Another Friday night home with family (as opposed to whatever the llama normal teenagers do on the weekend).
Somehow it got to the point where my mom, sister, and I were all trying to search YouTube videos on my laptop at the same time. (Hello, people, there’s like four computers in the house. And Codex doesn’t even have grease on the keys yet. Hands off.)
My mom was reminescing about the songs she loved when she was my age. The list included Weird Al and Dr. Demento, a very crude and violently odd parodist from the 80’s.
Then I showed her one of my personal favorite videos– Llamas with Hats.
Let’s compare, shall we?
One of her favorite YouTube videos was a drunk guy singing an Irish ballad about how a woman strangled men with her bra straps, and then how they hung her with the very same bra in the town square.
My video was about a sociopathic llama with a habit of eating hands.
Now I was disgusted by her video, and she was disgusted by mine. She argues mine was a lot more crude– while I argue that hers was more violent. Plus, mine was animated llamas. Without the actual video, it wouldn’t have been too gorey. Some references to death, yes. But if her SONG had had a music video, it would have been ten times more gorey.
So I got a lecture on the ‘clean’ level of YouTube videos I watch, and when I tried to replay the Llamas with Hats (to prove that without the video it’s really not all that violent) she told me she didn’t want to hear it.
Is this a generation-wide thing? I’ve noticed–obviously–that there are differences between this generation and the last. The average teenager of the world is prone to a lot more sensual material, graphic jokes, and Justin Bieber than any time before us. I suppose our sense of humor is affected just as surely as our mindset into such things.
Maybe what was normal in the 80’s isn’t normal now– But the question is whether or not this is a GOOD change or not.
Based on the second-to-last paragraph, the immediate answer is no. Justin Bieber has not proven any sort of benefit to our generation. But with the advances in technology, was this divide between parents and teenagers inevitable? Maybe the gap is just a side-effect of scientific breakthrough, and then who are we to hinder its progress?
I guess all I’m saying is that technology is both a blessing and a curse. I mean, look at us. If not for the internet, it’s quite possible (–remotely possible–) that we might have social lives. We might not have the skin tone of corpses.
Yet look at the bright side. We’re writers in addition to being practically-zombies. How much physical paper have we saved with the invention of Microsoft Word? How many diseases have been cured by scientific advancements? Information is avaliable virtually instantly, on every single subject. The entertainment industry has shifted, and it’s actually viable to make a career on YouTube. (Again, I’m not sure whether that falls under the ‘blessing’ or the ‘curse’ category.)
Our parents (or at least mine) were growing up just as computers were becoming something more than room-large hyperbolic calculators. They didn’t have all this stuff. I wouldn’t say they necessarily worked harder to get where they are (it takes a heck of a lot of effort just to get a job these days, in this market), but they haven’t had the assets of technology that we’ve enjoyed.
I wonder what studying was like in the days before computers. How did you procrastinate? Read a book or something?
I don’t know how this YouTube-video squabble spurred this psychological muse session at one in the morning, but it’s really a significant idea in my opinion.
What do you think? How big do you think the generational gap is? Is it getting smaller or larger as adults are adjusting to social networking like teens? Is technology impacting us positively or negatively?