The Baby Boomer that wasn’t
I was born in 1953 and that puts me right in the middle of this “Baby Boomer” generation. My older brother and sister nearly ruined me but that is another story. I was born an artist and entrepreneur and I never fit into the “status quo”. So this short bio is to help “set the record” straight on what appears to be another battle between the “generations”. I hope there are other “Baby Boomers” like me that also rejected the “status quo” of our generation. I sure hope so.
I grew up in a middle class family as number 3 of 4. I wore hand me downs, I didn’t care. I was a natural born artist and entrepreneur. I was a loner, and often explored the canyons and beaches of San Diego all alone. I didn’t have motor cycles or mini bikes like my friends. I walked or rode my old and only (Stingray) bike. My Mom did not coddle me; she was in her own world mostly defined by a bottle of Vodka. My father was a war hero, but never talked about it or anything for that matter. He was a task master and I only knew the bite of his belt.
I was forbidden to wear blue jeans or surf and was beaten mercilessly every time It was discovered I had a few pairs of jeans or was caught at the beach, (gasp) surfing. In 4th grade my teacher, Mr. Aucoin, discovered I was an incredibly gifted artist, yada yada and walked me home one day to inform my fortunate parents how lucky they were and should put me into art school. When he left my Dad and I had a little talk in the garage. He tied me to the rafters by my hands, stripped me naked and gave me 20 lashings with his belt as he raged telling me I was going to go to college and be an engineer and join the Navy. I was rebellious then and continue to this day. (I love engineers, I happily employ them, but I am not one, well maybe I am)
Entrance to middle school began with a beating and a shaved head. Did I mention I grew up in a basically abusive environment? My older siblings were “uber” abusive too, my brother tossed me into a black paper wasp nest when he was 8 years old and I was two, going downhill from there.
I am illustrating a point, so please, keep reading. 7th grade began with extreme humiliation, shaved head painted green by my Dad, with black and blue bruises on my ass the size of cantaloupes and being a small and late bloomer, just acerbated the abuse from my peers in the showers as my bright brilliant butt checks and prepubescent hairless body became target one for all the aspiring narcissists and sociopathic bullies of that day that would make up the majority of the coming baby boom generation. Like I said, I was rebellious then and defiant and refused to be subjugated by these aberrant Neanderthals both at home and school and eventually what would become the status quo in government and corporations of today.
Fast forward from my lovely childhood as I graduated from High School with honors, despite the consistent obstacles of bullies, liars, family abuse and substance abuse. You know where this is heading, right? I was terribly damaged goods, despite my strong will and despite I knew it was not me and that the day would come I would overcome this as well. I still landed into extreme despair and destruction. But wait, this next huge disaster, I believe is one of the major reasons I am not nor ever became a sociopathic baby boomer, like 90% of my generation did.
I overdosed! Praise the Lord! Right out of high school I was invited to a big summer time, up in the foot hills in Orange County of Loma Linda a big kegger bash party and I went. A party with 100s of babes, live music, in an upscale ranch house on 100s of acres kinda out in the middle of nowhere, with a spiked bowl of punch, spiked with a concoction of Meth, Strychnine, PCP, angel dust, type of spike.
50 some people died of overdose that night. Another 30 some people got rounded up and put into hospitals and I never heard from them again either. Then there was me, on another dimension where everything looked like demons, I was panicked with fear, running wild through the woods, mindlessly lost in the streets on Orange County for many weeks, living with no conscience awareness totally on instincts like a wild animal. But I overcame and survived it.
Keep reading, as I believe this young foundation, including the drug overdose, is what saved me from the abhorrent mindless pursuit of materialistic greed and quest of power my generation became drunk on.
The point is I survived. I eventually found my way home to my Dad’s and you can imagine how that reunion went right? He beat the crap out of me, but my step Mom did step in and stopped his madness. I was able to work a few weeks at a menial job to afford to fly to Santa Cruz where I found a huge tree stump one room cabin in the middle of nowhere to recuperate. I then moved into an old chicken farm, turned it into a redwood burl business and began to rebuild my life from the ground up. I was basically like a refugee starting with nothing and building a new life from scratch.
Down the road, I got back into surfing Santa Cruz level, large, huge waves, again from scratch. My first board was a broken long board someone gave me. I reshaped it and learned to surf the big waves.
I found myself rejecting jobs, dropping out of college and always relying on my entrepreneurial abilities and my artistic capacity. Eventually I found great success, and discovered this whole Yuppie phenomena with my generation buying big imported cars, seeking money at all costs, I found myself constantly fending off the predator attorneys and frivolous lawsuits. It made me sick.
