When Ideas Go Bad: Blogging for Tips

This year, I realized that a disturbing phenomenon is sweeping the web.  This is happening at this very moment, as we unknowingly stare at our glowing, hypnotic screens for a quick info or image fix.  

My first hunch that something was amiss came in the fall of 2010, when I read advice for college students on writing a blog for school. The author painted the entire process as a mindless, annoying drudgery;  a necessary evil at best.  Not to say I blame the students for hating to blog.  The tips were in response to an anonymous institution of higher learning (probably most of them) where blogging was mandatory for all students, regardless of their field of study. Take that individualism!  Back in my day, we merely had to endure two semesters of 'Essay Writing: the NYU Way' and I am fairly positive none of them were published or will be, ever. (Assuming the instructor's response to students' work had any correlation with how well guidelines were met, the class of 2002 successfully created the biggest mulch heap in New York City.)

Hunch number two was in January when my fiance's younger brother had to hold back laughter as I innocently suggested he start a blog. Little did I know then what Gen Z has known since age 12:  blogging is past its prime.

A tipping point has been reached on the world wide web.  With so many people attempting to make a living by writing something of immediate use to others, we have run out of good advice.  No matter, though, because when the reserves of good advice are low, we Americans go running off to mine the abundant riches of bad advice with all the low-brow fervor of a hillbilly during the Gold Rush.

LostGen's Most Wanted List for Willing Participation in the Spreading of Obviously Bad Advice

Lifehacker.com  -  Oh, Lifehacker, what has happened to you?  Two of the worst offenses I have come across so far are on YOUR site.
Date:  April 15th
Time:  6:00 AM
The Perp: "Simple Habits You Can Do In Minutes to Change Your Life."
Conclusion:  Not only was this a review of someone else's crappy advice written on mandebt.com, but it was also a complete misrepresentation of said crappy advice.  Mandebt.com is packed with dumb advice, and the three examples pulled for this article managed to offend all who cared to comment.  Read for yourself here:

Date:  April 15th
Time:  5:00 AM
The Perp:  "Why You Should Carry Blank Business Cards"
Conclusion:  It is possible to write a personal note on a regular business card, which would achieve the goal of 'standing out' but wouldn't require someone to bend over a short, wobbly table for 10 or more awkward minutes.  OK, I'll concede that if the corporate world adopts the canine method of 'butt-sniffing' as part of a customary meet-and-greet, this may catch on.  Read the article here:

Bnet.com  -  You are run by the CBS network, so although you suck you have my deepest sympathies.  ABC could cause the reincarnation of Bill Shakespeare to slit his wrists in the third floor urinal just to avoid a "brainstorming session," but CBS is still making shows starring David Caruso.  That's both lame and boring.  Damn, its not even a good joke anymore.  It hath transcended all mortal interests.

Date:  April 18th
Time:  Unknown
The Perp:  "The Smartest Thing You Can Put on Your Business Card"
Conclusion:  Where to begin.  This is a review of the above mentioned lifehacker article, only Rick "Two Face" Broida puts an even stupider spin on the possibilities of whipping up an impromptu, hand-written business card on the fly.  He does cut it notably short when hitting on the potential drawbacks of this tactic,  thus preventing the revelation of his man-vs.-self crisis surrounding the bullsh*t article he's assigned to review.  Thank god he's an airhead. Read the article here:

If you spot any similar infractions upon the trustworthiness of advice from strangers, please let The Lost Gen know.  Sanity is on the line, folks.  Don't be a social loafer.  Be a Timberland boot.


  1. aynte know buddy rote nuthin'! why that isz!

  2. I'm sorry anonymous, but I do not have the copy of the Newspeak dictionary containing any of these words. What edition are you using, exactly? This syntax suggests mine is fatally out of date.