Why it’s time to stop being sarcastic about Millennials

So who's chicken?: Millennials don't like handling raw chicken meat, apparently. Well, let's not for

So who's chicken?: Millennials don't like handling raw chicken meat, apparently. Well, let's not forget that a couple of generations earlier it was very different... - Credit: Getty Images/Hemera

Oh let's give the Snowflakes a break…

It's time to call a truce in the inter-generational war. The Millennials blamed Babyboomers for having houses and pensions and living too long. Babyboomers fought back by mocking millennials for being too preoccupied with phones, parties and takeaway coffees.

Only last week yet another survey revealed that the under-35s can't change plugs or know how many feet in yard. Well, why should they? It's years since I've had to change a plug and years too since we've gone metric.

I'm not too good on rod, poles and perches either. So what?

Anyway, they can look it all up on their phones in a second.


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Also last week we learned that supermarkets are designing meat-trays so that chicken breasts can be slipped straight from the packing into the pan as millennials, apparently, can't bear to touch raw meat.

Now stop right there. You wanted to laugh or say something sarcastic, didn't you? Well don't.

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Things change. When my grandmother wanted chicken for dinner, she went into the back yard and killed one, tucked it under her arm and wrung its neck. (I think of her every time I see someone playing the bagpipes.) Then she plucked it and cleaned out its insides and made soup or gravy with its bits.

She no doubt considered my mum a softie for buying chickens already dead and dressed. Snowflake…

The world moves on – and we all move on with it. While the over-50s criticise the youngsters for their pleasure-loving preoccupations, maybe they should think how their own lives have changes since their parents' day too.

Most over-50s are better off than their parents, live in warmer houses, are more active, healthier and certainly have more holidays and highlighted hair. A few generations ago most over-50s would be dead, crippled or confined to a chair in the corner of the kitchen. The changing times that have given us all more opportunities, so we shouldn't blame the next generation for making the most of the chances we created.

The over-50s buy their share of ready meals, ready-made cake, bread and even grated carrot. Imagine what Gran would have said about that as she struggled with a rabbit and a some turnips.

We all lose some of the skills that earlier generations took for granted, otherwise we'd still all be brilliant at hunting bison with home-made spears. Each generation makes life easier for themselves as well as the next one along.

I once took my mother on a day trip to Prague. Possible for all sorts of reasons (her new knees, cheap air fares, fall of communism) but unthinkable twenty years earlier. As we knocked back the wine in Wenceslas Square my mother beamed in astonishment. Her own mother's outings, she said were no more than a bus to the seaside and an ice cream on the front.

If we want millennials to be exactly like we were, then we're going to have to live the same lives as our parents did. And that's not going to happen.

So we all make the most of a changing world, whatever age we are. Don't worry about the millennials, they'll grow up fine – just like we did.

Even if they never have to wring a chicken's neck.

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