Dear Older Colleague: Let’s Compromise

Dear Older Colleague: Let’s Compromise

Stop using a “valley girl” voice when imitating my generation. Example: “Like, whatever! Everyone knows what the Internet is, duh!” This is partly for your own sake, as these dated generalizations are as socially isolating as they are aggravating.

In exchange, I will stop: Vocal fry and apathetic verbiage.  Because a fairy loses its wings whenever Kim Kardashian prefaces with a grating: “Yeah, I mean, I dunno…” 

Stop gawking at my salad.  What is this? It’s a mango. Yes, it is a “summer-y” choice for a snack. Just once I’d like to eat an avocado without a comment about “what a health nut” I am, or how single women my age are “always on a diet.”

In exchange, I will stop health preaching. This means no more annoying assertions about how gluten and aspartame are toxic while you are trying to enjoy your Hot Pocket and Diet Coke. Let’s be real, I only skimmed those articles online. Also, nobody cares.

Stop assuming I have all the time and energy in the world because I don’t have kids.

In exchange, I will take your fatigue into consideration. If I ask you how your day is going and you wearily reply, “Good, good, got Madeline down at 2 AM and got a solid four hours of sleep before my spin class, so…not bad,” then I will refrain fro nagging you to show me how to un-jam the fax. Again. For the third time that day. 

Stop taunting me with recounts of the unregulated, hedonistic music festivals your generation enjoyed, noting that “music today cannot compete.” I’m in no position to deny the Ke$ha abomination, but the 60s and 70s had some crappy tunes, too.  Don’t believe me? Then check this out: Or, you can visit Hell’s waiting room, where “Tears of a Clown” plays on repeat.

In exchange, I will stop saying things like “Didn’t Elton John get shot or something?” because I think your freakouts are funny. 

Stop reminding me that society operated just fine before computers.  Stop commenting on how people my age are “addicted to the social media and gadgets.” This includes bemoaning “the loss of face to face communication” and the abomination of text abbreviations. Have you ever heard me say “LOL” aloud? You have not.

In exchange, I will stop assuming you can’t access my Facebook profile.

Stop saying things are “da bomb.” That ship has sailed, my friend.

In exchange, I will stop trying to bring back “groovy.” The high rise bell bottoms I bought on consignment don’t give me that right. You guys earned that.

– Katya Karaz

Photo: Florida Conference (Creative Commons)