Category Archive 'Millennials'
10 Oct 2018

Job Interview: Millennial vs. Baby Boomer

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04 Oct 2018

Artisanal Brooms

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A broom is not just a broom. It is statement about who you are. Your broom expresses your values, your identity, your respect for skilled craftsmanship, and your passion for your home. Obviously, you, too, need an artisanal broom made by a sophisticated, college-educated woman living in Brooklyn. (Or not.)

Vox tells you all about them and where to get them.

In the spring of 2017, Erin Rouse quit her job at the lighting design firm Lindsey Adelman to make brooms full time. She picked up the skill during her time in that job, which allowed employees to study in workshops around the world. She went to the Canterbury Shaker Village in New Hampshire, where she studied with a master broomsquire, the technical term for a broom-maker.

At $80 for a hand broom and $200 for a full-size version, which can reach $350 with a pleated skirt and handle cover, Rouse’s brooms aren’t cheap. Assuming all of her materials are prepped and ready to go — the process of cleaning and sorting by size a 100-pound batch of broom corn can take three or four days — she can make one in roughly two hours, plus the time required to trim the broom and sew a skirt and sheath. If she’s also dyeing the broom, that adds another five days to its production time. …

There are people willing to pay good money for a beautiful, well-made broom. Hilary Robertson, a New York-based interior stylist and set designer, is the target audience for that.

“I don’t really want to own anything that I don’t find beautiful, even if it’s a washing-up bowl,” Robertson says over the phone. “That’s my business, and the way I live.”

She recently bought one of Rouse’s brooms for her weekend home in Connecticut, an old schoolhouse with an extension. It has stone floors that get dusty very quickly, so Robertson needed a broom, and it has very little storage space, so she needed that broom to look especially good. Indeed, anyone who’s buying a luxury broom is doing so because they consider it part of their furniture, Robertson says. But that doesn’t mean it’s a choice lightly made.

RTWT

You have to love millennials.

15 Aug 2018

Socialism: A Political Solution to a Spiritual Problem

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Nathanael Blake has a good editorial explaining that the yen for Socialism really amounts to a category mistake.

The surge in socialism’s popularity among young Americans has little to do with the actual merits (or demerits) of the system, or even what it actually entails. Most seem to think it means a larger welfare state and taxing “the rich” a bit more. Rather, socialism’s allure is due to the families that are broken, the communities that are atomized, and the churches that are empty — often, sadly, because they betrayed their responsibilities to God and man.

The needs and desires that are met only by faith, family, and friendship are still part of the human condition. The current half-baked socialist revival is a category error, as it attempts a political and economic solution to a cultural and spiritual problem. But part of our crisis is the loss of the ability to think clearly about such matters, as exemplified by a generation that relies on the Harry Potter books for a shared moral language. This poverty of moral imagination and expression illuminates the spiritual and cultural desolation that prior generations created and bequeathed to their children.

As people seek a political solution for their spiritual and psychological dismay and distress, we see pathologies that used to afflict religious entities become manifest in politics. The sudden popularity of ersatz socialism is not because it offers a realistic plan of improvement, but because it sounds fair and compassionate while promising to relieve anxiety over economic uncertainty. That socialism will deliver on none of these promises is beside the point.

The concerns and anxieties that beset our culture will not be addressed only by reminders of material abundance provided by free market economics. Man does not live on technological miracles alone. Wealth will not satisfy us and assuage our anxieties; affordable airfare and iPhones will not save our souls. But as we look for that which will, we must remember the bounty lavished upon us. Our unhappiness rarely results from real material deprivation, and a socialist redistribution will do little to increase the sum of human happiness.

Only by bearing our material blessings in mind will we be able to think clearly about our desires for cultural, relational, and spiritual satisfaction.

RTWT

14 Aug 2018

“Get Off My Green!”

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30 Jul 2018

A Rising Democrat

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29 Jul 2018

Medieval Man vs. Millennial Man

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23 Jun 2018

You Woke?

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06 Jun 2018

Millennials Believe the Worst Has Already Happened

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Stephanie Georgopulos argues that looking on millennials as too entitled is mistaken. In fact, she contends that her generation could not possible have lower expectations.

I am at the San Francisco International Airport some barely recent morning, registering for a travel program called Clear when the automated kiosk assisting me makes a strange request: “Stand still while we scan your irises.” I’ve barely digested this first ask when another takes its place: this time, the kiosk wants my fingerprints. I find this slightly less alarming; I already use those to access my banking app, buy coins for my mobile games, and unlock the phone that hosts all this information in the first place. But my eyeballs — which I had only just learned could be used as ID, and from a machine at the airport, no less — my dude. Those are the windows to my soul! Ever heard of foreplay?

