By Scarlette Quille
Living in North Idaho, and being safely out of my 20s, I would not consider myself to be a trendy person. In fact, most of the time I don’t even know something is a trend until that trend has reached the end of its lifespan.
Most trends aren’t meant for people over 35. At a certain age, photographing and posting pictures of yourself featuring activities like twerking, vaping and wearing shorts that have a waist band around your rib cage whilst also allowing your ass cheeks to hang out is just sad. It’s not my place to judge another human being, and I understand that, in theory, one is only as old as one feels. However, let’s just take a moment to acknowledge that no one over the age of 30 had to deal with parents being able to embarrass us both in person and on social media. You know what I mean? Let the kids have their ‘80s bangs moment. As an adult, we have plenty of bizarre trends geared towards people our age, to post about.
In fact, let’s take a moment to discuss some of the top trendy things adults 30 years old and up are doing on social media.
1. Marie Kondo. Have you heard of this tiny Japanese powerhouse? She has started a multimedia empire which includes several books, an app and now a Netflix show. Marie teaches all of us how to go through our house and remove anything in it that doesn’t “spark joy.”
If you haven’t heard of Marie Kondo and her life changing process of “tidying” your home, let me catch you up: Tidying up Kondo-style consists of going through your clutter in a specific order, discarding everything you so carefully have hoarded through the years, after taking a moment to thank those discarded items for their service. Yes, there is a bit more to it than that. The last-most trendy part of the process (as far as I can tell) is to post a picture of your perfectly organized dresser drawer featuring vertically folded clothing. I’m not going to lie, I have totally been watching the Netflix show and said thank you to at least three hefty sacks of clothes. I have not posted a picture of my dresser yet, because shamefully I have not finished. I know Marie Kondo would be so disappointed in me, silently judging me while wearing a cardigan sweater and perfect smile.
2. Paint and Sip. We’ve all seen the pictures: seven or eight purple-toothed women holding up nearly identical paintings. These paintings are the product of what’s known as a “paint and sip,” essentially an evening where you pay to drink wine while an art instructor teaches you how to copy a chosen painting. The paintings are typically landscapes or some other non-offensive home décor-friendly image. This is a trend that I do not participate in. As an art teacher, I spend most of my waking hours trying to get students not to appropriate someone else’s artistic vision. I am always confused at how these teachers get all of their students to paint the same things. I never see a cleverly disguised penis or a random naked person in the finished work. I feel like the closer the person gets to an exact copy of the original, the more their skills are revered. The typical paint and sip seems to disregard the best part of art-expressing individuality.
Don’t get me wrong – getting drunk while painting is one of my favorite pasttimes. However, I would be more inclined to participate in this type of gathering if you could have your choice of drink and subject matter. On second thought, maybe I should capitalize on my strengths and throw an “open bar and paint whatever the hell you want to” night. Wait, that’s pretty much every Friday night at my house.
3. Indirect communication. One of the biggest trends I see on social media is posting something that tells everyone on your friends list that you are going through a tough time, without actually saying, “I’m going through a tough time.” For instance, when a woman posts a picture of herself doing some sort of yoga pose on a mountain top accompanied by an empowering quote, we can all assume this person is going through a divorce/breakup. Nothing says I’m single and bitter about it like posting yoga poses or over filtered selfies with motivational quotes.
4. Adults bullying adults. For some reason it’s super popular to post things meant to shame other people for their opinions or their life choices. Complaining about the kids in the community who dropped the F-bomb at the store, or how the local park has too much litter, or complaining that, “Everybody has time to play the silly Game of Thrones quiz but won’t stop to share this religious message or Gofundme page.”
It takes a special kind of self-hatred to stalk local forums in an attempt to gather people together for the purpose of spreading hate, or using social media to shame someone into sharing a cause. There are many people who use social media for fun not as a campaign to promote their values by devaluing other people. Sorry, I took part in the 10-years challenge and watched “Birdbox,” didn’t know that was so offensive to the guy who constantly posts sexist memes and laments about how tough kids in the ‘80s were.
Suddenly a feed full of duckface and highwaisted pants doesn’t seem so bad after all.
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