Saturday, October 3, 2009

Engineer puts his 2.7182818284  cents in....

I have never understood why a generation is defined by a timeline such as when decades start or end. What is the difference? Having the beginning of a new decade defining you! Bahh! This holds as much credence as the planets alignments when you are born will have defined your personality type. The doctor's body has more gravitational pull than Jupiter when you are born. Also I might mention that I truly believe that each generation has its greatest and worst but the one thing in common is that the aging generation of before always complains of the next generation in line.

My thoughts are that the actions of generations should be defined by major events that happened when the generation is at its premium adulthood, ready to go out into the world. That is what sets the tone and mood of the country.

Here is my go at it..

Heaven or Hell? Who do ya got? (1939 - 1947)

This generation is defined by the extremes in humanity. From the rumblings of the Third Reich, Pearl Harbor, and war atrocities, this generation volunteers or is dragged into greatness. Combating the insanity of evil rulers who achieved power by demonizing groups or ethnic types, the outside line of cruelness will be redrawn over and over again. By wars end, all bets were off as to what was permissible. Firestorms in Dresden and Tokyo. Not to mention what happened in Hiroshima. Uncovering the atrocities of the could that not affect the sanity of rational thought? On the opposite end was the Marshall Plan of rebuilding what was destroyed in Europe. Starting over and helping rebuild these war torn countries instead of saying "They started it.." was one of the finest hours of this country. This is the real America, helping people rise above the rubble. After defeating the real true "evil empire" this shell shocked generation just wanted to get home and start a family with a house with some lawn and a white picket fence. Too bad for some it was Levittown..

Ignorance is Bliss (1948-1962)

This is the generation that was taught to act like the "Cleavers" and not question anything or act out of the norm. The moms wore pearl necklaces and high heels while serving dinner when "your Father came home". While at the same time, all the new pills for housewife anxiety were selling at an astonishing rate. All complaints were stifled and weirdness was extremely risky. Commies were everywhere in a subversive way, just ask Senator McCarthy. Every boy was to be a engineer and every girl was to be..well.. a housewife. Remember that this is past time for the Rosie the Riveter so they have to hurry up and get back into the kitchen.

In the meantime, the government were building A-bombs at a frantic pace. Super secret stuff, all this atomic power goodness. Everything was atomic. Atomic symbols on diners, furniture, clocks, radium wrist watches.Clean energy to cheap to meter. Ha! Meanwhile, tremendous resources are poured into building bombs. At one time 28 percent of electricity and half of the stainless steel produced in the country went to making bombs. Those poor Mormons(downwinders)in Utah never had a chance. We were testing above ground bombs like the 4th of July. But just think about it, the supposed largest nuclear accident ever to happen, Cherynobl, released less radioactivity than even the smallest of above ground tests in the 50's. But the government said it was safe so don't worry. Especially don't pay attention to those glowing sheep and cows over there, dead on their feet.

Our Nazi scientists were racing against the Soviets Nazi scientists to make the first orbital rocket. Unfortunately, we got the rocket engine scientists, (I reach for the stars but sometimes it lands in London Von Braun), while the Soviets got the guidance system scientists so our rockets flew up extremely fast in circles and blew up and theirs mostly blew up on the launch pad. But all the new influx of engineers eventually fixes the problems. Yeah ENGINEERS! White short sleeve shirts, slide rules, and pocket protectors. We ruled!! The generation had a uneasiness about the situation but 'Government knows best". A complete pressure cooker building steam and heat until something was gonna give. And believe me it does!!

Shit, Stop the car right now! I want out! (1962-1969)

The event finally happened in Oct, 1962. Oh No! Missiles in Cuba! Something I would like to call the "Great PuckerUp" month. This generation hears JFK announce to the country about the blockade and everyone knows there is a strong chance that they made a mistake in not listening to that fallout shelter salesmen with more sincerity. Not that it would have made a difference. Somehow we make it through but it puts the seeds of discontent in the youth. What if there isn't a future in this world if it is a rubble? Remember those "Duck and Cover" turtles? This generation sees the system as completely broke with no chance of being repaired, (at least not with the amount of patience and perseverance that they have), and decide to tune in, turn on, and drop out. Meanwhile, this lofty goal is helped out by the latest in chemical developments and philosophical musings of Huxley, Leary, and various other Shamen. Assassinations of some of the countries leaders help to further demoralize any hope for change. Communes and alternative societies pop up everywhere. Noble experiments but basic human nature doesn't change. For the most part, those social experiments fail because of power structure problems. Hey Man, who made you boss? Bummer, too heavy for me man.I'm splitting. Leaders are being assassinated right and left and the CIA is really starting to flex its techno muscles with spy planes and photos taken from the sky. This fuels the fire of paranoia and conspiracy quacks saying they are responsible for everything but Santa Claus.

Complete narcissistic flop-doodleness (1970-1980)

The age of self awareness, self-help, and finding your inner man beast, cave whatever. Not only is this the generation that taste forgot, with the hideous clothes, colors, and leisure suits, but there is not really any pretense of social change or lofty goals of any kind. It is completely about the parties, self realizations, sex, discos, and narcissism. The social trends, thoughts,and even the music was the equivalent of Twinkies, seemingly good on the first bite but leaving a nauseous feeling after the experience. Threes Company, need I say more? Gas shortages and 55 mph speed limits were the norm. A president that was of high morals and character is, in my opinion, unjustly perceived as a..and I hate using this word but it does seem perfect.. pussy.

I may seem harsh on this group, but it may be just some self reflection because I am a card carrying member. BUT NEVER, and I cannot stress this enough, NEVER did I have one of the Brown Corduroy Leisure suits but I heard they were quite common with lawyers.

I not a President but I played one on a movie once (1981-1989)

This generation was tired of this flaccid bullshit and was ready to take charge! Unadulterated capitalism was in vogue and a take charge actor president was in the office. Making the big bucks on Wall Street was the name of the game and personalities were defined by the labels and brands of products that you had. Even books were written about serial killers that was designer driven. The drugs at the time defined the generation. Screw all that mind expanded doors of perception crap! I need something to make me work hard and party harder. Bring on the cocaine cowboys and the Miami Vice chic bullshit. Money was the name of the game and power was the way to achieve personal fulfillment. A person who was the president of the Screen Actors Guild in 1947 pivotal in getting actors blacklisted, major FBI informant in the fifties, became the President of the United States. Suddenly there was the "Evil Empire" and Star Wars defense. Good ole Edward Teller (Worm Tongue for u Tolkien followers) and his whisperings in the leaders ears! But after ignoring all of the foreign political experts advice on arms limitation, he starts to change his mind after seeing a movie on tv call "The Day After".

The generation had Michael J. Fox movies and the invasion of Grenada to set the tone. One the other side, the Soviets were coming apart at the seams with Chernobyl and having to import a lot of food to stay alive. Afghanistan was a major thorn in their side, partially because of the war being lost because of an influx on new weapons, (stingers), supplied by us. I mean, what could be a better idea than to give people in that desert area high tech weapons? The cold war had become hot again.

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