Boomers, Xers and Beyond
Sat, 31 Aug 1996 15:30:18 -0400

In a message dated 96-08-30 11:25:26 EDT, writes:

> Hey, does anyone here think the boomers have the drive and selfishness
> to push for massive investment in age-delaying technology in their own
> lifetimes? Or are they all going to go zen and "age with grace--die
> content." Which do you prefer they do?

Howard Julien has already picked up on the generational context implicit in
the choice of the word "they", so I'll only add my $.02 on that briefly:
Careful what you say, sonny, *some* of your elders may be around for a *very*
long time! (Although in a thousand years or so, the generational differences
may have finally receded into insignificance ...)

Kidding aside, this is a good question. For years I've actually had a
feeling that the "boomers" haven't had their last big impact on history; that
the "revolutionary" cultural impact of the post-war generation was really
just lying dormant during the "middle" years when they have been preoccupied
with establishing themselves in careers, mating (as opposed to coupling) and
raising children. There is a vast reservoir of experience with rejecting
paradigms and experimenting with new ways of living and being that was
amassed by the boomers in the 1960s and 1970s. It is likely to express itself
again in new ways -- in fact it already is, in my opinion.

The Boom generation was the first to explicitly espouse a "youth culture"
and, in the mass-culture interest in fitness and youth-retention sweeping the
industrialized West now, I think we see just the sort of (selfish) desire to
reject traditional paradigms that has marked the Boomers since we first
learned to talk. I see this every day at the gym. The place is full of
folks my age and a little older, fighting *hard* to defeat the biological
programming of the individual "life cycle". This is in sharp contrast to the
generation that preceded us, whose members accepted without question that one
settled comfortably into the obesity of "middle age" and then the decrepitude
of "old age".

Of course, the Boomers have never been a cultural monolith, and the same will
be true as we move into this new stage. But I think the odds are very good
that a significant minority of my generation, at least, will become
increasingly interested in the issues we discuss here.

Now, what do you young folks have to say for yourselves? ....

Greg Burch <> <> or
"We never stop investigating. We are never satisfied that we know
enough to get by. Every question we answer leads on to another
question. This has become the greatest survival trick of our species."
-- Desmond Morris