Warning: This article contains a millennial rant.
Shawn Mendes. Justin Bieber. Taylor Swift. Harry Styles. Cristiano Ronaldo. You get the idea. They're young, rich, and oh so talented, which in the words of the aforementioned superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, is the reason opposition fans boo him. After all, isn't that what life is all about?
Well if Instagram, Tinder and Snapchat filters are anything to go by, young people seem more obsessed with image and status than ever before, with the quest for fame and fortune seemingly taking precedence over anything else.
That's a big statement to make, and I'll probably rile a few of my fellow twenty-somethings who aren't at all interested in being hounded by TMZ's chief windup merchant, but a lot of people seem to be of the opinion that if you don't look a certain way, or have a certain level of virtuosity or charisma, your chances of doing well in life are slim. In other words, you'll have to get a normal job and live with your parents for the rest of your life.
Maybe that's a tad sensationalist, but there aren't any jobs for young people. I went to Barcelona recently, and youth unemployment there, and indeed in most of Europe is depressingly high. Unless you happen to be a high-flyer, it appears you're almost doomed to live a life well within your means- even if you have the privilege of living in a first world country.
Indeed, youth unemployment's become so bad that I feel that talent shows and their ilk have almost become the only way out for my generation. Even academics, lawyers, and doctors struggle to make ends meet in today's world, and it's even more depressing that teachers, police officers and paramedics have to live off very little while a select few who happen to be able to sing or kick a ball can live the so-called 'dream'.
This is not to say that Taylor Swift and co don't deserve their fortunes. They're tremendously talented and are reaping the rewards from a society who- rightly or wrongly- view them as demi-gods.
My only concern is that young people without said talents and who live in cities like London and New York won't be able to afford a home and start a family like their parents did simply because they won't have enough money.
And those that do have the financial capabilities will likely be bankrolled by their parents, creating an even greater disparity of wealth in the Western world. So unless you happen to sing, act or vlog (yep, that's actually a thing now) don't expect too much in the way of financial security unless rent controls in premier cities like London and New York actually become a thing. At this moment in time, that seems a long way off.
With that said, while you may not be able to sing like the Biebs or kick a ball like Ronaldo, there's always avocado toast, which you can buy in abundance if you still live at home. And that's actually something to savor in more ways than one (have you tried it?!).
In fact, I wouldn't actually mind living off avocado toast until I dropped dead if there wasn't condescending, know-it-all estate agents who believe my generation would be able to afford a home if we kicked our eating habits and lived off spam and water for the next 30 years.
Research conducted by Strutt & Parker, an estate agency in Birmingham, England, calculated that if young people gave up certain 'luxuries', such as takeaways, nights out and anything else resembling a decent quality of life, young people could actually afford a deposit on a house in an unaffordable city like London.
And that's fair enough if you don't mind working and doing nothing with your social life for the next three decades. However, most young people want to live while they're young and have fun, and the discontentment millennials feel was only fuelled when an Australian property mogul did the unthinkable: he criticised avocado toast.
Of course, this then led millennials to bite back, with one millennial twitter user writing, "i actually used to own three houses, but i sold them all to buy avocado toast."
In all seriousness, moguls and tech millionaires should be praised for their success, yet many don't seem to realize that not everyone will develop an app and sell it for $50m to Yahoo! Still, if you want to live in a nice city, that seems to be the only option.
According to the luxury British estate agents, Savills, even an annual salary of £80,000 wouldn't go far if you wanted to buy a home in the British capital. "An £80,000 salary is not going to get you that far, you will still not be able to afford large swathes of the capital. If you then find yourself facing a higher tax burden that is going to further impact where you are going to be able to buy," Lucian Cook of Savills said.
So where does that leave the majority of young people? The ones who don't end up becoming Bitcoin millionaires and A-list actors?
For now, at least, it appears as though they'll be consigned to the four walls of a below average wage cell. And that's if they're lucky. The rest will survive on zero-hour contracts and the lie that a coveted internship will one day lead to a full-time position.
Until then, there's always avocado toast to ease the pain. If you're still living at home, that is.