Freak-out in Wine Country: or why I don’t find jokes about Millennials Funny

Aren’t Millennials just the worst? Haven’t they ruined society as a whole? Why don’t they ever look up from their phones? What makes them so special? Yes, these are just a few of many such questions modern entertainment has posed to us. Tricky, thought provoking questions all of them. However, being somewhat of an expert on the modern millennial mind – I was born in 1994 and therefore am a Millennial myself – I will attempted to answer. Okay here I go. No, we aren’t the worst – that goes to whichever generation invented the Atomic Bomb. Society was already ruined when we got here. The modern phone is a technological marvel, why should we look up from it? And, probably a lot of things make us special – we’re a very diverse group of people. Now why, my Wee Readers, do I even feel the need to say these clearly obvious truths to you. Because it feels like our modern media has forgotten them.

We can see this in things like Amy Sherman-Palladino’s cracks about ‘trigger warnings’ in the Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life; the reports that Modern Family’s Haley is a narcissist ; or the overwhelming feeling of deep resentment for the youth of the world that comes off in every joke in Netflix’s Wine Country. Ah now we come to the title of the post, but don’t worry this isn’t a review for a terrible, terrible movie merely a triggering incident. And a slightly embarrassing one at that. But first some background. Wine Country, made by Netflix and staring many actresses that should know better, is a truly atrocious film. Filled with many unfortunate implications beyond it’s clear hatred for Millennials, not limited to – a successful woman giving up an amazing job opportunity for the approval of people she doesn’t know anymore, and the implication that if a 50 year old woman doesn’t see herself as a little old lady, then she’s kidding herself. So I guess whatever age you are, you’re going to find something to hate in this film. But seeing how this is my blog, we’ll focus for now on the Millennial jokes.

Over the years you get used to hearing those kind of jokes. To stamping down the embers of deep seated rage every time a character on screen makes a crack about Twitter, or Hipsters; or the general supposed self-absorption of every single member of an entire generation of people all across the globe. However, it was about the time the women in Wine Country where standing in the middle of the art show they’d been kindly invited to by their waitress, calling the other patrons assholes for admiring the – admittedly very weird – art, that I found myself overcome with tears . Not the proudest moment of my life, I will admit, but an interesting one nether the less – I don’t think I’ve ever been triggered before. I was barraged with memories of a particularly uncomfortable Online Tutorial of one of my previous Psychology courses. When one of the tutors running the course – not my own thank the Gods who don’t throw lightening at me – decided to take a detour from what we were actually discussing, to go on at length about the psychologist/ researcher Jean Twenge and how wonderfully insightful she was. Don’t know who that is, ooh lucky you.

Dr. Jean Twenge is an American Psychologist most known for her research into generational differences. She has published several books on the subject including: iGen: Why Today’s Super-Connected Kids Are Growing Up Less Rebellions, More Tolerant, Less Happy and Completely Unprepared for Adulthood (2017) ; The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement (2010) ; Generation Me: Why Today’s Young Americans are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled – and More Miserable Than Ever Before (2014) – which should tell you a lot about the tone of her theories. She has popularized the notion that Millennials, or young people today (I realize they’re not all Millennials, it’s more just a buzz word to refer to the young ) are Narcissistic because they were praised so much when they were growing up. For, she explains, doing nothing. Yes you heard that right, it’s the participation trophy speech. So if you ever have the misfortune of hearing some jerk complain about handing children stickers or trophies for participating in something, just remember that you have Dr. Jean Twenge to thank for that experience.

Of course you might be saying right now, Wee Lassie, surely this woman is a professional Psychologist – sure, maybe she got it wrong pertaining to a global scale – but there must be some sliver of truth in her research. Well, honestly I can’t say for sure either way in that regard, having never forced myself through the torture of reading such infuriating theory laden books. So, for all I know she could have gotten something in there right, I will allow for that slim possibility. However, Twenge has been accused of cherry picking her data. That is she decides on a theory – i.e young people are narcissistic – and chooses the test results that best correlate to this view of the world. So, it’s probably best to take most things she says, with a little pinch of salt.

Thus, as we can see this feeling of resentment towards Millennials and Generation Z (that’s the generation that comes after Millennials) is not merely limited to our popular culture. There are real people out in the world who believe and perpetrate these myths about today‚Äôs young people. But what we really have to ask ourselves is, why? Why all this venom towards the young all of sudden? Well one theory is, perhaps it’s not new at all – after all, older generations have been feeling resentful to younger generations since there were people. In fact, the term ‘Generation Me’ was not originally used to describe Millennials at all, but rather Baby Boomers. Another theory is that it might be political – at least in regards to our media output. Millennials are more likely to be/vote Left-Wing. Which is a threat to the generally more Right-Wing owners of the companies that produce many of these films and shows. But whatever the case, these views and resentments do exist and serve no real purpose in our society other than to breed resentment between us. And how dose that help anyone?

Alright, winding down the rant now.

