“I feel a very unusual sensation – if it is not indigestion, I think it must be gratitude.”
-Benjamin Disraeli, former British Prime Minister
It’s no secret that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday (which means, according to this quiz, that I’ll have 6 kids someday…). Last Tuesday, I was in a weird research mood (bizarre college withdrawals, perhaps?) and wanted to know what other Millennials were grateful for this holiday season. Of course, I made sure to have a nice, diverse sample size and an unbiased questionnaire. Thus, I went out into the streets and interviewed the first 15 Millennials I saw (easily identifiable by the slight, permanent bend to their hand from typing and holding smartphones). I asked them a simple question, “What are you thankful for?” From there, I controlled for boring responses like “quality time with the family”or “Trump might let me stay on my parents’ insurance until I’m 26,” and voilà! I got these ten fabulous responses. So here we go, an insightful look at today’s youth.
“I’m like a really good photographer. No, I’m not kidding. Here, look.” He shows me his Instagram pictures, an eclectic yet sophisticated mix of selfies, sunsets, an occasional cat, and zoomed in shots of latte art. “I usually go with Clarendon or Juno,” he adds.
I look at him, somewhat confused: “But this one says #nofilter?”
(2) My friend’s Netflix account
“I would’ve missed Narcos Season 2 if it weren’t for them.”
(3) Pokemon Go
“I caught a dragonite yesterday. I think I can die happy now. Last month, I lost a snorlax, and I still haven’t quite forgiven myself. But this helps. This definitely helps.”
“Because it means that I never have to memorize anything ever again.”
(5) Snapchat filters
“I’m backpacking through Europe next month. Trying to find myself and discover who I really am. I’m most excited to do a face swap with the Mona Lisa.”
“Everyone is obsessed with PSL, but I actually think the Frappula Frappuccino is a much better drink. Not very many people know about it. It’s like a white mocha frap, except with strawberry drizzle. Although, I usually get it with a few modifications.” And then, in an impressive show of speed and lung capacity, she lists the following in rapid succession: “Three shots of espresso, three scoops of protein powder (emphasis on the three, because it’s usually only two if you just ask for it), soy milk, six pumps of sugar free mocha syrup (again this is normally two), extra whip cream, and no ice.”
(7) Late Night Comedy
“How else would I know what’s going on in politics? Oh…well I also use Facebook.”
(8) Headphone jacks
“I’m thankful my iPhone 6 still has headphone jacks. I’m just old school that way, I guess.”
“No, not like my 2,216 FB friends. I mean like all the thanksgiving episodes from Friends! Gosh, I love that show. Really makes me miss the 90s.” *Stares into the distance nostalgically*
“Wait, didn’t you say you were 18?”
“Yeah, I was born in ’98. Why?”
“BuzzFeed is life.”
Millennials, once again, showing us that life isn’t just about what you do. Life is about who you spend it with…and who posted it first on social media.
These responses might not be real, but it does make you wonder, “What do my time, conversations, and actions say about what I’m actually grateful for?” Wherever you spend dinner tomorrow, I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving. I hope your list is longer than 10 items, because we all have so much to be thankful for. I’ll leave you with this quote:
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
John F. Kennedy