Why Your Obsession with (Insulting) Travellers Means You’re Writing Mediocre Shit

Today, I read what was easily the worst piece of writing I’ve come across this year…and considering I read a lot and it’s part of my job to keep track of news and articles, that means it’s nothing short of abysmal.

It’s so awful on every single level, I’ve decided to have some fun with it. So here’s my response to this two-bit, second-rate hack who has the audacity to publish this travesty.

Mr. Jeffrey Grey, this aforementioned article of yours is the journalistic equivalent of what exits my rear end after I’ve had coffee with my breakfast, South Indian food for lunch, more coffee at teatime, Mexican food for dinner, and copious amounts of hard liquor for supper.

I say this not because I disagree with your opinions, but because this horribly negative view you have of people who love travelling is based on the very things any half-decent writer should avoid: oversimplification, sweeping generalizations and unwarranted condescension.

Let’s have a look, shall we?

Rubbish 01

You are right about the existence of young people for whom travel is a form of escape from the realities of life, like a career, a home, an actual future. And yes, they are usually privileged kids using their parents’ money to avoid growing up. You are right about this particular thing, I’ll give you that. But what’s it to you?

Rubbish 02

well-dang-j3xhwz

And then you go on to destroy any credibility you might have had by asserting that the only people with a constant desire to travel have or even “want” mediocre lives. It could only go downhill from there and boy, did it hurtle downhill.

Rubbish 03

Firstly, what’s wrong with “just” seeing and enjoying? Secondly, who died and made you the authority on what constitutes a life worth living or a job worth doingI know for a fact that when I travel — and by golly, do I fucking love travelling — I make a positive impact on the economy. The money I pay for my flight and accommodations, the food I enjoy and the things I buy contribute to the livelihoods of the airline and hotel staff, the restaurateurs and business owners.

Rubbish 04

Oh, now you’re the authority on everyone’s creative process? Kind of contradicts the nature and defeats the purpose of creativity, doesn’t it?

No Suicide

Also, as someone who travels at least twice a year and wishes she could do so more often, I can assure you that the only thing people “obsessed” with travel are “conceding” is that there is so much worth doing, seeing and maybe even creating in so many parts of the world, we want to get out there and experience it. Didn’t think that one through, did you, genius?

Rubbish 05.PNG

I didn’t think this abortion of an article could get any worse, but it just did. Firstly, you’re assuming everyone has / should have the genius-level IQ and therefore, the same priorities as Albert Einstein. Secondly, now you’re the authority on what Einstein thought and didn’t think? Damn!

I’m sorry (not really) to break it to you, but people in real life don’t spend every waking moment wondering whether they can invent this generation’s super computer, or publish a judgmental article on Thought Catalog castigating people who dare enjoy themselves by travelling.

And no, it’s not because they live mediocre lives. It’s because, rich or poor, famous or not, male or female, they have bills to pay, jobs to do, households to keep in order…the list goes on. You know, the very responsibilities you accuse travellers of shirking.

Rubbish 06.PNG

Aaaaaand…it gets worse! I don’t know about the rest of you, but it seems most people who love travelling are the opposite of “afraid to try anything”. Correct me if I’m wrong, but fear isn’t really a handy trait to have when travelling to foreign lands, especially for the first time.

And are you writing a fucking indie screenplay here? Running far away and taking menial jobs we would be ashamed to take back home just so we can continue running? What the fuck is this? The Travel Diaries of a #Hipster?

Rubbish 07.PNG

Aww, that’s sweet. You spared a thought for us inferior beings and cared enough to validate our need to travel…but only if we take “periodic” vacations (in which case, “from time to time” is redundant, by the way).

Never mind that some of us can actually afford the time and money to travel for months at a time; it’s a pyramid scheme that’s duping an entire generation! Oh, it’s such a shame you care so much about people who care so little about what you think. They’d rather throw their future away than listen to your inane ramblings. Tsk tsk.

Now I don’t know if you’re unable (physically or financially) to travel, or just too afraid to leave the comfort of your own home to explore the rest of the world. But I do know that despite your efforts to mask it with false concern and a façade of wisdom beyond your years, all this cynical, scathing criticism of those who love to travel is just a projection of your envy and bitterness that you cannot and / or will not do the same.

giphy

Travel, even if it’s just “for the sake of #travel”, is great. It gives us a break from work, affords us new experiences, and broadens our knowledge of different countries and cultures in ways merely watching it on TV or reading about it cannot.

It may not lead us to become famous entrepreneurs, inventors or philanthropists, but so what? You’re not entitled to the fruits of our potential greatness. And people may not remember me for my desire to travel, but the friends I’ve made on those travels are very unlikely to forget me, or me them. In fact, I met the most wonderful man I’ve ever known on one of my trips to Europe, and my life has most certainly grown much richer for it.

I’m not from a wealthy family, and I had to get a job that provided a stable income (yes, one of the things you assume constant travellers lack) before I could afford even an economy flight ticket. But I’m not escaping my responsibilities when I travel. I enjoy what I do for a living, but I also want to see as much of the world as I can. And I’m far from the only person I know with a similar story.

So really, instead of spreading your vitriol all over the Internet and attempting to disguise it as well-intentioned advice just because your life is mediocre, here’s some advice from me to you: Get your judgmental behind out there and experience life in countries besides your own. And if you can’t or won’t do that, don’t hate those who can and do. Bitterness is not a good look, especially on a grown man.

Let’s get that head out of your arse.

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