I mentioned in my post about our trip that we went to Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The Hipster capital of the world. My eldest son was in heaven. Vintage bookstores, vintage clothing stores, vintage record stores and vintage cool stuff stores. At least that’s what the signs and my kids said. My head said; used books, used clothes, used records, and old junk. Our simple rule was if you’re going to pay for the used clothes you are also going to pay for the medication that will kill the scabies should you end up getting them. We are not lugging home a used typewriter, record player or records.
So what’s the deal with the kids and this stuff? I can see the nostalgia factor for us but what’s there for them? We tried explaining that record players are not all that cool. That once you’re used to ipods that will run a near infinite play list getting up to flip a record every 30 minutes will wear thin. Not to mention the possibility of scratches on records. But somehow it’s still so cool and we are so not. Then there are the typewriters. Oh please, not typewriters. We tried explaining jammed keys, ribbons, one copy only and don’t even get me started on trying to correct errors! Have any of these kids had to retype an entire page because it’s 2a.m. and you’re so tired that you’re not seeing straight so you just typed the same paragraph twice? The line up at the photocopy machine is so long that there is no way that you can make a copy of your essay and get it handed in on time. You hand in your only copy knowing that if there is any problem or just in case there is a problem you have to retype your essay so that there will be a duplicate. They have no idea. How is this cooler than anything put out by Apple?
This past Monday I was at the parent/teacher/student committee meeting at my son’s high school. This little interesting tidbit was given to us. Wilfred Laurier University has published the fact that 43% of its first year Arts students are on academic probation. 43%! Now Laurier is a perfectly well respected university with nothing overly unique about its student population. This leads me to assume that the stats must be somewhat similar for other Ontario universities.
I have a bit of “Vintage” advice for our university students. If you want to do something truly “vintage” do what your parents did. Get your work handed in on time. Don’t expect your parents to bail you out or your professors to buy your lame excuses. When you study or write a paper try to do just that one thing and that one thing alone. No matter what you think you will not absorb information the same way if you are texting, MSNing, Facebooking, ichatting, skyping and ‘listening’ to cool videos on youtube. Nobody owes you this opportunity and no employer will want to hire you if you can’t be responsible for your self.
Somebody’s pushed my button.