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Are We Human or Are We PUMA?

Human performed by “Goodbye Elliott” — be sure to click Play

While searching for a “Killers” version of their song, “Human,” that I could use here, I found this heartrending one by the band “Goodbye Elliot,” performing in their living room in Hawaii. As a former grades K-12 music teacher, I have a special place in my heart for talent like this, the joy and purity of playing and performing music.

We were lucky to have found each other. We were just kids.

—Paul McCartney, of his songwriting partnership with John Lennon. “The View” 1/14/09.

Wow, I guess I’m officially old, although everything about my generation will still be sixteen. “I Want to Hold Your Hand” was released in 1962. That was 47 years ago. I didn’t even like the Beatles at first. I was into Ray Charles, oldies, jazz, avant-garde authors, poets, and playwrights, movies and musicals.

You won’t notice the years slip by. I’m telling you now. I don’t care.

But, are you still “Dancer”?

Are we human, or are we PUMA?

Some people might view that in a negative way. Not me. I’m looking at it this way. As ‘What’s Your Point, Honey?” filmmaker Amy Sewell* put it:

Women shouldn’t be paid equal, they should be paid more.

“The Killers” official music video of Human**, which is disabled for download, is full of big cats, which gives the song a special mystique and meaning to me. Call it telepathic radio — PUMAs are filmed heading right into the camera, stalking New Mexico-looking landscape. I highly recommend that you view it on YouTube, linked at bottom of page.

From mp3 lyrics;

[** There has been considerable confusion and debate over the line “Are we human or are we dancer?” in the song’s chorus. Many have incorrectly heard “denser” instead of “dancer”, a change which significantly alters the interpretation of the song’s meaning. On the band’s official website, the biography section states that Flowers is singing “Are we human, or are we dancer?” and also says that the lyrics were inspired by a disparaging comment made by Hunter S. Thompson about how America was raising a generation of dancers.] Lyrics: Human, The Killers [end]

As with any good song, poem or story, it holds up to lots of interpretation. Apparently there are many, including mine. The video and the song remind me of PUMA, at first, of course, because of the cats. But also this . . .

The idea of our innate wildness as humans, all of us, is visceral. Our willingness to break free from what’s expected. Afterall, that’s what my Baby Boom Generation did, right? Which is the human part, which is the animal part? Which is the spirit of the human, AND which of the animal? Where do they exist and reside? Are they part of our hard drive or an application? How do they determine our way in Life and the paths we choose?

HUMAN by The Killers

I did my best to notice
When the call came down the line
Up to the platform of surrender
I was brought but I was kind

And sometimes I get nervous
When I see an open door
Close your eyes, clear your heart
Cut the cord

Are we human or are we dancer?
My sign is vital, my hands are cold
And I’m on my knees looking for the answer
Are we human or are we dancer?

Pay my respects to grace and virtue
Send my condolences to good
Hear my regards to soul and romance
They always did the best they could

And so long to devotion
It taught me everything I know
Wave goodbye, wish me well
You’ve gotta let me know

Are we human or are we dancer?
My sign is vital, my hands are cold
And I’m on my knees looking for the answer
Are we human or are we dancer?

Will your system be alright
When you dream of home tonight
There is no message we’re receiving
Let me know, is your heart still beating?

Are we human or are we dancer?
My sign is vital, my hands are cold
And I’m on my knees looking for the answer
Are we human or are we dancer?

You’ve gotta let me know

Are we human or are we dancer?
My sign is vital, my hands are cold
And I’m on my knees looking for the answer
Are we human or are we dancer?

My new boyfriend finally turned me on to The Beatles around the time “Revolver” was released in 1966, then “Sgt. Pepper. . . ” in 1967, and I was hooked. These were our anthems. When the movie “Let It Be” was released in 1970, the Beatles were at their height of mutual destruction, at each others’ throats, sarcastically sniping and putting each other down in the film. But evidently, I didn’t know or believe it before I went, alone, high on acid, thinking I’d have a wonderful ride. I left the theater on one of the few bummers I ever had while stoned out of my mind. The curtain had been pulled back in The Land of Oz — about the Beatles and so many other unacceptable things in our culture.


