Hey, Generation X! It’s nice to finally have the world revolve around us, isn’t it?
On many commercials, we hear familiar songs from our youth in the background. The jokes in sit-coms are aimed right at us. Hollywood’s intent on capitalizing on our collective nostalgia with remake after remake.
We knew we finally hit it big last weekend when the Super Bowl halftime entertainment brought together a slew of hip-hop artists from the days when we ran the streets, with Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and 50 Cent.
And, if you have a cross-section of ages on social media like I do, we all watched decidedly different halftime shows.
The people in my age bracket, the angsty generation, loved it. It was the best Super Bowl halftime show we’d ever seen, as songs brought us back to our desperate attempts to feel cool when we knew deep down we weren’t.
The older generations for the most part responded with the musical version of “get off my lawn.” The younger generations acted as if they’d just discovered America, only to have plenty of natives already saying, “I know the words to this song!”
I get it that generational warfare is common in popular culture. But let’s not forget that every generation gets its chance to be in the driver’s seat. Up With People performed at the Super Bowl four times, which probably appealed to someone.
Gen X was polite as Diane Ross performed at the halftime in 1996 and Smokey Robinson sang there in 1998. We pretended to know what was going on last year when The Weeknd performed, even if we’re still having nightmares about the zombie-looking dancers.
It’s always been a bit of a forgotten generation. After we gave up on our teen angst, we did our best to fit in with society. We learned about all the great music from the 1960s and 1970s to fit in with the Baby Boomers ahead of us. A few years later, we tried to keep up with the generation behind us, the beloved Millennials.
Maybe we didn’t push enough for our own ideals, just accepting what was in front of us and behind us. But now we’re in our prime years for leadership, and it’s time to enjoy that. We might be a smaller number than other generations, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make a difference.
That’s even if that difference is just shown in people finally marketing to us, via commercials and halftime shows. We’ll take what we can get, since X finally marks the spot in popular culture.
David Trinko is editor of The Lima News, a division of AIM Media Midwest. Reach him at 567-242-0467, by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @Lima_Trinko.