Recently one of my so-called online "friends," whom I have never met in the flesh but "know" through blogging, pasted another snarky comment on something I wrote. There was something so familiar about the way she ridiculed me though. It reminded me of countless friends both male and female with whom I went to high school. And when I saw her birthdate on her profile page, I noticed that she was just two months older than me. This is a common phenomenon. I can tell a person's age just about the way they interact with others. My so-called online friend is apt to make sarcastic remarks about anything. And so are most of my real friends. She's a pain the ass, they are all a pain the ass, and I am a pain in the ass. Since we are all about the same age, I wonder, are we Generation Pain in the Ass?
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I was born in the last year of the 1970s. Through the years, I have been lumped into many different generations. Originally I was Generation X, then I was Generation Y, then I was Generation X again. I've also been part of the Thirteenth Generation, the Pepsi Generation, the MTV Generation, and now something called Generation C, which stands for "connectedness" - which I guess means that we like to use the Internet like everybody else.
Recently, this generational schizophrenia reached a boiling poist when a so-called Millennial complained about the jobs market, only to receive the smackdown from a card-carrying "member" of Generation X (as if it really was a club, with cards), who wouldn't be outdone when it comes to bitching. This prompted a Slate article about a Generation Catalano, named after a character on a mid 1990s TV show that was canceled after a season, about the length of time anyone in Hollywood thought of catering to our demographic.
Generation Catalano's take on the Gen X-Millennial feud? You're all a bunch of assholes. Anyone who would willingly associate themselves with the term "Millennial" which reminds me of a Robbie Williams song, or "Generation X" which reminds me of Winona Ryder stealing stuff, is an enemy of the human race. But we are enemies of the human race too. That's what makes this microgeneration of children born during the Carter Administration Generation Pain in the Ass. No matter what it is is, if you are for it, then we are for ridiculing it.
How could this be? You ask. How could precious babies birthed during the halcyon reign of a benign, altruistic, mild-mannered peanut farmer turn out to be such a bunchs of jerks? Have we taken after his ne'er-do-well pain in the ass brother, Billy Carter instead? Perhaps. He's dead, so it's easy to lay the blame on him. But, hey, anyone who is a pain in the ass can fall under this generation's umbrella. Like the late great Andy Rooney. Consider him a charter member!
The younger Mark Zuckerberg-led Generation Facebook is different. Better titled Generation F, for Facebook or Future or just Fuckhead, for stealing all of our thunder, they are already running things. If we're lucky, we'll just swap our disdain for the Boomers for the Millennials at some point. We can stop making jokes about hippies and yuppies and start making jokes about Harry Potter. In fact, we can keep making snide remarks and not really doing anything and arguing about the virtues of long-forgotten indie rock bands until we are wearing diapers in the nursing home and can't walk. Then we'll really be a pain in the ass. Wouldn't that be grand?
Honestly, I'll steal an often-stolen line from Groucho Marx here and say, please accept my resignation, Generation Pain in the Ass. I won't belong to any generation that will take people like me as a member. But if I resign, then I know that you all will too. Why?
Because you're a pain in the ass!