A baby boomer gentleman apologizes for being a baby boomer and shares his thoughts on why they had become…them (he doesn’t know). Probably this is one of the most heart-felt confessions I have heard in years. I almost wished my father be this guy.
So let me apologize for my generation, for wasting so many precious resources….I apologize for myself, I apologize for everyone in my generation. We were not thinking….What were we thinking?
And it is a very disturbing thing to me because I come from like the end of the hippie era where I was influenced by somewhat but I was also a minted engineer so when I got out of school I understood about energy and second law of thermodynamics and we were all driving Honda motor cars and we were all getting 40 miles to the gallon. And we were all very proud of that. You know, being energy-efficient. We understand that energy doesn’t last forever.
We had the idea, and somewhere on the way we lost it. And I don’t know how that happened because while my idealistic nature which I still have existed when I was in my early twenties and even through into my thirties.
But somehow I caught the buzz that I was not worth very much unless I have something more. I never bought into that fully, but to be honest I did buy into it somewhat, so I don’t know when that shift took place in me.
It is very easy for us to deduce a lesson from here, vowing not to be carried away in the flow of consumerism or group mentality, and stay in the presence to always be connected with who we truly are. Yeah, the new-agey stuff.
But I want to remember the fact that it was the baby-boomers who started the new-age movement. They started out saying Fxxk No to the life of slow insanity accumulation inside a suburban pressure cooker house of their previous generations, which was depicted in the movie Revolutionary Road.
And yet, even that generation started their life on a idealistic note. Are we just repeating the pattern of idealism turning into practicality turning into apathy, planting the seed of hatred (and eventual convert to the dark side) into offsprings over and over?
I am a child of a baby boomer couple and seeing their life through my adult life, I have also gone through the cycle of despising to disillusioning to pitying their life style, which meant shielding their ignorance by excessive materialism. I want to think that I am immune from their pattern. I want to say (and I do say) that I will not be repeating the same mistake they made.
But if what comes out of my mental loud speaker is true, why haven’t I considered raising a kid of my own? I just didn’t meet proper opportunities, is my politically correct answer. Is that true? Don’t I secretly fear that I might repeat the karma of my previous generation?
Whether I will fall for this trap (or more likely, pull myself out of it because I am already in there) remains to be seen. But I would like to brace myself for the day when I, like this brave man, will be standing up and apologizing for myself or my generation or both for screwing up whatever opportunities we had in our hands.
I hope I just want to be realistic rather than fatalistic. Most people do not live their lives trying to screw things up. But as the gentleman solemnly realized, somehow, someway, someday, we might be scooped up in a big wave of social trend and end up in a position we despised in our early days. I am just not ready to declare immunity from that force.
Maybe I can note my thoughts here in my blog, share it with the world, and look back some time later. I hope I would be able to laugh it over, either by overcoming it or by admitting it.