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WebSideStory Pick of the Week! 3/16/98

Do You Like This Internet Resource? Recommend-It (tm) to a Friend!
Senior Housing Net
By Ted S. Maier
    Tweeners or Cuspers: The Center of the Generational Oreo Born 1955-64, they are the cream in the middle of the generational Oreo. For years, the voice of these confident 40-somethings has been obscured by the media hype showered upon the surrounding boomers and Gen Xers. But the cuspers are now ready to speak. They want everyone to know that they are neither a part of the "me-first" boomers nor the Gen X "drifters." Instead, they are a distinct generational cohort that shares some of the characteristics of both these groups, but fits comfortably into neither. For marketers and advertisers who previously lumped this consumer group into the others, the time to change course is now. oFrom among the following list, poll respondents were asked to select the three brands they most closely associate with their generation. From the looks of it, cuspers envision themselves in a comfy pair of LEVI'S, lounging (or working) in front of their Macs, while sipping on a Coke. Brands are listed in order from most to least popular. LEVI'S 70 percent Coke 41 percent Macintosh 33 percent Ben & Jerry's 20 percent IBM 19 percent Honda 17 percent I thought that you might enjoy this email that I received. A long, long time ago ... Friends, this is one of the best emails of all time. If you were born between 1965 and 1977 (give or take a year or two) you will certainly enjoy this as much as I did. Don't skip a line, read this when you have time to take it all in. I am a child of the 70's & 80's. That is what I prefer to be called. The 90's can do without me. Grunge isn't here to stay, fashion is fickle and "Generation X" is a myth created by some over-40 writer trying to figure out why people wear flannel in the summer. When I got home from school, I played Atari 2600. I spent hours playing Pitfall or Combat or Breakout or Frogger. I never did beat Asteroids.

    Then I watched Scooby-Doo. Daphne was a goddess, and I thought Shaggy was smoking something synthetic in the back of the Mystery Machine. I HATED SCRAPPY. I would sleep over at friend's houses on the weekends. We played army with G I Joe figures, and I set up Galatic wars between Autobots and Deceptions. We stayed up half the night throwing marshmallows and Velveeta at one another. We never beat Rubik's cube, unless you count taking off the stickers.

    I got up on Saturday mornings at 6am to watch bad Hanna-Barbera cartoons like "The Snorks", "Jabberjaw", "Captain Caveman", and "Space Ghost". In between I would watch SchoolHouse Rock (Conjunction Junction, what's your function?) On Friday night, Daisy Duke was my future wife. Did your Dad turn from mild-mannered Bill Bixby into the "Incredible Hulk" when he got upset? At the movies the Nerds got revenge on the Alpha Betas by teaming up with the Omega Mu's. I watched Indiana Jones save the Ark of Covenant.

    I wondered what Yoda meant when he said, "No, there is another". Ronald Reagan was cool. Gorbachev was the guy who built a McDonalds in Moscow. My family took vacations to South Florida and collected Muppet Movie Glasses along the way (we had the whole set). My siblings and I fought in the back seat. At the hotel, we found creative uses for Connect Four pieces. I listened to John Cougar Mellencamp sing about Pink Houses and Jack & Diane. Boy George bewildered me. I was a "Wild Boy" for Duran Duran. MTV actually played music videos. Nickelodeon played "You Can't Do That On Television". HBO showed Mike Tyson pummel everybody except Robin Givens. I drank Dr Pepper. I'm a Pepper, you're a Pepper, wouldn't you like to be a Pepper too? Shasta was for losers. Tab was a laboratory accident. Capri Sun was a social statement. Orange Juice wasn't just for breakfast anymore. Bacon had to move over for something leaner. My mom put a thousand Little Debbie snack cakes in my Charlie Brown Lunchbox and our world was the backyard and it was all you needed. With your pink portable tape player, Debbie Gibson sang back up to you. Everyone wanted a skirt like the material girl and a glove like Michael Jackson. Today, we are the ones who sing along with Bruce Springsteen and the Bangles perfectly and have no idea why.

    We recite lines from Ghostbusters and still look to the Goonies for a Great adventure. We flip through T V stations and stop at the A-Team and Knight Rider and Fame and laugh with the Cosby Show and Family Ties. "What you talkin' about Willis?"

    We hold strong affection for the Muppets and Gummy Bears and why did they take the Smurf's off the air? Afterschool Specials were about cigarettes and stepfamilies. Romper Room was nothing like Barney. Aren't the Power Rangers just Voltran reincarnated? We are the ones who still read Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys, the Bobsey Twins, Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume.

    Friendship bracelets were ties you couldn't break and friendship pins went on shoes. Pegged jeans were in, as were unit belts and layered socks and jean jackets and JAMS and charm necklaces and side pony tails. Rave was a girl's best friend; braces with colored rubberbands made you rad. The back door was always open and Mom served only the red kool-aid to the neighborhood kids. You never drank the New Coke. Entertainment was cheap and lasted for hours. All you needed to be a princess was high heels and an apron. The Sit'n'spin always made you dizzy, but never made you stop. Pogoballs were dangerous weapons, and Chinese Jump ropes never failed to trip someone. In your Underoos you were Wonder Woman, Spider Man or R2D2.

    In your treehouse, you were king. In the 80's nothing was wrong. Did you know the president was shot? Did you see the Challenger explode or feed a homeless man? We forgot Vietnam and watched Tiananmen Square on CNN. We didn't start the fire Billy Joel. In the 80's we redefined the American Dream, and those years defined us. We are the generation in between strife and facing strife and turning our backs. The 80's may have made us idealistic, but it's that idealism that will push us and be passed to our children-the children of the 21st Century.

    We had neighborhoods where in the day we could play kick-the-can, ring-o-levio, "guns", and all of the things that made us "Grownup". There was always that one field that could be used for either baseball, football, or just a place to hang out. That was my field of dreams, Mr. Costner. At night we would play flashlight tag, and we could trick-or-treat at night without the fear of being killed. We loved orange racetracks... that was until our mother realized she could smack us with them. We collected Cabbage Patch kids, and their ugly offspring Garbage Pail kids.
    We collected football & baseball cards, but it was because we wanted to be the first in the neighborhood to have the complete set. We played with He-Man and Skelator. Going to get a Happy Meal on Saturday with Mom or Dad was worth waiting the other six days in the week. Was Green Lantern the coolest superhero or Aquaman? "Wonder-twin powers activate!" "Hey, my mom will take if your mom picks up!" This is what growing up in the 70's & 80's was all about! So if you are reading this and it ALL hits home then you do indeed have a heritage or a generation. This is what makes us the most unique generation of all. Please pass this on to all that can relate! AUTHOR UNKNOWN!
    My favorite the afternoon show in the mid 70s.

    Continue To Page 2.

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