The Beatles, “Get Back”

John was always my favorite Beatle, including, perhaps especially his journey into feminism. This morning, Paul talked about losing his best friend, when John died. At the time, it was reported they’d been somewhat estranged, amidst years of pressure to reunite as a band. Down the road, perhaps they’d want to take some of it back, but at the time I’m sure it made sense to each of them. I’m not sure what the song means, and on wiki, it sounds like they were just making up ditties during their jam. But, even though it’s far from my favorite Beatles song, I get that same feeling of getting back to what’s essential, and of meaning.

Through it all — the trials of our existence — what is the kernel we seek? A means to live in peace, be fed, happy, respected, love and be loved, and make our music? To be free. To be seen. To feel some kind of meaning in our life. Seeing and hearing Hillary Clinton‘s deep eloquence and majestic thinking during her Senate Confirmation Hearings for Secretary of State reminded me once again. To discover our purpose, individually and collectively, and the Spirit of our Dancer.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life? —Mary Oliver, The Summer Day


* Stay tuned for my upcoming post, and recorded interview with documentary filmmaker and feminist, Amy Sewell. We discuss her latest film, “What’s Your Point, Honey?” which is about how to fulfill our mission of electing a woman President of the United States.

“The Killers,” Human on YouTube.

[cross-posted from Lady Boomer NYC]

144 Responses

  1. Beautiful post, LB!

    Maybe there’s something to this generational stuff…I just don’t feel it. I’m considered Generation X, perhaps for a reason!


  2. Thank you, mb!

    I’m not sure what you’re referring to by “it” . . . 🙂

  3. i am a gen xer to. an early one, but gen xer just the same!

  4. I wrote this the other day in some kind of fit of melancholy, and it’s a mood piece that was a little soft for here and now, perhaps. However, yesterday, after the miracle of the plane that was a boat, and seeing the Clintons and hearing the most beautiful Bon Jovi renditions, I decided to post it.

  5. I’m finally getting to write my report of last night . . . So far today, my computer’s been saying the startup drive is almost full, then full, and wouldn’t let me doing a thing. So I’ve been deletin’.

  6. I think it is a beautiful post! Of course, I am a boomer so maybe I can relate a little better.

  7. i too am genX

  8. Sadly, I feel that there is a deep moral disconnect which I have seen in the Obama movement. It is hard to say what has made them so bitter that they cannot enjoy their choosen one’s ascending to his presidential throne. They must dehumanize all those that disagree with them because it makes it easier to destory critics and encourages apathy among others. They are slowly and steadily breaking down the one common thread we all share and that is our humanity. Terrible atrocities happen when apathy reigns. If this continues, what a sad legacy this will be for Obama and his supporters.

  9. Aww. Those kids are adorable.

    Maybe the Killers are PUMA’s. I can’t find anything about them supporting Obama, although I’m sure I’m now on someone’s watch list for searching “killers” and “Obama.”

  10. We’re SUPERHUMAN.

    The video and the song remind me of PUMA because of the cats. But also the idea of our innate wildness as humans

    Where’s Truthteller? LOL. Seriously though, this reminds me of American Girl in Italy’s post about pumas as “the new jews”. I agree that PUMAs are a people persecuted for their beliefs, and eventually for their failure to fall in line, and follow the chosen one.

  11. This is a lovely post. Every now and then it’s time to reassess. I like the thought that if it isn’t inside you it doesn’t exist.

    Lately I’ve been feeling the power of PUMA and the resurgence of feminism (the Kool-aid resistant kind) on several sites. We’ve been in crouch position for a long time. There will be more leaping and dancing now.

  12. The Real Kim! Yo, boomer!

    frenly, taggles, mb — hey genxers – LOL!

  13. I don’t feel like I’m part of some great generation, and I don’t feel that my age defines me.

    That’s what I’m saying. It seems from your posts that you feel differently, and that’s what doesn’t resonate with me. But I still love your writing and think it’s beautiful, and eloquent!

  14. And I can’t wait to hear what happened at the concert last night!!

  15. I have been thinking of officially joining the PumaPAC.org, but I would like to know what the stance on abortion is. I like the New Agenda’s no stance on abortion because I believe the issue has been used to divide women and prevent them from . I read one post that made me think PUMApac.org did take a stance, but I checked out the Mission statement and goals, and it says nothing about abortion. I would like to join to be more active.

