The under 35s who can't boil an egg or change a lightbulb: Survey finds growing numbers who still live at home do not know basic skills


*]The research shows many 25 to 34 year olds don’t have key life skills
*]A third of young adults cannot change a lightbulb, according to survey
*]And a quarter admitted they would have to ask to know how to boil an egg


So, how many Millennials does it take to change a lightbulb or boil an egg?

This opens up new possibilities for the work force. It used to be only elderly men who had to hire housekeepers and cooks. Looks like the market has expanded.


The second question is a trick question. You don’t boil eggs, you bake them. Much more evenly cooked inside and the yolk doesn’t get that nasty grey film if you don’t do it perfectly. :thumbsup:

Also these statistics absolutely frighten me about my generation. I mean if a third had no idea how to properly wire a lighting fixture, sure that would be a totally understandable statistic. But no idea how to change a lightbulb? All I can say is good thing LEDs are coming into vogue right now. They won’t have to change them until about 2046.

But honestly I can’t say I’m surprised. A very intelligent and well off friend of mine (he makes over $200k a year and owns a McMansion) recently bought new tires for his wife’s car. They were bald in under 5000 miles because he never checked the tire pressure, never had them rotated or balanced, and never had the car aligned. Heck he must never have even looked at them to miss the uneven wear to the point his wife burned through the treads that fast. And his other car recently ran out of gas on the way home from work (and it has a perfectly functioning gas gauge). And he’s yet to buy furniture for his kids (oldest is now 3). They sleep on mattresses on the floor. I mean my wife who are the same age as my friend sometimes joke that “adulting” is hard, but it’s not THAT hard.


They can operate your computer at light speed though … and reprogram it until it no longer behaves in ways you understand. :wink:

Just remembering adventures with my nephew from the short time he lived with me. :smiley:

So brilliant is some ways. So unschooled in others. A breathtakingly paradoxical combination to watch catylize before me. :stuck_out_tongue:


I’d like to know the methodology of the poll and just what the sample size was?
It was commissioned by Poundland which I think is the UK equivalent of dollar stores so did they poll employees, customers or 24-35 year olds generally?
Let’s not forget this is the Daily Mail, they love outrageous headlines.


Well I’m 32 and would have to ask my grandmother or mother how to go about hard-boiling eggs to make sure they come out right. I mean, I can drop eggs in boiling water. And then take them out again and eat them - without asking. But would they be nice hardboiled? Probably not. But I’ve lived on my own for a long time and I don’t think I’d say that boiling eggs are a necessary life skill.


None, trust me, mom and dad do it. Well I have to take that back, my son is 26 and lives at home while going to School. He is a physics major. He took about two years off to teach kids math in Florida so he is behind a couple of years. But he can boil an egg and change a blub.


Bet they can google “egg boiling” and “lightbulb changing,” though, and probably accomplish the task competently.


Reminds me of a smart backside remark someone said to me recently, and this was from a Millennial. “Remember when your math teacher said you wouldn’t always have a calculator with you?” He proceeds to pull out his smart phone and hit the calculator app and says, “joke’s on her”.

Your Google analogy is similar. But it also raises an interesting point about the dependence our society has developed in a short 15 or so year time span on that website (and ones like it). I fully admit I’m guilty of it too more often than I’d care to admit. It’s such an accurate and easy source of vast amounts of information, if it ever went away life would definitely get interesting. And it’s not just mundane household stuff, when I was in grad school a few years back, using professional online databases, not Google itself but in the vein of Google, had become the norm for searching relevant professional material. Almost no time was spent on the equivalent manual searching ability via the old standby books. Compared to my own undergrad work just a few years earlier everything was computerized. Heck my own university 15 years later has largely computerized everything. Even in the rare instance you want to search for a physical book in their library rather than searching the stacks manually as I used to, you type in what you want and a robot brings it to you (which would have killed my researching as some of the best sources I used to find were books on shelves adjacent to the one I had been searching for). I wonder what would happen to our society if the ease of online searching were somehow denied to us all of a sudden.


That’s true. I have managed quite a few small plumbing and other household repairs thanks to YouTube. :thumbsup:

Growing up, my father (who grew up without much money) felt very strongly that we should hire people to do things instead of doing them ourselves as a sign of our prosperity. My mother, who grew up more solidly middle-class, has always been more of a DIYer. I learned some basic cooking and cleaning and gardening, but that was about it. I’ve been living independently since I was 17, though, so I’ve had lots of opportunity to learn some more intricate stuff.

Interestingly, my husband is less “handy” than me, even though his father is incredibly handy. But my FIL liked to do those sorts of mini-projects by himself as a kind of stress relief so DH never really even got to watch.


Ran into this myself growing up. My dad is very handy, when he gets around to doing things. But he typically would just do it himself rather than show us how to do it. As a result my wife is more handy around the house than I am when it comes to building and maintenance projects. Conversely my mother liked to share her household skills more and as a result I’m better at things such as cooking and cleaning things around our house. As far as traditional roles go it’s a bit backward, but it works out as we’re both a bit backward.


And there you have it. :wink:

If you drop an egg into boiling water, the shell will crack. Put the egg (gently!) into room temperature water, and then let the water come to a boil.


No way. A THIRD!? I cannot believe that.


The bolded part certainly strikes a chord with me. I did a lot of research by browsing the stacks, finding books I would not otherwise have known existed, and even got ideas for research papers that way. The robot method kills the serendipity.


Don’t put the egg in boiling water. Put the egg(s) in cold water and put on the stove. Leave until the water starts to boil, then cover and turn off. Let sit 10-15 minutes and there they are.


Add a small amount of salt to increase the boiling temperature if you live in a higher latitude.

Once the eggs have reached a full boil, put the lid on the pan and take it off the stove. (Turn off the stove at this point unless you’re using it for something else.)

Leave the eggs in the boiling hot water until it cools. Your perfectly hard boiled eggs are now ready for making egg sandwiches. :thumbsup:


. . . and as soon as the water comes to a boil, take the pan off the heat, cover it, and let it sit for 20 minutes. Voila – a perfect boiled egg. Works every time.

And here we have it. Daily Mail = pretty much a McStory.


I did a lot of that and I am 29. I also did a lot of online research (and even today sometimes cry that I no longer have access to the databases I did in undergrad and grad school. :crying:) As the meme says, “Porque ne los dos?” :smiley:


That has been my method. But, I recently saw Jacque pepino prepare boiled eggs. He pokes a tiny hole in the end, and then drops them into simmering water. They looked very nice when he peeled them. The yolk seemed to blend into the white.


I am planning on opening a lightbulb changing service. Five dollars for the first bulb, three for each additional lightbulb. Lessons at twenty-five dollars for the first hour. does that sound reasonable? Maybe I can offer prepaid warranties.

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