Monday, 5 November 2012

Greed was Good


MacQuarie Point
My reading has been slightly well, different, since I reached Australia. I read a Ken McClure (Steven Dunbar) story on my Kindle, and then found and devoured The Lollipop Shoes by Joanne Harris (a sequel to Chocolat and second in the trilogy that now includes Peaches for Monsieur le Cure) and loved it. Then I moved onto JoJo Moyes following Helen’s recommendation - The last Letter From Your Lover and now You Before Me. Both excellent, and different from the general run of the mill chick lit-cum romance. At Forster, I found the intriguingly titled Man Drought. I flicked through, expecting it to be a chick lit story, but it isn’t – and before I knew it, I was sucked in by seeing odd phrases I’ve heard bandied about but never knew the source or context.

Bernard Salt talks about the startling fact that women outnumber men in Australia, and that after the age of 22, girls have a hard time finding a husband. Failure to grab a partner in their twenties means they have to wait until they're 57+ before the gender balance tilts in their favour once again. It is also an intriguing comment on the changing habits of the generations over the last century.
He gives each 15-year generation a tag, and it was these tags that caught my attention. Frugals were born in the 1920s and early 1930s. The Great War coloured their and their parents’ lives, and they lived through the Great Depression. Hence they were frugal in every sense, darning socks, never spending wildly and always saving money against that inevitable rainy day.

The Pre-Boomers were born 1946-1961, and came up with free love, The Sixties and James Bond. They became the world’s first teenagers, and they lived through the Cold War and moved out of the family home at 18 on a lust-driven imperative.

Generation X children came long in the years 1961-1976, and thought up the idea of road-testing partners before the age of thirty. A cynical generation, they watched Dynasty and Gordon Gekko and thought Greed was Good.

Generation Y children were born 1976-1991. They are the first generation to stay at home with mum and dad, and are often know as helicopter kids because they hover around the family home; also KIPPERS – Kids In Parents’ Pockets Eroding Retirement Savings. They were the first generation to ask if they could bring their lovers home and have their sex life, often with serial partners, in the family home. Their pre-boomer parents, more liberated than their Frugal parents, agreed. Transparency? Or what previous generations called wanton promiscuity?

 The Millennium Generation are children of the Xers, born in the 16 years up to 2006. All bets are off on what their tag will be, for they are the ones devoted to their electronic devices and wary of going out alone in the big, wide world.

2 comments:

Jessica Nelson said...

Hmmm, very interesting about the age groups and their titles. I miss being the Millenium one by a few years.

Jen Black said...

I suspect the borderlines between generations can be smudged a bit either way! Jen