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The artist masterfully blends EDM, pop and hyperpop on a record that feels like a night out with her.
Review: “BRAT” by Charli XCX
Published June 12, 2024

The age of obsessive self-interest

Are we apathetic because we have become too focused on ourselves to ever look outside ourselves?

Although we have long since entered January and you all (I’m sure) have already decided what your New Year’s resolutions will be for the coming year, the topic nonetheless seems relevant, if not utterly ideal, for the very first column of my (still) very new year.

In all honesty, I’m usually not one for any kind of resolution, seeing as I don’t have any goals so I never really fail, or so I liked to believe. However, this year has had its ins and outs. At the end of December I suddenly found myself without a job or a boyfriend and struggling to create for myself any personal motivation whatsoever. I suddenly took on a whole new perspective on goal-making.

Apathy is a dangerous mind-set, and I can’t say that I’m the only one guilty of it. Of all the generations, it seems that the moniker ours has earned is that of the disinterested, the apathetic and the self-centered. And although I can’t say I necessarily disagree (although like anything else there are exceptions), I do wonder about the reasoning behind the trend.

Are we apathetic because we – unlike previous generations – have become too focused on ourselves to ever look outside ourselves? I doubt it’s one thing in particular, but to sum up the experience in general, I’d say it’s because we’re one of the most obsessively self-interested (read: “individualistic”) age groups alive. Although my mother has certainly threatened to get a Facebook profile to check up on me and make sure I’m staying away from meth, she hasn’t gone so far as to do so (and then update and check it every day) and it’s probably because she – unlike us – has better things to do then devote copious amounts of time to the personal study, development and online marketing of herself and her intriguing personality.

The more I write about this the more I feel that I’ve written about this all before, or maybe it is simply that I think about it so much that writing just becomes another extension of those thoughts. Either way I look at it, I realize that the older I get the more frustrated I grow not only of my own apathy, but of those surrounding me as well. If we’re all as creative, intellectual, aware and forward-thinking as we portray ourselves to be, then perhaps it’s time to, as they say, “put our money where our mouth is.”

I say this not to be contrary, but instead to start a dialogue – one that I feel is becoming more and more important as we face larger issues. So here’s my suggestion: If you’re concerned with your image as a Libertarian-abortion-rights-vegan-Darfur activist enough to make your Facebook carbon neutral, then you should also be doing yourself a favor and talking to the organic-Fair Trade-socialist-bicyclist next to you in lecture. I don’t know about the rest of you, but one of my New Year’s resolutions is to start eating those dolla dolla bills, yo.

Kat Hargreaves welcomes comments at [email protected].

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