  16. It’s pro-choice.

  17. Karen – Maybe you should go ask over at Puma Pac.

  18. donnadarko, yikes! Yesterday I was musing about who Obama’s scapegoats would be. He’s so post-label, ya know. It occurred to me that it might be non-believers – non-Obama believers that is.

    We’re part of the resistance all right. And we’re leaving our tracks all over the internet.

    The reason we give Obama genuflectors such fits is that theirs is a one true god proselytizing religion. Somehow it makes it less true, if everyone doesn’t believe.

  19. I did ask. My email was fwded to another person, but I have emailed that person before over the past week or two and never received a response. I am guessing it refuses to take a stance and that post which made me wonder simply reflected some of the author’s opinions.

  20. Thanks, purple finn!

    madamab — ah, yes, you’re right. I do identify with a generation or tribe. And thank you for your honesty. At the same time, following our wild self/spirit is ageless and timeless. I guess I’m feeling the dichotomy or perhaps dissonance between them within myself right now.

  21. karen email murphy at pumapac dot org.

  22. beautiful post LadyBoomer.

    i love the killers — that brandon flowers has such a sweet and serious singing voice.

    What differentiates us Pumas from Obots is that we view politics and our involvement in it as part and parcel of our, as you wrote, “means to live in peace, be fed, happy, respected, love and be loved, and make our music? To be free. To be seen. To feel some kind of meaning in our life.”

    That is something Obots will NEVER understand or be a part of.

  23. Well, LB, let there never be any doubt – you are PUMA. And you’re beautiful!


  24. That is the person I have emailed in the past and who my email was fwded to over various things. I don’t remember ever hearing from her.

  25. I see that wild spirit in PUMA, and I love it.

  26. Fl voter, I think the obots are drunk on hubris. What they don’t seem to get is that most obama voters are not kool-ade drinkers but reluctant voters who felt they had no other choice.

  27. well, she is here now. maybe she can help you now.

  28. I guess PUMA’s are Humans. Even with all the hate spewing vitriol directed at us we remain HUMAN.

  29. Hey, Murphy, does PUMA take a stance on abortion, or does it believe the pro-choice/pro-life issue has been used to divide women and turn women against each other?

    There are sexists pigs who are pro-choice; sex without consequences in their opinion.
    There are pro-life believers who support women’s empowerment.
    And I have also heard sound and reasonable arguments from all angles as well as sensless arguments from all sides.

  30. my ears are burning!!


    Hi Karen — Puma PAC is about political reform of the Democratic Party, making it possible for a woman to be elected president, and changing the cultural landscape in which the crudest and most vile sexism and misogyny are unremarked upon aspects of our political discourse. Oh, and making women’s history part of every school’s curriculum.

    Reproductive choice is a constitutional right. The days of forced pregnancy are LONG gone. That’s our position on reproductive freedom.

  31. madamab said: “that’s what doesn’t resonate with me”

    When I look back at my long life, it is the ’60’s revolution, the assassination of JFK and the 2nd wave of the feminist movement that define it politically. I think the PUMA movement is of a similar significance. I’m glad I’m sharing this with you and so many others here.

  32. Seriously – ObamaNation is a movement based on hatred, triumphalism and narcissism.

    We shouldn’t expect anything else from the hard-core Kool-Ade drinkers. They would be right at home in Orwell’s “1984,” loving Big Brother and reporting on non-believers to the Thought Police.

  33. Thanks, Murphy — You have a caller on here!

    I think you’re a flower child genxer!

    I know, I just heard The Killers and was kind of intrigued by his weird feathered suit, found their video — amazing! — then got hooked on Goodbye Elliott’s version.

    But really, it all comes down to power and integrity, don’t it?

  34. Thank you, purplefinn and LBNYC for talking about these issues…very thought-provoking!

  35. Darn, I forget the civil rights movement. It’s so much a part of the ’60’s for me along with the anti-war movement. There was so much going on then.

  36. I see. Thank you, Murphy.

  37. Me, too, Purple Finn. Beautifully said. Glad we can share now and that we also lived through those defining moments.

    Murphy! Yes, sister!

