Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Columns

May 17, 2013

VINCENT DAVIS: X? Y? Call us 'Generation Tough'

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Listen-do you hear it? It’s the sound of a million spam emails making it past your ‘spam proof’ web filter. 

In the time it takes you to read this sentence I will have missed no fewer than 3 reminders on my phone that will go unchecked because when I setup those alarms I didn’t have time to add any notes clarifying what they were for. It can feel like in a world with Google, Siri, Mr. Movifone, etc. … 21st century Americans aren’t living up to the expected level of suffering our ancestors went through via the Great Depression, Dust Bowl and various war-rationing campaigns, so we are forced to look inward and make our lives terrible all on our own.

The people of two or more generations back lived through a lot of crazy things and as a result they are classified by various crazy names, The Boomers, The Beat Generation, and the nebulous “Greatest Generation.” These people lived through wars back when the main method of battle was men facing off with rifles and living in trenches, a war across the ocean meant you better cut down on how much tin you’re using in Cleveland because we needed all of it for simple aircraft that might crash before they ever get to the battlefield. They were the first to grow their hair long and wear jeans, or whatever.

I’m not knocking World War II or saying the 50’s or 60’s were overrated, but did people of those eras clearly believe that modern people not forced to ‘sacrifice’ aren’t as awesome as them have to rub it in by not even giving our generations full names? “Gen X,” “Gen Y,” “Millennials.” Two letters and a word that gets marked as misspelled, even in Microsoft Office 2000.

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