Monday, May 20, 2013

Me, Me, Me

I ran into an older man at the grocery store over weekend who was remarking about the attitude of people under 40 while we were standing in line at the checkout.  There was a magazine cover featuring its cover story entitled "Me, Me, Me Generation" and he said to me "Yup, that's everyone under 40."  We went on to talk about all the inconsiderate people we had run into lately.  I would gather to say he was in his 60s and he seemed a little bitter about the whole thing.

I have often remarked to my husband as he drives and comments about other drivers, that it might make him feel better to understand that most people don't think about anyone else other than themselves.  People will stop in the middle of the street and talk to people out their car windows who are on the sidewalks or even on their porches.  People in the grocery store will leave their cart in the middle of the aisle while they go off and look for something.  People will walk slowly down the street in the middle of the sidewalk while checking their phones oblivious of others trying to get around them.  It is pretty annoying, but I generally thought I was the only one that observed that trait.

There is a even a new term, meme, that comes from an idea or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.  The term originated from the book The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins where he writes that evolution depends on the existence of a self-replication of a gene which he says can explain human behavior and cultural evolution. The Time Magazine article, that my elderly grocery store checkout line companion observed talks about the Millennials, the generation who are in their 20s now.  However in their defense, these people are setting the stage for the future and generally they are more liberal which could mean a "shift away from the politics of resentment", and more responsible as the teen pregnancy rate has dropped by 42%.  Finally, they are generally a more optimistic lot as most of their adult lives has been through a period of economic growth.  All these things might be true, I just wish I could get around them at the grocery store.

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