Driving through Los Angeles on a six lane boulevard, I pulled up to red light. A scrawny looking 18 year-old with a blond mohawk and lip ring sauntered from the side of the road unto the grass median. His all black clothes and black backpack looked like the standard gear for the rebellious youth. He sat down and settled against a sign post and produced a piece of cardboard. The edges were completely torn and a marker had scribbled his message, "Ninjas took my Girlfriend. Need $$ to take Karate."
I smiled. Read the sign again... If I had been in the lane next to the kid, I might have have actually given him money. His creativity was refreshing.
We often don't give the youth enough credit for thinking outside the box. We take surveys and our anecdotal evidence of working with these young people, and then we make generalizations, and group them into categories so that we can handle them.
They are no different in their search for their identity and in finding their place in the world. They just might have different means and avenues of doing it. At least, the young man didn't have his sign digitized.