Saturday 18 November 2017

Success stories have robbed us of all excuses

The Forbes Fab Five from Ireland have defied the recession and left the rest of us feeling sick, says Donal Lynch

McIlroy asked the Wozniackis for their daughter’s hand in marriage and then got down on one knee in Sydney to propose
McIlroy asked the Wozniackis for their daughter’s hand in marriage and then got down on one knee in Sydney to propose
HIGH ACHIEVER: Patrick Collison. Photo: Damien Eagers
One Direction's Niall Horan.
Donal Lynch

Donal Lynch

IT should be a feelgood story to light up dreary January: five Irishmen are listed on Forbes '30 under 30' -- a compendium of the most successful young adults in the world -- at least according to foreign journalists (whose approval we seem to crave almost as much as that of the Troika).

These young men -- Rory McIlroy, the Collison brothers (software entrepreneurs from Limerick), One Direction's Niall Horan and video game designer Terry Cavanagh -- are culled from the supposed Generation Screwed. Their poor timing -- coming of age in the worst recession since the Fifties -- ought to have condemned them to a lacklustre adulthood of stuttering achievement and eating beans on a rented sofa.

Their gender, if we believe mental health experts, ought to have left them wandering baffled through the modern world as they struggle with the effect unemployment or piddling wages has on their sense of selves as men. They should be full of rage and resentment, shaking a fist at their elders, who control almost all of the country's wealth and have bankrupted the younger generations. And yet instead, here they are: shining like beacons of possibility, each worth zillions of euros.

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