My Generation

The Plinky prompt for today is slighty more stimulating than normal.

What’s your generation known for?  Do these traits apply to you?

People try to put us d-down (Talkin’ ’bout my generation)

Just because we g-g-get around (Talkin’ ’bout my generation)

Things they do look awful c-c-cold (Talkin’ ’bout my generation)

I hope I die before I get old (Talkin’ ’bout my generation)

(The Who, 1965)

I belong to the baby boomer generation, that huge group of people born in the post World War II baby boom which started in 1946 and ended perhaps as late as 1959.  The exact time span is kind of up in the air depending on who you talk to.  A “generation” is defined in human terms as being about a thirty year span, from when you were born to the time that you had your own children. And then I guess it gets to be ‘their’ generation.

It’s very hard to decide on definitive characteristics for such a large group.  I was a teenager in the sixties, a parent in the seventies and eighties.  A grandparent in 2001.  Now I’m looking at retirement along with all the other baby boomers who will break the pension and old age security banks.  I suppose as a group of individuals we probably have similar ideas, problems, and attitudes, all influenced by the things that have happened in our lifetimes.  But personally I don’t think we’re any more special than any other generation before or after us, except perhaps for our sheer numbers.

I remember Beatlemania, Woodstock, Hippies, the Beat Generation, the Vietnam War, Motown Sound, Rock and Roll, being the first generation to grow up with television, men walking on the moon, the women’s movement, the civil rights movement, Trudeaumania, the surge of interest in Eastern religions, bohemian hedonists, free love.

I’m not sure how to translate all of that into “traits” specific to my generation.  Every generation wants to change the world.  The Boomers are the parents of Generation X, and they’re going to pass the torch to Generation Y.  Every generation thinks the one before it is full of old people who just don’t get it, but we do. The things we wanted are still the most meaningful goals to persue – peace and love and freedom.

We have never stopped hoping that the current generation will be the ones to finally get it right.