Staff only: Get used to disappointment and you'll be fine
Published 24/02/2010 | 05:00
If, like me, you are in a job that brings you into daily contact with the younger generation, then you too will have doubts about their ability to cope with this grave new world that offers them nothing but disappointment.
This is the generation, through no fault of their own, that has grown up in an era of instant gratification and of 'go on, pamper yourself' nonsense.
When I was a teenager I was obsessed with rock music. If I wanted a particular album, I had to save up. I'd go out then to the only record shop in town only to be told it was out of stock. I'd wait for it to come in, get fed up waiting and end up buying something I didn't want.
Generation 2010 download what they want, when they want, often for free. Nothing on the telly for Generation 2010 to watch? They just find anything they want on the internet, 24 hours a day.
That's technology, but let's not forget the role of modern psychology in bringing us the golden age of the slacker that sleeps all day and plays all night until he or she is 30 (and counting). I blame Barney, the purple dinosaur and all the other saccharine kids' TV programmes from the turn of the century, such as The Effluent Show (sorry, The Elephant Show) which told all our kids that they could be whatever they wanted to be -- all they had to do was imagine it and it would be theirs. They grew up to be the generation that was given cars and boob jobs for their 18th birthdays.
To counterbalance the now-obsolete influence of Barney and his day-glow minions, I will attempt to provide some easy (they have to be simple or they'll lose interest quickly) tips for Generation 2010 to cope with the Celtic Carcass. My philosophy is this: get used to disappointment and you'll be fine.
1. Like football? Don't support Man United -- they always win. Liverpool never fail to fail; or even better Arsenal, who will make you believe but then give the ball away in the box.
2. Similarly, go for the original Irish club in Scotland -- Hibernian. Celtic are too good for you.
3. Drink Pepsi. It's not absolutely everywhere, unlike God and Coke.
4. Order coffee in a pub in the Midlands. You'll get instant guck in a cafetiere.
5 Similarly, your Athlone sandwich should have margarine on it. No butter for the likes of you.
6. Travel by public transport. It's crap and you'll be spending Saturday nights with your friends in bus shelters anyway.
7. Forget foreign holidays. When I was 18, I spent the summer abroad working in a factory. Let the motto be 'learn and earn'.
8. Just two will do. Reserve getting langered for special occasions.
9. Let your designer labels be Dunnes and Penneys 'til you're paying into a pension.
10. Support the education sector. Repeat the Leaving and go to college 'til it's all over.