Failure To Launch


I remember reading an article in the 70’s outlining my generation as the “Lost Ones”.

It predicted that we would have it all early in life, and then lose it.

Aww, the 70’s. Remember them?

Sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll, and all that jazz.

We were the first ones our parents really worried about as far as getting into illegal substances. The Rocky Horror reared its ugly head and turned an entire generation into cult movie followers. We swam with Jaws, ate spaghetti with The Godfather, Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, worried about the Apocalypse, re-examined our faith with The Exorcist, and had a Close Encounter with a Taxi Driver on Halloween.

We moved out early, and stayed out, at least for most of our adult life, anyway. We went to university, and for the most part paid our own way. Life was good. And we deserved it.

The economy was booming, there was still such a thing as job security, and there were tons of good paying jobs to be had. We were a laid back generation, with hope for a bright future. But we had an issue with authority and weren’t afraid to let our opinions be known. Cynically optimistic as I like to call it.

We went on to invent Microsoft, Apple, and Dell, built the Space Shuttle and created the internet. We got married, had kids, cottages and bush parties. And no matter how the years passed, we still wore jeans and rode our bikes. In so many ways, we refused to grow up, to part with the 70’s idealistic lifestyle.

Suddenly, we became senior executives, were getting divorced, our kids were moving back home, or we were losing our executive positions and moving back in with our aging parents.

So what happened to the sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll teenagers of the 70’s?

The economy took a turn for the worse, that’s what happened….The government began to run up debts it couldn’t repay. We who once questioned authority are now being questioned ourselves….about ever increasing taxes, bad political decisions, and wasteful management of finances. Our sense of entitlement has now come back to bite us.

We once fought out in the fields and demanded shelter, but now, all these years later, we are having a lot of trouble holding on. We are caught between generations, our aging parents who now are becoming our children, and our children who can’t afford to live on their own.

We are almost busier than humanely possible, still hanging on to classic rock as a comfort, still going to Stones concerts and wondering if our bell bottoms still fit. Dare we go there? Um…I’m thinking….no. Our parents stayed together, but our generation with its trail of broken relationships, broken dreams and forgotten promises has become more cynical than ever.

I remember wondering what kind of world our parents left us back then, and now I see how we mismanaged what we did have, over spent, over compensated and failed to really appreciate what we were so generously given by a generation who spoke honestly, knew the true value of a handshake, and the meaning of a dollar. We became wasteful, neglectful, treated everything as disposable, and our cynicism turned to outright resentment.

We only have ourselves to blame….

If this doesn’t apply to you, if you are still happily hanging in there, and I hope you are, please disregard. But, if for any reason, you can relate to anything I’ve mentioned, and I’ve left out a lot of course because of time and space issues, I hope you can relate when I say that our once ‘Lost Generation’ found it all, lost it again, and now is fast becoming invisible.

I dread to think what we are leaving the ones left behind….

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