Where is Generation X?

Disclaimer: There are of course exceptions to everything, this post is about the generality of Generation X.

As a member of Generation X, I used to always wonder why the media is fairly silent on my generation in comparison to the Baby Boomers and the Millennials. If you watch the news, or read articles online, Generation X is almost non-existent in the discussion. I used to be annoyed about it, would grump at people and wonder not only where we the latchkey generation as kids, evidently we were also that way as adults. I found an interesting article on Business Insider that covered it a little here that did back me up a bit.

My grumpiness about Gen X has changed though when I realized an important point. We really aren’t a separate generation, rather we are sort of the place between generations, the grey area where boomers and millennials touch. My husband and I have talked about it for years now and it has become a lot clearer. We really don’t have our own place.

Don’t get me wrong, Gen X does exist, there are things about our generation other than the music and some movies that aren’t present before or after, but we don’t really have any things that we can show off as our own. Unless of course you count that we have been hit by a lot of recessions and we aren’t quite young enough to change it around like the Millennials can, while not having the resources to start with that the Boomers had.

Ok, the Breakfast Club is a solid legacy of Gen X.

Our generation is divided between the boomers and the millennials. I realized this as I watched my friends fall into those two categories as we have gotten older. Now that I am on the higher half of my forties I realize some are boomers, some are millennials.

The boomers overall have kept to their parents outlooks. Generally more conservative, more religious and believing that things shouldn’t changed. These are the people more likely to talk about making America great again. They don’t like society changing, they think everything is going to hell in a hand basket and don’t believe in same sex marriage or gender identity. They believe in owning the biggest homes they can, the nicest cars, working the best jobs even if its at 80 hours or more a week and that the economy will fix everything so capitalism is good.

The second half is where I believe you first see the ideals of Millennials had started. The people who keep up with technology, who believe in equal rights, same sex marriage and that people can determine what gender they are based on what is right for them. Same group that doesn’t believe wealth is the way to success and that they have to maintain the planet for future generations, whether or not they have children. Most have cut the cord to their TV.

This placement between generations doesn’t seem to be the first time. There are other generations just in the last century that appear to be a parallel to Gen X in their invisibility, and as buffer between generations. These include “The Lost Generation“, people who came to adulthood during the First World War. You hear a lot about their children, the “Greatest Generation” that fought World War II and brought our economy to become the leader of the Free World, but you never really hear about them.  The “Lost Generation” underwent the horrors of World War I, and especially in Europe, but also in America the generation was shattered by that war, and never recovered fully.

Ernest Hemingway, from the Lost Generation (Writer/Journalist)

The Silent Generation” that grew up between the “Greatest Generation” and the Baby Boomers. Some of them fought in World War II, but most came of age in the late 1940s and 50s and fought in Korea and early Vietnam. They were sometimes considered the luckiest generation as they came after World War II so they were not as likely to see combat (Korean War had much less casualties and a lot smaller military), they enjoyed the increase in lifestyle, retired the earliest out of everyone but with all that no one really talks about them. Their deeds are often assigned to the Baby Boomers, but in fact many of those Civil Rights Movements were pushed by the Silent Generation (Martin Luther King Jr. was a Silent Generation member)

Joan Didion, from the Silent Generation (Writer/Journalist)

It makes me wonder if the cycle for the generations is longer then we try to make it.

With my experience of Gen X, I wonder if we need to span 30-40 years for each generation, with a known grey area between. That would explain a lot to me about Gen X and why we seem to be conglomeration of Boomers and Millennials, just either too young or too old to fit those designations at this point. It would also explain why the Lost and the Silent Generations, each sandwiched between two other talked about generations didn’t get much recognition as their own and seemed to have the same situation where many of their people fit into the generation before and after them.

Sadly Lost Generation left to tally.

So nowadays when people ask me at work to form into groups or to express who I identify with, I generally identify with the Millennials. That being said, I still have no idea what happened to Generation X.

 

 

 

Justified (Season 1)

Definitely a good show, especially if you liked Timothy Olyphant in Deadwood and Walton Goggins in the Shield. It definitely has a western feel to it, not as much as Longmire, but its there.

I cheated a bit though, I watched the first few episodes when it first came out and I really liked it. However, like most things life caught up and I wasn’t able to finish the season.

Following US Marshall Raylan Givens (Elephant) as he is transferred back to his home state as a punishment due to his proclivity to shoot bad guys down. There he meets with an old friend named Boyd Crowder (Goggins) who is part of the criminal world there.

It tells about why Raylan left his small town along with his family, friends and history and how he tries to avoid dealing with it when he comes back. Combine that with him attempting to take down the Crowder clan, full of criminals, especially Boyd it makes for pretty good tv. The writing and acting are great, and it goes by quick. I sometimes wonder if 13 episode seasons aren’t the best way to do tv since it forces them to make it tight storytelling.

Pros: Great acting, writing, etc. Pretty much all of it is in the top 10% of television.

