Boomers Not Sitting Still For Retirement

Jim Shea
Contact ReporterThe Hartford Courant

Aging in America used to be a pretty straight forward, Point A to Point B kind of thing.

You went to school and then got a job.

You worked for a long time.

You retired at 65.

You went fishing.

You bought the farm.

Well, hold the "Amazing Grace."

The baby boomers are entering yet another stage of life, and if you have been paying attention at all over the past half century or so you know this is a group that is not going to go gently, or quietly, into that good night.

When you talk about this demographic bombshell of some 76 million Americans now between the ages of 48 and 66, the word redefining comes to mind, along with the phrase kicking and screaming.

Maybe their daddy didn't dance and their momma didn't rock and roll at their age, but boomers will be tripping the light fandango and turning cartwheels across the floor … for as long as the hip replacements hold up.

At the Aging in America conference in Washington earlier this month, experts noted that retired — as opposed to retiring — baby boomers are doing such things as going back to school, starting new careers and businesses, pursuing long held dreams, and generally pressing their lives' reset button.

So, no, you aren't going to see boomers rocking on the front porch unless, that is, a vintage Stratocaster is involved.

Baby boomers? How about baby bloomers.

Author Gail Sheehy has dubbed those between the ages of roughly 55 to the early 70s as the "Grand Tweens."

I can't say I'm crazy about the name, but I guess I'd rather be called a tween than a member of Generation X, Y or Z, which sounds too, I don't know, chromosome-ie.

The other advantage of being a tween is that it comes with great built in music possibilities. I'm thinking along the lines of such revamped oldies as Tween Angel or Tweenager in Love. And how about spicing up the evening cocktail hour with a version of Tweenage Wasteland.

Yeah, I'm getting a whiff of the future and — with apologies to Nirvana — it smells like tween spirit.

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