So, what’s my point, really? Am I saying that the prejudice that young people face is worst than the prejudice thrown at older or middle-age folk? No, of course not – but nor should it be seen as less important. After all when one is trying to make a point against ageism in their film – in what universe dose it aide your message to make snide, hurtful comments about another age group? If anything it hurts your cause, because people who feel attacked – whether or not you feel that feeling is valid – are not going to be listening to your argument. Though I’d like to point out that the film that kicked off this rant – Wine Country – is so awful, I’d argue it makes no deeper point what so ever. *gasps for breath* Oh my God, that felt so good, I’ve been keeping that in for so long.

If you’ve enjoyed or been in some way moved by this mad wee rant of mine, remember to follow the wee blog if you haven’t already; and to check me out on Twitter and Instagram; also, my new Facebook page – The Wee Writing Lassie – and Pinterest just for the fun of it. Until next time my Wee Readers, have a bonny day.

Return of the Top Ten Evil Songs + 3, I added for the fun of it

After much deliberation and investigation – ha, that rhymes – through your, my Wee Readers, many suggestions I have finally compiled the worst of the worst. Yes, that’s right my wee readers this is the Return of the Top Ten Evil Songs – this time with added runner ups, that I added just for the fun of it . So without anymore delay may I present your selections for the Top Ten Evil Songs of 2019.

10. Blue (Da-Ba-Dee)

Many Thanks to Lynn Blair ( https://inkedautist.wordpress.com/ ) for recommending this song. Blue ( Da-Ba-Dee) is a song by an Italian group, Eiffel 65. Written by lead singer Jeffrey Jey, keyboardist Maurizio Lobina and producer Massimo Gabutti – the music video of the song depicts aliens trying to abduct Jeffrey Jey while the other members of Eiffel 65 try to stop them. Now if it sounds like I’ve just recently learned all that just minutes before I started writing, that’s because I did. I knew nothing about this song before I started researching for this post, other than the fact that it was so catchy that I literally had to turn it off mid-way through or it would be stuck in my head all day.

9. Supercalifragilitexpalidocious

Big shout out to Widdershins ( https://widdershinsfirst.com/ ) for recommending this next Evil Song. The first known record of the word ‘supercalifragilisticexpialialidocious’ – at least according to Wikipedia and The Oxford English Dictionary – was found in a column by Helen Herman in the Syracuse University Daily Orange, dated March 10th, 1931. Although it was actually spelled ‘supercaliflawjalisticexpialadoshus’. However the writers of the song – the Sherman Brothers – claimed that they made the word up, and that they based it on memories of creating double-talk words as kids. The original word was also said to mean ‘all that is grand, great, glorious, splendid, superb, wonderful’ which is a change from the movie where it’s implied that it’s a word to use when you don’t have anything else to say. Whatever the case this tune will stick in your head to the day you die, also penguins…we never can forget the penguins.

8. Hips Don’t Lie

Here’s to masercot ( https://morepotatoes.com/ ) for this evil recommendation. Written by no less than six people – Wyclef Jean, Jerry ‘Wonder’ Dupllessis, Omar Alfanno, LaTavia Parker, Vinay Rao, and of course Shakira herself -and first performed by Colombian Singer Shakira in 2006, ‘Hips Don’t Lie’ is an infectious song, with such catchy and lets face it slightly repetitive lyrics that you won’t be able to get out of your brain even if you were to use an ice-cream scoop to do the bloody work for you. Wow…that, eh, that got very dark there. Anyway, Shakira’s Hips Don’t Lie…good song, can’t get it out of your head. Moving on now, before I end up creeping you all out.

7. The lemanade song

Big shout out to Em @ The Geeky Jock ( https://kinesiologic.wordpress.com/ ) the Wee Reader who introduced me to this wonderfully catchy/evil Song. The Lemonade Song (sometimes referred to as the Duck song) was first uploaded to YouTube by Bryant Oden on January 21st 2009 as a lyric video. In March 23rd – of the same year, I’m assuming, but please correct me if I’m wrong – the song was made into an animated short by YouTuber Forrest Whaley. 88 million views later and by April 21st the song is now on iTunes for $.99. Wow, what a Duck can do in just four months.

6. Orange and Lemons

Many thanks to ‘davidjhopcroft’ ( https://davidhopcroft.wordpress.com/ ) who recommended this song to me in my last post. Oranges and Lemons is both a traditional English nursery rhyme and a playground singing game. It refers to the bells of the churches in or near London. Of course there have been many speculations as to its hidden deeper meaning. For instance some have speculated that it might be alluding to child sacrifice; or public executions; or even the marital difficulties of one Henry VIII. Now before you dismiss these theories as ludicrous, or possibly from the minds of paranoid conspiracy theorists, just remember this – Ring Around the Rosies is about the Black Death. So let’s not pretend that children’s songs having disturbing origins is in anyway a new thing.

5. The Pink Panther Theme Song

A big whoop to ‘da-AL’ ( https://happinessbetweentails.com/ ) for recommending this Masterpiece of an Evil Song. First composed for the 1963 film ‘The Pink Panther’ this smooth catchy, Jazz tune was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Score at the 37th Academy Awards. However it was robbed – robbed I tell you – by the Sherman Brothers for their soundtrack of Mary Poppins. Huh, this is the second time the Sherman Brothers have been mentioned in relation to an ‘evil’ song. Coincidence? Yes, absolutely – but what if it wasn’t?

