Generation Take-the-Reins

I’ve been racking my brain trying to come up with a good topic to discuss on this blog for a month now, and Betsy gave me the best idea. Instead of getting into a stupid internet drama comment battle with my neighbor, I’d like to lay out my ideas about my generation, based on this article which talks about why corporate America is shitting its pants because of Generation Y, and this comment, which I received from my next-door neighbor on Facebook after sharing the article:

Who us going to support you and pay your bills because your generation refuses to sit in cubical sand take orders from a boss you can’t stand or a job you hate? Who is going to clean the house? We’d all like to be that way but some if us have to bust our asses to pay for a house and bills for our kids. I know you Viviana are not lazy but yes many people in your generation have a huge sense if entitlement.

This article basically outlines the fact that my generation is a “fuck you, we don’t take no shit from nobody and we’re tired of playing by your shitty societal rules” kinda people, and corporate America doesn’t know how to handle it. Really, they talk about how previous generations in general don’t know how to handle it, but the focus is career based. And damn is it true. If my neighbor’s comment says anything (aside from some rather atrocious grammar) it’s that she took away nothing from that article except that my generation is “entitled”!

Except that we’re not. I don’t think it’s entitlement to want the same things that generations before were able to get with ease. Like, you know, a nice paying job, with benefits and enough money to save for a rainy day or a vacation. And minimal debt and affordable college education. How is that entitlement? We’ve been told all our lives that THAT’S the path to a nice little life. And frankly, we’ve found that to be a lie and we’re not down for it.

It’s not that we expect a silver platter to be laid on our laps, it’s that we don’t take things at face value as they’re given to us. We challenge what we’re told, we dig deeper, we’re inquisitive. Yes, we don’t believe in wasting our lives sitting in cubicles being dictated to be some asshole in a suit. But isn’t that a good thing!? Shouldn’t people be rejoicing that a generation has finally had enough of that shit? Or is it generational jealousy that’s causing this rift?

Here’s the thing about Generation Y. We’re a bunch of do-it-yourselfers and startups and community builders (take a look at all the sweet community projects happening in Detroit that are aided along by young Detroiters) because we realize that the societal norms that have been pushed upon us all our lives – go to college, get a job, get married, start a family – aren’t what we want. We don’t want to be corporate slaves, wasting our time in some office or some retail place, watching our blood pressure rise and the wrinkles form on our faces from all the stress. We’ve decided that we don’t need to continue working some shitty job with shit hours and shit pay that gives us nothing but shitty outlooks. We’re tired of helping the shitty job wheel keep turning and we’re doing something about it because we refuse to believe that our lives should be dictated by a job we hate. There are literally so many better things we could be doing with our time and we’re taking action.

We’re not okay slaving at the bottom, working laughable minimum wage jobs despite having 4 year college degrees, while corporate bosses rake in 6 figures and up dictating to us about things they’ve never done in their lives. We’ve had enough of unfair working conditions, hypocritical politicians, and massive corporations lying to our faces with a toothy grin. We’re Generation Take-the-Reins and our predecessors are scared of us.

They’re scared of our potential so they try to slander us by calling us lazy, entitled, and stubborn. They try to put us down by pointing out that we’re still living at home with our parents, and we’re okay with it. But they fail to point out that the reason we’re still living at home with our parents is because we can’t get independently livable wage jobs with the frequency and availability that previous generations did. And as the vast majority of corporate owned jobs are run by people from previous generations, we’re not to blame for that.

Yes, we approach work from a different angle than people are used to. We refuse to adhere to schedules that don’t work and cover our tattoos and take out piercings because it makes you “uncomfortable”. But that doesn’t mean we don’t want to work or aren’t willing to work. It means that we’d rather do it on our own terms, and not just for money, but for the betterment of our society, for things we care about, and for our future generations. My generation wants to change things, and to change things, we must first look at what we’re given from a different perspective. That’s what previous generations find disconcerting – that we’re taking a legitimate hard look at what’s wrong with our society and we’re challenging these norms – and not quietly, but loudly and vehemently, with every fiber of our beings.

We still want a lot of the same things everyone else wants – an enjoyable, happy life, filled with good people, good memories, some extra cash to go sight-seeing and travel a bit, maybe a happy little family and someone to love us – but we’re doing it differently. Yes, it’s uncomfortable, but that’s what change is. It’s constant and it’s moving, and someday a different generation will have us squirming in our seats, but we’ll know that we started something positive, not just for us, but for them, and theirs.

