Tag Archive | baby boomer

Remember Our Gang?

If you grew up during the mid 1950’s – we’re talking baby boomers again – you probably enjoyed watching Our Gang aka The Little Rascals.  Although originally created for the silent pictures, they evolved into the talkies, and MGM later syndicated the 220 segments for television. The popularity of Spanky, Alfalfa, Buckwheat, Darla and the rest of the gang continued through another generation. We made telephones from string and tin cans and became part of the gang.

Interestingly, producer Hal Roach created quite a stir in several contexts with these films. When he chose his cast of characters, he included boys and girls, blacks and whites and treated them all as equals many years before diversity became the accepted mode. He encouraged his cast to improvise and act like real children unlike child actors today. Some of this occurred as a result of the cast being too young to read the scripts. The director’s practice was to explain the scene and encourage improvisation. It worked.

What I remember best was the way they created Rube Goldberg-type inventions from scrounged resources either from things discarded or those left unattended. They embodied the spirit of the depression – use what you have to create a new solution. They reinvented the wheel in many of their episodes. Who knows? Perhaps their inventions provided the inspiration for some of the technology we currently enjoy.

The plots were simple – after all they only had 20 minutes – and even their squabbles encompassed the slapstick comedy tradition. Some things may have been broken, but they were never destroyed. As popular as the movies and TV shows were then, today’s producers could not evoke the same feelings with remakes. Something – perhaps the spontaneity or genuine approach to life the original cast brought to their characters – was missing from the newer versions. Maybe it’s time to bring the originals to life again but then, today’s kids might not even find them interesting.

Top questions about baby boomers?

You’ve likely heard the term baby boomer, but do you know what one is? If you don’t, you’re not alone. Using the Google keyword search tool I discovered that 246,000 searches are conducted globally per month to find this out. This is based on a 12 month average. If you are interested in only English speaking countries, the number drops to 110,000 per month. You’ll get similar results if you ask who is a baby boomer or who are baby boomers?

In case you’re curiosity is getting the better of you, I won’t keep you in the dark any longer. A baby boomer is a person born within the period of 1946 to 1964. And according to an article entitled Just How Many Baby Boomers Are There, the 79 million counted in the 2000 census were far too many for the 30-somethings anxious to take over their jobs.

So, what other questions along this topic ranked the highest? According to Wordstream after the generational type question/definition, baby boomer dating seems to be the hottest query followed by references to the PBS baby boomer TV show and health concerns. Other topics with higher rankings were somewhat alarming.

  • baby boomer selfishness
  • why are people afraid to speak about baby boomer euthanasia
  • the government should seize baby boomer assets before they retire

Interestingly, the most competition in these searches came from advertisers and marketers. No mystery here. Baby boomers represent both a large segment of the population and the wield a lot of buying power.

I’ve decided that baby boomers don’t identify themselves in this category so they’re not the ones searching. Boomers consider themselves to be real people rather than being pressed with a label. They are concerned more with specific themes or issues and use the Internet to locate more related information.

So here’s my query today dedicated to baby boomers all over the world.

What are the specific topics you regularly Google / search?

BTW: If you’re not a baby boomer, pass the question on to some you know and let me in on their responses.

What is the new 65?

With new technology and medical advancements, what used to be considered mid-life has now stretched from age 40 to 60. What then is the new 65, i.e., the arbitrary time for retirement? The answer depends upon the one you’re asking? 

If you are posing this query to those in the corporate world, keep in mind their competing in today’s global marketplace.  They’re looking at head counts, medical claims, salary ranges and productivity. Loyalty and time accrued factor less and less in their priorities. For most businesses, the new ideal 65 is 55.   

 If you’re a financial planner reviewing the portfolio of today’s baby boomers, you might say 80 is the new 65 because most boomers have not set aside sufficient funds for the golden years and will be required to work longer to meet their financial needs.  Even if you’re 65 and have planned well for your future years, you may not be ready to sit in a rocking chair on the front porch.  You’ve learned and experienced a lot and would like to continue to use this expertise to benefit others.  Those in that category might say that the new 65 is 75. 

Go figure 

No matter how far along you are on the continuum of life heading towards your 65, you’ll want to evaluate your status.  Then you can figure out your strategy so you’ll stay on track or get back on course.  Perhaps these questions will get you started.

  • Should you be starting to save or be saving more?
  • Are you on target to reach your financial quests for college education for your children, travel to foreign ports, or a second home by the sea?
  • Will your skills continue to measure up or do they need an upgrade? 

These are valid questions at most any age, but let me ask one more.  If you could do whatever you wanted and had no restrictions or limitations, what would that be? You might want to give some thought to this one.  Are you already doing it? If you’re not, what would it take to get you started?  Remember, it’s never too late to begin.