  38. Who let the dog in? This is a cat party?

  39. FLVoter, on January 16th, 2009 at 3:55 pm Said:

    “Sadly, I feel that there is a deep moral disconnect which I have seen in the Obama movement.”

    FLVoter — I know. We cannot be silent. And we cannot let Them define Us. Or the terrorists have won.

  40. I never knew there was supposed to be hostility between gen-Xers and boomers until this last year, when many “liberals” in the lefty blogosphere told me that I was a scourge on the face of the earth and should crawl away and disappear.

    My first thought was, “What’d I do to them?” Finally I just had to scratch my head over anyone who was apparently envious of my wonderful boomer childhood growing up with nine siblings in a house with 2 bedrooms and one bathroom!

    There are disadvantages to living alone, but I gotta say, after all these years, I still like having my own bathroom.

    BTW, I like that song, Ladyboomer. I have to ask my niece (born 1985, no idea what gen that is) if she’s familiar with it and the group.

  41. Madamb and Lady: There was something about the 60’s and 70’s, especially if you were active in the peace movements, civil rights and feminism, something that lingered after all was said and done.

    I cannot speak for LadyBoomer, but I know that at times, when I am upset about the war or the past three elections, I get restless and think I am supposed to be out there waving my banner; or when I am at some social function – I think, What the hell am I doing here?”

    We were wild, but it was a nice wild, if you didn’t have a ride, you felt safe hitching a ride. I don’t think I am glamorizing, but those times are embedded in you and even though it sounds hokey, I never felt more free to be me than then.

  42. TheRealKim, well said.

  43. purplefinn, PUMAs are also similar to Jewish people because of our suffering and high moral ground.

  44. sister of ye — Hey boomer! Shared bathrooms, we had those, too — a shared showerhouse and outhouses. Stay tuned for the movie. no seriously, stay tuned. Oh, and nice to share songs among the generations. My kids and I do that back and forth.

    We lived like a third world country, beginning in the Carter Times, and made it through. The thing is, we Chose it. People in third world countries and people here now in this country aren’t. I Can grow food if I need to.

    Well, it’s not only generational — b/c I ‘m a pariah to my longtime friends. I don’t even want to talk about it — I know where they all stand.

  45. sister of ye –

    I never knew there was supposed to be hostility between gen-Xers and boomers until this last year, when many “liberals” in the lefty blogosphere told me that I was a scourge on the face of the earth and should crawl away and disappear.

    That’s what doesn’t resonate with me. I don’t know why in the world I should be hostile towards an entire generation. I think it’s ridiculous. And I don’t know why they should be hostile towards me, although I don’t think they are.

    Seems like another bullshit tactic to divide Americans from each other to me. As we know, Obama specializes in driving wedges between those of the leftish persuasion.

  46. Great post.

    As you mentioned Lennon in it, I wondered if you would be interested in listening to this, it is John and Yoko talking about why they wrote Woman is the nigger of the World.

    [audio src="http://www.upload-mp3.com/pfiles/50876/Lennon%20talking%20about%20witnotw.mp3" /]

    You can upload it to the wordpress if you want to and know how.

  47. in moderation, please release me….

  48. donnadarko, suffering through this excruciating election cycle? Having the same hopes as so many that the end of the Bush presidency would be a chance for the USA to get back on track. And then having them dashed with yet another gamed election – this time primary? Discovering that the Democratic Party isn’t? Having the best candidate undercut by her Party? Is that the suffering you’re talking about?

  49. donnadarko – I’m a Jewish PUMA. I’ve got you all beat!

    Now, if only I were a boomer too…


  50. Gotta go – have a great evening!

  51. Madamab: I never saw the ostracism against boomers and former, yes we were, hippies until this election. I first saw it at HuffPost, when a GenX’er told me no old hippies allowed. My children were born in the ’80’s so are they GenX’ers, I dont know?

    What I do know is that they are proud of the things I did and they love Dylan, the Stones, and can proudly sing along with any old Motown tune out there. My daughter once told me that she couldn’t be friends with anyone who didn’t know Janis Joplin was dead.

    Anyway, the GenX’ers here are not the ones that I saw on some of the other blogs. You guys are wise beyond your years and I am proud to know you and feel wiser having known you.