So don’t all us entitled. Don’t call us lazy. And don’t call us stubborn. We’re challenging beliefs and shaking the building blocks of a wall of lies. We’ve had enough of the force-fed ideal lifestyle bullshit that’s been shoved down our throats our in entire lives, and we’re reconstructing the meaning of an ideal lifestyle. We are Generation Y, damnit, and we’re proud of it.

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Thoughts on the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

I don’t know about you guys, but 75% of my Facebook news feed is videos of friends and celebrities doing the ALS ice bucket challenge. Before I go any further, let me just preface this post by saying that I commend everyone who has participated in helping raise awareness for this cause, and especially to all of the people who actually donated and didn’t just throw perfectly good clean water on their heads for shits and giggles. That said:

The fact that this thing has gone so viral that it’s literally infected my news feed to the point of every other article is a video or link of someone else doing this challenge is a feat in and of itself. My thoughts on this subject a very love/hate. 

The one hand, as I mentioned earlier, I respect everyone who is participating and in turn spreading awareness of the disease and helping raise money for research and the foundation. However, I have a few qualms with all of this.

The first and foremost is the complete waste of perfectly good clean drinking water. There are people around the world, this very second, literally dying due to malnutrition and unsafe drinking water, while people of our privilege are throwing buckets of water on their heads in order to avoid donating $100 (that no one can actually force you to donate anyway, btw) to the ALS foundation. 

Secondly, as the circle of people who haven’t been nominated to do this challenge yet continues to grow smaller (seriously, this is spreading like wildfire) I feel anxious about being nominated and keep practicing in my head what I’d do. For one thing, and don’t take this the wrong way, but I will not be donating to the ALS foundation. Why? Because I’d rather donate my money to a cause that I genuinely care about, like the WaterisLife.org foundation, which is probably most known for those really cool “straws” that filter dirty water into clean drinking water for people in unprivileged countries such as Ghana, Kenya, and Haiti. 

You may have seen this picture.

If you think I sound haughty, heartless, or holier-than-thou, let me tell you that I completely understand the idea of “just because it doesn’t effect you, don’t mean it isn’t important” and I totally agree. Again, points to all of you who are donating/spreading the word. ALS is certainly not a fun disease to have, and my heart goes out to everyone who has to deal with the crippling disease. However, I would rather conserve a bucket of ice water and donate and promote clean water foundations that help bring a fundamental necessity to people who very seriously need it. 

So while this viral challenge continues to snowball in momentum and provide us with hundreds and thousands of great videos (Tom Hiddleston, I’m talking about you) and millions of dollars raised for the ALS foundation, please be reminded that there are thousands of charities and organizations that you can donate to that you may have more a personal connection to. Please don’t hesitate to Google organizations for diseases, research, etc and find out how you can help. 

For anyone interested in donating to the Water is Life foundation, click this text right here.

#dontnominateme 

Confidence

I really enjoy getting psychic/intuitive readings. I find that getting someone else’s perspective on things is exactly the thing that I need sometimes to help me see things from a different perspective, and give me a nice little kick in the butt.

That said, I chose to get one spur of the moment earlier this week and it was exactly what I needed to hear.

Among the common threads that linked all my issues together was needing to feel confident in myself and my abilities. I have not been feeling appropriately confident and this has held me back. I know what I am capable of, I know what I can achieve and I know I have talents. But lately I’ve been questioning all of that, and have internalized it all as well. I know this hasn’t done me any good. What good is worrying anyway? I must remind myself of one of my favorite pieces of advice:
Worrying is like a rocking chair, it’ll give you something to do, but it won’t take you anywhere.

In that I must find my strength. And in action. I know that standing still won’t help me move forward, and I need to conjure up the courage to face my problems with my chin up and my smile on.

I’ve always found that when I feel good about myself, I look good in the mirror as well. When I feel down on myself, I look terrible. I find flaws, more reasons to hate this part of me, that part. Both positive mind sets and negative ones are miraculous in their own ways. While a positive one can make you see the greenest parts of life, a negative one can make you forget them, and in that they are both powerful. But a negative mind set never got anyone anything worth while, and I’m not about wasting any more of my time feeling sorry for myself, wishing I’d done this or that, or any other shit.

