Teenage Mutes

I can only reflect on what’s missing and what’s too much. They are the perfect target group – marketings most wanted. They are early adopters:  iPhone, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Whatsapp. Born and caught in the web of gadgets and google spiders. From the age of none they tap their pale, chubby fingers on gorilla glass. Even though they have a good mother who cares about diversity and realness, she buys herself the much needed time off with the unburdening distraction of a slick, edgy pad. I saw commuting school kids communicate on the bus, sitting in a closed group right next to each other. They had no expressions on their faces. Emotions are born and managed in their devices. Smilies and Emoticons carry their state of mind and mood. The bluntly abstracted symbols deliver joy, sadness, concern and excitement with undeniable cuteness and invariable indifference.

I recently had the disturbing yet fascinating pleasure of getting to know a teenager – of age at least – but still it was just shocking what manner of interaction they believe to be adequate. She demanded a “selfie” essentially every day every time my situation or condition just slightly changed, no matter if improvement or demotion. I told her that this is not going to work because we obviously come from two completely different planets. But she was a precocious one, explaining that she is not one of those 15-year old “hardcore-handy-snapchat-facebook-whatever-kids”. You have to give her credit for that level of fore- and insight and differentiation being only three years older. Or is it just adolescent ignorance?

A strong influence in my life where films. They taught me about human values, about poetry, pain, acceptance and how to be and become a man. But there has come a new era of maturation now. Kids grow up amidst an abundance of lifeless life. CGI characters – fluffy, vivid and generic. They still teach the same values, somehow, but they don’t constitute something, anything real and tangible that you thrive and aspire to be or become. They deceive and deprive in the same fashion as those delicate, elaborate contraptions of glass and metal. How can you ever grow to dearly love someone who never was infused with goosebumps from the hazy, fire breathing Hades cityscape in the opening scene of Blade Runner?

I only see hope for those who have enough seasoned influence to conclude that they where born too late. It is the curse of the teen age to be born late. They have access to an endless universe of information – but they know nothing. Even if they knew they wouldn’t have time to reflect and admit, because their phone keeps them wired and dazed in the infinite loop of electronic social engagement. The cold but colourful illusion of experience and human contact revokes any usefull conciousness.

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