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I sometimes get annoyed at myself simply for being young.
In all of the books I’ve read compiling quotes from wise old coves that I admire, they have few good things to say about the young, particularly of this generation. My problem is that I often take such views to heart, particularly if they are funny or make a good point.
Adults I know see the youth of today as bone-idle, constantly plugged into something, arrogant, all-knowing, experimental, parasitic, jobless hopeless worthless little buggers. And I worry that I am included in that group. Even though I am different from my peer group in many respects and like to think of myself as accomodating and nice, it is also true that I am still living at home, sponging off my parents, not getting a job, but instead doing a Mickey Mouse acting degree. Now, I wouldn’t have it said that acting is a pointless vocation, but I do have very little chance of being picked up by the RSC even if I showed half as much determinism as the rest of the students in my year. Which is to say I’m not doing as well as I could be.
I can see why the older generation might have a problem with the younger generation. There do seem to be an inordinately large number of teenagers who sit on the bus with music blasting from their phones or fiddling with an app mid-conversation. I myself spend a lot of time on the computer because (I tell myself) I view it as an important medium for displaying my writing and artwork. Part of me says that maybe it’s time I packed it in and got a real trade, old school. Call it peer-pressure, if you like. Adults have unwittingly been pressuring me to get a proper job and not go flouncing off to uni ‘pretending to be an actor’.
I can see the annoyance with students too. Many of my friends set a bad example by going out, getting drunk, being promiscuous etc. I may not behave like this, but what about that saying ‘A man is only as good as the company he keeps’?
According to my idols, youths think they know everything because they are coming into the world, power-hungry and arrogant. ‘Move over, old man.’ And when we don’t get our way, we instinctively place ourselves in the role of victim. Many a time I am horrified to find creeping into my head the impulse to excuse a late piece of work, say, by spewing out all my personal issues. ‘I’m under so much stress, I just can’t! You try handing in an assignment while YOUR mother’s roaring at your dad until 4am.’
I repulse myself sometimes, thinking like a victim. Big whoop. Your parents argue, everybody’s got problems, deal with it.
Perhaps the reason I feel insecure is the feeling that I am not a product of my generation, my time and place, but rather that I am the only unmotivated slob in the country. Is this in fact to do with being young or do I need to get off my **** and behave like an adult?
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