Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The Last Boomer Game

We recommend this article by Michael Kinsley in the Apirl 7th issue of The New Yorker magazine be required reading for anyone trying to understand Boomers today.

Titled "Mine is Longer than Yours," it is an essay about the "last Boomer game," or the quest for longevity. In essence, to update the bumper sticker, he who dies last wins.

Kinsley, you may recall, was once on CNN's Crossfire, opposite Pat Buchanan. He went on to run online magazine Slate in the early years, then became editorial page editor for The Los Angeles Times. He has Parkinson's Disease, but that isn't why he wrote the essay. He wrote it because he's smarter than the rest of us.

Sometimes I feel like a scout from my generation, sent out ahead to experience in my fifties what even the healthiest boomers are going to experience in their sixties, seventies, or eighties. There are far worse medical conditions than Parkinson’s and there are far worse cases of Parkinson’s than mine. But what I have, at the level I have it, is an interesting foretaste of our shared future—a beginner’s guide to old age.
Like we said, read this piece if you want to better understand Boomers.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've never seen this spoken (or written) of before but its a fascinating subject.
Oddly, I've noticed that when my 3 friends and I now get together a few times a year (we are 66, 64 and 62 year old women) there is a deep but un-spoken tension between us and I now know what its about.
Who among us is the healthiest and will, therefore, live the longest. It all boils down to that.
Who has the most "positive attitude", takes the best care of herself in terms of eating her veggies, avoiding chemicals, meditating, does the most yoga, exercises the most? Who keeps up with all her medical checkups with the most informed physicians at the best hospitals?
Who is the happiest or most content with her (happy happy) life with the most friends and invitations?
Bottom line, these once enjoyable get togethers are no longer pleasant experience, in fact, I'm thinking about avoiding them all together as I seem to get along much better (and 'am more relaxed) with people in their 50's or 70's but with my same age group - its nasty.
After seeing them I, invariably, come away feeling bad about myself as one of the two of them has ferreted out some unhealthy habit on my part (I like a glass of wine every now and then and they abhor alcohol)or I coughed a few times (chronic bronchitis)or someone commented that I looked "tired."
Already the march down the Grim Reaper's road has begun for our once happy little group and this new omnipresent anxiety has taken away all our fun.

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