Me Generation

Note, though I tried, I couldn’t remotely relate this post to cycling.

Not sorry about this.

Recently, at the library, I bought a book for the dollar. It’s called Generation Me

Don’t let the slutty cover fool you; the rest of the book isn’t titillating.

It is illuminating.

While reading it, I felt like a fish who was made aware of water for the first time. That is, our culture is so permeated with self-centeredness that we don’t even notice it.

Now, whenever I hear myself saying certain phrases, I cringe, such as “whatever makes you happy.”

For a long time, I knew the whole, follow your dreams, pap was overrated, but now I know more about why this is so.

Even the book, _Feeling Good_, as good as it is, in some way falls victim to the whole self-fulfillment problem.

I say it’s a problem because too much emphasis on the self can lead to depression. Just listen to a depressed person talk, everything is about him.

Contrast this to a giving and caring person who doesn’t seem to notice their own problems so much because they are focused on helping others.

Yet, these ideas go unquestioned.

And I see this everywhere. It’s all me, me, me.

I’m totally not above any of this.

Some examples include a time at a Buddhist statue store where the owner was trying to explain the reason that the Chinese had made a certain statue and the girl interrupted with: “it means anything you want it to mean?”

Wow, historical facts are not up to interpretation which always flows through one’s own personal opinion.

At a history teacher meeting (I was there by accident), I heard them call research papers, I-search papers, because the students couldn’t write two sentences, even about the distant past, without filtering it through their own personal life.

I guess this explains why people have such a hard time listening to anything, and they constantly interrupt with irrelevant details about their personal life.

It also explains why people are so eager to spill all their own darkest personal trauma at me which really pisses me off because I’m a super-sensitive person who is easily hurt. Words have a powerful effect on us humans especially those who care.

Everyone I know who teaches college has told me that this generation will tell them, in five minutes or less, their whole biography which often has graphic scenes of childhood trauma, sexual abuse, and emotional pain.

On the other hand, the book acknowledges what we know: the sky is not falling. Today is better than yesterday. Interracial marriage is accepted which was thought disgusting by most not too long ago. There are more opportunities for women and racial minorities than ever.

People do matter, and they should be allowed to express themselves.

However, people should care more about how others view them, and they should present themselves as best as possible while still being honest.

Some ideas are dumb like the biggest lie: “You create your own reality.”

Overall, this book is excellent so far, and I am going to try to meet the author as she lives in San Diego.

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