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Why Can’t We All Get Along?

September 24, 2015

Susan Marg

© racorn

© racorn

Millennials, born between 1981 and 2000, have never known a world without computers. They get all of their information and do most of their socializing on the Internet. I find that amazing.

Political, social, and cultural events are part of what makes us who we are. We’re often closer to those our own age, give or take a few years, than we are to our parents. We have more in common with those who experienced the same things growing up that we did – the same music, the same movies, the same technology — or lack of technology. We visit the same malls and shop at the same stores as our friends.

I remember my two-year old nephew, who’s a Millennial, loading a movie he wanted to watch into the VCR. He didn’t have to ask Mom or Dad. He just did it. This was in 1990, about ten years before DVDs became popular and no one had ever heard of streaming. Watching him I thought: well, so much for learning delayed gratification. Yep, that’s something Millennials have never learned.

Millennials are different from previous generations. And that’s neither good nor bad. We all have our faults and foibles, but that doesn’t mean we can’t all get along.

Last month in the August 23 issue of Parade, actor Chris Elliott, a baby boomer, and his daughter, actress Abby Elliott, acknowledge the generation gap. In the article they discuss how they stay close. It helps that they are in the same business, show business, and they have each other’s back. They also believe that the family that laughs together stays together. In other words, it helps to have a sense of humor.

Offering advice to her elders, Abby points out that “LOL” does not mean “Lots of Love.” (For those who don’t know, it means: “Laughing our Loud.”) From her perspective, writing “RIP LOL” in sympathy would not be appropriate.

While I reserve the right to interpret “LOL” any way I want, I won’t be putting it on a condolence card anytime soon.

© 2015 Susan Marg – All Rights Reserved

Speaking Volumes

September 12, 2015

Susan Marg

When was the last time you used the word “groovy”? It’s probably been decades. It was hip in the sixties, when we wore bell bottoms, the wider the better, with tie-dye tee shirts, and mini skirts were mod.

Illustration by: © macrovec

Illustration by: © macrovec

Slang falls into and out of fashion. If you’re part of the in crowd, you use it spontaneously, effortlessly, instinctively. It slips on as comfortably as an old pair of jeans. It’s a part of who you are, when you grew up, and to which generation you belong.

What are some of your favorite expressions – to describe something good or to convey a feeling? “Bummed out” comes to mind. So does “jazzed” and “stoked.”

The myriad ways to say “hello” are secret passwords that let you into the club. “What’s shaking” is old school for “wassup.” “Yo” was a simple greeting. “How’s it hanging” meant “how are you.” It still might.

There are even more ways to quit the scene. “See you later, alligator” from the fifties was shortened to “later” in the sixties. “Good night, John-boy” and “may the force be with you” came from pop culture in the seventies. “I gotta book” told the group you were leaving in the eighties, and “I’m gone” was just another way of saying “good-bye” in the nineties.

One of my favorites: catch you on the flip side.

© 2015 Susan Marg – All Rights Reserved