I am a “Generation Straddler”.
What does that mean exactly?
Just imagine a person having one foot on each side of two states, straddling a state-line or a demarcation line. That’s what I am and those who were born in the same year I have (or at that age bracket) are considered generation straddlers.
I recently had a conversation with a dear friend about having a hard time defining which generation we belong to. You see, we were born in a very strategic year where we straddle two great decades that made a huge impact on the world as we know today.
Spending my formative years between the 80s and the 90s was both enlightening and confusing. Those two decades can be viewed like an antithesis of each other. The boldness of the 80s versus the minimalism of the 90s. The junk food craze of the 80s versus the vegan emergence of the 90s. So it only goes to show that people who grew up as a generation straddler is more well-rounded, so to speak. We can get along with Gen-X and Gen-Y people without looking and sounding off.
Although it’s not something to be proud of, I can count several friends in the early to mid twenties and those who are over forty. It’s weird when you look at it. With ideologies clashing, I’m always caught in-between the younger Gen-Ys and the older Gen-Xs. Then, when the quintessential question of which generation I belong to comes up, I’m left tongue-tied, not knowing where I really belong to.
Both generations have positive things going for them and I am glad that I get to experience both. But the struggle in choosing which category I fall under is and will be a lifelong dilemma. Anyway, I once stumbled upon an uplifting insights that it’s awesome to have friends in different age brackets or different demographics. If you do, it’s likely that you are a well-rounded person (metaphorically speaking) and can relate or jive with any person of any age.
It means that you are likeable.
That’s a great way of putting it, right? I just wish that stating that as fact would help make it not so hard to categorize myself. Never belonging to a particular generation truly plays havoc to my mentality, not to mention adding some more on my issues. (Yeah, I have issues. Who doesn’t?)
Is being a generation straddler make me stand-out in a positive way or not?
For some it might not have a great impact in their lives. They go on not being bothered by it. But for those (like me) who is unable to be inconspicuous (without lack of trying), it’s something that is bothersome. It’s like I have developed a social schizophrenia from the times I’m out mingling with people and I can’t readily decide which crowd I want to hang out with and toss a couple of corny jokes with. It is hard to choose especially when I enjoy both group’s company.
To see the positive side of this, I just remind myself that at least I won’t be considered a wallflower in such social events. I can have any company I want without trying too hard.
So, being a generation straddler isn’t all that bad. There might be some cases of identity crisis, or moments when I’m caught in the middle of a fight between the older and the younger. But all in all, it makes life more interesting this way.