4 Reasons Why Teenagers Procrastinate

Just as Justin Bieber is famous for singing like a girl, teenagers are famous for procrastinating.  Hold on one second-I know you might have found that opening line funny, but it was a pretty cheap, easy way to start this post.  Let me try again.

Benjamin Franklin once said something like ‘never do tomorrow what you can do today’, which, in the 21st century, means ‘don’t procrastinate’.  Wait-that wasn’t very funny, and what’s up with B-Frank? I mean, Ted already mentioned him here, and I don’t think any other philosophers have been mentioned on this blog.  I’d better fix that: Karl Marx, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke.  Good to get that off my chest.

You know what?  I’m just going to start.  You’ve already read two introductions, and those are my way of procrastinating.  I find intros easier to write the actual posts.  In case you haven’t already figured out what my topic is, I am now going to examine procrastination.  Actually, if you hadn’t already figured out what my topic is, I suggest you seek help (but you can always do that tomorrow; I suggest reading this today).

Teenagers are infamous for a lot of things.  Being a teenager gives me quite a reputation to live up to.  In fact, I don’t know if I can be as horrible-I mean, as wonderful-as people expect me to be.  One of those well known attributes is pure, wide-eyed innocence-that is, for young toddlers ages 2-6 (I hope you weren’t surprised for any reason.  I always knew toddlers to be this way, except when I was a toddler).  For teenagers-I’d just like to pause and mention that this paragraph is now turning into my fourth introductory paragraph-a strongly defined attribute is procrastination.  Why? See for yourself:

#1-Shattering Consequences

As a Teen, I am fully aware that the world could end on December 21, 2012; even if it doesn’t, I won’t be doing my homework until the 22nd.  While this may seem far off, you need to realize how many similar events could occur.  Apparently, the world also will end in March 11th of this year due to aliens, according to the Battle: Los Angeles movie.

In fact, if I had the money, I would pay some big graphic designer to destroy (only cinematically, of course) a different major city everyday, to give me a viable reason to think the world will end that day.  Even without world-ending events, school could be canceled tomorrow due to: snow, tsunami, tornado, snow, earthquake, snow, meteor shower, snow, massive protests against or for the government, snow, or snow.  Why should anyone do work if the due date will be extended, hopefully indefinitely?  It doesn’t make sense.

#2-Pure Genius

Clearly, only a pure genius could pull an all-nighter and expect to get good grades.  Also, someone this smart would not need to focus on their homework for very long, so there is no reason not to put it off.  In fact, brainpower could be better spent on other activities, which have a greater moral, spiritual, and concrete payoff, such as: videogames, Facebook, and Facebook videogames.

#3-Unforeseeable Consequences

These are different from “Shattering Consequences” because they are only shattering to a few people.  Think of them as ‘Individual Shattering Consequences’.  Oddly enough, though, teachers aren’t as sympathetic unless the whole class experiences something shattering.  That’s pretty low, if you ask me, but modern educators are ruthless.  Good examples of unforeseeable consequences include: parties, overwork, sickness, “sickness”, spiritual journeys, vacations, and Shattering Consequences limited to a few people (flooding one’s house, icing one’s driveway, or destroying just one skyscraper).

When these consequences arrive, who could blame us teens for not getting our work done on time?  Non-teens could, I guess, but we are too busy being teenagers, and therefore pure genii (only a pure genius would know the plural form of genius) to worry about these consequences or this blame ahead of time.

#4-Society in General

Society has advanced so far that there are simply too many possible distractions.  One must actually use effort to focus on work.  It turns out that along with the US borrowing tons of money from other countries, we also borrowed tons of effort, so effort is hard to find these days.  Even if you cared enough to create concrete, windowless homework cells so teenagers would be forced to concentrate and do work, the government (along with at least ten other political organizations) would intervene, so I can procrastinate without worrying about anything.  The good news is that when society, as we know it, ends due to Shattering Consequences, there will be no more distractions and people can get to work raising society back to the level where nobody could work again.

