My generation’s issues

I’ve seen a lot of memes and jokes recently that talk about “First World Problems.” I’m going with the assumption that this is talking about how people in third-world countries worry about whether or not they’ll have food and shelter, while those of us in first-world countries worry about scratching our brand new electronic devices. It makes it all seem a little petty.

While I’m sure that I’ve complained about something that could be considered a first-world problem, I usually just shake my head at the antics that some of the people in my generation (or younger) get into. And I had a brilliant example of how spoiled we’ve become first thing this morning.

We live in a town home, so we have three floors. Our bedroom is on the top floor. Every night, I take my tablet and my smart phone upstairs with me. (Because, really, it would be a shame to just go to bed instead of checking Facebook, blog stats, etc.) This morning, I woke up and grabbed my tablet to check the weather. It wouldn’t load. Well, it would load for two of the locations that I have saved, my grandpa’s zip code and my parents’ zip code, but it wouldn’t load for my zip code. I put down my tablet and grabbed my phone. Same story. And I started getting frustrated.

It was about that time that I could just imagine what my grandparents would say: “Look outside. Open a window. Open a door. Remember the forecast you looked at six hours ago before you went to bed.” And I felt a little silly.

One, those imagined words of advice were totally accurate. I did check the weather right before I went to sleep. Granted, weather can be fickle, but I don’t think it’s really going to change that much in six hours. Two, what was I worried about? I could either walk downstairs and get on my desktop computer to check the weather, or I could open the door. Not to mention that winter weather in Colorado usually means you’re going to be wearing pants and a shirt, and then adding however many layers of sweaters/scarves/coats/gloves. All of those additional layers are kept pretty close to the front door, so I didn’t need to be worried about them while I was in my bedroom anyway. We’ve just gotten so used to having information immediately available to us!

There was a show on TV called Doomsday Preppers. (I don’t know if it’s still on or not, since I never really watched it.) Apparently, these people store food, water, paper goods, etc. in preparation for some kind of apocalyptic event. If you think something catastrophic is on the way, it’s probably a really great idea to have those things on hand. From what I’ve heard, these people will also often stock up on alcohol/tobacco products to use as bartering tools: they’ll be willing to feed someone’s addiction for these things in exchange for something that will help them and/or their families.

What about our information addiction? If something did happen to “shut down the grid,” whether it was for two days or two months, I have to wonder how a lot of my generation would cope. No Facebook, no funny websites, no texting? No weather app to tell you what you should put on in the morning? No online games, no Netflix to entertain us? If it’s possible to die of boredom, I think half of my generation wouldn’t last a week.

Maybe some of these preppers should stock up on a few board games and paperbacks. I know a publishing company that has some great books for very reasonable prices! 😉

Thanks for making it all the way through my random thought for the day. Have a terrific Tuesday!

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