Monday, October 22, 2007

what youth culture can do to help us remember....

When I was 18 I decided that my life goal was to be a youth pastor. I thought that this would be a really great decision. Serving the Lord, helping kids, loving people...it has caused more trials than I originally thoughts, but that is a different blog. In the quest of youth ministry I feel in love with popular culture and in turn youth culture. I loved watching shows on the N like Degrassi: the Next Generation. I used to watch the first generation after school. I learned great life examples of why you shouldn't take acid (spiders!) and what happens when you have sex (becoming pregnant)....I found myself this Saturday, exhausted from work, in front of my television watching the show in syndication. It's a lovely little teen drama with interwoven relationships, pregnancy, abortion, eating disorders, and rebellion. Life seems so simple in the show or really complex....love, drama, heartache, pain. All the things that makes a teenager...

Teen culture is interesting. I love the questioning. I love the life experiences. I love the rebellion and questioning. Life isn't black and white though often it is processed that way. The show always leaves in suspension and i love how youth culture is always dated by the latest fashions and trends. What is great about the show it doesn't shy away from the hard questions and doesn't limit the love or the struggling with the conclusions.

With the prompt of Degrassi I decided to revisit The Adventures of Pete and Pete. A fabulous show that was on Nickelodeon when I was a middle school student. There are two brothers named Pete and they live in a universe that I believe hipsters currently live their life. There is desire for freedom but also the questioning of life and relationships and asking what is the purpose. What I loved is the show usually brought global issues like the hole in the ozone or the commercialization of christmas, or the need for math word problems. What was great about the show (which is quite a bit) is that they had so many great actors who are a bit quirky join them in their world. Steve Buschemi was Ellens dad, Jeanne Garafolo was a poetry teacher, Iggy Pop was Nona's dad. I mean come on what other show has managed to do that?!
I guess that I relate to the show because it seems that it raises issues that we still deal with. Issues that seem so important to living and what it means to live is to make the most of the opportunities that present themselves. To live almost in a world that is full of creativity, a great group of friends, and to question why we don't all have superhuman best friends named Artie, the strongest man in the world.

I guess I still live in that space where you can dream big and live in your imagination. Not the kind that reality is replaced but the kind of world where you can laugh at yourself but also turn back time and live in the same hour again. I don't know about you but that sounds like fun to me!

2 comments:

Grant Wahlquist said...

Dude I totally forgot that Steve Buscemi was in that show!

Dave and Betsy: said...

I don't know if you look at past blog comments, but I thought of you this weekend as I picked up a magazine and saw an article about what teens (in some state) thought about themselves. They were to come up with something they love about themselves...that is beautiful or unique or unique and beautiful, or beautiful because it's unique...anyway you get the idea. Anyway, just a shot out there to let you know I think of you often, love you and miss you!!!

Betsy - Hollah Amy! (which still gets randomly yelled by our beautiful JJ every now and then around the house)