Clear is a private company that prescreens air travelers using biometric authentication. Becoming a member is like ordering the half-soup, half-sandwich version of TSA PreCheck: it works, if all you want is a taste and are willing to pay for it. With Clear, you don’t need your ID to go through security, but you still have to remove your shoes. You get to wait in a shorter line (sometimes), but you still have to take out your laptop. Basically, the Cleared still participate in the most annoying aspects of air travel and pay almost 10 times the PreCheck fee for the privilege.

How we decided on this valuation of convenience—it’s $179 per year—is not the point, though. My point is that some random startup casually acquired my eye-prints, and some small voice is telling me I should care more than I do. Someone out there definitely cares about this, no doubt. I’m sure at least one other traveler was not sated when a brisk Google search revealed that Clear is based in her hometown and run by a female CEO, ergo it must be a secure and entirely trustworthy business.

But I was sated. It’s the future, right? What’s the worst one could do with my retinal scans? I already gave my social security number to Camel in exchange for a pack of promotional cigarettes one time (or 12). Somewhere in Midtown Manhattan, a market-research firm knows how many condoms I used in May of 2011 (give or take). And when I think about the fact that every hard document I’ve reproduced on a digital copy machine — at work, at the bodega, at the library — is saved on a hard drive somewhere (lots of somewheres, in fact), I feel a sense of hopelessness that, in its own demented way, translates to freedom.

That’s why I unlock my phone with my fingerprint. It’s also why I talk shit in front of Alexa, why I haven’t put tape over my laptop camera, and why I still have a Facebook account. I don’t expect the worst to happen.

Because the worst has already happened. It is happening, and it will continue to happen.

I find this to be an honest, useful framework. If the worst has already happened, that means it’s survivable. And if the worst is a given in the future, too, we know that ignoring it won’t make it go away. There’s opportunity in having nothing to lose. You just need the right attitude. …

Millennials are known as entitled, but as a group, I don’t think we could have lower expectations.

I’ll go: I don’t expect to own a home. I don’t expect to retire well, or at all. I don’t expect anyone to give me anything I haven’t explicitly asked for, and even then. I don’t expect it will ever be affordable to continue my education in any formal way. If a package gets lost in the mail, I don’t expect to see it again. I don’t expect the government or the banks or the universities to do anything that benefits regular people. I don’t expect them to hold each other accountable on our behalf. I don’t expect them to expel abusers from their ranks, or to put my safety over their legacy. I don’t expect to feel safe in large crowds or alone late at night. And I don’t expect that my privacy will be respected, online or in general.

As far as I can tell, security — whether financial, technological, physical, or emotional — is not a thing. You don’t get to decide whether some drunk asshole drinks his drunk ass off and gets behind the wheel. Likewise, you don’t get to decide if the drunk Congress or the drunk banker or all the drunk administrations of all the drunk institutions do what’s right for you. Sometimes they will do the right thing for somebody, but statistically speaking, that somebody is not you.

RTWT

03 May 2018

The Hipster and the Slice

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HT: Vanderleun.

02 Apr 2018

When Snowflakes Date

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19 Mar 2018

Raise the Voting Age to 45

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Biz Pac Review:

[M]illenials have been turning to a painful new procedure in jewelry.

Diamond engagement rings are now not just for wearing around a finger, but the diamonds are being embedded IN the ring finger as a new piercing trend is underway, WCBS reported.

A New York City tattoo and body piercing shop owner said he has noticed an increase in customers asking for the procedure.

“We notice lately a lot of people coming looking for that,” Sam Abbas, owner of Ink Studio in the West Village, told WCBS.

He explained that all tools must be sterilized in doing the type of piercing but maintaining the area and keeping it clean are critical for the customer.

“You’re dealing with the blood, so you got to be very, very safe,” he said, explaining that an experienced piercing artist is a must.

The process, as shown in a mock piercing on CBS2’s reporter, Cindy Hsu, involved marking the spot on the finger with a pen and then using rubbing alcohol and iodine to sterilize the area. A small tool is then used to remove a patch of skin where an anchor, made of titanium or gold is inserted. This anchor holds the gem in place.

“I think it looks nice, but if you really think what it’s doing to the body – and you can have scarring – it’s so many complications that can happen from it,” millennial Cynthia Rivas told the news outlet.

The whole procedure runs about $100 but the cost of the diamond is separate.

Abbas admitted the pain associated with the procedure is certainly a factor to consider, but some are surprised it isn’t as bad as expected.