  52. madamab, Bye. I hope that your PUMA participation will help realize lots of our Boomer goals. Peace!

  53. We wanted something more and went for it in many different domains and ways. Then there was a lull. People were asleep. Just wanted to go to school a degree to make money — not that there’s anything wrong with that — just that they lost the heart of soul of learning that had taken hold in the 60s & 70s. So now they’re shaken up.

    People bought something and buy it everyday in our culture. They don’t what it is, they just want it. I fault the shallow, bought media as much as anything. People hated Bush and wanted a savior. They got it. PUMAs know and saw what happened. For those that didn’t get it, maybe they will someday, hopefully soon.

    Otherwise, frankly, the country is really celebrating that a Black man could finally be President. They don’t care if it was That one et al with no integrity. They’re just happy at redemption.

  54. LBNYC: I, too, can grow a mean vegetable garden, can the food and split wood. That is one of the reasons this economic crisis has never worried me, I know I will get by. However, I worry about everyone else.

    I thought someone was going to do a post on things we could do to make ourselves more comfortable during hard times.

  55. ‘Nite mb!

  56. In the sixties economic times were good. We felt we could thumb our noses at the hard work our parents exemplified. I had job offers before I left school simply based on my grades. All that changed.

  57. MadamaB, I agree that it seems like a deliberate divisive tactic, because I started noticing it when Obama-fever first started to rise.

    I’ve always felt that no one person can possibly experience everything, so there are things of interest to learn from everyone, right down to preschoolers with their refreshingly straightforward view of the world.

  58. The only thing that I have ever faulted about being a boomer is that I hate having roots. I will pick up and go somewhere new at the drop of a hat. Wanderlust has always been a big part of me.

  59. I’m Generation Jones. Same as the Big Zero and I don’t feel any connection to him at all. Zero. Nada. Zip.

  60. sister of ye, many good points!

    Yes, that was a way to discredit Hillary. Generation past. We needed someone “fresh.”

  61. TheRealKim — re: veggie garden, etc. — Cool! I can’t exactly grow one in in NYC, but if they start diggin’ up the Park, I’m good.

    That post sounds interesting, not sure who!

    Alice Rodham Puma — Thanks for the link! I may have heard that way in the past, and will check it out a bit later.

    I think, although I’m not sure, the point of this piece was about what’s essential — I’m not so concerned about the generational thing. It was just a backdrop to muse about feeling old and young at the same time, and about following one’s path, calling.

    PUMAs are multi-everything.

  62. This generational warfare stuff has been around for a while, the blogger boys are so vapid they need something to pretend to support. And of course they felt victimized by cindy sheehan’s refusal to play their docile mommy and do what they told her instead of representing her own conscience. But….Obama is 46, not that much younger than hrc. Certainly closer to her than college age, making the stupidity that much more stupid.

  63. LB NYC: Otherwise, frankly, the country is really celebrating that a Black man could finally be President. They don’t care if it was That one et al with no integrity. They’re just happy at redemption.

    Yep. And, in the end, that redemption is gonna cost a helluva lot more than just $700 million dollars.

  64. gxm17, on January 16th, 2009 at 4:53 pm Said:

    “I’m Generation Jones. Same as the Big Zero and I don’t feel any connection to him at all. Zero. Nada. Zip.”

    I guess I’m a bit daft — what’s Generation Jones?

  65. Plus the boomers believed in causes and had principles and did something about it….anathma to the bored postmodern hipster elitist ethos.

  66. In this post, I felt the feeling young and old, but I also felt the turmoil you feel when you aren’t sure where you are going or who you are anymore.

    That is the feeling I get when I get all glammed up and go to a social event, I enjoy myself, but a big part of me wants to run out screaming and go to Arcosanti or Costa Rica and forget that I ever stepped foot on a golf course.

  67. madamab, I know many PUMAs are Jewish. YAY US! And Boomers.

  68. My “baby” sister was born in Oct. 1964 and happily considered herself a boomer. If she were still around, she’d spit on the “Gen Jones” designation.

    Come to think if it, she’d probably spit on Obama, too.

    Actually, Obama reminds me a lot of my “baby” brother, born in 1962, Except I suspect Obama is even more full of himself!