4. A Million Dreams

Many cookies and thanks to ‘debsdialogue’ ( https://debsdialogue.com/ ) for reminding me of this fabulous song. Originally composed for the 2017 musical film The Greatest Showman, and performed by Ziv Zaifman, Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams; it’s also been covered by several artists including Susan Boyle and Michael Ball on Boyle’s 2019 album, Ten. One of the newer contenders on this list – what with one of main criteria of an ‘evil’ song being memorability, they tend to stick around in the collective consciousness far longer than there more forgettable counterparts. Only time will tell whether ‘A Million Dreams’ will also have this staying power, though considering how many times I’ve banged my head on the wall to get it to leave, I think it’s chances are good.

3. Fat Bottomed Girls

Another Big shutout to ‘masercot’ ( https://morepotatoes.com/ ) for this second suggestion of an evil song. Recorded in 1978 and first released in 13th October that year and written by lead guitarist Brian May. Now remember when I call a song ‘evil’ I don’t usually mean evil as in ‘evil laugh’ evil – I could never say that about a Queen Song. What I mean rather that it’s a song that sticks in your head no matter how much you shake it, or how many times you wack yourself in the face. And there’s rarely no other song that fits that description better than Fat Bottomed Girls. Even if sometimes we wish it otherwise.

2. A small world after All

Big Thanks to ‘dkatiepowellart’ ( https://dkatiepowellart.com/ ) for recommending this…heinous song to yours truly. Written by the Sherman bothers – oh look there they are again – for the Disneyland ride ‘It’s a Small World’, probably sometime in 1966 since that’s when the park opened – ‘A Small World after All’ is one the most, annoying songs in all of existence. In fact the only reason it didn’t make it onto my last list, was because at the time it seemed a little obvious. But looking back now, I can see that was a mistake – I mean, if you’re going to be discussing ‘evil’ songs, this one should be at the top of your list. After all, according to Robert J. Sherman – Robert B. Sherman’s youngest son – this song is the single most-performed and translated piece of music in the world.

Runners up

And now just for a special treat before I reveal the winner of the most evil song of 2019 – let’s take a minute to mention those songs that while nobody has nominated, I’ve not been able to get out of my head for the past few weeks.

Runner up Number 3. Mama Mia

First recorded in 1975 by the band ABBA, ‘Mama Mia’ was the title song of the hit Broadway Musical by the same name. I chose the film’s version of the song – staring Meryl Streep – because, not only is it one of the funniest versions – try and not laugh at those hippy clothes, I dare you – but its also the one that made me realize that I know every single word to that song. That doesn’t often happen to me, a tune maybe, but often even the most ‘evil’ of songs have their lyrics forgotten in my brain, but not this one. *throws hands in air* Yeah! What? Too sarcastic?

Runner Up Number 2. Dogtanian Intro

The show Dogtanian and the ThreeMuskehounds is a bit before my time – something you could have said for a lot of songs on my previous list as well – but my Mum always brings it up whenever I mention writing one of these ‘evil’ song lists, and I’ve got to admit she has a point. This is a really catchy theme song. Almost, like it’s latching on to the inside of your brain. Oh No. Back, Back I say to the depths of Hell, whence you have come foul song!

Runner up 1. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song

‘Yo Home to Bel-Air’ or as the rest of us know it as ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme tune’ was written by the aforementioned tv-show’s executive producer, Quincy Jones and Performed by Actor and Star Will Smith, under his stage name ‘The Fresh Prince. Smith also wrote the lyrics. In this Wee Writing Lassie’s opinion, this is one of the most catchiest/ memorable theme tunes of all time. What else is there to say except ‘In West Philadelphia born and raised on a playground is where I spend most of my days…’

1. Baby Shark

And now we come to our winner, this heinously catchy song was recommend by no less than three separate people – mainepaperpusher (https://mainepaperpusher.wordpress.com/ ), SnapperTrx (https://rgdev.wordpress.com/ ), and ascreasey ( https://amandasuecreasey.com/ ) – so thank you all for this song in my head. Despite what you may have feared, I don’t hate you at all, I’m much too focused on hating the song itself. I’m joking of course, the only song / person I really hate is Zip-a-de-do-da and the monster who wrote it, whom I will hate till the end of my days. Anyway, ‘Baby Shark’ was created by Pinkfong – which is a South Korean educational entertainment company -and unsurprisingly it is one of their most popular songs, at 2.9 billion views and counting. I won’t tell you what’s it about because if I start to recount it, that song is just gonna start playing in my head again, and then I’m not sleeping tonight. So I’ll just leave you with this thought, isn’t it strange that so many of these ‘evil’ songs were made for children. I mean not all of them, but a large majority were made for those of a younger generation then the people that wrote them. An odd thought , but the song has started up again, so I’ll leave it at that.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little journey into insanity we’ve stepped down into together, if you have make sure to follow my Wee blog for many more such high quality content. Or check me out on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and now my brand new Facebook Page – The Wee Writing Lassie. Until next time, My Wee Readers, have a bonny day.