I am not a Baby Boomer

Screen Shot 2014-04-10 at 4.36.18 PMI’m not a Baby Boomer. The number crunchers have always called me a Baby Boomer, along with all the other people born between 1946 and 1964. I’m here to tell you, people born in 1964 are not Baby Boomers.

Pew Research Center just published a new report on generations, and it reminds me how very little I have in common with people born earlier in the boom. Under the subhead, Portraits of America, there’s a picture and bullet points describing Gen Xers (ages 34-39) and Boomers (50-68). Apparently Easy Rider was a very influential movie for Boomers. I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen it, start to finish.

Gen Xers had The Breakfast Club, a movie I’ve seen at least two dozen times.

Boomers led “…counterculture protests of the 1960s…” You should have seen me at Woodstock. I was tearing it up.

I was 5.

Xers are “Children of the Reagan revolution…” Reagan was elected president in 1980, when I was a high school junior. I voted for Reagan in my first presidential election in 1984. (Sorry about that. I was young.) My point is, Reagan had a much greater impact on my life than the hippies of the 1960s.

While defining groups of people by generation can be helpful, it’s not a magic bullet. Boomers are between the ages of 50 and 68. Seriously? That age difference is a whole adult person – old enough to vote, join the Army and buy cigarettes. Shoot, the person born in 1946 could be the parent of the person born in 1964. Two familial generations and both considered boomers?

It’s a touchy subject for me because I don’t like being lumped into the Baby Boomer category. I guess I should get over it and let the U.S. Census Bureau and Pew Research and board of AARP have their arbitrary description, but I don’t have to like. And I won’t like it.

Because I’m not a Baby Boomer.


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