  69. TheRealKim – LOL! that’s great! You golf? 🙂

  70. purplefinn, yes, all that, and don’t forget our high moral ground. We were right about Obama.

  71. These blogger boyz just dont get it. I cannot picture any of them out in the streets protesting a war or holding a banner. I see most of them in a fraternity guzzling beer and only interacting on a computer.

  72. I like glam and nature both.

  73. I love being a boomer!!!! I believe it is our generation that will make the real change needed in our country today.
    Women like Hillary Clinton, Harriet Christian, and even you LB!!!
    It is each one of us pulling together for the good of all women everywhere.
    Women will make the difference, we always have.
    It it time to stand up for women, stand up as the sisters we are, I too believe there is a special place in hell for women who do not support other women!
    I still believe with all my heart that Hillary Clinton will be our first woman president. Am I just a cockeyed optimist? I don’t think so, I believe that this good woman, who has fought for women everywhere, will be our president, and not a moment too soon.
    Thanks LB, once again you’ve given us something to think about!

  74. Lady Boomer,

    I agree. We cannot be silent. I know that after what I have witnessed, I am not a Progressive, nor do I want to be one. Now that Obama will be President shortly, why can’t they try to build a bridge and adopt some of our concernns, such as the ERA and ending sexism and misogyny? I know that I did not vote for Bush in 2000, but when the Towers were attacked, I felt very united to all Americans including the Bushies. I feel no connection to Obamanation at all. The hate that has been on display for over a year now from Obamanation will mar his Presidency forever.

  75. Golf??? Hmmm, I was married to a golfer and we belonged to a club. I played occasionally, when there was a couples tournament. But I dont think that what I did actually qualified me as a golfer. I owned clubs, does that make me a golfer? 😀

  76. madamab, your party looks like a lot of fun. I hope as many of you on NY, NJ, and Conn. can attend.

  77. I am getting IM’s from my son in Iraq. Just shows you where there is a will, there is a way. The guys over there have discovered Iraqi moonshine, made from a nut from the palm trees. His whole unit is plasterd right now.

  78. FLVoter — I agree. But remember, Howard Dean started right after he lost, to build his ground up organization, which was already mainly in place after his groundbreaking org building during his campaign. At the same time we’re speaking up, we must not let their tactics deter us from building ours or accomplishing our goals.

  79. Real kim, yep. They constantly mock any kind of engagement. There is no activism but blogging. Winning, getting to be a paid blogger is all they care about.

    Sister, I’ve heard a few boomers say they think generation jones was basically invented so the cognitive dissonance crowd can pretend mighty Obama isn’t an evil old boomer like evil old hill. LOL wouldn’t surprise me.

  80. We’re the tail end boomers.


    My husband and I prefer the Blank Generation from a song by Richard Hell. But someone went and dubbed us Gen Jones.


  81. TheRealKim – more of a golfer than I! My closest is miniature when a kid. Oh, right, I didn’t remember about your son being there. I guess getting smashed is a universal language.

  82. Gen X is supposedly 1961-1981 babies. I’m dead center Gen X. Gen Y is the problem, IMHO. The Gen Y, netgens think the world owes them a living. Gen Y males AND females are the ones who wore “the shirts” b/c they think we are so post gender that we don’t need feminism anymore, or they have redefined it in some way I do not accept.

    No offense. But all the aggressive female Obots I saw were in their early to mid twenties. I am still pissed off at them. And then I keep reading these articles in the Economist et al about how the recession has finally forced the netgeners and gen y’ers to actually sell themselves to employers instead of their usual position where they think they are the ones who need to be wooed. And the Gen Yers feel “stifled” by “traditional work environments.” No shit. Welcome to reality.


  83. Iraqi moonshine, I quess it is universal. It is forbidden, but he drinks with his superiors, so I assume another “dont ask, don’t tell”

  84. Lady Boommer,

    Good Point! Looks like we will all need to be in it for the long haul if anything is going to change. I’m there.

  85. And I read a comment at The Blog That Shall Not Be Named where a commenter accused Baby Boomers or basically sitting around with their thumbs up their asses, living off the successes of their parent’s generation, while the world fell apart around them and they didn’t care to notice.

    This is the “new mentality.” All you boomers are to blame. Take note.

