Who am I?
Yesterday at work I was relaying the joy of my new purchase to work colleagues. No, it was not a pair of shoes, or even a handbag. It was a PVR. For those of you who are techno-illiterate, it stands for Personal Video Recorder, and has dual digital TV tuners and a 160Gb hard drive and completely rocks.
After much struggling, and bemoaning ("Two fucking physics degrees - surely I can connect a stupid fucking TV together!", etc), I was enjoying new and improved clarity, recording shows onto the hard drive and marveling at yet another toy that I had purchased.
So, after my glowing reports of this new found joy, I was asked, "Are you sure you aren't Generation Y?".
Now - this of course led me to a bit of research. According to Wikipedia, Generation X is the generation spanning those born between 1964 and 1979 - an age range which I can assure you I most definitely fit into. But funnily, it then went on to say that Generation X-ers were notable for their "stereotypical reputation as apathetic, cynical, disaffected, streetwise loners and slackers". This is a description that I think hardly fits me. Although, conversely, they they then go on to say that "Generation X is noted as one of the most entrepreneurial and tech-friendly generations in American history". Now that is more like it.
As for Generation Y, which loosely follow the birth years of Gen X-ers, up to approximately 2000, there seems to be little to exactly describe this group. Perhaps as their influence is more fully felt within the community at large, we shall understand what it means. They are collectively described as rude and rebellious, but more appropriately, they are reactionary and are more likely to think along the lines of "an eye for an eye" philosophy. They are accused collectively of bad spelling, poor grammar, and no respect of authority. But they universally are the purveyors of all modern gimmicks. Studies done have shown that in this generational category, the use of computers, mobile phones, MP3 players, instant messaging, on-line information sharing, blogs(!) and forums such as Facebook are not only common, but the norm. And it is into this part of the definition that I most clearly identify.
So it seems to me that there maybe Gen X and Gen Y - but it seems that there is something more. There are those of us who are Gen X in our birth years, and perhaps in our earlier years we were the rebellious slacker youths (hell - we gave John Hughes his entire early career by relaying our angst!). But now we are technophiles who fill up our, perhaps, empty lives by gimmick after gimmick. Electronic toys (of the non-adult variety) are our passion and our distraction.
So what generation are we that fit in between? X and a half? Gen i - for all things Mac? Suggestions please!