I’m really not a judgmental person. I really aim not to be. But it’s about to get real judg-y in here. Disclaimer: I know some really sweet, responsible, intelligent, talented millennials. This article does not apply to you.
On a recent trip to the beach, I was shopping for a new visor and my mom and I ended up chatting with the guy at the shop. He was definitely “young-ish,” meaning visibly younger than my thirty-nine year old self. He mentioned working as a store designer at Starbucks, so I pegged him, a two-job fellow, around twenty-five-ish. (Also he asked.) Do not ask me how old I think you look. I will be wrong. So wrong. Plus, I was the kind of girl who had a young face forever, so I was ecstatic to eventually be able to tell people, “I’m thirty!” Yeah, I still looked about nineteen then. Which means I looked about twelve when I got my driver’s license. Funny how the young face phenomenon disappeared around the age of thirty-six.
But during our chat with the beach visor guy, he confessed to his legal drinking age status and immediately apologized for his entire age group. Yup, that’s right. “I’m embarrassed to be a millennial,” he said. “They are so lame.” Or awful. Or obnoxious. Or idiotic. I can’t remember exactly which adjective he so fittingly chose.
Here’s the thing. I’m just over the millennials. I’m looking forward to a day when “millennial” replaces the word “jerk,” because they’re practically interchangeable. Let’s look at some for instances.
Not giving a shit. Millennials are really good at not giving a shit. Like if they, Lord help us, work in customer service, you are not likely to feel heard if you voice a small complaint or suggestion. What you will get is a blank stare, a fake, empty “apology” if you blatantly ask for one, and basically your run of the mill not giving a shit so that you feel pretty much invisible.
Giving a Big Shit when it affects them. While this group is adept at not giving a shit for others, their voracity to give a shit when something displeases themselves is great. They can talk for hours, loudly, oblivious of others, in public spaces about the unjust occurring to them or their smart phone.
They send texts to people sitting across the table from them! And if that is necessary, let’s be honest, they are talking trash about the person next to them.
Beware. There are millennials among us. They like to blend in. In fact, many of them like to buy the same outfits, purses, and necklaces just to keep us guessing who is who among their tribe.
But, have hope, America. Among the millennials are some anti-millennials. These are the ones who have broken away from the tribe. They may even work at Chic-Fil-A. Yes, if you are wondering “Who gives a shit about me?” then head to Chic-Fil-A and you might just have your faith in humanity restored. Someone might actually look you in the eyeballs when they talk to you. They might smile. And they might even go the extra mile of getting you something that you need exactly when you need it.
I do have a lot of respect for the hard-working anti-millennials. I see some of these kids making good grades in college, hold down a part-time job, and get involved in the community. This makes me able to breathe again.
But it won’t be long till I have an encounter with a millennial again. I have to brace myself because you never know when it’s coming. You might do someone the favor of letting an employee know that the toilet paper has run out in their store/restaurant/place of business and get that glassy-eyed stare. And then you know that all of the customers for the next several hours are going to have to desperately search their purse for any remnant of tissue just to relieve their old-ass bladder. But don’t worry. Those millennials will just sit there on their stool giving all the customers blank stares instead of fresh TP. They won’t get up and go change it. That’s what they need their mommy for. Mom and Dad still change out their toilet paper and sometimes even call up their college professors to ask how they can bump up their B to an A.
No, no, no, I don’t hate millennials. I have had several irksome encounters with them for sure. For. Sure. But I think I just empathize with visor shop guy. Millennials get a bad rap just like teenagers get (used to get?) a bad rap just for being teenagers. There are obnoxious ones in those groups that magnify their horrible traits so much that one begins to equate millennial with their pathetic counterparts.
But in reality, the majority of the millennials I come into contact with have jobs, work with children, work with my own children, are friendly, caring, and think of others. My children’s babysitters in particular fit this bill. Aside from babysitting, they have braided my girls’ hair, taught them about music, horses, German, soccer, and dance. I am one lucky momma to have my kids exposed to these incredible young women who model such fine character traits. So Go, Millenials, Go! Outperform those anti toilet paper fetching types and maybe eventually one day visor shop guy can be proud of his age bracket.