The Humor and Life, in Particular Web site
author:  Margie Culbertson

October/November 2007 Humor Contest Winner
Best Very Short Humor!

Baby Boomer Math

Artie Wellikoff

As we baby boomers age (ooh, did I say that word)? I meant, "get better and better." We must remember that age (damn, I said it again) is just a number. You see, 25, 64, 103, they're all just numbers. And who cares about numbers, especially big ones? Haven't we dealt with enough numbers when we were in school? We're past that now. While we're at it, let's throw weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol readings into that big numbers junk heap.

As we all know 50 is the new 30, 60 the new 40 and so on. By learning this new baby boomer math, it will become clear to you that at any given time, you are at least 20 years younger (ah, there's a good word) than your pesky birth certificate would lead you to believe.

The concept of aging, as we all know by now, is an anachronism, as outdated as your old baseball cards, and must be avoided at all costs. Don't get me wrong, aging wasn't always a bad idea. It worked very well for our parents" generation and for all those who came before them. As baby boomers, it was very important for us to know that there were older people around, if only for the fact that it made us feel young (which of course, we were, and still are!) For generations, a long line of basically very uncool people got old, decrepit, and eventually died (how unhip is that?). By the way, did I shock you with that "D" word? Don't worry, it's not our thing. We're too active, vital and youthful (at least according to the Cialis commercial I just saw) to be concerned with such matters. But we should never forget the debt of gratitude we owe to the older generation whose greatest achievement, of course, was creating us.

For baby boomers, eternal youth is our God–given right. Indeed, we are proud to be the first generation that sees no need to get into the whole aging thing. Our group identity is tied up with the word "baby" for a reason. You see, beneath these Botox–injected faces, enhanced breasts, and hair weaves, we're all really cute and cuddly.

But perhaps you, like I, have noticed a somewhat disturbing trend of late. Instead of finding our peers on the covers of magazines such as Rolling Stone and Cosmo, we are more likely to find them gracing the covers of Modern Maturity and the Ladies Home Journal. Titles such as "Fabulous at Fifty" and "Sexy and Sixty" are supposed to appeal to us. "Fabulous," "Sexy," certainly. "Fifty," "Sixty?" I think not. As I said, big numbers such as these have gone the way of your old eight track tape player and are no longer of any relevance.

But alas, an even more disturbing phenomenon has appeared on the horizon. Some of the children of baby boomers have started to turn 40! Yes, it's true. In some quarters this has caused panic and revulsion. If our children are getting older, doesn't that make us older too? Such thinking is dangerous and clearly indicates that these folks have forgotten the basic principles of baby boomer math. So I say to these people, "No, the fact that your son is turning 40 does not mean that you are Old. If you will just apply simple baby boomer math to the situation and remember that sixty is the new forty, you will soon discover that, in fact, your children are now the same age, and in many cases, older than you are". This, of course, is quite sad for them, but wonderful for us!

So we will continue to bask in our eternal youth, much to the envy of all other generations. Well, at least until 2008. What happens then, you ask? That is the year that baby boomers will first be eligible to collect Social Security. And the government will want iron–clad proof that you are, yes, sixty–two. But we will not shrink from this task, brave folks that we are. Numbers will become our new best friends and we will once again embrace them. You see, not all big numbers are bad, especially ones with dollar signs in front of them.

© Artie Wellikoff

Though this is my first effort in a while, I am a published author in a major publication. Okay, it might be difficult to prove, but if you check the June, 1965 edition of the Reader's Digest, you'll find a wacky definition which I submitted. I spent most of the intervening forty–two years toiling away for the city of New York as a probation officer. Now that I am retired from that, I have decided to get involved in less life–threatening pursuits.
I am married with a daughter in college, living on Long Island.

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©Margie Culbertson

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