By Emmagayle Harper
“I’m only 24. I can’t be old yet, surely not. Right?” I think to myself almost everyday scrolling endlessly through TikTok.
Zoomer humour everywhere, inescapable subverted expectations and a sheer amount of ‘randomness’ that would be sure to make even the most 2010 moustache obsessed, quirky glasses wearing hipster cringe.
Don’t get me wrong though, TikTok has grown on me but the temptation to chuck my phone in the bin is too real when I see 17,18 and 19-year-olds videoing themselves saying “Millennials are so old, and they’re really easy to clock. I mean, t’s the side parting and skinny jeans for me sis.”
Please have mercy, I know I’m old with my outdated haircut and my skinny jeans (that I won’t be giving up, thank you very much. The hair I can do but the jeans aren’t going anywhere) but y’know…you don’t have to actually say it.
Not Quite A Millennial But Not Quite Gen Z
I’m what they call a ‘cusper’, not quite old enough to be a proper millennial but simultaneously not young enough to get in with the gen-z lot.
It feels a bit like when you’re in high school and you’re split between two friend groups – but in my case neither of the friend groups want me, everybody say aww.
‘Cuspers’ are characterized as being “raised less by optimistic Boomers and more by sceptical Xers and pragmatic Gen Jonesers (the social cohort of the latter half of the Baby Boomers to the first years of Generation X), who raised them to focus more on the practical rather than the aspirational” according to Managing Millennials For Dummies.
The above explains a lot about my generation, we love a bit of self-deprecating humour. There’s nothing funnier than looking at a knocked over bin and saying aloud “same”, am I right guys?
But for any gen-zers reading this, it’s not just a you problem that I feel old, as the days creep in towards my 25th birthday I’m finding myself to be transforming slowly but surely into the grumpy old lady I have always been destined to become.
Back in my teens though I used to be energetic and fun, what happened to me?!
Life, life happened.
Back In My Day…
But before life decided to rain on my parade, as it does for us all at one point or another, I was just jumping about my wee hometown in my black skinny jeans, Twilight t-shirt and rocking some 3D cinema glasses with the lenses popped out being your typical millennial teen.
We were one of the first young generations to have access to social media and the internet in our formative years – which probably explains why we’re so messed up, but we try not to mention that too much, it’s not the best look.
Coming home from school and firing up the computer to jump onto MSN Messenger or Bebo to talk to our friends was just something everyone did before Twitter and Instagram became the main staple of the social media world.
As well as being glued to my computer I also had a BlackBerry that I was obsessed with in 2012, it seemed to be a trend that went around for a while and don’t ask why, I have no idea why a bunch of 14-15-year-olds would need a BlackBerry but BBM (BlackBerry Messenger) was pretty hype though.
And forget TikTok back then, Vine was king (RIP Vine, miss you).
Apps had just begun to pop off with popular applications such as Kik, Temple Run, eBuddy and Tagged becoming popular among teens.
Ah, they were good times, simpler times.
How I miss them.
Only Good Vibes Here, Folks
Now, it may just sound like I hate gen -z and I’m just having an old lady grumble but that couldn’t be further from the truth.
I love my lil gen-zers.
Some of my closest friends and cousins are of that generation and I adore each and every one of them but maybe cool it with the ‘millennials are sooo old thing’ and we’ll get along better.
I’m a grumpy, self-deprecating, twenty-something so I can sit and slag myself on my own, don’t you worry!
I’m kind of jealous of gen-z’s though because their fashion is so much more evolved and refined than ours was at that age and their taste level is just impeccable, I guess that’s what happens when you grow up with the internet being such a constant staple in your life.
They are also so incredibly socially and politically aware, and they’re all about inclusion and acceptance for all which I love so gen z, give yourselves a gold star for that one because you really are paving the way for future generations.
So, as much as I whinge and moan about gen z making me feel like a relic, I know that the world will be in safe hands left in the care of your generation.
But please just let me hang onto my youth for a little longer, I’m not ready to be considered old yet.