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  • I Want to Know What Ginny Has to Say About This

    Posted by James R. Rummel on August 7th, 2006 (All posts by )

    According to this blog post, the number one goal for baby boomers over the age of 50 is to lose weight.

    I have to admit that I am feeling some conflicting emotions about this.

    My interest in history has convinced me that living in past centuries was Hobbsian in that life was nasty, brutish and short. In fact, the majority of the world�s population still lives that way. I�m extremely grateful to be living at this time, in this country, where eating too much is a concern for people who would have probably died of old age a century ago.

    On the other hand, I can’t help but feel that there should be some other goals that these people should try and achieve.

    The rest of the top ten list also strikes me as frivolous. Number 2 is write a book. Goals numbered 3, 4, 5 and 7 is to take some sort of elaborate and expensive vacation.

    I’m 42 years old. Does that make me a baby boomer?

    Considering this list, I certainly hope not.

    (Hat tip to Triticale, the Wheat Guy.)

     

    17 Responses to “I Want to Know What Ginny Has to Say About This”

    1. John Says:

      Dude, if you were born before 1966, you’re a Boomer. ;-). I can say that from the smug vantage point of a birthday in 1969 – I am firmly in the X camp. But you got very little of the bennies that the early boomers got, becuase they’d already s@#t in the nest before you came along. Of course we Xers got none of the bennies. Low cost education? Hello tuition hikes (which soaked up the government subsidies and then some).

      Far too many Boomers have spent a life of navel gazing to make writing a good goal for them. In order to be a writer, first you should have lived an interesting life, and then you should have something interesting to say about your adventures.

    2. michael Says:

      Losing weight is frivolous? Hmmm. Lower weight provides several advantages…it’s keeping type II diabetes at bay so I’m not burdening anyone with health related issues. I’m more energetic so I’m more productive than I was 15 pounds ago.

      If being a healthier and more productive citizen is frivolous, I’m curious what you consider a serious goal.

    3. James R. Rummel Says:

      If being a healthier and more productive citizen is frivolous, I’m curious what you consider a serious goal.

      I started a free self defense class for violent crime survivors 15 years ago. I specialize in elderly and disabled students, mostly those who are confined to wheelchairs. These are not only the people who are the most vulnerable and at risk, they often are also in a very precarious position financially and can’t afford to pay someone for classes on firearms. Because of instructors like myslf they have a chance to live free from fear.

      I know how difficult it is to lose weight. I’m carrying at least 30 extra pounds on me right now. It would be really nice to burn it off, but I’m not too concerned about it. I’m too busy standing up for those who can no longer stand on their own.

      James

    4. Ginny Says:

      Ginny has to say that I liked coming to the world of Chicagoboyz where weight was irrelevant. I have what is sometimes euphemistically called a “weight problem.” Sitting & typing up posts does little to alleviate that.

      I got in shape a few years ago & lost weight (though remaining what one of my old boyfriends called in my considerably slimmer days “healthy” looking). But I’ve slid back.

      Yes, it is important – it has to do with energy level, diabetes, flexibilty – at our ages (I’m at the point for baby boomers), it has to do with life, both quality and quantity. In our world, those polled were saying they wanted good health which they associate with weight. They are somewhat right. It is another way of saying #7, “Stay Healthy,” which is probably the knock-on-wood answer for those who have the same goal but aren’t overweight.

      The blogstress that sees this as pathetic must be literal minded. Health is an ancient & understandable priority. I don’t often think that way, but my healthier friends do. They are right to do so and I am not.

      Paying off mortgages & retiring are similar in that they are specific applications of the second great desire – wealth. These represent freedom from that worry, a desire to leave the burdens of mid-life behind. This list really shows how far most of us are from the Hobbsian world.

    5. Lex Says:

      “… the world of Chicagoboyz where weight [is] irrelevant…”

      Hey, I’m fat. OK? There, I said it. I can accept that about myself.

      In fact, I’m the proverbial jolly fat guy. Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

      And, also, I’m 43, and I’m OK with that too.

      Age. Weight. I’m OK, You’re OK. It’s all fine.

      But, hey, around here, these things, things that matter so much to others, like age and weight, and whether you have excellent pecs, or other appealing body parts — all that is irrelevant.

      That’s what I think, and, really, I feel pretty good about, you know, just saying how I feel about things right now.

      I hope you feel the same way too. But, if not, I’m comfortable with that too. I can live with disagreement, and I can live even with confrontation. I don’t go looking for it, but, to be honest, it is something I can accept and deal with and work through. So, it’s OK if have your own views and feelings, since everyone gets to have their own views and feelings, and ideas also.

    6. LotharBot Says:

      When we were children, most of us had goals like “go to the moon” or “become president”. Even in our twenties, our goals might have been “earn a million dollars” or something similar.

