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Lucky enough to live past our prime

June 11, 2011

I’m appalled by the “Boomer bashing” being spewed about on the internet and television talk shows.
Okay.  I admit it. I’m a Baby Boomer and a card carrying member of the generation of “war babies” born between between Jan. 1, 1946 and Dec. 31, 1964. If I had my druthers, I would have been born in 1970 and barely be turning 40 right now.  (If I had known I would live this long, I would’ve taken better care of myself, too.)
Instead, I am fighting to stay on top of inflation and pinching pennies to be able to leave some dwindling assets to my children. 
Our generation has been much maligned  as the most self-centered, self-seeking, self-interested, self-absorbed, self-indulgent, self-aggrandizing generation in U.S. history.
Hey, hey.  Hold on a minute. Not all of us were draft-dodging, toke- smoking, free-loving, bra-burners who are stealing our children’s’ financial future and destroying our planet.  How can anyone blame that on an entire generation that barely spans 16 years?
Some of us got married, raised families, worshiped in the churches of our choice,  held down jobs and volunteered tirelessly for community projects. We fell into bed exhausted at the end of the day, then got up the next morning and did it all over again.  We did the best we could with the information we had.
What’s getting on the last nerve of every other generation is that each day about 10,000 of us are reaching retirement age and beginning to collect social security into which we paid for the last 40 plus years. 
I think it irritates them that some of  us are lucky enough to live past our prime.   Recently, I bought a birthday card for folks born in 1947 and it stated life expectancy at that time was a mere 62.   How dare us defy those odds?  We are shameful lot.
May I apologize for enjoying my time on the planet, but I don’t think my generation is any worse or better than any other.  
I’m a retired bouncing baby boomer.  So, go around me, yuppies, but please don’t glare at me in the rear-view mirror.

Emily Jones is a retired journalist who edits a website for bouncing baby boomers facing retirement.  She welcomes comments at

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