Friday, August 15, 2008

I thought we were friends.

Read this article by Robert Lanham today. I learned a few things. First, that I'm not a member of Generation Y as I'd previously assumed, but having been born after 1982, I am a member of a group known as "Millennials" along with everyone who was born after me up until 2002. Which puts me in the same generation as my nine-year-old nephew who's never watched anything on VHS.

Well guess what, Mr. Lanham. You and Wikipedia are about to get in a huge fight, because they say Gen Y ended in 1994. Which, I think, makes way more sense.

But that's not really the point. This is: you guys, this Lanham guy hates our guts. And it's not just him either. It's all the Gen-Xers. They despise us in the workplace, they loathe our music, they can't even stand our online personas.

I always liked Generation X. I thought they were so cool with their flannel shirts and long hair. I even wore a hemp necklace for waay too long because I thought Gen X was so awesome. I listened to Pearl Jam, even though I was much to young to be a fan. And I remember exactly how I felt on the day I found out Kurt Cobain died. Sad for a minute and then I probably went outside and played. But none of that matters. Because now I know how the Gen Xers really feel. The truth is simple and a little sad: they're jealous.

Lanham says we were spoiled; coddled by our baby-boomer parents out of their disdain for Gen-X. The truth is, we were the busiest group of kids, ever. While they might have been able to hang out at their friends houses after school and watch MTV, we were shuffled to soccer practice, piano, choir, karate, scouts, student government meetings and the like. Our parents wanted us to be the best damn kids we could be. And as a result, we got mono and blank spots in our memories that we can only assume were filled with practice sessions and commuting. Not to mention the fact that with all these kids studying and running and drilling their guts out, we created some sort of high school master race where it's become nigh impossible to make that team, get into that college or squeeze into the top 10%. No more of this big fish, little pond business. We flooded the crap out of that pond! Because our parents made us!

I loved you, Generation X. You had great music and movies like Stone Temple Pilots and Clueless. All we had when I was in high school was 10 Things I Hate About You which sucks in absolutely every aspect except the fact that it gave Heath Ledger his breakthrough role. You had grunge. We had Britney Spears and Boy Bands. We had to look really hard to find Sunny Day Real Estate, and you had it there at your fingertips all long. Your favorite bands didn't have to "sell out" to Outback Steakhouse, because people were still buying their albums. And you'll probably claim Garden State, too.

There are 30 million of you, Gen X, which means that when you flooded the workplace, you had a fighting chance. There are 80 million of us, and a lot of us have college degrees. We had to wait tables until we got an internship that lead to another internship that finally lead to the bottom of the totem pole somewhere. And then we got laid off. You don't have to worry about losing your jobs to us. You have the experience. And you're closer to paying off your student loans.

So quit your bitching, Gen X! You don't have it so bad. You have solid jobs—nay—careers! You have savings accounts! And please stop hating us, because we think you're cool. You're the big brothers and sisters we never had...or maybe we had you but you wouldn't talk to us because you were too busy brooding. The Boomers don't really hate you. Maybe you're just paranoid? (Maybe it's all the pot?)

All I'm asking is, can we end this rivalry go back to me thinking you're cool and you thinking it's cool that I think you're cool? Please? I'll even forgive you for letting Brian Austin Green have a career....


Rachel Smart said...

I love. Your. Blog.
Today every 5 minutes I kept going back, checking your blog to see if you posted anything new.

You never disappoint.

Love ya

jimbo said...

let me just say that, beyond agreeing with everything you just said about those bastard eddie vedder-ites, i think you're a fantastic writer, and i think whoever laid you off should be murdered and eaten. by some tribe of cannibals. somewhere.