Dead Hippie


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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

No way out: why can't boomers accept aging?

What generations before us were spared is the relatively recent invention of middle age as a sustained mentality — one predicated on an awareness of its own growing remove from that elusive property known as hipness. Indeed, the enshrinement of hipness as a long-term attitude — the idea that first you’re cool and then you’re uncool and then you die — is probably the worst legacy of the culture of the 60s. The result, the evidence of which is all around us, is a collective failure to maintain our generational integrity. Our lives are characterized by a sophomoric vicariousness: we behave as though our children’s triumphs and disappointments were our own and, facilitated by an increasingly euphemistic attitude toward extinction (now coyly referred to as “passing”), as if our deaths belonged to someone else entirely. They are not, we hurry to reassure ourselves, “ominous and intimately” our own, as John Updike, that connoisseur of waning potential, observed in “Rabbit at Rest.”

"Reinventing Middle Age"
New York Times

Comments on "No way out: why can't boomers accept aging?"


Anonymous Rhea said ... (6:21 AM) : 

But I wanna be cool until I die!! I know, I know. There will be a brief polyester period in there near the end, but still....


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