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“What Are We Going to Do About the Younger Generation?”

I must have been about junior high age when the movie version of Flower Drum Song came out, and I remember being quite taken with one of the numbers about the struggles of a multi-generational Chinese-American family. At the time, I was of course, totally with the hip youngsters, and thought the old fogies needed to lighten up a little.

Needless to say, that was - what? The early sixties? And now I am one of those old fogies!

Exhibit A:

My youngest granddaughter recently held a baby shower for her second child. (Yes, people still have baby showers). But did she send out invitations? No. She announced it on Facebook! And just to make sure that nobody misunderstood, she was careful to include the added enticement that there would be a keg. (Presumably filled with beer!) My granddaughter’s baby shower was a kegger!

Even before this blow, I had been coerced into attending her gender reveal last spring (I was already there, for a history conference, so it was difficult to weasel out of just one more day added to my visit). This 21st century ritual apparently always entails lots and lots and lots of balloons, chased by lots and lots and lots of kids and the inevitable screaming and popping of said balloons. And then there was the fact that I knew virtually none of the guests, and was repelled by the buffet. To top it all off, there was no booze.

Anyway, I had been to a gender reveal before (for my other granddaugher) and it had not gone well, with the party instantly breaking up when the reveal turned out to be contrary to the wishes of all assembled (especially the expectant parents). OK; that’s already more than you needed to know.

I just don’t like gender reveals.

And I don’t drink beer either. But fortunately, I am now safely on the other side of the state and still officially recovering from major surgery, so I’m off the hook for this one. (For the record, I did attend the baby shower for her first child.)

But I don’t suppose there is any way I can get out of knitting the obligatory Christmas stocking for the new arrival, a tradition that I started myself over fifty years ago for my own children. Who knew that this only child would grow up to be the proud matriarch of a four-generational family (and growing)?

Life is good.

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