What’s Up with Generation Y?

Turns out it was hot all week up in my corner of the world. For those who say global warming is a myth I say bullshit to you. Maine is by and large a pretty temperate place to be in the summer time. High eighties and nineties rarely happen and there is still a large portion of the population that doesn’t even have air conditioning. I hate heat in any form especially when I am sleeping or cooking so I have a few window units but let me tell you this weeks’ blast of summer to the extreme made me realize that my units were not nearly as high powered as they could be. And by the way old houses while they can’t hold heat in the winter time when you want them to they hug the hell out of the heat in the summer time.

So while lots of great ideas passed through the noggin this week, I was simply too spent to actually do anything other than drink cold beverages and whine and say someone turn this fuckin heat down. However between gripe sessions I did do my daily reading and stumbled across this sweet piece of story. I am starting to think those folks at the NY Times need to hire me or some real working class folks impacted by the economy so they can stop writing these bullshit ass pieces or maybe its that the folks in New York are living in a bubble separate from the rest of us. So they are unable to get a clue on what real hard times looks like.

In any event, to recap this piece in case you don’t feel like reading. We have a kid from good upper middle class stock who graduated from college 2 years and has not found a job…oh but he turned down a job paying $40,000 a year at an insurance company because well it wasn’t quite the path he wanted to go down. So until recently this kid was living at his parents’ house while they provided room and board, he now lives with his brother in Boston and his folks are paying his share of the rent until the end of August. Oh my!  

I have a lot of friends who often say I sometimes seem older than my years and maybe that is true. Just the other night I was looking at elder boy aka the college boy now and thinking back to when I was his age. Well when I was his age, he was growing in my womb and I was getting the crash course in grown up life. By the time I reached the same age as the kid in the Times piece, I had been married, divorced on the brink of remarriage and actually was making a career change all by the tender age of 24. Nowadays I meet members of the so called Generation Y and the Millennials and often think damn, you are a lazy fuck.

Look, I never planned to become a crotchety old woman saying these things but I have to be honest in the past couple of years I have seen a disturbing trend where I encounter younger folks and the expectations are that they are owed more though they have done nothing to achieve it in the work world. Look, you cannot work a year or two and expect you are going to shoot up the ladder; you got to pay your dues.

It also says a lot about how this generation which actually my son is a member of has been raised when a $40,000 a year job is looked down at. In the real world and not just rural America plenty of folks wish they had a $40,000 a year job, no it’s not a great deal of dough but if one lives frugally it can be more than enough. Generally speaking a daily latte and weekly stops at the mall won’t be happening on such a salary yet you generally can be assured of the basics of life.

Before I decided to write this piece I actually spoke to my son since I did not want him thinking I was attacking his demographic and he said he understood where I was coming from. However he said he felt it was not the entire gen Y crowd that seems delusional about their worth but that yes by and large a great deal of his peers do see themselves starting at the top rather than the bottom.

Again call me foolish but I think there is a great deal of value starting one’s professional life at the bottom, first off you get to really see the organization, field, etc. You also are still at a point in life where you are still learning who you are , where you want to go and while making a great deal of money is nice when you are young there is nothing wrong with having a little. Even though I married young when I was between husbands I had the roommate adventure, quite the journey in young cheap living. Bottom line these experiences grow us as humans, every shit job we work in our early 20’s, every shitty place we have will hopefully stay with us when we grow up and become real adults.

But the younger generations today want it all, my son’s theory is that the media is to blame and while  I want to say nah…I think he may be right. Mine was the last generation not raised on a steady diet of cable TV, yes many of my peers were the early latch key kids but there were still kids like me who did have a stay at home parent and no TV. I have said before, I got cable for the first tine when I was an adult, in fact lately as I have been checking out You Tube and I have been stunned to learn there were actually videos for many of my favorite songs in the 1980’s, granted music videos of the 80’s were primitive compared to what today’s kids see.

