Let’s start with this caveat: We did not ask Marla Russell to write this. Okay, now that’s out of the way, and we can just present what she sent us from Philadelphia. She calls it, The Tale of Two Boomers.
Sometimes I think there are actually two generations of Boomers. The 40 Boomers and the 50s-60s Boomers.
What makes me say this? Well, I just read David Henderson‘s story on BoomerCafé called “Baby Boomers Stake Out Claim In Digital World,” which talks about how boomers are finally getting savvy about technology. How we are now finding Facebook and other digital wonders.
I would say that may be true for some boomers I know, like my sister (born ‘46), my neighbors Barbara (’48) and Tony (‘45), but I certainly wouldn’t say that about myself or many of my friends. In 1994, I was nose-down in books about the rapidly expanding internet and anxiously dialing up my 9600 baud modem to see what was out there. I learned to hand-code a website in 1995 via AOL’s “Coder Café.”
But, there are always naysayers and doubters right? When I was trying (in 1995-96) to get my current company to embrace email, I met resistance. I explained how much better it was to email rather than phone a client, which meant trying to catch him or her at a “good” time. With email though, the clients could read messages when they down time between appointments and had a moment to spare. One of my colleagues, a video engineer, said to me, “Oh that Internet thing is just a fad, it will die out just like CB radios.”
Hmmm … CB radios, huh?
And guess what? Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Steve Wozniak were all Baby Boomers. Yup, we boomers ARE the digital age. Nerds and Geek boomers brought us into this amazing technological age and many, I dare say, are still innovating. Not just keeping up, but innovating.
Look at the BoomerCafe website. This is a well designed, content rich, and certainly not tech-shy website. It’s built by Boomers, right? (Yup … 100%.)
As I am more closely considering this Tale of Two Boomers, I’m realizing this is actually a matter of personality and comfort zone, not age. My 20-something kids aren’t really that tech savvy. They don’t tweet and they ask me for the best compression codec for YouTube. My 40-something friend calls me up to help her figure out why the printer isn’t printing or what’s going on with her cable modem!
So yes, sometimes I think there are actually two generations of Boomers. But, no that’s wrong, there are millions of us and we’re all different. Some born with an insatiable curiosity about anything current and state-of-the-art, and some most comfortable with the familiar, and contented with what is recognizable and agreeable.
Of course it takes all kinds to balance out this world. I say welcome to those who are now comfortable to peer into the present with open eyes and only somewhat reluctant fingers. To the trailblazers, thank you for imagining and executing an entire new age. The Information Age!
Marla grew up a country girl, but moved to the city … actually several cities (Miami, NYC, OKC & Philadelphia). Owner/ Operator of See Worthy Productions, a professional video production company. Also a certified personal trainer, avid gardener, and ever flourishing cook. Recently started a new blog WellOverForty.com. A blog written by a community of voices who live, love and focus on moving forward in healthy and heartening ways. Embracing and mastering the art of aging gracefully.