Monday, October 18, 2004

More nauseating yoof media voices

Being entirely the children of boomers (apart from a handful of ultra-young mum – and now presumably also grand-mum – Xers), today’s 18-25 year-olds have mostly so far had a pretty easy ride in life.

Having rich, indulgent parents can only get you so far in the adult world, however. Which is why I find the yoof media ghetto (or “walled garden”, to use the late 90s’ dotcom parlance) so vexing – what is it about the real world (= here, working in the mainstream media) that youngsters find so confronting as to need their own sheltered workshops in lieu?

Rephrasing the question (as an Xer, I of course well-know the answer that the mainstream media has long been a virtual closed-shop for boomer mediocrities) – what is the current sheltered workshop approach going to achieve in the long-run? In other words, is having For Yoof By Yoof media going to make the transition to working in the mainstream media – which is going to have to happen one day, kiddies – any easier?

Judging by this Op Ed in today’s Age, by youngster Louise Merrington, the answer is a firm “no”:

I discovered something appalling the other day. My friends and I could not correctly name Australia's first prime minister.

Leaving aside the question of why it should be so appalling to not know the name of a man who was by modern standards a racist and British toady, there is the matter of Louise and co (let’s call them Trinny, Annabelle and Jackson) somehow having completely missed, or forgotten, that annoying television advertisement from only three years ago, which both asked and answered the very question that so troubles Louise today.

Oh, that’s right, you were too busy on the Year 11 polo field during after-school hours to be watching much TV in 2001, weren’t you, Louise? (It would have been the rifle-range had you had your way, only (i) it had to be shared with the Year 10s, and (ii) Jackson was such a girl about guns).

As to how I’m so confident about Louise Merrington being a product of an over-the-top “private” school (scare quotes because of the prodigious taxpayer funds all such schools receive), this emerges in the it-would-be-LOL-funny-if-it-wasn’t-so-sad naiveté of poor Louise being made to study Chinese history, rather than Australian history, in Year 12 because such was statistically better for amassing high uni entry marks.

A yoof-only readership would no doubt let this one pass through to the keeper, Louise. Not me, though: you are simply one spoiled, dumb fuck-up. So your school deprived you of what the common people learned via their televisions and public schools? Tell someone who cares – and I can assure you that that won’t be anyone over 25.

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