There is no one in this world that is better at piecing us together than ourselves. We tear ourselves apart, and we build ourselves back up. It’s a learning process. And I am currently learning to be more confident. To trust myself more. To know that I have worth and I need to project that part of me.

I have been told numerous times that when you are confident in yourself, others will see you as such as well. I think that’s true of all characteristics and emotions. And as such, I think it’s not only good, but vital, that we project ourselves as positive, open-minded, kind, and confident. No one likes to hang around a debby downer. It’s like sticking a cord in a socket that sucks all the energy out.

I know I can’t change overnight. I don’t expect to. Everything takes time and time heals all wounds. My goal for now is to remain centered and focused on myself. I need to reign in my energy and build up my confidence so I can project that and communicate to people that I am open, I am available, and I am approachable.

On Judgement and Unsolicited Advice

Let he among us
Without sin
Be the first to condemn

An excellent quote from my favorite musical, Rent. I’ve got various New Year’s resolutions that I’m keeping up with. Perhaps one that I didn’t formally declare to myself is to be more loving and open and understanding of people and not judge them at face value.

It’s not that I can’t comprehend or understand why people would be quick to judge others, because I have been one of those people. It’s easier to point out others flaws rather than look at your own and work on yourself and your problems.

However, it is worthy to note that when we make judgments on people, we do not know everything about that person or what that person is going through. And just because they choose to share varying degrees of information about their life or parts of their lives, does not at all mean that we as viewers know the full of story or should we ever assume that we do. Most people choose to share just a tip of the iceberg of their lives with others. Whether it be publicly, such as a blog like this, or privately and intimately with their friends and family.

To assume we know better than that person is false. While the actual idea of knowing better than them could very well be true, we are judging subjectively. We can never know a person unless we are that person. Even the most open of people still has secrets or parts they wish not to share with others. So while we may very well be better versed in varying parts of life than others, it does not mean others wish to bypass learning the lesson themselves.

Just because we can give advice, doesn’t mean we should. Unsolicited advice, especially when it comes in the form of criticism (constructive or not [I personally think “constructive” criticism is fucking bullshit]) is nearly never accepted well. Sure, it can make a person look at whatever situation they’re in objectively. But it can also ignite a firestorm that’ll burn many around them should they get too close during the heat.  People don’t like to hear “the truth” or other people’s view points on their lives. It’s a fact of life. And who are we to give it to them? Everyone is here to learn their own lessons and their own pace, not be chided by their peers for making mistakes.

So before you decide to be someone’s “wake up call” maybe you should step back and think about whether that person is already aware of their problems and is working on fixing them.

Solar Glass

Guess who didn’t elongate Blogtober? THIS GIRL. JK, I did, but it’s on my other blog.

Anyway, I’m writing a post here because the inspiration and infuriation slips out of my head. I clicked on this article on Facebook earlier to read about solar glass. It’s a pretty cool concept – imagine working or living in a building whose exterior is made entirely of colorful glass that conducts electricity and helps power the place. Sweet, right? (Although perhaps mildly terrifying if something like a hurricane ever hit. No glass buildings in Florida, then.)

At the end of the article is this paragraph:

Professor David Lidzey from the University of Sheffield said: “Spray coating is currently used to apply paint to cars and in graphic printing. We have shown that it can also be used to make solar cells using specially designed plastic semiconductors. Maybe in the future surfaces on buildings and even car roofs will routinely generate electricity with these materials.”

This is the part that infuriated me. Not the actual statement, but rather the idea that we have the knowledge, we have the resources, and we have the potential to make this actually happen. Yet as humanity – as a global society – we are still stuck in the old ways of mining rapidly decreasing fossil fuels and using nuclear energy to power ourselves because MONEY, a man-made fallacy that we consciously allow to rule our lives, is more important to us than the very ground on which we live on and the very air of which we breathe that allows us to even be here and play these stupid games.

It infuriates me that things like this, like solar glass, are not mainstream and easily accessible and affordable for the public when they have every potential to be. And especially when they make so much more sense than using a limited resource like fossil fuels, as opposed to an unlimited resource like the sun. it’s legitimately stupid.