Cons: I get a little uncomfortable with how they portray people from very small towns in Kentucky. It feels a bit tropey, and I can’t tell how accurate it is. So sometimes I wince a little.

Already halfway through Season 2 because it is that good, and I hadn’t seen Season 2 before.

Pug (dream)

Yep, another post about another dream.

Trigger Warning: Not a pleasant dream (not bloody, but not pleasant).

Last night I had one of those dreams that skips across drifting awake and back to sleep.

It lasted over several hours but I couldn’t tell if I had dreams in between of different things. It wasn’t a horrible dream for almost all of it.

It took place somewhere similar to Bellingham, a green smaller city lacking the heavy traffic of Seattle suburbs. There were lots of trees, it was quiet and smelled clean.

I spent most of the dream wandering around residential neighborhoods. It was the hubby and myself with bit parts of some of my friends and a lot of characters I didn’t know. It all seemed to take place around this large residential apartment building.

The building itself was probably 5-6 stories tall and it was one of those stairs only apartments. On the outside of each floor ran a full size balcony/walkway. People’s apartments opened up onto the balcony, with an almost five foot tall railing.

Each floor was like this except 5+ stories tall with wooden railings.

The dream had some bits about a small outbreak of zombies or something, a bit urban fantasy like in its setting. We were running around and doing stuff. This whole time though was an older man with a black pug dog, fairly young dog I think, but not quite a tiny puppy. The pug was on a small cart the man was pushing around, like a flatbed cart, but smaller and could fit on the walkway. The pug was constantly being pushed along in a flatbed cart.

Evidently I knew him and talked to the man a couple of times. He resembled my father-in-law a lot except with slightly asian appearance (not sure as someone awake how that works, but that is how it was in the dream). He was always talking cute to the pug, saying things like “aren’t you a good boy, lets go get  so and so”.

The dream continued on with small things, even the zombies or the smell of them occasionally wafting didn’t bother me at all. However we were up on the fifth floor and the gentleman with the pug was racing around with the cart playing with his dog raced by me, stopped to go around the corner and the pug slid off the cart and over the balcony.

I froze and I all I could think is “Holy fuck, the puppy” and I ran over to the edge and I could see the pup down on the ground below. He was sprawled out, no blood but not moving either. For some reason, the picture of the sidewalk that was parallel to the road with a grass strip on either side stuck out to me. I grabbed the person next to me as I looked at the gentleman and I could see a look of horror. I started yelling for the guy’s niece to go to him as we ran downstairs.

I started running downstairs and that is when I woke up, trying to launch myself off the bed.

I realized where I was and that the hubby was still snoring, but our cat Ghost was staring at me like I was crazy (he was sleeping between me and the hubby). I laid there for almost an hour before getting up and writing about it. Still bothered me a lot, more than a lot of the horror, blood and guts dreams I sometimes have. Even right now my heart is still racing and I am stupidly worrying about some pug that only exists in a dream.

The Collapsing Empire

The Collapsing Empire (The Interdependency #1)The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Even the Flow changes.

Another great series start by John Scalzi. Covering an interesting variety of science fiction, the series is fixated more on space-opera rather than hard science and it works well.

The book takes the point of view of several different characters, but does focus on what appears the primary few more. Ranging from an unexpected Emperor, thieving Lords of various ranks, Houses that own vast business empires and scattered worlds dependent on “the Flow” to travel between each other.

While it deals with universe sized problems and story arcs, the small things are what pleases me the most. The complete normality of people who are ok with dating or having sex with any gender. No issues with homophobia, no judgments on sexual mores beyond interpersonal, it was just an awesome glimpse into that universe.

I admit I have been absent from reading Scalzi, not because of him but because my focus switched to history for awhile, this will bring me back.

View all my reviews

Wind chimes

Last night I had multiple small dreams. I don’t remember most of them, but I do know they had to do with my husband’s real life work situation and him being harassed by one of the management.

Surprisingly enough I don’t think it has anything to do with his being transgendered, or in a same sex marriage with me, but rather just because one of our supervisors is a complete selfish, asshole who targets people if they don’t like you for any reason.

The weird thing though is right before I woke up the wind must have picked up and it is a bit stormy. My final dream melted into one about me sitting around a coffee table with my parents, much like I did for most of my life when I would go over and visit them in the morning.

It was still dark outside, but all their lights were on and it had that warm glow their apartment would get. We were sitting there drinking the morning instant coffee and watching Good Morning America. I don’t recall most of what we were talking about specifically but when I was sitting there I could hear their wind chimes outside.

Mid-morning coffee with Jimbo, Mom and Dad.

My parents always had wind chimes, even when we were homeless for more than 18 months and lived in a car they had a tiny one. Sometimes the chimes would be in poor shape, but never for too long. They liked listening to them during windy days and it was fairly soothing.

