The group is making big and shiny demands
By Michele Provenzano, Staff Writer
College and university students across British Columbia participated in a walk out last Wednesday to demand the resurgence of what many feel is a fundamental human right: receiving stickers.
According to Millie Neal, Douglas College student and organizer of the event, young adults across the province are distraught upon having realized that stickers are merely a childhood memory.
“Despite being frequently and abundantly distributed to us during childhood and even into our teenage years, stickers have suddenly become obsolete. We’re in our twenties now, and we’ve realized we’re no longer receiving them,” Neal told the Other Press. “The worst thing? We didn’t even notice the point in time at which they stopped being granted to us. All of the sudden, they’re gone. Frankly, it’s distressing.”
Neal began organizing the walk out when her Facebook post went viral. “I posted a status that said, ‘Remember as a kid u just get stickers all the time? Why tf don’t I get stickers for like paying my rent and showing up to work doe?? Lolz.’ At first, it got a laugh-react and one or two sad-reacts from my friends. But then a friend shared it, and from then it just, like, snowballed. So like, yeet,” Neal stated before hitting the whoa.
The young social media influencer received hundreds of comments from fellow frustrated young adults lamenting the loss of the familiar phenomenon. Many described the tumult it causes in the transitional phase from adolescence to maturity. Support for Neal’s concern over the sticker-barren landscape of adulthood prompted her to act.
Thousands stormed out of Douglas College’s New Westminster campus and took to the sidewalk of Eighth Street gripping protest signs with Sharpie-written slogans such as, “IF I DON’T GET A STICKER HOW DO I KNOW IF I DID A GOOD THING OR NOT?!”
Post-secondary students have been an especially vocal demographic of adults affected by the strife.
“In sixth grade, when I got a good grade on my English test, I’d get a glittery glow-in-the-dark sticker of a smiling star smacked right onto the top of the sheet,” student Hector Yuen shared with the Other Press during the walk out. “Now, if I get an A on an English 1130 assignment, I don’t get anything.”
Acknowledging the glares received from students marching adjacent to him, Yuen continued, “Okay so maybe not an A, but you know what I mean. Good grades don’t get you stickers anymore. It’s sick. It’s like, why even try?”
“You go through life getting used to literally being handed symbols of achievement, and then those symbols just disappear,” alumna Kelly Green chimed in. “I don’t know how to measure my achievements anymore. Sure, I have a decent job and I’m paying my bills, but am I succeeding in life? Damn it, I still have my childhood sticker book handy in the glove box of my car in case that fateful day comes when my boss calls me into her office to give me a sticker of a monkey holding a banana in one hand and giving a thumbs up with the other.”
The march remained peaceful. However, several nearby business owners were disgruntled by the booming voices. A simple repeating chant lasted for almost an hour, one that sums up the heart of the issue: “WE STILL NEED EXTERNAL VALIDATION.” A subgroup of protestors occasionally shouted, “NOW MORE THAN EVER.”
Where will Neal take her activism next? “Maybe city hall,” she said. “We’re going to keep sticking it to the man until the man sticks something in our sticker books.”