Just A Jock Poet Dreaming

Analysis, analytics, data..

I’m overly involved,

At least on a personal level,

Except my metrics are

Meaning, significance, practicality

Instead of the outcomes so associated with

Profit, exit polls, or transcripts.

So this week of examining

Generational differences has left me

Scratching my head

For the numbers are adding up in a different way than I expected.

Maybe my non-mathematical and musically illiterate chakras needed

A shot of adrenaline to see more clearly,

But I think I’ve got it figured out…

My parents were Boomers

Growing up to be guides

Who got me to sports and let me learn from another,

Taught me to solve my own problems,

And provided me the loose boundaries

That allowed me to find my way;

Thank goodness.

So my Generation X upbringing

Somehow resembled that experienced by my Boomer parents.

Scary as it sounds to me,

I think like them.

Well, when learning about the Gen Y category this week,

I was shocked to learn that my generation

Has totally messed up the current crop of kids.

They claim we are doing everything for them.

They claim we must keep praising them

Because we built their self esteem so high

With ribbons, certificates, and trophies

That they need positive reinforcement

Like a hammer needs a nail.

We argue that they are lazy,

Forgetting that we have scheduled their entire lives

So they rarely ever made any real decisions.

We argue that they whine all the time

Forgetting that we were teenagers once too.

We argue that they don’t listen,

Can’t carry on a conversation, and 

Are not able to figure stuff out.

Then we give them a smart phone, tablet,

Or pay their way through school

Without even considering how our parenting

Might really be enabling.

In this time of great information

We, the Xers have really turned ostrich

Burying our head in a self-indulgence groomed in the eighties

That allows us to think travel teams are good parenting,

That using the latest app is knowing technology, and

That good grades are the absolute measure of a person’s worth.

I blame us for the complaints of Gen Y.

I blame all of us for just complaining.

(Finger pointing at me too.)

So in my best pop singer voice,

“I want to bring thinking baaaaaaack!”

I’m hoping my kids are growing up

Realizing that their mutt heritage is a rich source of discussion and humor

That should be accepted with pride

That will overwhelm any threat to the perfection 

I may have tried to create in them.

Learn to laugh at yourself, my children.

I’m hoping my kids can consume information,

Whether in line with their beliefs or outside of their broad

Political, sociological, psychological, humor seeking, spiritual, or cuisine craving thoughts,

And recognize the goodness of people

Whatever the label

For the labels only become bad

When the LABELER makes them bad

We can’t be hurt by what others say,

Unless

We choose to be.

Call it the Mencia Mantra and believe the old adage

About sticks, stones, and words.

I’m hoping my kids find their way

Not striving to have a big house, fancy car, or high powered job.

I’d rather they be happy, living with those they love,

Raising their kids to understand life is imperfect

And allowing my grandchildren to figure things out 

Without their parents being too involved.

I think the Gen Y kids know that perfection does not exist

They know things like advanced, proficient, basic, below basic

Labels, yes? Used appropriately? Hmmm…

They know things.

They get it.

Now, Xers, let them live.

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