“You’re going to feel it. You’re getting pierced. It is a little bit painful,” he said. But people did it, and I have a lot of people who say, ‘Oh nice, it’s nothing, I expect more.”

For medical professionals, like Dermatologist Dr. Monica Halem, more serious factors should be considered before making the decision to follow the latest trend.

“First of all, these procedures are not being done by a doctor, and it is a surgical procedure,” she told WCBS. “There are a lot of important structures that sit right under the skin there that can easily be damaged, like tendons.”

She also pointed to the danger of having the diamond, exposed on the finger, getting snagged.

“That’s sitting right above the skin, that’s easily caught on something and can do a lot of damage,” she said. It was not clear how the wearer can eventually add a wedding band as it is traditionally worn on the same finger.

Another caveat: It can take up to 5 weeks for the site to heal after the procedure. And if that engagement doesn’t quite pan out – or the fad wears off – removing the diamond is apparently more painful than getting it in the first place.

28 Feb 2018

Now That’s What We Need: “A Kinder And More Generative Masculinity”

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The old Yale.

Back in 1920, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Princeton ’17, in This Side of Paradise described “The Idea of the Yale Man” this way:

    I want to go to Princeton,” said Amory. “I don’t know why, but I think of all Harvard men as sissies, like I used to be, and all Yale men as wearing big blue sweaters and smoking pipes.”

    Monsignor chuckled.

    “I’m one, you know.”

    “Oh, you’re different—I think of Princeton as being lazy and good-looking and aristocratic—you know, like a spring day. Harvard seems sort of indoors—”

    “And Yale is November, crisp and energetic,” finished Monsignor.

    “That’s it.”

    They slipped briskly into an intimacy from which they never recovered.

The Yale man in fiction was traditionally portrayed as the All-American, square-shooting man-of-action. Fictional exemplars included Frank Merriwell, Dink Stover, Flash Gordon, and even Bruce Wayne.

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At least one millenial undergraduate these days has lots of problems with that tradition.

Jun Yan Chua (a senior in Saybrook), in the OCD, writes:

Today, the idea of the “Yale Man” inspires disdain. Memes that denigrate Yale men proliferate on Facebook… Some of this outrage is well-deserved: At its worst, Yale masculinity can be sinister — indeed, criminal — as evidenced by recent allegations about sexual assault at Delta Kappa Epsilon and other fraternities. …

As scholars of gender studies have understood for years, the “patriarchy” harms men as well as women. By setting an impossibly high standard for the elusive, ideal Yale Man, the dominant culture condemns the vast majority of men to fall short, prompting them to act out and hurt others — primarily women. …

To be a “successful” Yale Man is to check off a daunting list of boxes. One must be tall, fit and subtly dressed. Outgoing and social, but not loud or crass. Not just funny and intelligent, but effortlessly so. In reality, few live up to the demands of the normative Yale Man, yet his specter lives on as a figment of our cultural imagination, haunting we who fall short.

While women face similar pressures, men probably have fewer ways of conforming to this aesthetic of Yale cool. You can be the idealized boy next door — the frat bro or student-athlete, who also happens to be in Phi Beta Kappa. Or you might become a Yale politico — Yale Political Union extraordinaire in the streets, policy wonk in the sheets. Or you could be a man of arts and letters — think theater, a cappella or The New Journal. Fall outside these tropes, and goodbye social capital. The intense pressure leads Yale men to seek out sites of male bonding, only to find that these, too, disappoint, with their petty cruelties and oversized egos.

I exaggerate, but only slightly. In fact, the vision of the idealized Yale Man has a long cultural history. In 1912, Owen Johnson published his best-selling novel, “Stover at Yale,” which documents the titular character’s attempts at navigating Yale’s social hierarchies. Driven by its ladder of fraternities and societies and its emphasis on football, brutal competition characterized Yale at the turn of the 20th century.

That atmosphere took a toll on real-life as well as fictitious Yalies. …

We urgently need to reimagine Yale masculinity. … So how might we create a kinder and more generative masculinity? Instead of focusing on Yale cool as an aesthetic, let’s transform it into an ethic. Rather than fixate on who we are, let’s think about what we can do — for ourselves as for others. And let’s tell more varied stories about “real men” at Yale — stories of redemption as well as perfection, of struggle as well as triumph, of vulnerability as well as strength.

I expect the reader can easily imagine what I think of people who take courses in “Gender Studies,” who take that kind of contemptible nonsense seriously, and my response to the idea of a “Kinder and More Generative Masculinity.” The latter phrase provokes in my mind the image of a frail, sissified young man sitting on an egg.

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