Teen spirit

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

The Teen Issue can be a tough one to get right because it’s not always easy to find good teenage artists or teenage writers. It’s not like we can just have Bob Grimm write it every year.

But, this year, we’ve got good teenage artists and good teenage writers—like my man Oliver Guinan, who wrote a great essay on page 15. We met Oliver through our media partnership with community radio station KWNK, and he gives us all hope for the future.

I’m 38, but for whatever weird reason I feel a certain kinship with today’s teens that I didn’t feel with the crop of kids a few years ago. (Admittedly, the teens I tend to meet are usually either budding young journalists or budding young punk rockers or the kids of my friends, most of whom are cooler than me, so I get a pretty filtered look at the generation, but still.)

Of course, it can be problematic to think in terms of generational stereotypes, but maybe coming of age in the era of Trump is instilling a righteous anger in kids that they didn’t have a few years ago during the Obama administration, when it was a little easier, for better or worse, for teens to be complacent.

There’s also that weird 20-year-nostalgia thing in this country. The ’70s were filled with ’50s-themed entertainments like Grease and Happy Days. The ’80s were all about the ’60s, and so forth. And if you don’t think ’90s nostalgia is in full bloom right now, you should check out the biggest movie of the year, Captain Marvel.

Clifford, my elder son, and Josephine, my elder stepdaughter, will both turn 13 later this year. So, pretty soon, I’ll be living with teenagers. We’ll see if I still feel that “kinship” for long.