Watching the Superbowl “event” on Sunday February 6, 2011 everything from the Star Spangled Banner to the Half-Time Show convinced me that finally the detrimental effects of the Baby Boom Generation had finally shown its dismal failure in Generation Y.
Listen to this simple-minded Generation Y Guy analyzing Glenn Beck discussing the Superbowl.
The Superbowl is a wonderful reflection of American society, from the commercials, the nature of the competition, the glitz and glitter, and the hunger for entertainment. For years, especially since the Janet Jackson publicity stunt, the NFL has played it safe with older acts during the halftime show that were at least mature enough to keep their cloths on.
This Superbowl though had a peculiar blandness to it that was unique to 2011. This is the year we are collectively facing the massive bankruptcies that are challenging virtually every program created by government in this last century. This is also the first year that I have almost no interest in the films being nominated at the Academy Awards.
There is something cheap in films these days, much like everything else. It probably has something to do with the emergence of Netflix and the downfall of Blockbuster. The emergence of cheap, big screen televisions, and the film distributors and production houses banking on 3D to keep people wanting to go to the theater, and not waiting for the film to show up on their Xbox where all they have to do is push a button and the film arrives.
The music industry too is in the same boat, because of IPods and downloadable music, investment in music is on the decline. Where are the Michael Jackson’s or the Elvis’s today? The Black Eyed Peas earned my respect with the fantastic live performance on Saturday Night Live when they played Hey Mama. So I had high expectations that their half time show would be great. But what came out was four used up people who looked tired, as if the entire music industry was hanging its hat on them while they experiment with other revenue sources and commitment behind artists.
If you look at American Culture we are bankrupt in almost every facet you can think of. Our cars are behind. Our manufacturing is behind. Our aviation is behind. Our culture is behind, and preoccupied with a one world utopia, which Americans don’t want. (hint, hint entertainment industry. That’s why you’re revenues are down) Our financial institutions are stressed to the max, and our entitlements that we’ve built through politics are out of money. Things are so bad, that even American Football is on hold till a contentious labor dispute is settled, which I don’t think will happen in time to save the season. I think the owners will turn away from a season because it will hurt the players worse, and owners need to get their upfront money invested in players fixed. And they also have to listen to market demand which wants a longer season and they’ll find a way to provide that.
So who’s to blame?
Doc Thompson is asking the same questions and he discusses that here. His theory is that it all falls on the Baby Boomers.
I’ve never been happy with the Baby Boomers. Even when I was a kid I thought they were off. It never made sense to me why they seemed to count their lives in a declining value from the age of 30 on. They craved to always be 16 to 18 years old and built their whole collective psychology around that yearning. I’ve also despised that. Even when I was young, the people I most identified with were senior citizens, because they knew how to live and didn’t expect life to be comfortable.
When I came to work today it was hovering around zero degrees with a wind chill down around -10. There was much astonishment from other drivers who watched me drive my 1500 CC motorcycle down the frozen asphalt well before the sun came up. Most of those people were baby boomers and members of Generation X who were around my current age. I will have to admit that I have pity on almost all of those people, because they view aging as a regressing process. Many of the people of my generation and the baby boomers strive for their lives at the end of high school and start of college. Those are the best days of their lives.
I see my own life as improving each year. When I was younger I dreamed of being the age I’m at right now with the physical presence to do anything I want, and the wisdom to match it. Part of the reason I walk several miles a day, ride motorcycles in the cold and work with bullwhips and medicine balls like toys while my mind contemplates thousands of topics simultaneously, is because I love living life. Avoiding pain is avoiding life. I wouldn’t trade anything in the world to even go backwards one year. I enjoy every birthday as an opportunity to become even better than the last year. That’s why I name this site the way I do, because I’m always leaning forward to learn and be better. Complacency and failure are simply not options.
But complacency is the fad of the modern age and it started with those lazy, baby boomers. And they started the trend we see now, where a whole generation of young people are lost and clueless. You can see it in young people everywhere you look. They are overly commercialized and have lost the ability to think critically. They are a lost generation, and it’s really not their fault. It’s the fault of Generation X that didn’t solve the problems of the Baby Boomers and all the issues Doc Thompson brought up in his discussion above.
That’s why the Superbowl seemed flat to me, less spectacular than in years past, and somehow distracted and aloof. It was the first time I visibly noticed that the social problems we’ve all been holding back and pushing under the rug, started to show even above all the festivities of an American Ritual.
And this is how it’s supposed to sound! Don’t make a joke of it next year just to play to the younger crowd. They don’t know the difference. But some of us do.