Data provided by McGregor BFA
All data is delayed
Loading...
See More

What the country needs

Oct 17 2012 07:31 Adriaan Bester

Related Articles

Budget blues

Stylish saving

Rising to my heritage

Faith in my fellow man

Musings on transport

Brave new world

 

WHEN Zolani Mahola turned to Karen Zoid on stage in the Fugard Theatre last week to introduce her band’s new summer hit, the largely urban Cape Town crowd faced a moment of panic while remaining resolutely optimistic at her announcement that it is to be sung entirely in Afrikaans and isiXhosa.

As catchy tunes go, we were singing along while rhythmically clapping our hands in tune by the third time the chorus came by. Legs tapping, lips mock-singing we made up the words as we rolled along.

We are South Africans. A lack of understanding through language will not spoil a good moment. 

Help is at hand for those who are fearful about our ability to adapt quickly to a changing and demanding future society.

It comes in the form of Generation Y, and loosely refers to the group of twenty- to twenty-nine-year-olds that are sipping the juices from the born-free tree.

Attending a YFI discussion on Saturday in Stellenbosch by a panel of about 20 such Y-bies, I came within reach of the shoulders that will carry our hopes and aspirations forward.

They straddle the path between finding their feet in an adult world, and contemplating questions like: how do we stitch our multiple interpretations of this spot that we call home to the ways we were raised?

What is the role of our own belief systems? What makes us unique and relevant?

Powered by every form of technology and an insatiable thirst for knowledge, Generation Y is tiptoeing over the issues that have for so many years cemented us into strict views of ourselves, and how we believe we associate with each other.

They, at least the ones representing this generation on the select panel, are confident, hungry and seemingly unaware of the many divided tongues we inherited from a path that scattered so many of us into a continuous spiral, in search of an identity that can unite and not divide.

They brim with a glow that eats data faster than your trusted typewriter could consume in the first 30 years of your life. The tools they have and the eyes they use to scan the world are trained for the big revolution they can bring about, and to get us out of this rut we seem to be stuck in. If only they’d be given the chance.

I’m half a dozen years over the cut-off age of this “Generation Y-not” miracle workers. But if age were not the only entry criterion, and if recent memory of late my twenties is allowed, I can recognise the one missing ingredient, only because I lacked it too: patience.

When asked a few years ago how I would see my life "five years from now”, I doodled along in verbal potjiekos until the interviewee would interpret it as “so you want my job by then"?

A nervous chuckle and a confident “yes” usually sealed the awkward moment, moving us along to another lame question.

But my hair too is showing some silver. And now I understand the designs of the question as an attempt to connect to my generational view on the role I have to play in shouldering a brighter spot for all of us in the future.

Coming from a long line of believers in the healing powers of the song, I will download the new catchy Afrikaans/isiXhosa anthem soon. I will sing it until I feel embraced and part of a sweeping generation trapped between the boomers and the Y-nabies.

The odds are that I will mess up the words, yet I will sing aloud in public to show that I am trying to stretch the panic chord between us that so quickly snaps a bit further than the few inches we allow it.

And I will stand shoulder to shoulder with my fellow South Africans to see the value of the lessons I’ve learnt from my own generational discoveries, as I’ve profited from those I chose to follow before me.

 - Fin24

Sometimes Adriaan sings for his sanity on Twitter as @aiBester.


sa economy
NEXT ON FIN24X

Money creation made easy

2014-04-23 07:11

 
 
 

Read Fin24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Company Snapshot

We're Talking About: Small Business

Standard Bank is looking for 12 entrepreneurs to participate in a 10-part TV series. They could win a R1m investment into their dream.
 
 

No DA, EFF coalition

The DA and the EFF have denied reports of a possible coalition between them after the 7 May elections.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

DA won't get 30% - Zille
The EFF's ad was banned, see why
Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...
Loading...