Photography and Art

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Where Have All the Boomers Gone?

Yesterday, I took a walk at noon hour to stretch my legs and buy some lunch at a nearby sandwich shop. It was a nice, sunny July day and I walked out of the office, down a fairly busy city street, into Liberty Village (an area of condos and shops) and into Select Sandwiches. During my walk, I saw lots of people going about their daily business. There were cab drivers, people riding bikes, pedestrians, shoppers and panhandlers. Maybe I'm a little slow on the uptake, but, for the first time I was struck by the thought that everyone in sight was younger than me! Much younger.

I was fascinated. I kept looking around for some grey hair in the crowd - maybe a business guy out for a stroll like me or a senior citizen driving by in his Buick, but to no avail. I remained the oldest guy in the neighbourhood. A 56 year-old codger surrounded by babies.

Where have all the baby boomers gone? At one point, we dominated everything. You couldn't move without bumping into a boomer. But almost overnight we seem to have melted into the woodwork, leaving the world to a bunch of kids. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but it all seemed to happen so suddenly. It's going to take a little getting used to, like having your first grandchild or realizing that all the women in the bar are staring through you like you don't exist any more.

Maybe that's it. Perhaps we're just invisible and I was surrounded by boomers on my walk, but just couldn't see them. Or maybe there's a hang-out that I don't know about where all the boomers go on their lunch hour, a place where they play psychedelic music and we all wear bell-bottoms and give each other the peace sign.

I wish it were true. Looking around my office from my sixth floor perch, I see a sea of shining, young faces. There are a handful of boomers still hanging on to our jobs, trying to keep up with the pace of change in this crazy world. The rest are retiring early, unable to keep up or tiring of the daily grind. Soon, we'll be hanging out in shopping malls with our running shoes on, doing laps on shiny linoleum before the shops open. We'll be having coffee and talking about our investments and the benefits of income funds versus annuities.

And so the world turns...

PS: the lovely young lady in the picture at the top of this post is Maggie, a friend of my grandson The picture is called Maggie and the Fan.

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