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My son came down this weekend to visit from college, actually, he’s out of his dorm this coming Saturday. Anyhow, so like most parents, I think, we have a budget for him while away in college. Since he doesn’t work, a least this year he didn’t, we try and budget the money as best as we could. He gets a certain amount of money each week for groceries and personal things, like toothpaste deodorant, etc. My son has his own debit card right, which is tied to his mom’s account somehow, which means that mom could see pretty much where he spends his money. So about two weeks ago, he spent $58.67 in Ulta, and mom freaked out because she wasn’t sure what he bought for nearly sixty dollars. She gets a hold of him and finds out that he had run out of shampoo and bought shampoo at Ulta. Mom was like why would you buy a shampoo worth nearly sixty dollars, well he explained to her that the shampoo he bought, according to an App, he downloaded, was the best shampoo that did not contain anything that is harmful to the body. Now don’t get me wrong, we don’t want our kids to be exposed to anything harmful, but a 60-dollar shampoo was a bit much for us and definitely not in the budget.
Now, let me get back to the present day, while he was visiting us and what happened. It seems that he downloaded the App Yuka, and when you scan the barcode of a product it breaks down the ingredients and explains each one, then it provides a review of the product and I believe a rating letting the user know if the product is good or bad for you. I believe it even tells you about the ingredients and how they can affect your body directly, like your pituitary gland, a woman’s reproductive system, possible hair loss, cancer, and so on. Now don’t get me wrong, I am glad he is looking out for himself, but where does this stop?
I mean when I was growing up, I would drink from a hose, fall off my bike, scrap myself, and ride 2 miles back home to get either rubbing alcohol or something else splashed on my scrape. Guess what I survived, and I have two kids and a full set of teeth, and as far as I can see I do not have an extra limb. I got a bit sarcastic with him about it and said maybe we should wipe our butts with a leaf, and an organic leaf at that; well, he didn’t like my sarcasm, but I was taken back by what he was saying. We told him that he could not be purchasing 60-dollar shampoos and that he needs to step back a bit and take life a bit less seriously. I told him he can’t go through life worrying about every little thing. I mean, I told him, look just read the reviews of a product like on Amazon and see if anyone has had a side effect using that product, but other than that, come on really you can’t be taking this too far – and we definitely cannot afford it. We told him, that when you graduate, find a job and pay for your own stuff with your earned money, heck you can buy whatever you like. Look we told him, to use the App, maybe initially, but then read the reviews on the product and see if anyone has experienced any side effects, if nothing is out of the ordinary, then you can decide to buy it or not, but solely counting on an App to make your decision, is going to leave you either poor or with a lack of options.
My beef here is that, with all these Apps and social media platforms, it seems that social media has a grip on our younger generations, it almost seems as though they cannot decide without confirming on an App, Instagram, or some media influencer. My thing is when and where does this stop? The worse thing is that he sort-of blew me off, and kept on talking to his mom, man, he even downloaded it on her phone. Hold on, wait, and to get the app working you must create an account, so there you go, another place on the worldwide web where he put in his information. Ok-Ok, you are thinking that I am one of those conspiracy theorists that doesn’t like using social media, apps, and so on, but that’s not the case. I just feel like we need to be a little cautious about whom we give our personal information– that’s all. I mean come on, I use social media, I am on Tik Tok, I have Instagram, and so on. I do use a few apps here and there, but I don’t allow social media or any apps to run my life. I do read and look for information that may stand out, and go from there, but to solely rely on an App for my important decisions, I will simply not do it. What is that saying nowadays, “Ther is an App for that”, I get it, but why not trust our fathers and mothers and grandparents when it comes to certain things, like shampoo. I mean he has lived in our house for 20+ years and used the shampoos we have bought him, and look at him now, and he is just over 6 feet, smart as heck, has a good head on his shoulders, can hold a conversation with any adult, and has come this far without generating a third limb. So, what is the deal, when did Apps take over his life?
I think the younger generation is slowly moving to rely more on electronics, social media, and the internet for life decisions and it has me worried, well at least for my kids, because in 15 or 20 years where will they be, will our society be so different that communities will live on Apps? I am not trying to push my ideas onto him or my daughter, and I totally understand that times are changing, and certain things are becoming easier to access over the internet. Heck, I know there are great videos out there or information on many things. I even refer to a video on how to change a radiator and followed the video with my son, and it was great. I totally appreciated it, but I won’t stop using a product because some app tells me to. I might investigate a little further, but if up until this day I have been using a product and nothing has happened to me, why would I stop now, and why wouldn’t my kids believe the product is good if I have been using it for decades and I am ok. That’s my point, if someone you know uses something and has been for a long time, why not believe them instead of an App. Relying on an App, which I am sure is great and provides great information on the ingredient, can lead to worrisome and a lack of options. Imagine being afraid of everything, where will we be. I can’t even phantom this notion; I have enough trouble with regular stuff in my life and now worrying about the shampoo I have been using for 20 years, will take me beyond that darkness I have been fighting to get out of – wow that is mind-blowing, saying this out loud.
All I am trying to say is that we need to be careful not to rely so much on Apps or social media for our decisions, instead use the information along with input from family, friends, and product reviews to help you make a good decision, one that you will be happy with, not anyone else or anything else.
Well, I come to the end of my post, and as always, I appreciate you stopping by and taking a few minutes out of your day to read my post. As always, I try and leave you with a relevant thought for the day, so here it goes, “Do not rely on social media to dictate your happiness or you will not be able to fully enjoy life”. (Watts, 2017)
Citation: Jaime Watts (October 2017) Don’t Depend on Social Media for Happiness. From The Daily Illini. Article linked here.
“Do not rely on social media to dictate your happiness or you will not be able to fully enjoy life” Jaime Watts (October 2017) Don’t Depend on Social Media for Happiness. From The Daily Illini. Article linked here.Tweet