      I guess it’s funny to see how simple the goals become as you age. Losing weight is honestly not THAT hard. (Try Weight Watchers. Seriously. I’m not kidding; it works because it’s a good system.) Visiting Hawaii, Australia, or Europe is just a matter of saving up for a while. None of these are the impressive goals I expected to hear.

      Maybe I’m just too young to understand. But dang, I hope when I’m in my 50’s and 60’s I still have some lofty goals.

    7. Lex Says:

      By the time I’m 50 my goals will be things like, “find my toothbrush” and “get a gallon of milk” or “replace shoe laces”.

    8. John Says:

      I’m with Ginny on this one. While I defer to no one in my distaste for the Boomers and their narcissistic posturing cum voyage of self-discovery, I think that the detractors are perhaps projecting a bit of narcissism on the weight goal when it really is about health. But I am surprised at how inwardly focused all of those top goals are, for the generation that wanted to save the world. That does strike me as circumstantial evidence that all the leftist causes were more about them feeling good about themselves.

      But the writing thing? Spare me, you generation of self-indigent whingers.

    9. John Says:

      self-indulgent – spellchecker is a mindless thing.

    10. Robert Schwartz Says:

      Boomers = born 1946 — 1964
      X = born 1965 — 1981
      Millennial = born 1982 and later (i.e. the class of 2000)

    11. James R. Rummel Says:

      Hey, I’m fat. OK? There, I said it. I can accept that about myself.

      I’m fat myself. If anyone gives me crap about it then I have this almost uncontrollable urge to sit on them.

      I wanted Ginny’s thoughts on the shallow, “Me Me Me” sort of goals the survey revealed since she has been so eloquent on Boomer narcissism before. Jonathan pointed out to me that it seems I’m wanting Ginny’s thoughts on being overweight.

      In the spirit of full disclosure, I’ve never met Ginny, or any of the other Chicago Boyz, so I have no idea what they look like. No matter how it seems, it can’t be that I’m discussing any of my fellow Boyz physical characteristics since I simply don’t know what they are.

      James

    12. Jonathan Says:

      Nothing wrong with saving the world or becoming president, but such goals can be every bit as self-indulgent as more-modest goals related to self-improvement would be. Everybody wants to do his own thing, and as long as that thing doesn’t harm other people, who is anyone else to say where it should rank in the world’s hierarchy?

      BTW, my goals for the next month are to make a successful home-made pizza and to become Jennifer Lopez’s sex slave. The pizza is going to be difficult.

    13. Mitch Says:

      I suppose it’s too late to become a cowboy, one of my original goals.

      Besides, every Miss America candidate has had “making the world a better place” as her life goal. If they can’t pull it off, what makes you think that you can?

    14. Jonathan Says:

      I wanna be a cowboy. . .

    15. Ginny Says:

      Jonathan,

      So your mother didn’t mind the great Willy’s plea: Mommas, don’t let your boys grow up to be cowboys?

    16. DirtCrashr Says:

      If you’re only 42 you’re not a Boomer because you’re not in the controlling-interest majority who do the hiring and firing of the Gen-Xers. From the Gen-X perspective it’s understandably seen as Everyone Is Against Us, but they lack the discernment between the shades of power and just lump things together – that’s why (and how) they’re Gen-X’ers. There’s that buffer slice of the disenfranchised which John refers to, the inter-stitial non-entities who trail The-Powers-That-Be and the self-absorbed Next-Big-Thing-ers, grasping at crumbs.

      On the list, as far as I can tell you’d better do #7 first if you want to enjoy #3-4-5-8 at all, but most of the things should be done already by the time you’re 50, except for #9 and #10 – that takes a stroke of luck and savings.
      If you don’t write a book when you’re young already it won’t sell or be intersting to any of the Gen-Xers running the lower tier of the PubIndustry, the talent-scouts. Otherwise Boomers mostly buy and sell Boomer-books, it’s part of the on-going navel-gazing.
      I’d also say Hawaii or Bermuda are a toss-up depending on which side of the continent you’re on. Westcoasters can get to “their” Islands in 5-hrs, Eastcoasters can get to “theirs” in 2-1/2+ or so. Australia is too freaking far if you’re over 45, have a mortgage and are flying Coach, that’s a goddam 14+hour flight, you should have done it when you were 20 and strong. ;-)

    17. DirtCrashr Says:

      I think maybe I stuck my foot in it over there when I posted, “I’m from the backside-curve too and have never belonged-to or identified-with the Boomers – I couldn’t care about their feelings, secret-yearnings, or desire to live to 100 – and the EONS thing about makes me sick – I really just wish they would go the hell away.”
      Oh well, they’re boomers, who cares?