As I watched government and big business slowly being taken over by my generation, I was shocked at the selfishness, idolatry, greed, envy that consumed and choked our culture. The Viet Nam war was not caused by Baby Boomers, however, most of us did time in that hell. During the 60s the “Hippies” rioted against the “establishment” only to not just become the “enemy” they rebelled against, but an even worse version.
I never was a “Hippy”; that event occurred in the mid to late 60s where I was a child being beaten, suffering a divorce, beaten some more (seriously, I thought all middle class families were like this). I also continued my love for surfing, “rebelliously” wearing blue jeans and continuing my artistic endeavors. Sexually abused, running away from home, finally finishing High School to then hit a wall with a massive drug over dose. So I never really got into the “Hippy” thing. I got into the Surfer thing and art was my and continues as my foundation and source of livelihood. And so glad I did and it is.
Side Note: About the Baby Boom surfer revolution. Professional surfing was invented during this time. A few big names and mentors come to mind during my time:
Shaun Tomson (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaun_Tomson )
Gerry Lopez (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerry_Lopez )
Jack O’Neill (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_O'Neill_%28businessman%29 )
Peter Townend (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Townend_%28surfer%29 )
All of these people choose to be entrepreneurs, environmentalists, and very spiritually founded. And this is my culture. With that said….
Baby Boomers: First it was Red Robin shoes and Dr. Spock, and then came the Hippies that morphed into the Yuppies, that devolved into Liberals, becoming socialists and eventually tyrants of the very type this generation at first rebelled against. We have discovered the enemy, and he is us!
You can understand my shock and dismay that Baby Boomers “my generation” have destroyed the economy, ruined marriage, turned the American economical machine into a broken junk heap, lead the way of cultural rot, ruined the educational system, driven the nation into unrecoverable debt, sold out the industry to Chinese and Saudi interests, etc.. To watch Baby Boomer leaders like John Boehner, Barack Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, George and Jeb Bush, etc. ad nauseam, conduct national suicide is the very epidemic of Baby Boomer greed and self-grandiosity. Editor’s note (not all Baby Boomers).
In the 80s I started an ad agency in the beginning of the Silicon Valley technology revolution. A huge success which was ultimately brought to destruction by, you guessed it, greed, deception, idolatry and envy. The very people the company was making wealthy, attacked it with lawsuits wanting more and my first wife at the time drained its resources in her never ending quest to buy more stuff. I was badly prepared for this onslaught as I tended to trust people as I was a surfer, not a Hippy, Yuppie, Boomer, idolater.
Responsible for the Clinton-Bush duopoly control over our culture, economy, war and general destruction, Baby Boomers are going to go Baby Bust real soon, as it is real clear that the Democratic and Republican parties are the same snake wearing two different masks. So I must ask, is it a deeper conspiracy from multiple generations going back? Is it Illuminati stuff we are dealing with? Is World War 3 on the brink of disaster? It feels that way.
So, why the focus on beating up on Millennials, are Baby Boomers looking for a scape goat? After all we, the Baby Boomers, raised the Millennials, right? Spare the rod, spoil the child right? As a younger Boomer, I have already raised 2 who are in their mid-20s and I am proud of them. Both are successful have goals, one working his way through college, no college debt, the other a brilliant entrepreneur and artist, making her way very well in a very difficult and competitive market, as an oil painter of modern art.
Here is another perspective from my point of view. As the economy sank in 2008, etc., I sold my home in San Diego and moved into a much lower cost of living situation so to be able to survive to Wyoming. I also have a strong work ethic. Not all Boomers do. I have as many if not more issues with Boomers being lazy, not being on time, deceptive, etc. as anyone. It is an individual case, I believe, and is a cultural problem, not a generation problem.
Oh By The Way did I tell you I home schooled my children to protect them from the overall intention of the Baby Boomer generation (Our culture, our government) to control my children’s critical thinking and God given creativity.
There are bureaucrats, politicians, drug addicts, upper management elitist in large publically controlled corporations, criminals, publically held corporation employees, small business owners, then there are entrepreneurs (innovators, musicians, artists, engineers, revolutionary leaders). None of this list really is designated by a generational condition.
What is needed is more entrepreneurs to stand up and not only be accounted for, but to identify other entrepreneurs and build a culture based on what drives the entrepreneurial spirt.
I meant to write this in one hour this morning after reading another article from a millennial whom has become bored and tired of hearing the constant drone of the selfish boomers, banging the drum of pointing at them as scape goats. Frankly, I am tired of it too.
I really do not care what generation you are from, or color, or sex, or whatever. If you are entrepreneurial or even think that maybe you are, come join us. Because I think we can join together and in that spirit, that quest, we can change the world. Maybe even avert a global war that threatens our very existence.