…

 

The Gen-Xers were next, followed by Generation Y, but now, according to a couple of researchers, and to every single one of this generation, it’s all about the Millennials. If it isn’t about you, it isn’t about anyone. It’s hard to argue with this but I’m here to help you out. I want to help you feel better about yourself, though I’m confident that most of your parents have already seen to this. For the few of you whose self-esteem can’t be boosted by a Bliss Spa membership, or a college Study Abroad program that allows you to both help feed starving Ethiopians and also get course credit, the following tips are for you…

 

REDUCE YOUR TEXTING “FOOTPRINT”

There are only a few instances where the need to text is imperative, i.e., not while navigating the jam-packed streets of New York, exiting subway cars, walking through revolving doors, riding on escalators, standing on line when I’m behind you,  waiting for you to “step lively” so that my day can proceed.  This also goes for restaurants, Broadway shows, Off and Off-Off Broadway shows,  (except for Blue Man Group or Stomp, as someone should always be disturbing the cast and audience  — in short, stop whenever your need to text exceeds my need to not want to slap you.  These are the only texts you should ever need to use.

 

  1. “My H2O just broke” (because god forbid you say “water” – that’s so old school).
  2. “My leg is on fire”
  3. “Am being chased by ISIS – no, not Lord Grantham’s yellow lab, the other ISIS (binge-watch Downton Abbey).

 

Let’s face it – “you can’t think and chew gum at the same time” didn’t become a cliché because you can think and chew gum at the same time. Ergo, you cannot walk and text at the same time. Did you know that the rate of functional illiteracy rises proportionately with the number of times you text each day? I can’t see the screen of your smart phone or “ intellectually engaged” tablet and I’m not clairvoyant but I know that you are writing in acronyms. You can probably neither spell nor define “acronym,” because you have no mastery of the English language, so I will help you. “#SOBORED,” is not a word.

 

MIND THE APP

You need another app like you need another nostril.  Don’t you have anything better to do while waiting for the bus? Wouldn’t anything be better than checking your MTA “app?”  Where is the M104? How many 5ths of a mile is it from here? How many traffic lights are there between 58th Street and Broadway and 42nd Street and Avenue of the Americas? Are they synced? If two trains leave Grand Central Station and one is carrying a 45-lb bag of Mighty Dog Chubby Dog Kibble, and the other train will get to Cleveland on the first Thursday after we “spring forward” to Daylight Savings Time, is there an app for that?  How about a “What-the-fuck-am-I-doing?” app?  You don’t need an app for that.

 

Here’s the thing of it – you have APP-OCD. It’s like a substance abuse problem, without the fun of abusing a substance. Unlike jeggings and sweatpants, your brain doesn’t expand to absorb all of the junk you’re feeding it. So for every Epicurious or HauteLook app you’ve downloaded, that’s one less Russian novel you’ll be able to absorb. I take that back. You’re a millennial – you wouldn’t be able to understand Anna Karenina without flashcards. Or emojis. In fact, I don’t understand why you use the acronym, “RTM,” when one of skills requires the ability to read.

 

STOP BINGE-WATCHING

It’s a terrible term. You never binge-read. You don’t binge-think. What don’t you do in order to watch 62 episodes of “Breaking Bad,” in one weekend?  Patience is a virtue. In the 1980s, we were more than happy to wait an entire summer to find out who killed JR.  Having something to look forward to gives you – well, something to look forward to. Cramming in all of anything into your head as fast as you can is – well – let me make this visual for you. During the summer, Coney Island  hosts its annual Hotdog-Eating contest. Next time. instead of just checking on “huffpost” to see who won – force yourself to watch every minute of the contest. See Joey Chestnut soak 61 hotdog buns in water, then shove them down his throat, followed by the dogs and some condiments in ten minutes.  That’s what you look like when “scarfing down” every episode of “House of Cards” in a day. If you have to be instantly gratified in every aspect of your life, what’s the point? I’ll let you take a break now and binge-watch “In Treatment” to figure that one out.

 

GET LESS POLITICAL

You don’t read newspapers. You know less about history than Sam Cooke. You think “The Daily Show” is a news program. You’ve never watched Sean Hannity but you know you hate him. You’ve never watched Rachel Maddow but you know you love her. You marched on Zucotti Park but even years later, neither the leaders nor you, the hip, young politicos, can even guess as to what its goals were,  even after listening to screaming unintelligible, angry sound-bites from scared 20-something NY-1 reporters and keeping the  free goat cheese ravioli, homemade stews and Katz’s pastrami sandwiches away from the homeless people who actually could have used a square meal.

 

Here’s what’s going on in your “radical” head: “Oh, there’s a group of grungey-looking yet mildly attractive young people carrying signs and walking in a particular direction. I’ll follow… Maybe they have weed.”  “Dang – some of those white girls look sooo hot with dredlocks. But they’re appropriating – not cool.”  “Wow – I have that same shirt from Abercrombie…. I think I hear Dylan leaking out of that guy’s earbuds…Rad!  “Wow – maybe they’ll let me shout into the bullhorn…”  ” I wonder if he’s a poser or he really wants to end fracking….WTF is ‘fracking’? Maybe it’s like fucking but with a French person? I don’t know – I took French in middle school”   How come the reporters always get to move to the front? I wish I had a microphone… Maybe my parents will get me a job as a reporter…”Want to be a really radical millennial? Look up the word “humble” in the dictionary and try emulating the definition. Try saying, “Please,” and “Thank you.”  Educate yourself on all factions of the United States political system so you can have an opinion that was not given to you by your progressive college professor who, by the way,  has yet to leave college, probably makes six figures and lives in subsidized faculty housing.  Stop saying “My dad’s secretary stood on line for 19 hours so I’d be the first person in my dorm to have the IPhone 6.”

 

DON’T TELL ANYONE, ESPECIALLY ME, ABOUT THE “ART” YOU’RE PUTTING OUT THERE…

Really. You haven’t even uploaded it and I know I don’t want to watch your web-series, visual media’s answer to the self-published book. No one wants to watch your web series, no one wants to read your self-published book.  Yes, despite the fact that you made up an “indy publisher”- sounding publishing company – “Yeah – it’s being published by Harwich House…” Good name. Sounds publish-y. British-y. Boutique-y. People might buy that.  They’ll certainly buy it before they buy your book. “Harwich House” sounds real.   Throw that bad novel up on the Internet. Sell it on Amazon. Fuck – they sell lamb chop panties on Amazon – why not your shitty novel? You think we really think all those 5-star reviews were written by people who aren’t you, your relative or someone you paid?  Vantage Press laughs at you.

And stop posting your life in short films on Youtube. No one – and I mean no one – probably including some members of your immediate family  – wants to watch your wedding on Youtube. You’re not Angelina and Brad. You’re not Jay Z and Beyonce. You’re not even my Uncle Sol and Aunt Ruthie.  You’re you. You probably don’t even really love your spouse – you just wanted to be married, like it’s some sort of life EZ Pass.  There’s one reason I love watching your weddings on Youtube, though.  It’s because not even your wedding was real. You hired a coach to teach you a first dance, you’ve planned the flash mob, you’ve made sure that the lighting and sound were perfect. You chose “your song,” not because you share a special song, but because you have to dance your first dance to it.  You’ll need the video because you were too busy orchestrating your wedding to actually experience it. So now, you and your partner can sit back with a bowl of popcorn and your micro-brewed beer and see that you’re not as attractive as your parents said you were.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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