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Pop Culture

Millennials and Gen Xers bond over these 20 'baffling' Gen Z trends

"I thought younglings would be a little less foolish than we were."

gen z trends, millennials, gen x, boomer, generational humor

Baffled by young people? You're not alone.

We can try to be the hippest, savviest, most progressive adults of all time, and still, there will inevitably be certain quirks younger generations have that just baffle us. Just think of it as a badge of honor. You’ve made it far enough in life to say “kids these days…”

And let’s face it, since Gen Zers and Gen Alphas were born into a drastically different world than their millennial, Gen X and certainly boomer counterparts, it’s understandable that a few things are going to seem foreign.

Then again, maybe some things, like this wretched Skibidi Toilet business, are just plain weird.


Recently, older generations banded together on Reddit to share some of the more perplexing trends that younger folks are taking part in. Below are some of the best contributions.

Give them a read. It might make you feel old, but also less alone.

1. "I guess there’s, like, elementary school-aged kids with full skincare routines now? That’s wild…"u/retrosnot86

Photo credit: Canva


2. "That they use phones instead of laptops. I use my phone a bit, but it's hard to imagine it being my only computer. I need at least 20 inches of screen, a trackball, and a keyboard with physical buttons just to think properly. I don't want to budget my battery to last all day if an important text comes through. I want my internet signals sent over a hard wire. When my computer stops working, I want to open it up and swap the broken part with a better one." u/gameryamen

3. "All the self-labeling. When I was young, we avoided labels at all costs!"u/1mamapajama

4. "I find many younger people to be very fearful. Hyper-fixating on the worst possible outcomes even though the actual chance is so low it's not worth worrying about."—u/sonicfluff

5. "Making fun of kids for 'no show' or 'ankle' socks. What on earth is that about?" —u/Tangboy50000

Photo credit: Canva

6. "They are allowing every one of their friends on Snapchat to know their location at all times. My 23-year-old coworker and her friends are constantly revoking and then reinstating their visible location depending on whether they're happy or mad with each other. If someone notices that they can't see where another person is, they'll bring it up, wondering what they did to upset them. Her best friend will ask her friend to check her boyfriend's location and whichever friend he told her he'd be with to make sure they match.

At least I can kinda understand family members knowing, but even then, my siblings don't need to know where I am at all times, and my parents should maybe stop constantly checking once I hit 18. 21 surely. IDK, I guess if you grow up with it, you don't think it's weird. I'm 43, and I certainly didn't grow up with people who didn't have the ability to know where I was at all times unless I told them or called them."u/CallejaFairey

7. "Not dating someone because of the phone they have..."u/SaveusJebus

8. "Binge-watching short videos compiled so you never watch anything with a plot or storyline. Just tons of 10–60 second videos, and most of them are awful."u/hey_nonny_mooses

9. "Vaping. Isn't it clear by now that inhaling fumes is not really a good idea?"u/LordGigu

via GIPHY

10. "That literacy rates are plummeting.”—u/Soren_Camus1905

u/mbbyskyadded:

“Part of it is also media literacy. Literacy isn't just reading, it's understanding context and the target audience of a piece of media (which may NOT be you, and this is ok) Shit like TikTok often lacks nuance AND is catered directly to the user via algorithms, so it's harder to understand that not ALL the content you consume has to be geared toward you and all the things YOU like. So now… [when] some new movie isn't something you perfectly align with and enjoy…you're convinced it's incorrect and shouldn't be like that, when in reality it was just meant for someone else who DOES enjoy what it's about. All of this makes reading more difficult, because the clues…are often subtle and not explicit in good works of literature (it's part of what makes them good, imo)."

