Putting the BOOM! Back in Boomers, Part 1

RobDevotions

I’m hard pressed to find a group of Americans getting more of a bum rap than the baby boomers. Whenever they’re not taking the heat for everything from declining church attendance to global warming, they get the blame for just about everything else!

If a war breaks out somewhere in the far reaches of the world, it’s those pesky boomers again.

No lasting peace effort between the Palestinians and Israelies? Gotta be the BB’s—who else?

Lots of theories floating around out there regarding this massive generation of people. I thought it might be a good idea to stick to the facts for once, like:

  • Who are they?
    Boomers are blooming across lifestages. On the younger side, they’re in the throes of kids, education costs, careers and commuting. At the upper end, they’re empty-nesting, grandparenting and reinventing retirement. As pensions evaporate, Social Security falters and real estate (their investment of choice) flattens, 2007 could be a wakeup call for the Me Generation’s financial future; trading up could mean staying put. As ever, they’ll scrimp and splurge to share the good life with loved ones, from kids to pets to aging parents. Fave indulgences are food, travel, creature comforts, tech toys, fun fitness, hobbies and a well-feathered nest for entertaining. With life expectancy growing, Boomers’ focus is on health and hipness quotients to fight “old” aging and keep them in the game.
  • They are a massive generation 141 million was the Estimated U.S. population in 1946. Today, the nation’s population stands at 297.7 million. The biggest addition? Boomers
  • 33% and 5% = The proportions of adults age 25 and older with at least a high school diploma and at least a bachelor’s degree, respectively, in 1947. By 2004, the respective proportions had risen to 85% and 28%.
  • 78.2 million = Estimated number of baby boomers, as of July 1, 2005.
  • Baby boomers are the 1st generation in American history in which the majority have obtained at least some form of higher education.
  • For Baby Boomers, health care is shifting from a medical topic to a blend of entertainment, fitness, beauty and spiritual well-being.
  • Gardening is the #1 hobby for adults over 50.
  • Boomers make up 60% of all divorced people over the age of 15 in the U.S.
  • The median consumer for a new Harley-Davidson cycle is a 46-year old male.
  • One in four boomers in the U.S. has a second home, and the typical vacation home buyer was 52 years old, earned $82,800 and purchased a property that is 197 miles (median) away from their primary residence. The largest concentration of vacation home buyers is in the midwest.
  • The top 6 concerns of Baby Boomers are: a) Having enough money to retire; b) Overall financial health; c) Having enough energy to do what they want; d) Having enough money for health care; e) Taking action to prevent disease; and f) Getting good advice from doctors.

Some Fun Facts:

Baby

What are the official years of the Baby Boom Generation?
1946 – 1964 saw a marked increase in the number of births in North America.

How did the birthrate rise and fall during the baby boom years in the US?
1940
2,559,000 births per year
1946
3,311,000 births per year
1955
4,097,000 births per year
1957
4,300,000 births per year
1964
4,027,000 births per year
1974
3,160,000 births per year

Symbols of the Baby Boom in Suburbia
1950
1960
Hot Dog Production (millions of lbs)
750
1050
Potato Chip Production (millions of lbs)
320
532
Sales of lawn and porch furniture (millions of dollars)
53.6
145.2
Sales of power mowers (millions of dollars)
1.0
3.8
Sales of floor polishers (millions of dollars)
0.24
1.0
Sales of Encyclopaedia (millions of dollars)
72
300
Number of Children age 5-14
24.3
35.5
Number of baseball Little Leagues
776
5,700


According to TV comedies, how has family life changed for the Baby Boomer Generation?
1950s
I Love Lucy
1960s
The Andy Griffith Show
1970s
All in the Family

What books have the Baby Boomers made famous?
Doctor Zhivago
by Boris Pasternak
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
by Jon Le Carr
Valley of the Dolls
by Jacqueline Susann
Love Story
by Erich Segal
Jonathon Livingston Seagull
by Richard Bach

Baby

Music the Baby Boomers Have Taken to Heart
Rock Around the Clock
by Bill Haley and His Comets
Heartbreak Hotel
by Elvis Presley
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
by The Platters
Save the Last Dance for Me
by The Drifters
Duke of Earl
by Gene Chandler
I Want to Hold Your Hand
by The Beatles
You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’
by The Righteous Brothers
The Sounds of Silence
by Simon and Garfunkel
Aquarius
by The Fifth Dimension
American Pie
by Don McLean

Which movie stars have symbolized the Baby Boom Generation?
John Wayne
Marilyn Monroe
Rock Hudson
Doris Day
Paul Newman
Julie Andrews
Robert Redford
Barbra Streisand

What celebrity deaths have most affected the Baby Boomers?
John F. Kennedy
Marilyn Monroe
Martin Luther King
John Lennon

Baby

Fads of the Baby Boomers
Hula Hoops
Frozen Foods
Poodle Skirts and Saddle Shoes
Panty Raids
Barbie and GI Joe Dolls
Bikinis
Frisbees
Yo-yos
Ouija Boards
Dune Buggies

Which athletes have been immortalized by the Baby Boom Generation?
Golf
Ben Hogan
Arnold Palmer
Jack Nicklaus
Baseball
Willie Mays
Mickey Mantle
Yogi Berra
Jackie Robinson
Football
Joe Namath
OJ Simpson
Hockey
Rocket Richard
Gordie Howe
Bobby Hull
Basketball
Bill Russell
Wilt Chamberlain
Dr. J
Boxing
Muhammed Ali
Sugar Ray Robinson
Tennis
Billie Jean King
Jimmy Connors

In short, they are a ginormous force to be reckoned with!—Actually the greatest potential of all may still lie right here with these folks and how they lead the next generation. So I say, let’s court’em, encourage’em, equip’em, and send them out to take the world for Christ.

Tomorrow I’ll tell you how.