I know I’m not the only one who thinks this way. But I wish the growing “humanity” community would increase at the rate of which we are depleting our natural resources for our own ends. I wish a revolution would really happen because this shit is getting ridiculous and the structure of our society is extremely unbalanced.

Instinct.

Last night before I went to bed, I was on Tumblr (obviously) and one of the last posts that I reblogged haunted me all throughout today. This is the post I’m talking about, but here is the content and gif in case you’re lazy and don’t want to follow the link:

Many classic horror icons and other disturbing creatures share common characteristics. Pale skin, dark, sunken eyes, elongated faces, sharp teeth, and the like. These images inspire horror and revulsion in many, and with good reason. The characteristics shared by these faces are imprinted in the human mind.

Many things frighten humans instinctively. The fear is natural, and does not need to be reinforced in order to terrify. The fears are species-wide, stemming from dark times in the past when lightning could mean the burning of your tree home, predators could be hiding in the dark, heights could make poor footing lethal, and a spider or snake bite could mean certain death.

The question you have to ask yourself is this:

What happened, deep in the hidden eras before history began, that could effect the entire human race so evenly as to give the entire species a deep, instinctual, and lasting fear of pale beings with dark, sunken eyes, razor sharp teeth, and elongated faces?

The last paragraph really got to me. My first instinctual thought was “aliens”, I’m not gonna lie. Or aliens to us now. I turned on all the lights last night before meditating, when I went to get water, and when I woke up this morning, it was the first thought to flood back to me. I think the question of what happened in the depths of our humanity that scarred us instinctually is not only valid, but extremely important.

I’m watching an old Ancient Aliens episode right now, and they’re talking about the origins of Satan throughout the cultures of the world and what he was represented as (reptilian-like, similar to the description in the above Tumblr post). I think this is related. I need to ruminate on this subject further before I come to any solid, concrete theories of my own. But I think it’s a great question to ask and an even greater journey of speculation to discovering something important about our past.

Answers

Today I went to church looking for answers to all the stress and anxiety and negative feelings I’ve been feeling lately. I was in a very good mood for about 10 minutes after I woke up while I was getting dressed. Then I went and asked my dad if I could take my mom’s car since hers was in the way and he rather rudely told me no and I should take my car. SOOOOO, I was going to just put her car in the street, as it was the most logical and easiest option (my car is always in the garage) and my dad followed me out and said he’d put HIS car in the street and then I could just move my mom’s car in his spot. Honestly this pissed me off even more. He didn’t have to get up from napping because it literally would’ve been so fucking easy to just put my mom’s car in the street instead of moving two cars. Just. Fucking ridiculous.

So I got myself to church. I rushed. There was no reason to, as always, as the whole standing up sitting down making crosses over oneself thing was still happening for a solid 20 minutes after I arrived at like 11:10. As I said, I went searching for answers. I got none. I couldn’t quite hear what the pope was saying (as usual) and the guys in the foyer where they sell candles were being loud as fuck and talking and banging shit around. It only aggravated me more. However, I did notice while trying to recount how many times Jesus is painted on the walls (18 last time I remember) that the painting of him that is right above your head as you walk into the church – he has a triangle (pyramidal if it were 3D) halo around his head. It’s the only one like that. I found that highly interesting and spent quite a bit of time pondering why only that painting was done like that and why it was done like that at all. 3 is a very powerful number, that’s for sure. I have a multitude of theories about it, but I’m not going to expound.

So while I didn’t get what I wanted in church, after hitting up Meijer, I decided I’d go to Ferndale to the Boston Tea Room because it’s always calming in there and I generally feel at peace. I was hoping I’d find some new stones to add to my growing collection. Instead I found a pair of sterling silver bee earring studs (for only $6.25!) that I attempted to use as nose studs but found the gauge to be too big. I also decided to buy Buddhist mala prayer beads made of cherry quartz. So in a way, I did add new stones to my collection. I’m still a bit bummed I didn’t pick up the ombre citrine set while they still had it. I’m half tempted to go back and get the lavender jade set, but I need to be conserving my money, once again. This was a spiritual thing. I bought them to find peace. I don’t need more.  Although I will probably get more in the future, I’m sure. In a way, I made my answers today.

I still feel discord and I’m trying not to let it get to me. Inner peace and tranquility brings forth outer peace and positive energy. You are what you think. Etc etc.