11. "Committing crimes as part of social media trends. Especially the challenge of licking ice cream at the store and putting it back. That's a straight-up health code violation."u/Heroic-Forger

Photo credit: Canva

…and on that note…

12. “The popularity of ‘nuisance streamers’ with younger folks. I don't find being a public nuisance even a little bit entertaining or funny, especially when it’s being filmed. Also just in general the trend of filming, photographing and trying to make "content" out of their entire life in some vain hope of becoming internet famous. I don't get it. Last thing i'd ever want to do is have my entire life posted on the internet.” u/system_error_02

13. "I've trained three co-workers in their early 20s who don't use the shift key to capitalize letters. They hit caps lock, type the letter to be capitalized, and then hit caps lock again. I can't wrap my head around it."u/mowglimg

14. "That they're bringing back those thin '90s brows again. It seems it's a lesson we all must learn the hard way."u/dontaskwhatitmeans

15. "Kids making fun of other kids because they don't have a specific water tumbler. It sounds like somebody is trying to parody 'making fun of other kids for having the wrong brand of clothes or phone.'" u/shf500

Photo credit: Canva

16. "Refusing to learn to drive. I understand not wanting to, preferring to live where you don't have to because of good walkability/transit/likability, etc. But just being unwilling to learn at all? It's an important life skill, and there might be an emergency where you have to!" u/Beruthiel999

17. “Making every phone call via speakerphone, especially when holding the phone directly next to the side of their head because they can't hear."u/veni_vidi_vici47

18. "Getting addicted to nicotine. I thought younglings would be a little less foolish than we were." u/computer_crisps_dos

19. "I listened to a 23-year-old (more than a decade younger than me) say she wanted to start 'preventative Botox.'…Girl..." u/Kholzie

And last but not least:

20. “Broccoli haircuts.” u/Johnny_Menace

Pop Culture

Here’s a paycheck for a McDonald’s worker. And here's my jaw dropping to the floor.

So we've all heard the numbers, but what does that mean in reality? Here's one year's wages — yes, *full-time* wages. Woo.

Making a little over 10,000 for a yearly salary.


I've written tons of things about minimum wage, backed up by fact-checkers and economists and scholarly studies. All of them point to raising the minimum wage as a solution to lifting people out of poverty and getting folks off of public assistance. It's slowly happening, and there's much more to be done.

But when it comes right down to it, where the rubber meets the road is what it means for everyday workers who have to live with those wages. I honestly don't know how they do it.


Ask yourself: Could I live on this small of a full-time paycheck? I know what my answer is.

(And note that the minimum wage in many parts of the county is STILL $7.25, so it would be even less than this).

paychecks, McDonalds, corporate power, broken system

One year of work at McDonalds grossed this worker $13,811.18.

assets.rebelmouse.io

This story was written by Brandon Weber and was originally appeared on 02.26.15

Pop Culture

What is 'Generation Jones'? The unique qualities of the not-quite-Gen-X-baby-boomers.

This "microgeneration" had a different upbringing than their fellow boomers.

Generation Jones includes Michelle Obama, George Clooney, Kamala Harris, Keanu Reeves and more.

We hear a lot about the major generation categories—boomers, Gen X, millennials, Gen Z and the up-and-coming Gen Alpha. But there are folks who don't quite fit into those boxes. These in-betweeners, sometimes called "cuspers," are members of microgenerations that straddle two of the biggies.

"Xennial" is the nickname for those who fall on the cusp of Gen X and millennial, but there's also a lesser-known microgeneration that straddles Gen X and baby boomers. The folks born from 1954 to 1965 are known as Generation Jones, and they've been thrust into the spotlight as people try to figure out what generation to consider 59-year-old Vice President Kamala Harris.

Like President Obama before her, Harris is a Gen Jonesernot exactly a classic baby boomer but not quite Gen X. Born in October 1964, Harris falls just a few months shy of official Gen X territory. But what exactly differentiates Gen Jones from the boomers and Gen Xers that flank it?


"Generation Jones" was coined by writer, television producer and social commentator Jonathan Pontell to describe the decade of Americans who grew up in the '60s and '70s. As Pontell wrote of Gen Jonesers in Politico:

"We fill the space between Woodstock and Lollapalooza, between the Paris student riots and the anti-globalisation protests, and between Dylan going electric and Nirvana going unplugged. Jonesers have a unique identity separate from Boomers and GenXers. An avalanche of attitudinal and behavioural data corroborates this distinction."

