Millennials are an easy target for any air-to-nerd missile.
Their penchant for smashing avocados is widely documented, memed, and repeatedly discussed as a point of contention about an entire generation of humans. Nevermind that the judgement is being cast by another set of older, wealthier humans, who are often able to become wealthier simply by virtue of already being wealthy. And they’re getting away with it… very slowly.
But no, it’s the children who are wrong for opting to see the world, upon realising the aforementioned generation have all the housing tied up tighter than a 1990s tie-dye T-shirt, in their negatively-geared investment portfolios. But why own anything, when you can just rent it from those very same humans who, by virtue of convenient timing, were able to tie it all up like the aforementioned tee? To millennials, owning a house is simply like flying a kite at night – unwholesome.
Indeed, why bother investing in any kind of pricey assets when your job is probably held with a record-high level of uncertainty. Workforce casualisation is an emerging problem in Australia, and while the government is always twirling, twirling towards freedom and spinning unemployment figures however it needs to every month, millennials are often grappling with the old-fashioned bureaucracy forced upon them in a modern economy increasingly revolving around gigs. The wishy-washy nature of your job probably means your superannuation and retirement prospects are looking similarly wishy-washy too. Fortunately, sweet liquor eases the pain of that reality, and liquor flows cheaply and aplenty in many overseas destinations.
Just like every generation before them, millennials are simply guilty of trying new things – like naming children after Ikea furniture, or standing in front of an imitation-brand London Eye to say “Wow” like Owen Wilson. After realising that yes, the internet is on computers now, ‘the young’ are harnessing technology to deride the views of an aging gaggle of boomers, and forge their own paths to glory in a world increasingly stacked against them.
Baby boomers used to be with it, but then millennials changed what it was. Now what they’re with isn’t it, and what’s it seems scary and weird. But if Donald Trump can understand Twitter, anyone can.
The internet has Teflon-coated the fourth pillar of democracy, and widened the scope of voices that can be heard – as long as you’re willing to jump across the various echo chambers. Rupert Murdoch’s proverbial ‘by the balls’ hold on media is nothing but transparent toadying, though he still has considerable sway with the kind of demographic that thought Tony Abbott was a good idea as Prime Minister. The very same Tone that seems to be having his lemon and eating it too right now.
Millennials are smart and progressive: they work hard, they play hard – despite the view of many employers. They don’t need to be taught that mono equals one, and rail equals rail. They are not the demographic that thinks the reason we have elected officials is so we don’t have to think all the time; outwitting their old-fashioned ploy of doing a physical mail-out vote on gay marriage by signing up to vote in record numbers. Instead of being excised as subtly intended (“They won’t understand mail in this day and age.”), millennials simply rose to the antique challenge in a move that will probably backfire with a searing kiss of hot lead at the next federal election.
The source of derision has not changed: a general fear of mortality drives the standard “kids these days” declarations made about today’s generation by baby boomers and related entities. The kids can’t be accused of stupidity in a worldly sense, because they have more information available at the tips of their fingers than ever before. If anything, their real problem comes from the fact there is so much information available to them, that the most important things can slip through their cracks in time.
For you see, within all of this positivity, I have identified the real issue with kids these days. That’s right: you don’t need to crack each other’s heads open and feast on the goo inside, sell your soul to Milhouse, or wait half a year to find out that Maggie shot Mr Burns (whoops). By gum, it’s all here on a map throughout this article: kids these days have no fucking idea about the golden era of The Simpsons (season three to season ten…ish), nor any of it’s classic moments. And as the years go by, more and more of these timeless jokes and references are flying over their heads in the Sproose Moose.
Back in my day, it was mandatory viewing. If I wasn’t watching from a stack of recorded Simpsons VHS tapes during the week, I could catch up with Saturday/Sunday morning marathons on pay TV, or watch every night on Network Ten. It should still be as mandatory as skipping Lisa episodes.
Even though the show is still punching out new content, it exists essentially by name and publicity stunt only now. The golden era Simpsons episodes were written by Ivy League/Harvard educated writers packing in incredibly dense commentary on society and life in middle-class America – and it holds up remarkably well, even in today’s Trump climate.
You don’t win friends with salad, but you do win friends by knowing The Simpsons. There’s a certain unspoken comfort in being able to bounce ancient plotlines and one-liners off others, in a world oft-overtaken by aimlessly scrolling through low effort social media posts.
Kids these days need a dose of classic Simpsons as much as they need smartphones – and if it was available on-demand somewhere today with exposure, we’d all be embiggened for it.