Talkin’ ‘Bout My Generation

Thanks to Fark.com, I was led to an interesting column on the Grand Junction Free Press regarding ‘Where Have All the X-es Gone?’.  As in Generation X’ers.  I highly recommend clicking the link and giving it a read.

And while this is a bit more somber subject matter than I usually cover here, I do want to devote a little space to it because I think the thoughts expressed in Ms. Asturias-Lochlaer’s article do speak for many members of my generation who feel like saying “Hey, what about US!?” when we see the news, and watch any form of advertising, where we are not represented.  Or even seemingly understood. 

Without regurgitating too much of what has already been said, Generation  X is generally considered those born between 1965 – 1976, although you can easily find disagreeing start/end years if you search the web.  I chose to go with the most common years I found.  Anyhow, this generation is not as large as the preceding Baby Boomers or even the generation that follows it, the Millenials (again, definitions vary here.  Some would call this Generation Y).  But we’ve been tasked with a lot of clean-up, a lot of worry and frankly, a lot of bleak responsibility.  We know about environmental issues, we know about the unstable political & economical environ we’ve inherited, and we know we’ll have a tougher time retiring than our parents did.  Yet from an advertising perspective, you never seem to hear about us, our generational identity as mis-quoted as the years that comprise it.

Now I’m not crying in my beer, I’m just saying I found it interesting how this generation is portrayed (or NOT portrayed) in the media, yet how profoundly instrumental we’ve already been in the shaping of our world.  We were the generation to truly accept the idea of racial equality, practice realism in our goals, seamlessly adapt to the latest technologies (cable TV, CD’s, PC’s) and to celebrate self-reliance.  We first embraced the internet, yet it has now become the breeding ground for the younger set thru Myspace and Facebook.   And while many would say we are to blame for Grunge music, I prefer to think of us as representing the most prolific era Heavy Metal has ever had.

Ok, I’ll stop now ’cause I’m starting to sound just like my Grandpa after a six-pack.  It just makes me scratch my head a little.  Is there truly so little money to be made from this ‘small’ group of 51 million that we are to be effectively ignored?  Or are we too busy doing what we do to survive in our daily lives, that we don’t complain and stomp around and make demands in front of the news media so everyone remembers we’re out here.  We just get it done. 

Well, the later is my theory.  But admittedly, I’m biased.  I’m a Gen X’er.

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