I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that lines used.
“Not everybody wins a trophy.”
That patronizing line gets spat from the lips of sneering pundits on the news. It makes its appearance in venomous opinion columns in the local papers and it graces cover of national magazines.
“Not everybody wins a trophy.”
“Some people are losers.”
“This is what happens when you give kids awards for just participating.”
To hear some folks talk, the sum total of this country’s ills can be traced back to the coddling of America’s youth- Generation Y in particular. And certainly there’s no shortage of criticism launched in the Millennials’ direction.
This is the generation of entitlement, the generation of immediate gratification, the generation of the two-second attention span, the “me” generation. And all stemming from the baseless sense of accomplishment and self-esteem given out with every participation award.
Or does it?
The idea that kids are being handed award after meaningless award is rampant- so much so it seems to have gone unchallenged. Yours truly took to the internet to find out what the statistics were on the number of participation awards given out, and my efforts were utterly fruitless. Now there were plenty of polls on public opinion of participation awards, but neither my old friend Google Scholar nor the internet at large had anything to offer in the way of hard numbers.
And that should concern us.
Ask yourself- just for a moment- how many participation ribbons or trophies you’ve actually seen anyone receive. Not how many you suspect might be out there. Not how many schools or competitions have that “mentality”.
How many have you actually seen with your own eyes?
I’m guessing the number of actual occurrences might not quite be so high.
Then why the outrage?
Millennials are constantly painted as greedy, lazy, thin-skinned egotists as a result of a kind of upbringing for which little to no hard data exists. One might just as easily blame the decline of glam rock or UFO sightings for the supposed ills of Generation Y.
Yet the accusations persist. Continue reading
Posted in America, bizarreness, money, Sociology, work, Youth
Tagged baby boomer, Boomer, Coddled, debt, entitled, entitlement, Gen X, gen y, Generation Gap, Generation Y, lazy, Lose, Loser, Military, millennial, millennials, Not Everyone Gets A Trophy, Not Everyone Wins A Trophy, Participation Award, selfish, Statistics, student loans, Vain
Post four about Taylor Swift. How on earth did we get here? I suppose it’s because, for better or for worse, she’s managed to attain the kind of pop culture prevalence and staying power which has resulted in my writing:
Which brings us to this Friday, three days after the artist donated $1,989 to a fan to help her pay off her student loans.
Click the image to be linked to the tumblr post cataloguing the full gift-opening.
The fan in question, Rebekah Bortnicker, created a video which she posted to tumblr, and which I’m half-watching as I write this. It’s actually pretty great. You know what else is actually pretty great, though? The way that some people have been reacting to this news, like nicole and Angela in the comments section of the People article I linked to up above:
Posted in celebrity, internet, money, morality, music
Tagged 1, 1989, 989, argument, bigger problems, comparing, comparisons, criticism, debt, fan, issues, logic, money, more serious, problems, Rebekah Bortnicker, student loans, Taylor Swift
A couple days ago, I came across Primer, an online magazine declaring itself “A guy’s post-college guide to growing up.” At first glance, it appears to share a lot of similarities with another publication I reviewed, The Art of Manliness, and while I’d like (and intend) to do a full-on compare/contrast piece, I’ve still got some research to do. As of yet, though, the primary distinction between Primer and Art of Manliness is that the former appears to be a lot more validating of the millennial generation, who are more commonly accused of laziness, selfishness, and naivety.
And let the debate rage on…
Posted in education, money, Youth
Tagged 20s, 30 is not the new 20, 30s, adventure, apartment, Art of Manliness, career, change, charity, childhood, debt, Dominic Preston, economic crisis, economy, Education, extended adolescence, Generation Y, graduate, job, lazy, lecture, Meg Jay, millennial, millennials, naive, non profit, primer, purpose, review, selfish, student loans, TED Talks, teens, travel, undergarduate, volunteer
EVAN: Dear readers, we have gathered here today to read as Gordon and I discuss the concept of what I’m calling “easy money” shows, and how we, as recent college graduates, view them.
GORDON: You mentioned a few specific examples earlier on- could you list ’em off again for the readers?
EVAN: Well, at the top of my list is a personal favourite of mine, “Storage Wars.”
Not only does it tickle me to no end that Jarrod ignores Brandi’s warnings not to bid [at around 00:26], but I am enraptured by the promise of finding treasure among, well, garbage. Continue reading
Posted in America, Canada, Economy, Evan and Gordon Talk, money, television, Youth
Tagged America, antiques road show, california, Canada, CSI, debt, easy money, el dorado, Extreme Couponing, finances, gold, heatlh care, Las Vegas, midgets, pawn stars, recent college graduates, staged, stock market, storage wars, student loans, TLC, Toronto