Teenagers are idiots. They listen to 40-year-old music like Led Zeppelin or the New York Dolls, they dress like those old dudes from The Strokes, and they will never have jobs because of robots. But in one respect, today's teenager is much like the previous century's teenagers: They do not like socializing around their dumb parents and weird uncles and Tea Party Jesus-freak aunts. Because all of those creepy segments of adult society spend all their time on Facebook, the kids have finally figured out that Facebook is not at all cool.
Facebook management admits in new corporate filings that they're losing the teen market to competitors that don't [...]
"The traumatic experience of surviving superstorm Sandy has provided some high-school seniors inspiration for their college-application essays, a task that in the best of times is already stressful."
Meticulously Documenting Their Binge Drinking And Incessantly Checking Facebook Has Apparently Made College Students Smarter
Early during my freshman year of college, in 1989, I was sitting in the student center when a reporter from the school paper walked up and asked me whether I would be interested in talking to her for an article she was working on about the social life on campus. I made the mistake of agreeing, on record. Her story was about the dangers of underage drinking, and what might be done about the problem. One of my own roommates had spent a recent night in the hospital, having his stomach pumped to avoid alcohol poisoning. But I used the opportunity to mount an attack on the school's policy [...]
"'Is it bad that idk who Rodney King is,' Twitter user Jiggy wrote, 'cause I don't.'" —Did you ever think you would live to see an era where a sentence like this could exist, and could, actually, be used as an example of the differing levels of cultural and historical knowledge that point to the generation gap so frequently exposed on a social networking site? I mean, you probably didn't, right? But it says SOMETHING about the way we etc. now.
"Lindgren was speaking to 70 students at Columbia Journalism School’s storied Pulitzer World Room, after he'd been introduced by journalism professor Victor Navasky, who himself had served as editor of The New York Times Magazine in the 1970s. Navasky told the students the early "New Journalism" practitioner John Hersey was Lindgren’s personal hero and asked who there knew about Hersey’s 1946 New Yorker story 'Hiroshima.' One student raised her hand."
Of the 43 million U.S. citizens who are between 10 and 19, only about 3 million have received naked pictures from someone by cellphone, survey says. And only a million of them have sent naked pictures of themselves or took naked photos of others to send! All this talk about sexting and that's all that's going on? That's about the usual carve-out for "people who will never hold elected office or teach or be lawyers," generationally speaking, so no need to work about the sexting epidemic. This is why you're supposed to have 3 or 5 children, so a couple of them can drop out along the path [...]
"I plan to spend time in high school and college classrooms in the next few weeks to explore whether millennials can reverse a generation-long decline in U.S. politics. Will they rejuvenate comity, compromise and a viable political center? Will they pull together, or will they become Generation X-treme? Most important: Will the best and brightest of the largest generation even bother with politics or government?" —Hey millennials, I know you're busy trying to find a job and a way to move out of Mom and Dad's, but we also need you to save the democracy that has failed you so badly. And you'd better do it, or else [...]
"Across North Carolina and in dozens of other states, teachers are committing what once would have been heresy: They are writing off cursive script." —What are they going to cancel next, semaphore class? Introduction to phrenology? This is an OUTRAGE. How will the youth be able to properly express the sentiment "SEXT U L8R LOL" to one another if not in cursive?
"For many, the sound of Christmas is the dulcet tones of choirboy voices singing Once in Royal David’s City or The Holly And The Ivy. But it seems the ‘sweet singing in the choir’ may soon be silenced – by increased levels of testosterone in young boys."
"We were just doing global research with field strategists in understanding the role of beer in Saturday night around the world vs. other drinks. In studying beer, we started to discover that young adults cherish their smartphones and iPhones so much that they don't want to lose them if they have an epic night out. Now they take what they call their 'drunk phone,' a cheap low-end phone, so now they are carrying two phones because they don't want to lose their smartphone."
"It used to be young creative types started magazines that defined the culture. Think Spy in the mid-1980s or even Might in the 1990s. The digital era hasn’t quite had that. One effort underway, naturally in the Williamsburg area of Brooklyn, wants to change that." —Guess what's going to be Spy for millennials. Just guess! Okay, pencils down. Here's your answer. The sad thing is, given millennials, you can sort of see the point.
Here's a cute story about an adorable 7-year-old who happens to be a prodigy at the piano and in science. It is important not to remember, as you watch it, that eventually the light and joy you see in his eyes here will be replaced with the dullness of sorrow and his life will become a sad mess of recrimination and failure, as all lives do. Because thinking about something like that could really bring you down.
"Teenagers who drink lots of soft drinks get into more fights and carry more weapons than their peers who drink less, found a new study. And while the study couldn’t determine whether soft drinks actually cause violence, the findings add to a growing — yet still controversial — body of research on the effects of nutrition on behavior." Older readers might not want to click through, as the article goes on to reference "a notorious 1979 San Francisco murder trial, lawyers blamed the killer’s actions on his recent switch from a health-food diet to one filled with Coca-Cola and other junk food," which… really? It is incredibly painful to [...]
"It's a trend—thanks to peer pressure, and the Internet."
"Cigarette use among U.S. teenagers fell to historic lows and a four-year rise in marijuana use appears to have leveled off, according to a national study released Wednesday."
In case you missed it, this is pretty great: "The short video captures young Gabriel deep in thought as he takes in some sage sisterly advice on the perils of spitting, fighting and disobeying one's parents. Defying her own youth, Gabriel's sister delivers a minute-long park bench lecture, telling him in no uncertain terms that he should 'toughen up a bit' before walking off and leaving the words 'think about it, Gabriel' ringing in her brother's ears."
"Later, we talked about the exchanges, and she explained that she saw e-mail as something for 'old people.'"
I do a lot of pretty random stupid shit thinking that I will write about it. Most of my activities turn out to be useless, though there’s always the idea that I could hit upon something so I live in this constant state of expectation that’s not as exciting as it sounds and is actually mildly depressing. This is because the pretense of adventure, day in and day out, when hardly anything actually ever happens eventually wears on you, especially when you are not rich. As much as one tries to tell oneself that things are being accomplished, such encouragement is no match for the more persistent mantra which goes [...]
When a kiddy-fiddler commandeers your cul-de-sac: "C. has a problem perhaps too serious to be called a quandary. A few months ago, she says, her family received a flier from the local sheriff. A registered sex offender was moving to her street of small, single-family homes. Hers is a long street, though, and she expected the offender to be some distance away and easily avoidable. Instead, he bought the house next door." What to do, what to do? The answer is simple, really: just move to Manhattan.