(Note: this post was supposed to be two paragraphs. It morphed into this. I’m sorry)
This very grainy photo is of me (on the left) and my best friend in High School. No only were we band geeks, we were both first chair in our sections. Hollllaaaa. (I played snare during marching season which meant my instrument weighed more than I did and broke my back basically every half-time).
What’s with the strike of nostalgia? I was on Facebook and saw a picture of freshman university students and realized I don’t know any of them. In fact, the last group of uni students I know is graduating next month. And then I’ll officially have no ties left to my alma mater.
Not to mention the fact that I stopped knowing kids at my old high school almost as soon as I graduated (I didn’t invest a lot of time in my high school apart from band, sorry BR).
This basically means that 23 is the new 60. It means I use the phrases “kids these days” and “when I was a kid” as if I wasn’t…you know…still a kid myself a few years ago. I was 17 in the picture above. That was 6…SIX…!!!…years ago. Do you know how old Justin Bieber is? 19. He’s of the age of college freshman across the world. Except he’s dominating the world right now and doesn’t have time for things like higher education. (He gets all the education he needs from the school of hard knocks).
It seems like the age range for a generation is getting smaller and smaller while the gap is getting larger and larger. “Generation Y” or “Millenials” are technically those born in the late 70s to those born in the early 2000s. Are you kidding me?!
I consider those people currently 22-27 in my generation. That’s it. Maybe 21. Maybeeee 28. But if you were born between 1986 and 1991…you pre-qualify to come over to my flat to hang out when I hold parties.
Actually, let’s just scrap the idea of generations and switch over to age groups (and I’m not talking about the kinds of age groups you find on surveys. Can we just talk about that for a second? “18-35” should NEVER be on a survey. Opinions within that age group are going to vary so widely these days).
Why? In my mind it’s because way back in the day, things changed a lot slower than they do today so it was easier to call anyone born within a certain range part of a generation. Just like certain cultural fads and events define decades, there are certain traits the define generations.
Then the 90s rolled into town and things started to get fuzzy.
And THIS is why I’m so stingy about who I consider part of my generation. Things hit time-warp speed in the 90s I guess. Technology really took off and with it, the rest of the world. This puts what I define as my generation in the unique position that those before us didn’t have everything we had because it wasn’t available and those born after us have always had we only just got.
Things that had been around literally for decades (so things the boomers and Gen X-ers remember) became obsolete. Remember cassette tapes? I’m sure you do. Do kids these days? Probably not. Because after cassettes were CDs (the stuff of my generation) and after that were MP3s. Except this technology evolved so rapidly that it only took a few years for CDs to go out the door with cassettes.
Moreover, kids born just a few years after me won’t remember the TVs shows I watched as a kid because they were taken off the air by the time they were old enough to watch. They won’t remember the fashions we wore because these pop-up quick fashion shops like Forever 21 and H&M made my generations fashions the stuff of yesterday. The list of things that make a “when I was a kid” moments goes on and on.
It’s not just popular culture things either. When I was a kid, spanking was perfectly a perfectly acceptable method of discipline but sometime in the mid-90s or something it became child abuse. When I was a kid, we were taught cursive. Yes…connected handwriting. And yes, I actually write in cursive almost every day. Mind blowing, I’m sure, to kids these days.
Even if 23 is the new 60, I still feel really young. If you were a 23 year old young woman back in the day, you were probably only a few years off from getting married, buying a house, and having kids. People my age are still doing that. But it’s okay if I hit 30 and I’m still unmarried. It’s okay if I rent, not buy. It’s okay if I change jobs. It’s okay if don’t have my life figured out.
There are so many more opportunities coming to people my age…and they’re coming at a rate exponentially faster than a few years ago. People in my generation (age range, that is) are not only the great leaders of tomorrow. We’re probably the great decision makes of all time. More opportunities = more decisions. More decisions = more ways to fail and succeed. And maybe it’s because I’m being optimistic tonight but I think we’re doing a bang up job at succeeding. The 20-somethings of the world are probably the most confused and the most brilliant. We’re young. Even if the Justin Biebers of the world are trying to tell us to hang up our boxing gloves because his generation is coming around. I’d like to remind him that Mark Zuckerberg is 28. Adele is 24.
So shine on, all you crazy 20-somethings (that are really 60-somethings in terms of kids these days).
Does this all make sense? It’s after 1am and I’m kind of sleep deprived but I don’t want to wash my dishes, go to bed, or work on editing photos so writing about what’s on my mind clearly seemed like the best alternative.
Have a great week! xx
P.S. sorry if I offend anyone not between the ages of 21 and 28. You can also pre-qualify for parties at my flat by filling out a quick online form! (Just kidding…but don’t you love those credit card adverts that go “Pre-qualify online! Just give us all of your critical information and we’ll google your SSN and credit history in 5 minutes to let you know!”)