Youth, and How to Run Screaming from it

Foster Youth Education - Stuart Foundation

Youth, they say, is wasted on the young… but, if you give it to the elderly, they’ll just break a hip trying to use it.

After attending my granddaughter’s second birthday party (she’s fifty but has only had two actual parties), I’ve been thinking about youth. I don’t see myself as wanting my youth back… although, if I could be young for five minutes, I could clean under my dining room table and that would be pretty swell. My youth was pigs, chickens, snakes and squabbling with my brother and sister. Did I forget about school? There was also school… Diogenes said that the foundation of every state is the education of its youth; so, here in the United States, we are essentially sitting on cinder blocks…

School taught us to crave the approval of authority figures. This wasn’t so bad, at first.

What happens when a volcano erupts? - BBC Bitesize
Wrong vinegar?

There was a mishap with a baking soda volcano that maimed four students and left dozens smelling like a Caesar Salad. Also, our funding ran out while I was learning the alphabet, so I didn’t know any words starting with U – Z, until I started college. But, it allowed us to hang with other children and what could possibly go wrong? Sure we made bad decisions, many involving rabid skunks, but without youth, what stories would we have to tell our children? “I had perfect attendance in fourth grade”? “My teachers let me clean the erasers”? “I was a sniveling little weasel who grubbed for grades like some horrible, obsequious scum-lapping warthog from Hell”? Actually, that last one might spark their interest, but I’ve only recounted it when I was three sheets to the wind and another two sheets to the god of the grape, or, as they call it in my house, “Daddy’s Yelling and Sad Juice”. And, all this backfires when we reach our teen years and have to rebel against authority and the only authority we’d previously respected was our school. Well, my parents, also… but my father was an ex-boxer so I sure as HELL wasn’t rebelling against that guy. That’s why elementary schools should hire drill sergeants so we can rebel against them instead of education. I rebelled so hard against civics class that I was an anarchist for five years and didn’t vote for ten.

As Whitney Houston once said, “I believe children are our future… UNLESS YOU USE A CONDOM”. Wise words… but are we so wise as to not listen to our youths? Face it, an old man will never be as wise as a teenage girl thinks she is. Who is happier of the two of us? The one without a prostate the size of a cabbage, in my opinion…

Okay… if I had a chance to be young again, I might do it… if only to try again with that baking soda volcano…

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25 thoughts on “Youth, and How to Run Screaming from it

      1. I let anger and pride govern my actions… Much of my time was spent getting mad about not getting respect…

        It wasn’t until I had kids that I realized that respect wasn’t an external thing.

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  1. It doesn’t take a genius to say “our children are our future.” Sheesh. Now, an aside: there’s a rumor that many men marry emotional black holes. Think this is true? My dad was also a Boxer. He left early to pursue his career and only taught me how to fight like, maybe twice. But it stuck. I actually kicked some ass in 9th grade when I started getting picked on. I looked like Howdy Doody, so I was an easy target…until I fought back. Now, with that said, I’d love to be young again…and would live like Genghis Khan. (That’s bro code.)

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  2. great post. love it. I swear your perspective. I wouldn’t want to be “young” again…well, maybe younger but the youth today has WAY too much stress and anxiety foisted upon them. It’s tough in the digital age to be a kid…

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