Looking back at these reasons, I can see that teens blame everyone but themselves for procrastination.  You know what that means…teenagers have finally reached perfection.  However, if you are not currently a teen (or training for those teen years), you have no chance of mastering the art of procrastination, so don’t attempt it.  Otherwise, you will stick out like an adult among teenagers (or like the one movie that picks some lesser city to destroy instead of LA, NY, Vatican City, D.C., etc.).

I’d love to come up with a terrific ending line, but there’s always the chance that the Internet will be taken over by hordes of angry virtual protesters (or that this site will be hijacked by Justin Bieber fans just like they hijacked Esperanza Spalding’s site), so there is no guarantee anyone will ever read this.

Teenage Communication and Cows

Did you ever wonder how cows managed to converse using only a couple of sounds? Regardless of whatever sarcastic answer you probably came up with, guess what? Today’s modern teenager has managed to do the same thing.  For example:

Cow 1 (probably named Brown, but I won’t make that assumption): Moo-ooo.  Mooooooo.  Mooooo.

Cow 2 (probably named Yohannes, but again, I’ll avoid rash assumptions): Moooo.  Moo.  Moo.  Mooo-ooo.

Cow 1: Moo.  Moooo-moo.

Juxtaposed with:

Teen 1 (probably named dude): Yo.  Dude. ‘Tsup.

Teen 2 (also likely named dude): Mmm-mm.  Na’much. Mmm?

Teen 1: Mmm-m.  Same.

Let’s examine what was actually said:

Cow 1: Did you hear about the new growth hormone they’ve been giving us?  It’s got all sorts of unusual side effects.

Cow 2: Yes, I read about it the other day in the morning paper.

Cow 1: Yep.  Well, back to that nutrient-rich grass.

And:

Teen 1: Hey, how are you doing?

Teen 2: I’m fine. Not much is happening.  How about you?

Teen 1: I’m also fine.  Not much is going on with me, either.

It’s ridiculous, isn’t it?  Even disregarding the fact that the cows managed to have a more intelligent conversation, both animals-I mean, both the cows and the humans-managed to convey much information in very few noises.  For those not fluent in these noises, they can be a problem to decipher.

There are a few clues to use, though (in the spirit of 4th grade vocabulary lessons, I’ll call these context clues).  The first is to examine the facial expression.  Dead eyes, flat mouths, and blank faces are the default setting on most teenagers; anything different gives you a hint at the meaning of the ‘mmm’.

The second is how far the third hair right behind the left ear is sticking up.  The farther it is from the head, the happier the teen is.  The third clue is gathered by examining the pitch of the ‘mmm’, but this only works if you have some other statement to reference it with.

The only possible long-term problem with this form of communication is if the phase doesn’t fade.  Then, I would recommend moving to Switzerland so you can laugh out of joy instead of extreme fear when the President of the United States goes up to give the State of the Union Address and starts it with: “Mmmm-mm.  Mmmm-mm.  Mm, mmMmm, mm, mmm.”

Beware of the “K” Text

We all know what it is. We have all come across it at one point. It is no more than one letter, but it speaks volumes. Yes, I am talking about the text message which presents you with just one letter: “K”.

I suppose all of us have thought about this certain text message at one point or another. I know that when I tell someone “Hey I’ll be there in five”, I can hardly survive unless whomever I am texting replies with a calming, reassuring “K”. But let’s stop viewing this message with such a concrete mindset. In my experience, “K” could possibly mean much more than we think. Here is one scenario:

You are walking to someone’s house. After alerting this person that you would be there soon, they reply with one letter: “K”. Suddenly, you are thrown into a world of confusion and bewilderment. What could they possibly mean? You just don’t get it…Aha!

He is leaving you a cliffhanger. Sure, he can try to keep you guessing, but you know what comes after the “K”. Using your phenomenal brainpower, you know the message is actually, “Kentucky Fried Chicken will be at my house!” He just left out the “entucky Fried Chicken etc…” blurb. You then begin sprinting towards the house, and with much urgency you break down his front door.

