Wednesday, 8 July 2009


I was born just after the war in 1946 which makes me a fully qualified 'baby boomer'. Many couples understandably felt it best to delay starting a family until after hostilities had finished so the maternity wards were pretty crowded when I came along. This made me part of a population bulge which has caused a few problems decade by decade with a need to increase facilities and resources to cater for this 'people bubble'.

This was the case in most countries which had been involved in the war of course and in America, Russell Baker of the New York Times Magazine said in 1974: 'All very well for the bulge group, you may say. It will continue to dominate society as it passes through the decades like a pig through a python.' As a result, 'the pig in the python' has become a graphic phrase to describe the impact which we boomers have had on our different nations.

In Britain, first there was a shortage of schools and school places to educate the extra children. Then there were shortages in University places. Following this came a lack of jobs and later still came a shortage in housing as baby boomers reached home buying age. Now of course, we are all reaching the stage of drawing our pensions and the future prospects presumably, are for a greater demand on the Health services as baby boomers become elderly and because of improvements in living standards, live longer than our forebears. This will mean a greater need for hip replacements, retirement homes, heart bypass surgery, home carers and medicines generally.

I would agree with those who suggest that we Baby Boomers feel as if we belong to a club. We identify as a group and in the 1960's we rebelled against the lifestyles and music of our parents and sought our own styles and identity. For me, the epitome of this feeling of newness and rebellion is expressed by The Who in their 1965 song 'My Generation', but there are many other songs which contain the same sentiments.

So we are now a group of ageing rebels and have to accept that as such, we are an easy target for what I hope is affectionate humour! If you haven't already seen it, please enjoy this cartoon which sums our situation up. It is called, 'Baby Boomers begin collecting their social security....'

My favourite line from the cartoon is 'we tripped on acid, now we have acid reflux'. Like all good humour, there is a lot of truth in there. (I take daily medication for acid reflux!).


  1. That video is hilarious and true. LOL Now I'm going to have Bored, Tubby, Mild in my head all night.

  2. Hello Tony, This is very interesting. The video is very funny!I think I am going to have the tune in my head all day too!
    Ann XX

  3. Tony I to was born in 1946. I had never heard the phrase "Pig in a Python" Learn something every day. I'm off to take my prilosec. Have a great day Joe Todd

  4. Oh my - My Generation and The Who certainly brings back memories - I was rather fond of the Rolling Stones - ahhh the good old days of Woodstock and bellbottom jeans and while I can't yet collect Social Security I consider myself a Boomer as I was a child of the 60's (born in 52) and that's close enough. I have a few more years before I can collect my SS - thankfully Devoted Spouse is collecting his now and that helps - hope they don't run dry by the time I get there! Cheers!

  5. That video is quite funny, and I'd never heard of "Pig in a Python" either. Quite an appropriate analogy.

  6. Pig in a Python is a new one one me too and I am a 1946 boomer. well, never too late to learn.