  86. gxm17 — Thank you for that! See how Me my generation was? I hadn’t even heard of you guys. Eek! I’m sorry. 🙂 This is great!

  87. Nope, Seriously, trust me. We’ve been around, and overlooked, since the 70s. We’re the ones who got squashed between the mighty Boomers and the mighty Xers.

    Quote from the Wiki link above: “This is the situation described by Sex Pistols bass player Sid Vicious, who said that he had missed the Summer of Love because he was too busy playing with his Action Man.”

  88. Micki: “All you boomers are to blame.”

    My mother says the same thing!

  89. Yep, it was us, we turned on and tuned out.

  90. No problem Lady Boomer. We, well at least my husband and I, actually like our outsider status. It goes along with the whole original punk rock attitude.

  91. madamab, on January 16th, 2009 at 4:22 pm Said:

    Seriously – ObamaNation is a movement based on hatred, triumphalism and narcissism.
    We know those qualities are at the heart of the inner workings of BO’s campaign, and in many of his bloggers with whom we interact.

    But there are lots of good people out there who don’t know what we know about the election and who are happily ignorant and thrilled that he is PE. There is a blindness about him out there amongst decent people. They are convinced that things will be magically better after the 20th.

    Some of these folks are dear friends of mine; smart, articulate, well-intentioned. Already they are nervous and protective about their ill-chosen candidate. In my church a community prayer was offered up that asked people not to expect too much and to remember that BO is “just one man.” Apologists so soon, and inauguration yet to come.

    Not exactly reflective of the campaign promises, as I recall.

    I predict vast disappointment and anger amongst his mainstream supporters, but not for a long-time, as the BO camp will manage expectations tightly, while simultaneously courting the right and hanging onto whoever it is that financed this debacle.

  92. We had some good shit back then to turn on too though. 🙄 😀

  93. I guess that shouldn’t be discussed, but LBNYC knows what I am talking about 😉

  94. In moderation, wonder what I said this time……

  95. I’m even thinking of pulling out my “Focus Thine Anarchy” and “Eat the Rich” buttons. It’s time for another wave of creative dissent.

  96. Well, I was born in 1971, so I was not able to put into practice Gordon’s philosophy (Greed is Good). When I graduated from college, we were in a recession. So, i get the bad rap Gen X selfish “me generation” crap even though I didn’t really get to be very “me centric.” The only thing I got was the music. And, actually, I’m pretty pissed at Nirvana. I liked listening to alternative music when it was actually alternative.

  97. Well, gxm, cheer up, every generation has tail enders, you guys at least got a special name. 🙂

  98. FL Voter — Good! We need short and long term vision, right?

    Hey all, I have to head out! Hopefully, the store will be okay without me for a bit.

    So, what is your passion, your Dancer, for now and the future? for PUMA? Hunter S Thompson mocked the country as a nation of dancers. Did he mean artists or just kids who go to a club? That we’re not tough enough? Anyway, I shouldn’t be bringing all this up before leaving. And I don’t know all that much about Thompson, but could speculate as to his meaning. But, maybe it will spark something . . . or not.

    Thanks for being here and for the conversation.

  99. I think most of that generational hostility is taking place among those whose economic level gives them enough comfort to raise stupid barriers. I’m a boomer, but solidly working class. I got thru college on work and partial scholarship, and never had the luxury to “tune in and drop out,” not if I wanted to eat.

    Same with my niece and her friends. She’s been looking for 5 years for a full-time job with those “luxuries” like benefits, but never could find one. Now she plans to apply to the police academy. Part of me hopes she succeeds, though I admit part of me doesn’t, the part that’s going to worry about her safety everyday.

  100. Consider me cheered up. Listening to Richard Hell still brightens my day. 🙂

  101. gxm — the real problem is that the 700 billion isn’t buying redemption, it’s paying for the indulgences. Where’s Martin Luther when you need him?

    I’m a GenJones too.

    Obots are dumb! I was just at the local minimart, where a 20-something was asking the counterguy if he had any decorations for her ‘inaugural party’ she was having ‘in a room’. The guy kept repeating that he “doesn’t carry anything like that.” Following each iteration, she stared at him for 15 seconds, asked the question again, then followed it with ‘in a room’.

    She wasn’t drunk, and didn’t seem high. Just really, really dumb.

