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Generation Gaps

I sometimes forget that I'm getting older and there are people much younger than me who haven't heard of Bettie Page or The Cure (???).

Sean's not at work so it's just myself, David and Kara until he gets in at midday (it's Mike's day off). When I mentioned Bettie Page's death earlier neitehr of them had heard of her. Then I put The Cure's new CD on (which sounds pretty good on the first listen) and Kara had never heard of The Cure (but does admit they sound familiar so I think she'll recognise Love Cats or some other big hit that gets played on the raido).

It's days like these that remind me that I'm not as young as I used to be and that a whole new generation has been born that has a completely different set of reference points.

Comments

( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Dec. 12th, 2008 11:04 am (UTC)
I don't think it's a matter of age as much as of general culture and curiosity. I mean, you can't know everything and everyone, but those two are classics, they're icons of their respective fields and have influenced younger generations… Seriously, everything labeled "burlesque" is a rip-off of Betty Page…
zombichicken
Dec. 12th, 2008 11:05 am (UTC)
sorry, the anonymous comment was me…
spangle_kitten
Dec. 12th, 2008 12:31 pm (UTC)
Yes, I agree that it's more to do with culture and interests. Age has a certain amount to do with it because of exposure to a certain public figure being in the magazines etc, but it's not everything. I have non-goth friends who haven't a clue who the Cure are, and they were all around when they were in thier hayday. In a similar way I haven't a clue who loads of pop figures of that era are, and will go blank at the mention of programmes that everyone in my generation ought to know all the plot details of, because I was too busy watching old B-movies!

It's a different set of reference points but your reference points are shaped by your interests.

But if they're kids into goth and they don't know who the Cure are, or into burlesque and don't know who Bettie Page was that's a different matter!
w00hoo
Dec. 12th, 2008 11:15 am (UTC)
Try talking to them about having to track in a VCR...
ellebabe
Dec. 12th, 2008 11:21 am (UTC)
I feel sorry for the younger generation as their reference points aren't anywhere as awesome as ours!
(Deleted comment)
zencadet
Dec. 12th, 2008 01:53 pm (UTC)
karohemd
Dec. 14th, 2008 07:39 pm (UTC)
Oh wow, this is even older. Hadn't seen this version before.
zencadet
Dec. 14th, 2008 08:21 pm (UTC)
Yup, this is the original pre-Python version from the '60s TV show "Do Not Adjust Your Set".
philreed
Dec. 12th, 2008 12:21 pm (UTC)
Haven't heard of The Cure?

Stop, you're making me feel old.
zencadet
Dec. 12th, 2008 01:46 pm (UTC)
An unfortunate consequence of the only real organised roleplaying group in Cardiff being the University Roleplaying & Wargaming Society is that I'm in constant contact with people of around the same age as each other while I continue to get older. Now, some of my friends from when I first began associating with them don't have that much of an age gap so they'll get far more references than they're likely to miss, but so often I find myself making a reference in a conversation to be met with blank stares and my inner despair.

That said, I agree with the other comments that it is also a matter of what you have as reference points. For instance, while I know who Bettie Page was, I can still probably be considered young enough to be forgiven for not knowing who she was. I, however, would have no excuse for not knowing The Cure considering how much they were played everywhere during my time at university, but since they've not exactly been around much in the public eye lately, I could forgive someone younger than me (or even older than me) for not recognising their name, but not for not recognising Love Cats.

After all, as pop culture savvy as I might sometimes appear to be, all it takes is for one of those nostalgia countdown shows to come on the telly within an era I grew up in and I realise how much I also missed when they start talking about something that was apparently the "big thing" that completely passed me by.
lareinemisere
Dec. 12th, 2008 02:55 pm (UTC)
I remember at the most recent Fields of the Nephilim gig, talking to Prunequallor,MD about how scary it is that there are probably goths out there so young they have no Pavlovian reaction to the opening chords of a favourite Nephs track. We are, indeed, so old...
spangle_kitten
Dec. 12th, 2008 05:15 pm (UTC)
The biggest generation gap thing I've found is that when I pay in cash I tend to give them the right change as well, blank stares all round ;p

Less so if it's say £6.13 and I give then the 13, but when something comes to £4.61 and I give them £5.11 for example, I've had to explain what I'm doing. (Especially if it's a £5 note, they have no idea why I don't just give them that)
imagnocean
Dec. 12th, 2008 06:17 pm (UTC)
Betty who? The Cure who?
lynne_h
Dec. 12th, 2008 07:22 pm (UTC)
That feeling hit me a three years ago when lecturing to A level students, who had never seen the X-Files or Star Trek or heard of most of the bands or films I referenced. It really hit home when I realised that I was, technically, old enough to be their mother.

Next year's intake won't have been born until after I finished my first degree. I thought it was bad enough that that hadn't been born the first time I saw Star Wars
mnight
Dec. 12th, 2008 07:40 pm (UTC)
I agree its much a matter of curiosity as well as generational reference points.
I was born in '81 so am a young one in comparison to boyfriend and most of my friends, but I often know what they are talking about and most definitely know who the Cure and Bettie Page are.
I disagree with ellebabe though, my Gen Y (of which granted I am in the edge of) has plenty of awesome points of reference. After Brittany Spears, for example, is not the first of her kind and is not the only singer we all listen to...
gabby2600
Dec. 13th, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC)
I have met people who have never seen starwars.
lynne_h
Dec. 13th, 2008 03:10 pm (UTC)
I teach someone who has never seen Star Wars or Indiana Jones or Dr Who. It leaves him at somewhat of a loss in my lessons. He's over six foot tall, has a massive multi-coloured Mohawk and comes out with lovely little phrases like: "Is it me, or did the conversation in here just get really surreal?"
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )

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