The media that is constantly  bombarding our kids teaches them that in order to be happy and successful you need XYZ and sadly as a nation we have fallen for the same hype which probably has a lot to do with the financial crisis we find ourselves in. After all if I wear this label or that label I will be happy. Yet its this type of imagery that our kids have digested that leave them unable to function in the real world, after all if I watch My Sweet Sixteen on MTV or whatever reality show $40,000 often sounds like a very small sum of money and you get a kid straight out of college turning down what in reality is a adequate sum of money because we have a bling bling culture where we want lots of money.

So while I hope this is not taken as a slam on younger folks I will say it’s a lesson for us all that we need to look at the values we live by as for the young man in the Times piece, hopefully he won’t be turning down anymore jobs.

ETA: This is a link today’s letters to the editor of the Times that I think are worth reading about this topic and Scott Nicholson.

It’s hawt!

Its one of those days where I really wish I had something deep or witty to say but the truth is it’s too fucking hot! Maine is a place that generally doesn’t see 90 degree temps too often and we damn sure don’t see them for several days in a row. Unfortunately this heat wave that is touching the northeast decided to share the love with Maine and as a result it feels like I am back in Chicago, high temps and high humidity makes for one grumpy chica.

The last report I heard is that relief won’t be headed this way until the weekend, um…thanks its Monday dude! So I think its safe to say that as long as it feels like a test tank for hell, I may not be blogging since frankly its too damn hot to think (and they say all Black folks love heat, not this here darkie).

So if you are in an area affected by this crazy heat wave, stay cool and safe and I’ll see ya as soon as it cools off.  Now let me go get another slurpee to cool off.

I gained weight and…..

Life happens! That’s one of my many personal mottoes that I live by, life does indeed happen when you least expect it. Which is why when I was busy recovering from that pesky double hernia repair surgery that happened back in mid April, somewhere along the path to recovery I picked up an extra ten pounds and drum roll….I am not freaking out?

Let me provide some of the back story for new readers or folks who don’t know me. Most of my life I had no weight issues, I have always been on the smallish side though when I decided to give up my evil butt habit years ago, I promptly gained a weight problem. After a life time of being a size 5/6, I fought long and hard and started to accept that an 8/10 was going to be my new reality. Fast forward to having the kidlet almost 5 years ago and well my love of cooking and eating really caught up with me. Eight months after giving birth I was heavier than I was when I gave birth and when I walked I was short of breath. I am vain but it was not being comfortable walking that really kicked my ass in gear so I joined Weight Watchers and over a two-year period dropped damn near 50 lbs.

I became a good lifetime member back in 2008 and stayed at or below my weight goal for two years, I thought I had this shit licked up until I met the surgical recovery process 2.5 months ago. Turns out when one is restricted from moving a great deal, loaded on pain meds and laying on the couch, your options for amusement include TV watching, surfing the web and my favorite, eating. Truth is the past two months I been eating like it was going out of style, eating foods I forgot I even liked. If you follow me on Twitter you have been witness to the BGIM all food all the time extravaganza. It was good but after wondering why my favorite skirts were fitting funny, the truth came out. I gained a whopping 10 lbs since the surgery but guess what, I don’t care.

Don’t get me wrong now that I can move again I am damn well planning on it and have been ramping up my walking game. But once upon a time I admit this news would have set me on edge, now not so much. I do plan on taking off this weight but it will happen when it happens, I am more than the size of my skirt or the numbers on the scale. In some ways my cheapness is probably the greatest motivator since it was oh right before the surgery that I finally got rid of my larger clothes so at the moment I am doing wardrobe gymnastics when getting dressed and making use of my Spanx.

Point of this rant though is that I am at a point of acceptance about myself and the fact is in real life weight goes up and it goes down. As a woman it seems we are slammed with imagery that says we must be a certain way, I say fuck it all. For me I am happy with myself and the older I get I find that having internal beauty and peace is far more than numbers or any of the other things we as women buy into. I must admit that this rant was prompted by this post. The blogger who I know speaks eloquently about something I have grappled with for the past year, I like my gray hair but have had others tell me to color it. Why? It’s me. Just like this extra 10 lbs I am carrying around. Note, I am not saying if you color your hair or diet you have issues but for me those are not healthy things to fixate on.

Real people are messy and complex and we are constantly evolving as life happens to us.