Why do millennials like coffee shops
I tried to live as many millennial stereotypes as possible
I was born towards the beginning or middle of the millennial generation. That means, I am very familiar with the properties that supposedly characterize us: We are lazy, we are idiots, we are to blame for the fact that nobody uses serviettes anymore and that an entire industry is dying out. Incidentally, these are also things that Google automatically suggests when I type "Millennials are" into the search field.
But apparently we are also saving the public library. We save better for our retirement. We buy houses just so that our pets have a garden to let off steam. In the eyes of previous generations, we are to blame for everything that is currently going so wrong. On the other hand, we can't possibly bring about the downfall of the brewing business while cuddling our French bulldog and paying into the pension fund at the same time. Lazy people are bad at multitasking, after all.
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But this contradiction in no way prevents advertising agencies, trend watchers and everyone who likes to hear each other talk, from generalizing our generation. That's why I've set myself a big goal: to find out what it actually means to be a "Millennial". How do I want to do this? By living all the clichés about my generation at once.
"It seems as if millennial women are not afraid of experiments. From contouring to microblading, they have tried everything." - Influenster
My grandparents didn't survive the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong just so that their granddaughter would later voluntarily tinker with her face with a sharp blade. That's why my willingness to experiment is somewhat limited from the start. According to an influenster survey of 5,000 women, the most popular beauty trend is different anyway: contouring.
Because I've already had one or two experiences with it, it's not enough just to brush my face into a different shape. I pull out particularly heavy millennial guns and decide to watch a make-up tutorial on YouTube.
This is really a first for me. That's why I click around a little lost until I land on "How to Contour for Beginners". It comes from the Australian vlogger Tina Yong, who is followed by 1.7 million people.
Yong has the smooth, pore-free skin that unites all YouTube stars, and the iron, camera-tested gaze of a woman who wordlessly begs for a deal with L'Oreal. "If you are a beginner in contouring or just haven't mastered it yet, stay tuned!" Urges Yong. She is standing in front of something that looks like a glittering shower curtain.
In my experience, contouring is divided into three phases: the first is the "What the hell am I doing here?" Phase, followed by "Actually, it looks okay." This inevitably follows phase three: "Yup, now I've done something wrong, but I'm too lazy to wipe everything away again."
As you can see in the photos, I made it to the third phase and am now orange. Since I'm a work-shy millennial, you can bet your unicorn onesie that I won't do this all over again.
“The 'Millennial Pink' that is posted and shared over and over again is the flagship of this pink wave of colors. It also overlaps seamlessly with one of Pantone's colors of the year, rose quartz. This rosy shade encompasses the ever-widespread message of gender neutrality, but also builds up the popular, minimalist Scandi trend from the mid-20th century. " - WGSN
I have no idea what a color has to do with gender stuff and Scandinavian furniture trends from the previous millennium. But millennial pink flatters me optically, I think. Unfortunately, millennials are no longer allowed to simply "like" a color. Trend agencies would eventually go bankrupt if they couldn't collect consulting fees for presenting incredibly exaggerated observations.
My 23-year-old colleague Lauren is the official millennial advisor for this project and just to think that she was born in the 90s makes me feel a little sick. But she knows why millennial pink is so popular: "It's probably because society treats us like babies, so we're going back to the colors of our childhood." Then she adds, "Or something."
My friends have enough pink clothes to give me the perfect millennial outfit. As accessories, I choose a pink belt bag from New Balance, a peach-colored emoji pin and a pink baseball cap with a French bulldog on it. ("That's probably the most millennial dog," Lauren informs me reliably. "Even more than a pug.")
I think I look reasonably fine. But if someone asks, I might prefer to answer that I just got the peach out James and the giant peach cosplay. People stare at me on my way to work. Three boys lean out of the windows of a battered car and shout "Baby" after me. It sounds a bit forced though. If you put "Millennials are babies" on Google, you get ten million results. That's why there must be something to it.
When Lauren sees me in my new elevator in the office, however, she is thrilled. "You look like someone I would want to hang out with. Really trendy," she says. When I asked if she meant it sarcastically, she quickly denied it. "No! I think the colors are very fashionable and very millennial." I rate the mission as a complete success.
"When I bought my first house, I didn't pay $ 19 for an avocado toast and got four cups of coffee for $ 4 each." - Tim Gurner
Tim Gurner is actually an Australian real estate developer. In the media, however, he's more known for criticizing millennials for spending money on avocados and coffee instead of buying houses, investing in stocks, destroying the environment, and all the other things baby boomers are good at.
Personally, I bought four avocados for 4.20 euros in the immediate vicinity of the office. And that in an expensive organic market that advertises avocados as "perfectly ripe and creamy". What do you say now, Tim Gurner?
My triumph didn't last too long, though. I've been eating avocado porridge on toast for almost a week and I have to say: In the meantime, not only my wallet is protesting, but also my digestion. You know that indefinable taste of vague creaminess that avocados have? I can now define it: it tastes like tofu with a note of grass.
"You need avocados from really sunny areas," explains Regina, a Brazilian-French photographer I work with. She is right. Hass avocados, which come from deforested Mexican growing areas on a permanently chilled pallet, don't taste good. Especially if you eat them almost every day.
"Whether you love them or hate them, the so-called fidget spinners are just taking their place in pop culture. They are the yo-yo of millennials." —Nerdist
My attempt to get the millennials' new toy seems doomed at first. Lauren told me that small kiosks and low-cost shops sell them, but I can't find any there. "Everything is sold out," says a middle-aged salesman. "But I have a broken one if you like." He pulls the part out from behind the counter.
Actually, I would like to refuse to let myself be ripped off by a capitalist baby boomer once more, but on the other hand I am now really desperate. I hand him the two euros and return to the office with my sad, faulty fidget spinner. Just like the economy that our parents' generation bequeathed to us, it is just a broken shell that will never be completely repairable. And it doesn't turn very well either.
But then a ray of light appears - in the form of my colleague Alex, who has a nut on his table and doesn't seem to be ashamed of it. "When the fidget hype started, I was just as skeptical as everyone else," says Alex. "What are they doing anyway? Who are they intended for? How fast can they get? But when he turned in my hand for the first time and I felt the slight breeze on my face, I understood."
I borrow the spinner and try it. And you know what? I understand it too. A fidget spinner makes a sound that could be good for ASMR, it's a comfortable weight, and it's spinning really damn fast. With our unaffordable student loans and rising sea levels in mind, we may need some of the simpler joys in life.
I contoured my face, wore pink, ate avocados, and rolled a fidget spinner. Nevertheless, I still do not have the feeling that I have fully understood what we stand for as a generation. Like a young person who starts a hopeless job with no opportunities for advancement, I wake up listless and dissatisfied after my experiment.
Read more:I'm almost 30 and I've been trying to be a cool teenager for a week
Then I come across a unicorn toast pop-up store.
"This café will only be handing out free unicorn toast for one day. This trendy creation consists of natural food coloring and cream cheese," says the press release. "With this we want to celebrate that the popular slice of bread is also a nutrient bomb."
There is simply nothing more millennial-esque than trying to bring carbohydrates back to millennials with unicorn toast. This is the Most Millennial Thing Ever. I glow with joy as I stand in line waiting for my complimentary glittery rainbow bread. The time has finally come: the gateway to millennial life will open to me. It will taste like sheer success.
OK no. It tastes disgusting.
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