You can reach more people with a blog than a bullhorn

Last night, I met Kealan on http://election.twitter.com. We have not spoken, I know nothing about her, but she said something during the debates that I thought was interesting and I wanted to be a part of the next really sage thing she says, whenever that is. So, I’m following her on Twitter.

I saw she tweeted again this morning. Nothing of consequence to me, but what the heck, maybe her blog had something on it. Sure enough, it was a post-debate post titled 3 miles in the snow, uphill both ways. That got my attention right away because, while I knew it was going to be a GenY rant against old people, the title was so clever that I knew the rest of the post was going to be good. It was.

GenY may not be out in the street protesting the rapid decline of this country, but they are online with a vengeance. And, apparently, they do care and they get it. They understand that respect is the root of peace, that you can reach more people quicker and deeper with a Twitter account and a blog than you can with a bullhorn and a flag and that party and company affiliation doesn’t matter as much as not being obtuse and condescending.

And, not only are they watching as things are going on, but they are recording it, playing it back, digesting it and analyzing it. They are predicting the death of spin and revisionist history.

And yeah, mom and dad, they have been listening to you. If not, how would they know to use a phrase like “3 miles in the snow, uphill both ways” in the correct context?

I just can’t wait to see what Phil DeFranco is going to video about the debates. Please hurry, Phil. We dogs need our fix.

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They grow up so fast

Cameron Schaefer with BrazenCareerist writes a post about personal responsibility. You can read it here, but here is just a snippet.

This is what’s wrong with our society. We’ve become a people that hold everyone responsible, but ourselves.

Never before have I seen so much blame being placed on everyone but the person in the mirror. People waving angry fingers at big oil companies for high gas prices rather than blaming themselves for owning two S.U.V.’s and a boat. They completely ignore the law of supply and demand expecting that somehow prices will remain stagnant as consumption drastically increases.

This is like writing an angry letter to Hostess snack foods complaining about your recent weight gain while shoving 30 Twinkies in your gullet. Life’s about choices.

GenY is growing up and getting it. All it took was time. Thanks, Cameron.

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Grow your own roots

Grow your own roots
Grow your own roots
I was walking along the back road at the MetroPark and noticed this row of posts that looked like telephone poles, cut off about five feet high. On top of many of them were these little trees that started to grow in the rotting out center of the posts.

These young trees that are growing rapidly and happily atop these poles had no idea that their lofty outlook and elevated position were the result of a seed landing somewhat serendipitously on top of a pole that someone else stuck laboriously into the ground. The small trees were completely oblivious to the fact that their progress — while grand and far above all their other peers who landed on the ground — would eventually be cut unceremoniously short when the caretaker snaps them off the top of the poles during regular maintenance.

Yet, the seedlings that got their start of the ground have developed roots and grown slowly will continue to thrive, some even growing to tall, sturdy trees, far surpassing the poles that once surrogated the brash, over-eager seedlings.

It occurs to me that this odd relationship among the poles, the seedlings atop them and the seedlings that grew from their own root structure is an odd metaphor for the generational clash we hear going on in the corners of the Internet. While there are some GenY who are developing their own roots, many are sitting atop tree stumps that are not their own. After a while, their lofty perch will be exposed for what it really is; a rotting tree stump center for which there is limited room for a root structure.

But at that very moment this metaphor was at its clearest, I felt the urge to lift my leg and pee on something. I chose the closest pole.

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Be patient with GenY; winter is coming

Ryan Healy with Brazen Careerist posted an article up on the blog a few days ago, asking GenY to tell companies what they want. A flood of comments have come in since and will probably get a few more as the “old folks” wander into the office on Monday morning and peek at what the “crazy kids” are doing with their time.

A lot of the comments were GenY-ers, asserting themselves. Then the old farts would try to slap them back, then they would get riled again…. it goes on. Here is a short story to shed some light on all this.

When I was a young pup, we owned a laundromat in the Crocus Hill area of St. Paul. One year, around July or so, a large contingent of folks wearing robes, no shoes or anything leather descended on the area, preaching love, animal rights, tree-hugging, etc. They berated us locals for wearing shoes, belts and killing animals for clothing. After about a month of this, the local business owners had just about enough of them wandering into the shops, begging for money, preaching, etc. The subject of what to do with them came up at a local chamber meeting.

One of the older business owners stood up and said, “Don’t worry, winter is coming.”

Sure enough, when October hit and the ground got too cold to walk on, they left the area for warmer climes. And things got back down to normal. But, they left us with an experience and a short parable to write on this blog to a new generation a couple decades later.

So, don’t worry about GenY. Let them rattle a few cages, bellow out their rants and bend the older folks to change. Watch and listen for stories you can use to educate a new generation.

Winter is coming soon for GenY, too.

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