Occasionally, an article is published whose stupidity is so obvious that it doesn’t even matter which paper published it (The Sun, duh). These articles are above petty things like politics or editorial standpoint. These are my favourite articles.
The “piece” we’re going to look at this week is currently my choice article of 2011. And how could I not run directly at it like Quixote to a windmill or complete maniacs to a Toronto Mayoral Race? For God’s sake, the article is called “Teens are sending racy texts and photos unaware of the consequences”.
It’s 2011. Do you know what your teen is sexting? Not even, “Look out, parents. YOUR TEEN IS SEXTING.” Gone are the days when teens would go to the library and think about trying to grope each other but not actually do it for a laundry list of reasons incomprehensible to anyone who has legally purchased alcohol by the boxes of old Maclean’s magazines. No, they’ve been sexting for so long that it’s pretty much a given, only now we don’t know what they’re sexting. What do those sexts mean? Dahlia Kurtz has translated some for us.
The best part is when “soooo” is translated for us as, “so”. I know I needed that translated, as apparently, “soooo” could mean “sex orally or other orifice” or something. Also, why is Jenny responding to Johnny with the information he just gave her? He tells her that his parents are watching and she says, “Oh, OK! I’ll just make your phone vibrate one more time to tell you that I understand that you are trying to keep them unaware of the fact that we are going to sext or make a bid for privacy.”
13% of high schoolers have received sexts? That’s as high as our taxes! Clearly an epidemic of sextual transmission is sweeping across teenland. These numbers bear out, with 10% of teens (that’s what “one in ten” means if you finished grade 6 math) looking at pictures of each other naked on the information superhighway. Which, as we know, is full of sexual predators just waiting to stumble upon said photos. Because they’re just out there. In the web. Apparently, a number of studies prove this, some more scarily than others.
I just wanted to point out that computers and cellphones and the internet are “uncontrollable technology”. Just doing whatever they want without pictures of our naked selves which everybody has, but teens need to be more careful with.
Oh, Canada. So slow to enforce child pornography laws! Hold up. Scroll back. “Anal region”? Speaking of things that will haunt me for the rest of my life!
Okay, Okay, Heckles and Jeckles: Peter Cumming. Get your yuks out, because he studies children, and not that way either, wiseguy. There are things only the coordinator of the children’s studies program at York University is supposed to know about your children. Did anybody proofread this thing?
Remember when you played doctor? Remember when you span the bottle? Spun the bottle? Spinned the bottle? I saw the Spin Doctors play a concert in 1994. Now imagine that instead of a delightful band, I did some sick cross between playing doctor and spinning the bottle in front of Kingswood Music Theatre at Canada’s Wonderland. Now that I think back, it wasn’t that far off, because the opening band was Gin Blossoms, and my girlfriend at the time and I weren’t big fans. Cue Grunge-Goth groping.
Don’t use scare-mongering tactics: skip directly to scaring them. Although I can’t imagine thieves are part of the equation, unless sexual predators and peers are buying your dick pics from these thieves.
It’s probably every journalist’s dream to fit in a zinger, but three in a row? Kurtz must have yelled out loud: “Three in a row! Three in a motherfucking row! USA!” “You can’t get a virus from sexting, but it takes just one click to make a sext go viral” is being said by parents of teens right now, in the hope that maybe that stupid kid will finally get it. A great zing. Granted, “stranger danger” isn’t really hers. And it’s stupid. “Don’t talk to strangers” was good enough, wasn’t it? Stranger Danger seems too high-minded, somehow, like stramgers have become more of an abstract concept. And kids are great at understanding abstract concepts. Every adult knows that. That’s why they’re so easy to talk to and raise. And finally, she concedes that because the internet isn’t a real thing, it makes it seem like sexts are safe because they might also not be real.
Between midnight and 5 a.m., of course, is known as the Sex Time of The Soul. I used to peak at privately egregious behaviour around 3, 3:30 a.m. most weeknights with a variety of print media. This is just like that, only if I was a teen now, I could do the same thing with another teen without leaving the house.
How are we going to help them practice safe sext? That’s a zinger too far. Here’s a list of ten sexts you should familiarize yourself with and then look for on your teen’s phone, with really helpful details in parentheses.