DeWayne's World - What's the big deal?

DeWayne Bartels

A report from the Pew Center I read recently says generations have personalities.

I guess I knew that. At 52 I’m a boomer. Boomers were the “real deal” for a long time. We were the personality of America.

After all it was boomers who took down Nixon, created flower power and hippies. We created rock n’ roll. We took self-expression to a never before seen level. And don’t forget we made black lights a legitimate form of illumination.

Yeah, we did all that. And now we’re being tossed aside.  

“Millennials” are now the big deal.

“Millennials — the American teens and twenty-somethings who are making the passage into adulthood at the start of a new millennium — have begun to forge theirs: confident, self-expressive, liberal, upbeat and open to change ... They (Millennials) are more ethnically and racially diverse than older adults. They’re less religious, less likely to have served in the military, and are on track to become the most educated generation in American history,” the Pew Center report said.

Wow, these kids are really special it seems.

What other wonderful things did they find out you must be asking.

They embrace multiple modes of self-expression.

Three-quarters have created a profile on a social networking site.

One in five have posted a video of themselves online.

Nearly four in 10 have a tattoo.

Nearly one in four have a piercing in some place other than an earlobe — about six times the share of older adults who’ve done this.

Sixty-one percent of Millennials in the January survey said their generation has a unique and distinctive identity.

“Millennials have a distinctive reason for feeling distinctive. In response to an open-ended follow-up question, 24 percent say it’s because of their use of technology. Gen Xers also cite technology as their generation’s biggest source of distinctiveness, but far fewer — just 12 percent — say this. Boomers’ feelings of distinctiveness coalesce mainly around work ethic, which 17 percent cite as their most prominent identity badge. For Silents, it’s the shared experience of the Depression and World War II, which 14 percent cite as the biggest reason their generation stands apart,” the report said.

How special.

And, what am I as a boomer? I’ve apparently been delegated to the generic title of “older adult.”

This sensation over “Millennials” made me take an inventory of myself.

It turns out I have not one tattoo, let alone turning my body into a canvas, because I do not need a tattoo like everyone else to be an individual. I embrace expressing myself in words — spoken and written — not tweets because I have an attention span greater than a gnat. I can wear pants on my hips, not my knees. I can talk to people face-to-face.

The result of my inventory is I’m old-school, blasé, so yesterday.

That’s OK.

I wouldn’t trade being a boomer.

After all, we coined “Peace, love and happiness.”

So, chill “Millennials.”

DeWayne Bartels is news editor of the Woodford Times.