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.

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.

Life Sucks and I Don’t Get Paid Enough

Last week, I did some calculations about the amount of money I earn and how it gets used yearly to see what I have left over to use toward new car payments.

Surprise surprise, there are no new cars (aside from the Chevy Spark, really) that I could get with my measly income. Even then, I would still be on such a tight budget, that I wouldn’t be able to buy anything except the absolute bare necessities. That would mean no going out to eat – EVER. No buying new clothes that I might need. Nothing. Zero. Not one penny would be able to be sacrificed for anything. I would be working strictly to pay student loans and car payments.

Not only is this prospect extremely depressing for me, but when I look at it more broadly, I have to stop and wonder how other people manage to put food on their tables making less money than I do. I should however mention that I would make double the amount I do now if I were full time – I am only part time, which is part of why I earn under $10,000. INCLUDING COMMISSION AND MY SECOND JOB!

I’m increasingly becoming more and more disgruntled with the state of the job market, the level with which we cling to money as a means of evaluating a persons worth. As The Verve’s Bittersweet Symphony goes:

Trying to make ends meet
You’re a slave to money
And then you die

It’s fucking disgusting, actually. It’s fucking disgusting that the richest 1% of Americans own 40% of this country’s wealth. It’s fucking disgusting that I can’t get a decent job with a piece of paper that put me over $60,000 in debt. It’s fucking disgusting that the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep getting poorer. Where is the middle class?

I’ll tell you what they did when they consolidated the American car companies a few years ago and terminated several brands: they cut out the “cheap” affordable brands. They said FUCK YOU! If you don’t have enough money to buy a Buick, too fucking bad.

However, I came across this article that I think it’s a good reminder to remain positive in the face of trying times. It’s called The 14 Habits of Highly Miserable People and it definitely sheds light on the negative things we do to sabotage ourselves.

I’ve been desperately trying to keep a positive outlook on my life in all aspects, but I’ve been very annoyed, sad, angry, and overall negative lately and I REALLY DON’T LIKE IT. I don’t know what these emotions do to me or how they make me act toward other people and I feel like a horrible person. I feel like there’s poison running through my veins and I know that I’m not this kind of soul naturally. I do not enjoy experiencing seething feelings.

Furthermore, and only because my mom came in my room annoyed just now am I reminded of this, but my relationship with her lately has been very aggravating. Like rubbing two abrasive rocks together. She says and does shit that pisses me off and I’m just like oh my god, dear lord save me. Like it’s just another reason why I need a job that pays livable wages and allows me to MOVE THE FUCK OUT OF HERE. I’m starting to go crazy. I’m starting to hermit myself my room or go out shopping just to be out of the house and away from her.

UGH!

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.

Thoughts on the Meat Industry

Alright. Because I just discussed this somewhere else, let’s talk about it here for a second.

Earlier today, I was thinking about the current meat industry standards of how animals are housed before slaughter and it really baffles me that we allow these companies to house these poor animals in such tight and compressed spaces. It’s not like America is some small country with only so much space. We have vast unpopulated areas that could easy be converted into things like poultry farms and so on. Instead, we choose to allow the meat industry to continue to feed us with animals that are deformed and diseased due to their lack of a chance at a proper life, free roaming and grazing.

Like I said, it’s not like America is some small country. We have so much unused land. I’m pretty sure we could afford to not have chickens cooped up in awful darkened sheds with no room to move around or spread their wings, resulting in stunted leg growth and overgrown hormone injected breasts. It is truly cruel, disgusting, and obscene the things that we do to these poor creatures so that we can gorge ourselves on Kentucky Fried Chicken.