Sunday, August 2, 2009

Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the end of celebrating 20th anniversaries of the 1960s

Twenty years ago, the Fine Young Cannibals were driving me crazy on the radio and Turner and Hooch were stinking up the big screen. But in that summer of dross, a ray of hope. The month of August was devoted to remembering Woodstock, all that it represented to those zany baby boomers, and all that it continued to mean, culturally, in the then present day. By the summer of 1989, it seemed to me that there had been a Time Magazine cover devoted to the 20th anniversary of half the bowel movements that occurred in the 1960's. Woodstock, with its promise of being the End of an Era, represented hope at the end of the tiresome carnival ride of reliving someone else's youth. So, thank you, time for passing.

Now that I'm old enough to have lived through a decade of 20th anniversaries of significant events I remember happening in real time, I think the 80s got short shrift. I think society would've benefited from thoroughly revisiting some of the significant events of that decade. To give the 20th anniversary of Poland's Solidarity movement the same attention we gave to Woodstock's 20th. To experience the "All this has happened before" sensation of getting a refresher on Iran Contra. I might do a little of this in the future (Invasion of Panama... I'm looking at you). But for now, I'm going to recommend that my generational cohorts and youngers ignore the 40th anniversary of Woodstock and instead celebrate the 20th anniversary of an album that continues to influence today.

Also, Gen X (whitey division), I know we don't have the numbers but can we commit now to doing everything we can to make the rest of the country feel our "OMG WE ARE SO OLD!" pain on April 5, 2014?

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