I do recall in the dream that the last thing we talked about was Wolsey, and his getting harassed at work. I know they were reassuring, and if it follows true to life they would have been talking about money isn’t worth being upset, which fits into upcoming posts perfectly.

The whole time as we talked their chimes were softly chiming outside.

Being upset with my husband’s situation only lasted until I realized I could hear our wind chimes in real life. I bought two sets of wind chimes last spring. They both were to be tested to see which one I wanted to put on my parents’ grave (which surprisingly has been up over their grave and still there 7 months later). The second one we put outside our bedroom window on the deck.

This is the first time in seven months (since Wolsey and I put it up) that I heard the wind chimes move on their own. It was a soft tinkling sound that at first I wasn’t sure if it was a real sound, or just the chimes from the dream.

I laid there for a while thinking about my parents, about Wolsey’s supervisor and about how angry that supervisor makes me. The chimes surprisingly enough didn’t cause me any grief over my parents, they brought a smile to my face.

Sure, I am missing them, but there is an irrational part of me that believes they still touch my life, and always will. They loved the hubby and I both, last words out of their mouths to us was both how proud they were of us and how they loved us. I know what they would say to the hideous situation that W is in and how much they would care.

Fuck that supervisor.

Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

The best Thor movie yet.

Thor has always been a difficult franchise for me. I like Marvel, I do think Chris Hemsworth is a decent actor, but the character didn’t work for me. Not in the Avengers movies and definitely not in the Thor standalone movies. Too dour, too serious, the character isn’t a lot of fun except for a few one lines. That is until this movie. He was fantastic. The humor bordered on too much, but never crossed that line of being too silly.

The rest of the movie was pretty good as well. I liked having Hulk/Banner in the movie. I believe Marvel is underutilizing Mark Ruffalo and it was great to see him involved. I also enjoyed Scrapper 142 as a person who surprises Thor with her origins (won’t say more for spoilers) and of course The Grand Master was awesome. How can people not love Jeff Goldblum. He is one of those people I could watch an hour of him just talking. I absolutely loved the storyline on his planet, the gladiators and the revolution.

Sadly the part I didn’t like was about Hela and the whole Asgard part. This part felt less fun, less interesting and seemed mostly a way to move around the pieces in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She wasn’t interesting and I absolutely hated her outfit. That being said, it is fortunate they seem to spend more time dealing with Hulk/142/Thor on the scrap planet with The Grandmaster. It was pretty awesome.

The one other thing though that this underlined was the way Marvel ignores women. So many little cameos in the movie, and the one little tiny thing involving Black Widow just reminded me that we haven’t seen  a Black Widow movie, she gets less screen time then any of the others (even the Scarlett Witch, but she doesn’t even get her own movie). I am not sure what the problem is with Marvel, they have the Black Panther coming up (and I am going to be there first in line to see it) but still no women led movies.

The fact that D.C. has them beat on this just confuses me even more.

That being said, the movie was great. Definitely in the top 5 Marvel movies for me and the best Thor movie period.

The good: Action packed with a lot of fun moments. It was great to see Hulk/Banner as well, but Thor definitely made it his movie.

The bad: The part in Asgard was not in sync for me with the rest of the movie, and the whole movie underscored Marvel’s issues with female lead roles.

Of course I will see the next one, and I like his short hair better.

The Americans (Season 1)

A top notch spy movie set in a perfect time period.

“The Americans is an American period drama television series created by Joe Weisberg for the FX television network. Set in the early 1980s during the Cold War, it is the story of Elizabeth (Keri Russell) and Philip Jennings (Matthew Rhys), two Soviet KGB officers posing as an American married couple living in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., with their children Paige (Holly Taylor) and Henry (Keidrich Sellati). Their neighbor Stan Beeman (Noah Emmerich) is an FBI agent working in counterintelligence.”

Unlike other conspiracy series such as Homeland, The Americans focuses on my favorite time period, yes the same time period as Atomic Blonde, the 1980s and the cold war. I do realize this is my nostalgic teen years so I do have a feeling of connection, but I do believe it is good even without that. The acting is very good, the story is compelling and the chemistry between the actors is perfect. The series keeps moving forward, and while sometimes it is like watching a slow motion train wreck, things don’t always go the way you think they will.

I do like the fact that show doesn’t portray either side as evil. The agents on both sides have feelings, relationships and believe in their own ways of life. I think it is this part that really allows someone to just immerse themselves in the show.

My only issue with the first season is the “will they, won’t they” dynamic that happens between Phillip and Elizabeth. I understand that they have to work things out. After all, they weren’t actually ever married, they were two Soviet KGB agents who started their life together 20 years before as a cover. It is nice to see how they react differently to the situation, but the almost fully commit as real spouses, and then to back off is annoying. The same with Jennings and his wife, the relationship drama is sometimes more than I prefer.

Pros: If you like spy thrillers, the 1980s nostalgia, or just good acting it is all here.

Cons: A little too much relationship drama.

Season 2 is in my Amazon queue as we speak!