Monday, August 21, 2006

Is 80 the new 60?

I was intrigued to hear a comment the other day that 80 is the new 60. That may be true, but it's too early to tell, as they say*, as the baby boomer generation has still got quite a way to go until it reaches the octogenarian stage. What clearly is true - for many baby boomers like me at any rate - is that 60 is the new 40. Not only are many of us far from ready to retire and enjoying our lives to the full, but the icons of our youth are still around and looking fit, if not necessarily youthful in every case. We have Mick Jagger and co doing their thing in the UK yet again and the likes of Cliff Richard, Elton John, David Bowie and Paul McCartney still active (although in Paul's case experiencing something of a mid life crisis). Even the remaining survivors of the first blast of rock and roll, such as Jerry Lee, Chuck, Bo, James Brown and Little Richard, are still performing, even if their acts are shorter and less exciting than in days of old.
What worries me is not what the baby boomers will get up to in their old age. Like me, many of them will no doubt just grow old disgracefully and have a great time as they do so. It's what will become of our kids. Forced to work until they are 70 or beyond only to discover that promises of a decent pension were fraudulent, they may be the work till they drop generation.
* See link to the excellent Too Early To Tell site at bottom of the page


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