According to Wikipedia, my personal source for all things relevant and otherwise, Generation X refers to persons born between the years 1961 and 1981.
I've never cared for the term myself. For years, I didn't even know what it was supposed to mean. When I finally looked it up, I did not feel it described me well at all. Much like my high school code of conduct, I do not think it applies to me. So I set out to redefine, and rename, my generation.
It is a generation who purchased cassette singles and understood the emotional value of a mix tape; who generally have a great appreciation and longing for 80's music, television, and movies; who went to arcades to play video games; who know that Alf is from Melmac and Mork is from Ork; and who can scarcely remember a time when Vanna White was not on TV.
It saddens me to think the next generation will never know the utter joy of purchasing a cassette single. They'll never know the experience of listening to the B-side and hearing either a totally crap song, or a song you wind up liking better than the A-side. Heck, they may not even know what an A-side is.
Sure, spending $3.49 for one or two songs rather than $8.99 for the entire album might seem impractical. But with artists like Deon Estus, Sheriff, and Right Said Fred, you typically didn't want the whole album.
Also, when you were only making $3.85 an hour stocking shelves and collecting buggies at the grocery store, you knew that extra five bucks meant a meal at Taco Bell and two dollars gas to get you home.
It saddens me that the next generation may never know the thrill of having a numeric-only pager. There were no ringtones. Your only two options were tone or vibrate. And unlimited paging was $9.95 per month, also known as, the price of cool.
How will they survive never knowing what 143 means? Not to mention the life skills learned when you got a page followed by "911" and had to drive around and find a payphone to call the person back. I would venture a guess that a significant percentage of the population today have never even used a payphone. What a frightening thought.
It saddens me to think the next generation never got to enjoy Must See TV, the pinnacle of prime time television. To them, Cliff Huxtable, Alex P. Keaton, and Sam Malone are just characters dressed in out-of-style clothes that they might occasionally flip past on TVLand or Nick At Nite. They probably think Reality TV is good TV. Danny Tanner getting caught kissing DJ's teacher at school. That's good TV.
The Cosby Show, Newhart, Cheers, Growing Pains, Family Ties, The Hogan Family, Silver Spoons, Perfect Strangers, Who's The Boss, Head Of The Class, Charles In Charge, Night Court, and on and on--the 80's was the sitcom decade.
Wait a second... I think that's it!
Yes. That's it.
I, Bone, in front of God, bloggers everywhere, and bitter ex-girlfriends who lurk on my blog, do hereby coin the phrase, The Sitcom Generation.
We may be forced to watch reality TV, but that doesn't mean we have to like it. You can kill the sitcom, but you cannot kill us. Why? Because we learned how to obtain infinite lives on Super Mario Brothers.
Now if you'll excuse me, I believe VH-1 is about to replay the most recent episode of Scott Baio Is 45 & Single.
"When did reality become TV? Whatever happened to sitcoms, game shows? And on the radio Springsteen, Madonna. Way before Nirvana, there was U2, and Blondie,
and music still on MTV..."