Tuesday, October 19, 2010

When thongs were flip-flops and other mysteries.…

Rarely before has a cultural divide been so wide, separating generations, as in our time.

Consider this - most students who entered college for the first time this fall were born in 1992.

According to the Beloit College Mindset List, they have never seen a carousel of Kodachrome slides. They know Clint Eastwood as a movie producer, not as Dirty Harry.

They think email is too slow and hardly ever use the U.S. Postal Service. They know Beethoven as a dog and Michelangelo as a computer virus.

Young people today don’t worry about a Russian missile striking the U.S. They don’t really understand why we had air raid shelters.

On the other hand, those of us who are 50-something contribute to this cultural divide without even realizing it. For example, you reveal your age if…

…You have the urge to lick postage stamps.

…You don’t text and you don’t want to learn how to text.

…You forward junk mail to all of your email contacts.

…You don’t own a computer.

…You don’t own more than one computer.

…You know what a rotary phone is and how to use it.

…You have a rotary phone and plan to keep it.

…You don’t know what skype is and really don’t care.

…You think blue ray is a tropical fish.

…You cannot figure out why so many people are tweeting.

…You don’t believe in cell phones, even though there is evidence they exist all around you.

…You own a cell phone but don’t know how to make calls or retrieve messages.

…You think marriage should last a lifetime

…You have the urge to hang laundry on a line.

…You bake from scratch.

…You have a checking account.

…You go to the bank, not on line, to do your banking.

…You still go to the cinema, not the Internet, to watch movies.

…You do not have a Facebook account.

…You do have a Facebook account but don’t know how to post photos on it.

…You don’t have a blog and don’t plan to have a blog.

…Your husband still pumps your gas and washes your windshield.

…You remember when gas station attendants pumped your gas and washed your windshield.

…You remember when gasoline was 20 cents a gallon or less.

…You still use the expression “save it for a rainy day.”

…You get excited when you find loose change on the ground.

...You pick up loose change when you find it on the ground.

…You are more comfortable putting your hand out to greet people than giving them a high five.

…You carry cash.

…You cook most of your meals at home and rarely eat out.

…When you do eat out, you get a doggy bag for what you cannot finish.

…You put leftovers in a stew for tomorrow, instead of pitching them.

…You reuse plastic containers.

…You understand the expression “to put up vegetables or fruits.”

…You know how to can tomatoes and cucumbers and relish the thought of putting up dozens of jars every fall.

…When you were a kid, thongs were flip-flops you wore on your feet, not underwear.

…You read the newspaper by holding it in your hands, not by clicking a mouse.

2010 © Copyright Paula Damon. A resident of Southeast South Dakota, Paula Damon
is a national and state award-winning columnist. Her columns have won
first-place in National Federation of Press Women, South Dakota Press Women and
Iowa Press Women Communications Contests. In the 2009 and 2010 South Dakota
Press Women Communications Contest, Paula's columns took first-place awards
statewide. To contact Paula, email pauladamon@iw.net, follow her blog at
www.my-story-your-story.blogspot.comand find her on Facebook.

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