Generation X Turns 50 – Finally noticed in the media!

During the first week of January this year I was going to the Metro station in Washington DC and noticed a headline on the Epoch Times – “Gen X Turns 50“.  So I picked up a copy of the paper and read a great article by Cindy Drukier on the current state of Generation X and how we got to be the way we are.  I recommend it.

Generation X graphic from the Epoch Times article.

However, I do take issue with the first line: “The first cohort of Generation X turned 50 this year – you probably didn’t notice either.”  (The article dateline is Dec. 30 2015, so “this year” would be 1965.)

I noticed!  But overall she is certainly correct.  If, like I do, you recall the media hoopla over the Boomers turning 50 in 1996, we Gen Xers certainly have not had that kind of media recognition over our milestone birthday.   Thanks, Cindy, for getting us some front page recognition for once!

Celebrating my 50th Birthday

I celebrated my 50th birthday on August 2nd of this year.  As befitting the subtitle of this blog, I did not post at that time because I was in a summer of slacking off with regard to blogging. This extended through the fall, and then into the winter.

So, yes, I’ve been a slacker.

50th Birthday From Keep Calm Studio.com

I was ambivalent about having a party, but I knew I didn’t want some big over the top party.  So I waffled until the last minute, and then told my wife I did want a party, but just a small one.  And that is all there was time to plan at that point, so it all worked out.

While thinking about party versus no party, I had also read this Huffington Post article by Barbara Hannah Grufferman about making a list of fifty things to do during the year you are fifty (rather than having a party).  I found this rather compelling, and thought that maybe I would do the same.  I looked at the first few items on her list…

  • Join a book club
  • Visit the house where I was raised
  • Learn how to juggle
  • Visit the Grand Canyon

Hmm….    I’m not really a book club person, more a solitary reader.  The house where I was raised no longer exists.  I taught myself to juggle in graduate school.  I visited the Grand Canyon in 2009…..

I was clearly going to have to come up with my own list!  But of course, that is the point.

I started to think of things I wanted to do.

  • Learn to play the piano
  • Learn to dance the tango well
  • Learn Spanish
  • Visit my mom in South Dakota and the family in Minnesota
  • Visit my sister in Ireland
  • Write my book on the Manhattan Project
  • etc

But of course, to do 50 things in the year you are fifty, you need to do one thing a week, and take two weeks of vacation!  Most of the things I was thinking of were long term things I still wanted to do.  I suppose I could cast them in a shorter term light (take a piano lesson) but that didn’t really capture the issue.

So instead of finding 50 things to do this year, I am going to make a list of 50 things I want to do while I am in my fifties — that gives me ten years to get these things done.  Not quite a bucket list – I will wait til I am 67 until I write that.

So, anyone have any suggestions for my list of fifty things to do in my fifties?