To your horror, there has been a murder! Using a secret blend of herbs and spices, Colonel Sanders is on a killing spree. In fact, your friend must have been texting you “Killer in my house…OMG.”  Though, the rest of text was not finished due to an herb-and-spice-attack. Now, your adrenaline is pumping and you are ready to fight for your life. You can hear Colonel Sanders in the room next to you. You clench your fists and began to move, but you have a sudden epiphany.

When your friend sent you a text that said “K”, he really meant to say “Kidding about this whole murder scenario.” You are greatly relieved. In fact, you are extremely joyous about the situation – I mean, there is no way you could have beat Colonel Sanders in a fight! Suddenly, you are trampled by a herd of kangaroos. In your last second of life, you discover the truth about the text message. Your friend meant to say, “Kangaroos will kill you :) lol…”

This scenario is an everyday experience for thousands of people around the world. In fact, texting the letter “K” is the number one cause of death in Australia (did you really laugh at that joke? I hope not, ‘cause it wasn’t funny). Thus, I urge you kind folks to give responses that are more than one letter. K? But really, I don’t care what you do. To me, the value of life is solely based off people getting run over by packs of kangaroos. And, yeah, I’m gonna end it right here. Don’t even get me started on the “Ha” text.

Ways Teenagers Listen to Music

Do you remember when live music was the only available music? Hopefully, you don’t.  If so, this means that this blog is attracting the wrong type of readers: the ones from the 18th century.  I have nothing against 18th century people, aside from the fact that they don’t count as page views on this extremely awesome blog (that was started a week ago, but, nonetheless, has managed to already climb above ‘incredibly mediocre’ and ‘interesting-in a good way’ status’s).  I find that most people from the 18th century aren’t very able when it comes to computers.

The portable mp3 player changed the music industry, but that’s not important.  What is important, to teenagers, at least, is this: the maximum amount of time that they can spend on their iPod everyday.

It’s grown to become an image thing.  If you have ear buds or headphones prominently shown, you are considered, at first glance, ‘cool’ (for you readers from the 18th century, please ask someone from the 21st century what the modern definition of cool is).  This comes from the conclusion that you are listening to popular music.

Sharing music with more than one other person is a problem that has arisen.  Clearly, you are even cooler if you are listening to someone else’s music, because this shows that you are benefiting from both the popularity of the music and the other person’s obvious coolness (because they, too, are listening to music).  The other person acts as both an outlet for music and a cool-ness multiplier.

Splitters, which, as the name suggests, split the headphone jack into two jacks, are useful, because then four people can listen to music, and everyone becomes three times as cool.  Soon, you’ll see herds of migrating teenagers, all listening to one person’s iPod (but you’ll have to be careful, because the amount of sheer cool-ness will likely crush your lungs if you get too close).

Also, listening to music helps avoid unwanted conversations, in which you might have to mumble a few words; you are clearly occupied, listening to music.  You will see teenagers listening to music everywhere, often to avoid conversation while seeming cool.  Ear buds have become the long-awaited solution to unwanted conversations (and any welcomed conversation happens in texts or Facebook nowadays).

The newest fad is the return of the headphones.  These have a better sound quality, but a larger mass.  The solution is, of course, to never take them off, instead leaving them around one’s neck when not in use, as a sort of futuristic dog collar.  Now all the government needs to do is implant them with tracking devices, and—I’d like to go on, but I’ve just signed the national secrets act, so I must stop here.

The next fad, as I predict it, will be the return of the speaker (for sound quality).  These would basically be speakers you’d see in a state-of-the-art sound system in your house or car, strapped to your head.  While the initial weight might lead to a few minor neck injuries, I’m sure that these enormous contraptions will catch on.  After all, the injury rate doesn’t stop most people from wearing ties to work (and that includes adults, whose judgment is supposed to be better than the judgment of teens).