Teenagers suck

Tonight I took a run along the boardwalk here in Ocean City, N.J.

Ocean City is a fabulous place to spend Memorial Day weekend. Great beach, wonderful boardwalk, ice cream galore, a big bucket of Johnson’s Caramel Corn, lots for the kiddies, etc, etc. Yet we come here every year, and every year I am reminded of the jarring lesson that comes with summer beach getaways.

Namely, that teenagers are unoriginal buffoons.

I know … I know—tell me something more obvious. You’re right. There’s just something about a boardwalk overrun by kids in NICE STORY, BRO T-shirts that cracks my jaw. So, in no particular order, here are my beefs …

1. Why the fuck do 18-year olds get tattoos? And who is the parent allowing such a thing? When I was 18, my mom wouldn’t let me buy jeans without her OK. Yet today I saw a kid—18, at the oldest—with a love poem tatted to his chest. Love is beautiful, love is kind. But you’re friggin’ 18!? What the hell do you know about love?

Along those lines, the tatts are just outrageous. One female today (definitely not yet 20) had angel wings tatted below her bellybutton but above her vagina. She was also smoking a pack of Newports, which prompted me to turn to the wife and ask, “What’s more egregious? The cigs or the strategically placed vag tattoo?” She didn’t answer. Personally, I vote for the tattoo. As I’ve always said (when asked why I would never, ever, ever allow my daughter to pierce her naval, “The bellybutton is the gateway to the vagina.” And a sub-bellybutton tattoo is an open gateway.

2. I am itching to ask a kid—any kid—why he leaves his sticker on his hat. It’s the most irksome thing I’ve ever seen; even worse than the 29-sizes-too-big jeans that dangle a foot below the ass crack. I mean, these stickers, literally, exist for corporate identification. That’s all. They don’t look good, they’re supposed to be pealed away. Yet today I must have seen, oh, 100 hat stickers, unremoved.

3. Guys are asses, but teenage guys together on a beach are ridiculous asses. Quick hits on this point:

A. She’s not watching how you throw the football to your buds. I promise you—she’s not.

B. Your “Don’t be a fag” comments, coupled by the way you put your friends in headlocks, do not suggest manliness. It all only reminds the world that you’re struggling with some latent homoerotic feelings that will, soon enough, come to surface in therapy.

C. The vendors along the boardwalk make a killing off these guys with a very simple formula: Take the hottest MTV reality show out there, screen print a couple of lines onto a muscle shirt and sell for $25 a pop.

•••

Admittedly, there’s a part of me that’s jealous. I wish I were 18, cruising the boardwalk, hoping to meet some girl and, to ripoff Grease, make out under the dock. I love the overall innocence of the scene; the maturation process under the sun. I get it, I get it, I get it.

I just find it funny.

11 thoughts on “Teenagers suck”

  1. I saw a guy (no older than 20) at the local water park yesterday that, as best as I could tell, had the Chevrolet logo tattooed on his chest and the word “Chevy” written inside it.

  2. First of all if you are 18 you are and adult and are free to make an ass of yourself. As a 65 year old tatoos were not a big thing as they are today. But when I was 16 parents were screaming about the length of boys hair ( beatles just becoming popular). The girls were wearing short skirts as mini skirts were just becoming popular. And of course the music was a lot different from what our parents were listening to. I do think with the advent of rap and hip hop the music has gotten coarser. And some of the singers are more outlandish. Who knows what they kids in the next generation will come up with.

  3. I’m another guy that doesn’t understand the tatoo fad. Especially when it comes to women. I see a beautiful young woman covered in tat’s and all I can think is, why? Funny thing about these ladies is they spend lot’za money on cosmetics to improve their appearance (or cover flaws) then spend even more money to intentionallly scar themselves. Sad.

  4. These are the people that will be running this country, your health plans, your environment, your groceries, your bank…you get it.

  5. You think OCNJ is bad, go to Wildwood. Ocean City is at least a dry town, so it’s less likely that they’re drunk. Last time I went to the Wildwood boardwalk, I saw three fights over the course of the evening. Seemed like every obnoxious white kid in New Jersey who wanted to be Eminem was there. Never again.

  6. Teenagers suck because teenagers always have sucked, Jeff. It’s really that simple.

    And come on, throwing a football to get a girl to notice you has been around since Red Grange’s day. It’s the best way to show off your body and it’s a good way of meeting girls. I lived on the beach as a kid and we would always “accidentally” throw our football, wiffle ball, etc. near a bunch of girls and ask them to throw it back. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.

    But I hear you on the hat thing; that’s just dumb. Although when I was a kid we used to curve our hat brim so much that the sides were practically touching. I’m sure that Mike Lupica wrote many a scathing piece about the idiot youth of the 90s.

    As far as tattoos, I like no tattoos but discrete tats on a girl are ok — nothing too flashy. It’s just another way of self expression.

  7. Any kid that gets a tattoo in a line of sight, obviously didnt talk to any old marine vets or merchant marines growing up. The guys with hawaii grass skirt lady tats or the anchors, etc, on their arms… that are faded and look terrible when someone gets old, wrinkly and grey.

    When looking at amazement at a young woman with some terrible ink… a retred gentleman I know said, “why would you put a bumersticker on a maybach?”

    I’ve stolen that line and will use it on my kids many times in the future.

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