Friday, April 13, 2007

Generation Gap

I knew it. I found this article by Jason Ryan Dorsey (Special to Yahoo! Personals) that confirmed everything I’ve been thinking about “these kids today” (and in a lot more people than you would think in my generation). Take a look at his comments:

“Many Twentysomethings have grown up always getting what they want. They got the clothes they want. They got the car they want. They begged for better grades and got those, too. And they're used to getting what they want immediately and on their own terms. They expect to walk into a coffee shop and get their triple-cream-mocha-latte with sprinkles made just for them, with their name written in bold green marker on the side of the cup to prove it. They also get their favorite DVDs delivered directly to their home, their emails forwarded to their phone, and up-to-the-minute weather bulletins displayed on their computer screen. They even have the option to get fresh groceries delivered, but they won't because they can't cook unless Mom helps.

In addition to being raised on instant everything, these consistently head-over-heels-in-love and heartbroken Twentysomethings have huge expectations. The real world hasn't always gone the way they wanted -- instead of making CEO in a year they make 4,000 copies in a day -- but they use their 12 credit cards to fill the self-esteem gap. After all, who needs to buy a red 3 Series BMW with chrome rims when you can lease it?”

This is why I don't fit in today's world. I grew up in an era when you got things the old-fashioned way: hard work. Everything, including relationships, moved at a slower pace. I'm just not wired for this high-speed, fast-paced world. Despite having been born in the mid-1960s, I am squarely smack-dab in the pre-Baby Boomer generation. My values are more in tune with those WWII folks (in some ways) than with my own kind, so to speak. But there are other areas in which I'm right on track with my generation (or a generation or two after mine).

I like jazz - the good kind, not this whiny, wimpy Muzak nonsense that passes for jazz - and swing and folk music and classical music, much like my parents and my grandparents (and their contemporaries) did before me. But I also like Green Day, The Fray, Daniel Powter, Norah Jones and other new artists, too.

I don't think there is necessarily a need to patch the generation gap. Not in my own life and not in general. I do think that transgenerational exploration is beneficial to almost anyone, and that the more we learn from the past, the more likely we are to survive.

Not that I am likely to be texting anyone in the near (or distant) future - that's one form of shorthand I can't fathom at all.... U?

Whew! I feel much better!

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