We were the first to have a gen-name. Now everyone has one and some have two. Regardless of what they call themselves, our term for the latest group at front and center of deciding everything for everybody else is Young Moderns.
Nitpickers will say hey, what about the Gay Nineties and the Flappers? Nice try, but the Gay Nineties were an Age, like the Jazz Age, and the Flappers were rebellious young women and girls who cut their hair scandalously short and bound their breasts so as to appear flat-chested. The Greatest Generation didn’t get that name until we awarded it to them retroactively.
It is a common complaint that Young Moderns go around with buds stuck in their ears shutting out the world while listening to their music favorites. This is not their fault. It was our Walkmans that got people started on listening when and where they wanted. Curated playlists? We listened to what we wanted by making our own mixtapes.
Young Moderns are blamed for being a fear-driven culture. Again, not their fault, because we invented FOMO when we shunned people at work if they were not able to talk about last night’s episode of All In The Family, Cheers, 60 Minutes, and Seinfeld.
Health officials say Young Moderns are promiscuous and have high levels of STDs. This isn’t their fault. Okay, we didn’t invent sex, but we did raise casual sex to a new level when young, newly-liberated women got The Pill.
Young Moderns are bashed for wearing labels on everything. We started it with Levi’s little red tab.
Young Moderns are denounced for ignoring those around them in favor of communicating with people who are somewhere else. We invented hunching over devices and pecking away on our Blackberrys (sic). We called it chipmunking.
Another unfair criticism of Young Moderns is that they are too absorbed with their tech devices. We screwed up big here by inventing calculators, PDAs, desktops, laptops, tablets, cellphones, hardware and software.
Young Moderns are chided for how they dress. This is clearly our fault because we invented really stupid clothing. How else do you explain our platform shoes, disco shirts, and hot pants?
We invented fads, too. We produced toys like the Hula Hoop and the Slinky, and worthless crap like Wacky Wall Walkers and Pet Rocks.
They say Young Moderns are brand-obsessed. Blame us for insisting 50 years ago that one brownish fizzy sugar water was actually better than another.
Young Moderns’ inability to concentrate on anything for long? We added the crawl to the bottom of the tv picture so they would be easily distracted. This worked out better than we had hoped.
David helps decision-makers rid their organizations of manipulated, distorted, and fabricated information. His weekly blog https://www.letstakeacloserlook.com/ is occasionally amusing or interesting. So are his books.