When I was about seven years old, I remember thinking my soccer coach was “cool,” for no other reason than the black sunglasses he sported. This signaled sleekness and quiet confidence to my young mind, even if the farm of pimples on his face undercut its broader glory. He was the man.
As I got older, what passed as “cool” for teenagers and college students became having a social life, which usually meant spending the weekends knocked up on alcohol while trying to converse with gals over the din of loud ass party music. In contrast, the “anti-social losers” spent their time at home, perhaps with a few friends in tow, playing through some Call of Duty and wondering about how grand it would be to join those people.
Bizarrely enough, the latter group’s mode of recreation has suddenly become the norm, at least in some part due to the present pandemic restrictions. You cannot go out to the club or the bar, and most meetups have been canceled, so there’s little more left save to watch Netflix and cry over a jumbo bag of Tostitos. Sure, the likes of Tinder and Hinge are still around, but the elite feeling of wine tastings or happy hour are all but banished from the world of men. We have become all the same.
Much as this might seem like a new development due to coronavirus, I would argue it has been a trend for far longer. Nightlife’s steady slip towards oblivion was already in motion, and concerts require motivation to attend, something millennials are severely deficient in. Life before the invisible war wasn’t exactly glamorous and glitzy for the average goober; maybe some gym diaries, and weekend window shopping at the mall. Now mirrors and Amazon have moved the problem of appearing busy from our social network statuses to the wonderful laterbase. There is nothing to fear but boredom itself (and the mental health issues).
In the years ahead, our pathetic predilections may well serve the interests of an organized and docile social structure. WALL-E style protoplasmic Krang jellies are hardly the makers of civil unrest, or even spirited public discourse. So long as the streaming services function, and there’s enough Bai juice to wrestle down those cheesy Gordita Door (or Toilet) dashes, the atmosphere will be at peace.
We have all become the losers, and I feel fine.