Monday, October 22, 2007

Youth Beat

The Widening Divide

Today I became a victim to the cutting edge of pedestrian traffic violations.

The scene: The avenue attached to my boulevard.

Time: Just past noon, eastern standard.

The incident: As I drove down the street, a group of youths, perhaps 10 or 12, stretched across the street making it difficult to get by.

My reaction: I was terrified. Here, in my town! The youths had devised a sinister plan that threatened to disrupt traffic. It was a brilliant idea thought, and a brilliant idea executed. I kept my head down as I cautiously drove past the crowd. I avoided making all eye contact, because I’m a coward. Finally, I rushed home and wrote this blog entry.

I’m lucky. These kids are the new Badasses of the world and they will fuck with Anybody provided Anybody is driving a car even if it’s a cheap, beat-up rumbler.

But then I thought: Making it difficult for a person to drive by—that’s their best rebellion? Pathetic, really. Hell, unless a tank is rolling in their direction, these youths aren’t rebelling; they’re acting like a group of annoying asshole adolescents.[i]

But maybe I’m just getting old. After all, I’m a coward[ii] for not shaking my fist at any of these kids. I didn’t even honk.

The sad truth is I wake up each morning and measure the size of my prostate: Once one has crossed the Age Line I have, one cannot get into the habit quick enough.

Some days I like to pretend I’m young again: I apply thick layers of clay to my face to cover my many depressing wrinkles.

But the cliché is youth isn’t your age, it’s a state of mind.[iii] But this delusion was probably first uttered by an octogenarian in the middle of getting his diaper changed.

Truth: I’m getting old and so are my ideas. Because I was born in a year before 1990, any idea I have automatically ages at least 10 years upon the act of saying it or writing it. These Old Man Ideas are evidence of my early on-set decrepitness and/or how I’m a prude.

For instance, an idea for youths reading this: If your parents ever catch you masturbating, simply use the excuse that you were checking for testicular tumours.[iv] Too graphic? Who’s the prude now?

All I’m asking for is today’s youth to try harder. Making it difficult for cars to get by on a street is the least exciting rebellion I can think of; it’s a failure of imagination. I want the youth of today to cause real fear and give me something different to write about other than my prostate.


[i] Points for alliteration.

[ii] Second time I call myself a "coward" in the same post.

[iii] I think that’s the cliché; who gives a fuck if I got it wrong?

[iv] Girls can also use this excuse: Simply feign ignorance and blame your school for not providing enough sex ed, specifically a unit about female anatomy.

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