They Only Think They’re Smarter and More Savvy

parade-in-south-beach-miamiEvery generation of teens believes not only are they smarter than their parents in general, but smarter than they were when they were teens.  Rapidly changing technology only adds to their attitude of superiority as they go off to college, despite the fact they are still teens and haven‘t been on this earth as long as say, 30 year olds. They’re still at that ‘invincible’ age.  By the time they graduate college they realize that they really “don’t know Jack” because unless they were school aged entrepreneurs, they’ve lived their entire lives in a sheltered environment called Education and now they have to Face The Real World.

There are many who are familiar with the ‘Mindset List’ compiled by professors at Beloit College regarding the frame of reference of the current incoming freshmen as opposed to the experiences lived by their parents and other adults.

Personally I wonder how they will survive their freshman year — especially those who won’t be living at home.  After all, this is the generation whose parents felt it was the schools’ responsibility to provide them with breakfast.  Will they be expecting their professors to bring them breakfast?  Their parents made sure their teachers and schools knew about their children’s food allergies and “acceptable” foods to feed them.  Who will be advising the dining hall of allergies and preferences?  School buses have picked them up at their front door and dropped them in front of their school.  Will they be physically able to walk to classes and around campus?  Are they relying on Uber rides?  Will they be able to refrain from social media to pay attention in a 90-minute class?

Therefore, the following is my added 2 cents to this year’s Mindset list::

  1. There has always been an internet.
  2. Ancient history is any event prior to their birth.
  3. They’ve never known ‘childhood diseases’ of mumps, measles and chicken pox.
  4. But they are obsessed with zombie epidemics.
  5. The Olympics have always been held every two years, not four.
  6. Russia has always had a president.
  7. Bomb shelters have become Doomsday Shelters (which are secret).
  8. Prescription drugs — and lawsuits about them — have always been advertised on TV.
  9. There have always been Amber Alerts in the U.S.
  10. Schools have always had computers and school buses always had seatbelts.
  11. They’ve never seen a phone booth except while watch Dr. Who or old TV shows/movies.
  12. Movies and TV have always had parental ratings.
  13. ‘Cheers’ has never been a TV show.
  14. Chatting has always been done using their hands, not their mouths.
  15. TV has never been free — even if they stream it.
  16. Rap, hip-hop and dubstep are what they listen to.  Rock ‘n roll is for their parents and grandparents.
  17. They’ve never applied for a Social Security card.  Their parents did that for them when they were born.
  18. For them OPEC, WHO, WTO, NAFTA and EU have always existed.
  19. They’ve always carried a phone, or IPod with them everywhere.
  20. They use their phones as flashlights and to request concert encores.
  21. The solar system changed.  Pluto used to be a planet.
  22. Cigarettes were never advertised on TV and people never smoked in offices, restaurants or on airplanes..
  23. USSR is merely a name in a Beatles song.
  24. Catholic school has always meant private school.
  25. There have always been multi-plex movie theaters.
  26. GPS navigation has always been available.  Maps are for decorative use only.
  27. They’ve never known full service gas stations — except in NJ and parts of Oregon.
  28. Water has always been marketed in bottles.
  29. TV has always been available 24/7 and there are more than 5 stations (3 networks, 1 local, 1 PBS).
  30. They’ve probably never gotten free snacks or meals when flying.
  31. There have always been professional women’s sports teams and girls have always been allowed to play Little League.
  32. There has always been ‘reality TV’ fare.
  33. They never had the “Dick and Jane” books in school.  They have no idea who Dick and Jane were (or Judy, Spot and Puff).
  34. HIV and AIDS have always been part of their health and sex education.
  35. They’ve never used a film camera.
  36. They’ve never had a landline and probably never used a corded phone.
  37. Apple has always referred to a tech company, not a fruit or record label.
  38. Despite their love and use of technology, fewer students are majoring in computer science and engineering than their parents’ generation.  (Their parents will have to keep coding and die sitting at their keyboards.)
  39. They don’t listen to radio, they stream music.
  40. They have no use for stereo systems — except in cars to boost sound playback from their IPods.
  41. They’ve always known the U.S. to be involved in a war.
  42. They have no knowledge that Vietnam vets were not treated as heroes.
  43. While they feel college should be free, the don’t realize that all their education through high school wasn’t.  It was paid through taxes.  The government never minted money directly to schools.
  44. They’ve never known emergency call boxes on highways.
  45. Card catalogs are antique furniture.
  46. Gasoline and paint have always been unleaded.
  47. To them, the Great Depression started with the Dot Com Bust.
  48. The euro has always been the currency used throughout Europe.
  49. They’ve never used floppy disks.
  50. They’ve never passed handwritten notes to each other in school because there was email, messaging and texting.
  51. No one ever told them to ‘go play in traffic’. (big gasp)
  52. There’s always been a holiday (in the U.S.) called ‘Presidents’ Day’ to celebrate the birthdays of George Washington and Abe Lincoln.
  53. With few exceptions, holidays always fall on a Monday.
  54. They ‘keyboard’, not type.
  55. They know ‘spam’, not ‘junk mail’.
  56. Some colleges allow guns on campus.
  57. They’ve never known
    1. roll-up windows in cars
    2. the sound of dial-up modems
    3. Walkmans and Discmans
    4. getting physical copies of photos
    5. running out of disk space
    6. remembering phone numbers
    7. lighters in cars
    8. subway and highway tokens
  58. They were unconcerned with Y2K.
  59. They are very self-absorbed, hence all the selfies and GoFundMe campaigns.  (The consequences of “It Takes A Village”?)
  60. They won’t phone home for money.  They’ll Skype.  (Ignore the backdrop of books.  Pay attention to the audio.)
  61. Many don’t remember independent neighborhood pharmacies, record/video/DVd/game stores.  Bookstores are far and few between.
  62. They’ve always been able to download data, music, books.
  63. No longer made in the U.S. during their lifetime:  TVs, cellphones, Levi’s, Converse sneakers, Mattel toys, vending machines, Dell computers, Etch-A-Sketch, Black & Decker tools, Monopoly, Barbie.
  64. They never saw Han Solo shoot Greedo in cold blood.  RIP Han.