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generational differences

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."

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