Monday, January 25, 2010

Teenagers

If you ever get a chance to spend some quality time with teenagers I would recommend that you do so. Most of us elders forget what it was like when we were teens. We think we remember, but when it comes right down to it, we don’t. We remember the essence of being teens, but not the specifics and the practicality. Our imaginations remember better than what was in reality.

I was a teenager in the 50’s. The time of James Dean, the actor not the singer. The time of Elvis, hotrods, fallout shelters, Yankees dominating the American League pennant race, Black Jack gum, Howdy Dowdy, Glass soda pop bottles, fifty-cent movies.  Captain Video, I love Lucy and cigarette ads all over the television, magazines and newspapers, Ed Sullivan on Sunday night TV and Edward R. Murrow on CBS.

We had our wars too. Korea was prominent, but the death and dying of American troops was not. It was just as tragic as today and numerous, but we didn’t know about it for weeks or months. The media’s technology had not yet developed enough to share instantaneous information.

Today’s teens know who their entertainment and social heroes are, and they are environmentally aware and diligently recycle. Their cognitive powers are far more advanced than mine was as a teenager.
They are conscious of their sugar intake and they have oodles of information from computers and iPods available to them to augment their interests, amplify their studies and their hopes and wishes.

I often write about my encounters with my teenage granddaughters. One time recently, aunts, uncles, and grandparents sat around the dinner table trying to remember different words for the same thing. The adults did fairly well, until the kids with their hand-held Internet connections kept coming up with new words we couldn’t recall.

This weekend I posed questions that were subjective, not objective, like; “if you suddenly had a million dollars” what would you do with it?

I was blown away by the altruistic answers that came from such young, but aware minds. Granted, readers have the right to say, “ They are your grandchildren, of course, you are going to praise and prattle about their intellect and grace.”

I would certainly compliment their manners, their interaction and courtesy with adults and their limited, yet youthful sophistication, but not about the profundity of their choices and their genuine concern for the well being of family and of humankind.

The specifics of what these youngsters would do with a million are not important. What is important is that they embraced an unselfish vision and are concerned for the world and they tell me that their friends think the same way.

Bravo! Long live the Indigo children.



3 comments:

Anonymous said...

You might enjoy this:
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/24/opinion/24kristof.html?ref=opinion
Sue

ff said...

困難的不在於新概念,而在於逃避舊有的概念。.........................

Anonymous said...

Well....we beg to differ but not all teenagers embrace their elders and have a vision of respect for the rest of the world.

There is hope and wonder for most. Others choose to be selfish and indifferent to how their actions affect others.

 
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