Pontell describes Jonesers as "practical idealists" who were "forged in the fires of social upheaval while too young to play a part." They are the younger siblings of the boomer civil rights and anti-war activists who grew up witnessing and being moved by the passion of those movements but being met with a fatigued culture by the time they themselves came of age. Sometimes, they're described as the cool older siblings of Gen X. Unlike their older boomer counterparts, most Jonesers were not raised by WWII veteran fathers and were too young to be drafted into Vietnam, leaving them in between on military experience.

Gen Jones gets its name from the competitive "keeping up with the Joneses" spirit that spawned during their populous birth years, but also from the term "jonesin'," meaning an intense craving, that they coined—a drug reference but also a reflection of the yearning to make a difference that their "unrequited idealism" left them with. According to Pontell, their competitiveness and identity as a "generation aching to act" may make Jonesers particularly effective leaders:

"What makes us Jonesers also makes us uniquely positioned to bring about a new era in international affairs. Our practical idealism was created by witnessing the often unrealistic idealism of the 1960s. And we weren’t engaged in that era’s ideological battles; we were children playing with toys while boomers argued over issues. Our non-ideological pragmatism allows us to resolve intra-boomer skirmishes and to bridge that volatile Boomer-GenXer divide. We can lead."

Time will tell whether the United States will end up with another Generation Jones leader, but with President Biden withdrawing his candidacy, it has now become a distinct possibility.

Of note in discussions over Kamala Harris's generational status is the fact that generations aren't just calculated by birth year but by a person's cultural reality. Some have made the argument that Harris is culturally more Gen X than boomer, though there doesn't seem to be any record of her claiming any particular generation as her own. However, a swath of Gen Z has staked their own claim on her as "brat"—a term singer Charli XCX thrust into the political arena with a post on X that read "kamala IS brat." That may be nonsensical to most older folks, but for Gen Z, it's a glowing endorsement from one of the top Gen Z musicians of the moment.

Democracy

This Map Reveals The True Value Of $100 In Each State

Your purchasing power can swing by 30% from state to state.

Image by Tax Foundation.

Map represents the value of 100 dollars.


As the cost of living in large cities continues to rise, more and more people are realizing that the value of a dollar in the United States is a very relative concept. For decades, cost of living indices have sought to address and benchmark the inconsistencies in what money will buy, but they are often so specific as to prevent a holistic picture or the ability to "browse" the data based on geographic location.

The Tax Foundation addressed many of these shortcomings using the most recent (2015) Bureau of Economic Analysis data to provide a familiar map of the United States overlaid with the relative value of what $100 is "worth" in each state. Granted, going state-by-state still introduces a fair amount of "smoothing" into the process — $100 will go farther in Los Angeles than in Fresno, for instance — but it does provide insight into where the value lies.


The map may not subvert one's intuitive assumptions, but it nonetheless quantities and presents the cost of living by geography in a brilliantly simple way. For instance, if you're looking for a beach lifestyle but don't want to pay California prices, try Florida, which is about as close to "average" — in terms of purchasing power, anyway — as any state in the Union. If you happen to find yourself in a "Brewster's Millions"-type situation, head to Hawaii, D.C., or New York. You'll burn through your money in no time.

income, money, economics, national average

The Relative Value of $100 in a state.

Image by Tax Foundation.

If you're quite fond of your cash and would prefer to keep it, get to Mississippi, which boasts a 16.1% premium on your cash from the national average.

The Tax Foundation notes that if you're using this map for a practical purpose, bear in mind that incomes also tend to rise in similar fashion, so one could safely assume that wages in these states are roughly inverse to the purchasing power $100 represents.


This article originally appeared on 08.17.17

Representative photos by Canva and Evelyn Giggles|Flickr

Mom hilariously demands to know secret to clean kids' rooms.

Kids' bedrooms can be a source of contention in some households. Some kids are just naturally more tidy than others while some are more like little tornados leaving debris wherever they go refusing to clean it up. Parents can be on different wavelengths when it comes to how clean a child's room should be.

You've got the parents who are huge proponents of simply closing the door. If you can't see the mess, then the mess doesn't exist. You've got some parents that do a weekly or monthly clean themselves in an attempt to save their sanity. Then you've got the ones that have daily room cleans as part of their child's routine, but not everyone can or wants to be at that level.

