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I endured another holiday of family gatherings with my normal lack of gusto. Visiting my mother who has given up on life, and refuses to get out of bed was depressing enough. The rest of Christmas day was spent with my son and in-laws.
My son is great. He just graduated from college, and is seeking his first real job, but as he described current dating practices, I was thinking “This ain’t gonna happen. I’m not going to see grandchildren. He’s doing on-line dating, since the old way of meeting people in person is too difficult, and out of date. They have to “negotiate” just to have coffee. I can’t imagine what has to transpire before they dare holding hands or steal a kiss. They’re destroying all the fun, the terror, of first encounters. How can a relationship last when there are none of those fond memories of getting to know each other? My wife and I still laugh about our first date. We got too drunk to make it to the movie. She woke up on the couch of my new apartment in the country to find that a mouse had crawled up and died next to the couch. She freaked. Nowadays, there would not have been a second date. Those are the type of encounters one needs to have and endure to form a lasting relationship. No one is going to recall how a negotiation or text message went. Where’s the emotion in that? If they can’t interact while they date, how are they going to interact when times get tough? Again, no grandkids.
If I though on-line dating looked like the end of our species, spending the day with my spoiled, immature nephews was terrifying. These two teenage boys are in high school, but to be kind, they ain’t the shiniest pennies in the roll. The youngest is a freshman who is failing high school Spanish, the easiest language at its lowest level, and a language I could speak, read, and write fluently by their age. The elder is struggling to get into college, a place where he’ll fail, because he won’t survive away from home. Hey, I’m all for fighting and beating the odds, but sometimes one has to be realistic and cut their losses. Save the money and send him to community college for a couple years. All in all, if we’re playing Darwin’s theory of the survival of the fittest, things are looking pretty bleak for the next generation. My solution: Take away their cell phones and television. Kick these kids out into the “real world” where they must learn to interact and fight for themselves. And whatever happened to making kids mind their parents?
To be fair, I recall looking at my father’s generation with terror back in the 60s. My parents got in drunken brawls on a nightly basis, and after Friday night parties, I would come downstairs on Saturday mornings to find half-dressed neighbors passed out on the living room floor. It was not a lifestyle I wanted to emulate. My desire not to be like my father is probably why he felt I was a lazy, unmotivated shit who deserved beating.
On a side note, why can’t this latest generation play decent Rock’n’Roll?