2012-04-21

The Death of Cool

Cool is no longer cool, or so I've been told.  Apparently, it's no longer the staple of the younger generation's vernacular.  "Cool" is not cool any more.  "Cool" is anti-cool.  It's uncool.  To the younger generation's ears, "cool" sounds as old-fashioned and outdated as "groovy" once sounded to mine.  The only time you'll hear them use the word "cool" is when it's meant to derisively describe something from the older generation.

So, when you're out shopping with your teenager and she agrees that "yes Mom, those sunglasses do make you look cool", you'd best to set them back on the rack and try on a different pair - at least, if you care about looking "cool" or. . . "not cool" or. . ..arrgh!

Do you see the dilemma?  How can I express the concept of "cool" without using the word "cool"?  When I asked my kids what word they use in place of "cool", I was met by blank stares - they have no new word for "cool".

My daughter explained it this way:  "No one cares about 'cool' anymore. No one wants to be 'cool'."

No one wants to be cool?!  Can that be true?!  I was raised in a generation that valued "cool" above most everything.  It was practically a religion!  Back in high school, there was a social ladder that every teen tried to scale, and perched on the very top rung were the "cool" kids.  Just watch any Eighty's teen flick and you'll see what I mean as they all had the same theme at their core - the cool kids verses the nerds.  Nowadays, I'm hearing rumours that  "geeks" are the new "cool", but can it truly be real?  Has the concept of "cool", like the very word itself, become out-dated and old-fashioned?

When I consider my two kids (both in their early twenties), I realize that they have always been far more interested in being authentic to their true individualities than contorting themselves into some cookie cutter ideal of "cool".  Both of them are more interested in independent film and music than in the mainstream pop culture.  They cringe at the word "trendy" and prefer creative originality over conformity.  They are true to themselves.

So. . . if our younger generation has replaced "cool" with "authenticity" and "individuality", I can live with that.  In fact, I think it's kind of cool!


And now, for a treat, here's the authentically original and hugely talented Jeremy Fisher.    Enjoy!


19 comments:

  1. I just had to ask my daughter about this. She said the kids in her school might use it once in a while, but mostly they say epic or awesome.
    Who knew?
    My kid doesn't care about being "cool" either.
    Thanks for sharing the video.

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    1. I've heard epic and awesome too. How old is your kid?

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    2. Ah...the eye-rolling stage.

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    3. Yep, she has her moments.

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  2. He reminds me of Paul Simon. Nice.
    The death of cool? Maybe a redefinition, more diversity. After all if this generation wasn't concerned about "cool", they'd pull up their damn pants. LOL

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    1. More diversity is a good thing, right?

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    2. More diversity is a great thing.

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  3. so its hip not to be cool - well that just shows how great your parenting styles have been. How cool are you !

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    Replies
    1. "It's hip not to be cool" - exactly!

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  4. Cool is dead???!!! Not cool.

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    1. Let me put it this way - it's cool to not be cool, and being not cool is cool. Got it?

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  5. Hah, well cool was fun for a bit. I do like quirky as a replacement.

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  6. that video is sooo cool.
    or not cool...which is cool, but not way cool.
    just slightly tepid perhaps? LOL

    according to my 7 year old son, the appropriate word is "sic".

    I've been schooled.

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  7. I never knew that being cool was no longer cool. Learn something new everyday. I enjoyed the music, thanks for sharing it. :)

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  8. Say it aint so. Cool aint cool? Man. That's bad. Bad as in horrible. Not as in good.
    But I'm sure that's not cool either. Darn it. Can we still use that word?

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  9. Epic is the word of choice with my 15-year old. He smirks when I say cool. :)

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  10. I think cool has been replaced by connected. As long as you are somehow connected to another being who is completely alone, either by text or facebook, or whatever the hell else there is right now. I think that is the new "cool". Just don't say it...

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