Ariel B. recently posted a video asking parents to explain how they get their children to clean their rooms as she pans to her daughters' rooms that are in complete disarray.


The exhausted mom starts off by explaining that motherhood is ghetto. In fact she surmises that the "hood" people are talking about when they say the hood is ghetto is indeed motherhood before asking how other parents are doing it.

"My daughters' rooms are so nasty, everything you are ever looking for in your house is in them rooms," Ariel says.

This frustration started when her kids couldn't find their field trip shirts for summer camp, which prompted her to go in their rooms to investigate. She then shows everyone the room where the shirt was lost, exclaiming, "You couldn't find Jesus in this room. You couldn't find common sense, humility, any decent soul in this room."


The room was strewn with clothes, toys and other things. Commenters not only pointed out the mannequin head looking distressed under the bed but related hard to what the mom was saying and supported her rant.

"The mannequin head laying under table looking stressed. Her face looks like it’s saying 'help me,'" one person laughs.

"I'm closing the door. I have an almost 3 & 6 year old and I'm 37 weeks today…I close the door. It’s no way y'all messed the room up like this and expect me to clean it. So, when they get back from Florida, they can clean it themselves," another says.

"You're cracking me up! I can definitely relate to finding wrappers. I said 23 times don't eat in your room. I'm not cleaning it," another writes.

"That last part gets me crackin up every time I watch this. I watch this on the daily to remind myself it’s not just my kid," one mom admits.

But if you watch closely as Ariel pans the messy bedrooms you'll notice there's something important missing from the bed frames...a mattress. One person inquired about the important missing item and the response is not only comical but makes so much sense.

"I flipped the mattress looking for the orange shirt after I stepped on a Barbie jeep and almost broke my neck," Ariel explains before following up in another comment saying the mattress is in the hallway—it likely made it much easier to clean under the bed. And while the mom did receive some advice in the comments, it's unclear if she will heed any.

Bill Gates in conversation with The Times of India

Bill Gates sure is strict on how his children use the very technology he helped bring to the masses.

In a recent interview with the Mirror, the tech mogul said his children were not allowed to own their own cellphone until the age of 14. "We often set a time after which there is no screen time, and in their case that helps them get to sleep at a reasonable hour," he said. Gates added that the children are not allowed to have cellphones at the table, but are allowed to use them for homework or studying.


The Gates children, now 20, 17 and 14, are all above the minimum age requirement to own a phone, but they are still banned from having any Apple products in the house—thanks to Gates' longtime rivalry with Apple founder Steve Jobs.

smartphones, families, responsible parenting, social media

Bill Gates tasting recycled water.

Image from media.giphy.com.

While the parenting choice may seem harsh, the Gates may be onto something with delaying childhood smartphone ownership. According to the 2016 "Kids & Tech: The Evolution of Today's Digital Natives"report, the average age that a child gets their first smartphone is now 10.3 years.

"I think that age is going to trend even younger, because parents are getting tired of handing their smartphones to their kids," Stacy DeBroff, chief executive of Influence Central, told The New York Times.

James P. Steyer, chief executive of Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization that reviews content and products for families, additionally told the Times that he too has one strict rule for his children when it comes to cellphones: They get one when they start high school and only when they've proven they have restraint. "No two kids are the same, and there's no magic number," he said. "A kid's age is not as important as his or her own responsibility or maturity level."

PBS Parents also provided a list of questions parents should answer before giving their child their first phone. Check out the entire list below:

  • How independent are your kids?
  • Do your children "need" to be in touch for safety reasons—or social ones?
  • How responsible are they?
  • Can they get behind the concept of limits for minutes talked and apps downloaded?
  • Can they be trusted not to text during class, disturb others with their conversations, and to use the text, photo, and video functions responsibly (and not to embarrass or harass others)?
  • Do they really need a smartphone that is also their music device, a portable movie and game player, and portal to the internet?
  • Do they need something that gives their location information to their friends—and maybe some strangers, too—as some of the new apps allow?
  • And do you want to add all the expenses of new data plans? (Try keeping your temper when they announce that their new smartphone got dropped in the toilet...)


This article originally appeared on 05.01.17