Yesterday I saw a post on Facebook of a tweet someone had posted (see below) about being hard done by compared to us Boomers.
So what is a Boomer?
Basically, a Boomer is someone born in 19anything. Initially, the term Boomer was for the WWII generation who were part of the post war baby boom. However, since a TikTok video went viral in 2019, a Boomer is now just about anyone born before the new millennium.
Is it an insult?
That would have to be a yes. It’s a term used by teenagers and young adults to dismiss or mock attitudes, typically associated with people born last century.
So while I do realise that this Twitter user is in America, a lot of the comments were from here, sunny old Blighty. So let’s pick this apart shall we…?
My parents worked hard, saved, made do and mended. We holidayed once a year to somewhere in the UK. We had one car. We ate a lot of potatoes (see post Spud-u-no-like as proof) to fill us up. We wore hand-me-downs from friends and my parents earned every penny they have. There was no inheriting because the generation before them were not home owners, most rented (I can only refer to East London as that’s where my grandparents and wider family always lived). No one, gave my folks anything, ever.
On to my generation. Yes we were more spoilt than our parents, but no we weren’t handed everything on a plate. We did have the benefit of some good financial times when lots of people were able to set up businesses or buy homes, but don’t think for one second that was because we were flush, that was because we went without to pay our bills.
Education for my generation was shocking. I went to a school that Ofsted wouldn’t be able to close quickly enough nowadays. We had teacher strikes for what felt like years. We had a new way of teaching, which was, erm, not very successful I’d say. “Be creative don’t worry about the grammar”. When I was at college we were skint, properly skint. We got student loans to buy food, which we have since paid back. My first job paid me enough for me to get there on the Tube, nothing more. Skint was the vibe of the era.
We also didn’t have the choice to buy cheap clothes, it was a market stall for bargains or the high street. Or we would sometimes buy stuff in an independent shop that had brought market clobber indoors and was a bit cheaper. Mostly shops like Next were the cheaper ones, £30 for a pair of jeans when my whole Saturday wage was just £20. We travelled on foot or perhaps a bus if it was raining, even on a night out. All aboard the night bus! We had no Uber for a relatively cheap fare, just the hope that someone was brave enough to beg their Mum for a lift.
We also didn’t have bi-weekly eyelash infills, hair extensions, spray tans, designer anything, phones, expensive haircuts (we had our Mums, or our Mum’s mate home perming us), and we still didn’t have two pound coins to rub together.
So, while at the moment I would have to agree that tuition fees are extortionate, uni is becoming more and more elitist and that exams are definitely not easier, I don’t think its a case of we had it better than them. We had it different, we had other priorities and getting on the housing ladder was, and remains, as difficult as ever.
Perhaps us Boomers were willing to be poorer and didn’t have to spend a fortune on make-up to take selfies for The Gram! I’m winding you up on purpose. The generation of today do have it tough and my generation forever calling them snowflakes, etc., isn’t really helping anyone.