  102. What a beautiful post Lady Boomer. A wonderful reminder that we need to be taking in life with zest and gusto. You’re making me want to get out of my sick bed and dance!

  103. Micki, it’s only getting worse. I’m in Gen Y and I think Gen Z or whatever comes after me is awful. I look at the trash that passes off as kid shows: Miley Cirus and Hannah Montana, The Surreal Life, The Hills which celebrate celebrity culture and being superficial… others become obese in front of XBox and have access to porn and any other kind of misogyny you can think of online including youtube, political blogs, and facebook groups. If anything it’s my generation and the youngest ones who are sucking off of their parents’ hard work and money while spending years soul searching and going to graduate school until their mid 30s. Before Wii, internet and computers, people actually read things called books and expressed their opinions in ways other than wearing misogynistic messages on their t-shirts or posting a one sentence status on Facebook. And I agree that this is mostly referring to those in the upper-classes who can afford these luxuries.

  104. Ah, thanks, shtuey! Okay, but only dodi li, not the hora for you! Really, I hope you feel better soon!

  105. I am older then almost all of you,( Though in my mind i am 2).
    I was a child during world war 2 and I grew up reading about the nazis and the resistance. I remember the sacrifices made during the war.
    During the 60s I was busy working and raising children and did not have time to be a hippy.
    To me freedom to think and decide for my self is one of the most important freedoms of all.
    What I see of PUMAs is that we think and decide for our selves and do not follow blindly. That ability is needed now more than ever.
    To have a free country there must always be those who question and think and decide for themselves.
    I am very proud to call myself a PUMA and I still wear my bracelet and explain it to people who ask me about it.




  107. DV: My niece is 16 and I am afraid for her. She actually seems pretty sane and is active (she plays softball) and hates Miley and all that crap. I’m afraid she will get eaten alive in college.

  108. helenk,

    Wow, you sure said a mouthful of truth! You are a great woman.

  109. helenk, do you live near NYC? It would be great if you could show up to madamb’s party. I’d love to meet you.

  110. I think helenk is in myiq’s neck on the Left Coast.

  111. Ladyboomer,

    Thanks for a lovely post. This was so nice to come home to after a long cold day. I swear that looks like a baritone ukelele the guy on the right is playing. Since they’re in Hawaii, maybe it is.

  112. Ericaleigh, the problem I have is that Obama’s supporters trend well-off and well-educated. I think axlerod cynically exploited the desire of good people to believe in something, but when someone has that much money and leisure, there’s no excuse for not knowing anything about him but projecting everything they wish he were on to him.

  113. Thank you for your kind words.
    I live in California but I was born in Philadelphia.
    Now I am off to work



  114. cool post, LBNY

    CNN Headline:

    Obama says he always thought Bush was a ‘good guy’

    Happy Friday, PUMA’s-happy weekend.

  115. Catrina: LOL. Nothing surprises me anymore but that was hilarious.

  116. catarina, Happy weekend.

    “Obama says he always thought Bush was a ‘good guy’

    Spoken like a true feminist.
    Are you sure that wasn’t “good ol’ boy”?

  117. Hey Catarina–cold enough for ya??

    (throws frozen potato at Catarina)

  118. I just checked the local weather page, with has stats on the weather at the North Pole. It’s 7 degrees warmer where I am, but the windchill is the same.

  119. BEDFORD HEIGHTS, Ohio (CNN) — After two years of traveling around the country and criticizing President Bush, President-elect Barack Obama said Friday that he “always thought [Bush] was a good guy.”
    Barack Obama tells CNN’s John King that it was “tough” for him to request the additional bailout funds.

    Barack Obama tells CNN’s John King that it was “tough” for him to request the additional bailout funds.

    “I mean, I think personally he is a good man who loves his family and loves his country,” Obama said in an exclusive interview with CNN’s John King.

    During the election season, Obama frequently campaigned against what he called Bush’s “failed policies” and promised a “clean break” from the past eight years.

    Asked if there was anything he wanted to take back, now that he has spent more time with the president, Obama praised Bush’s team for helping with a smooth transition and said part of what America is about is being able to have “disagreements politically and yet treat each other civilly.”

    Obama also said he thought Bush made “the best decisions that he could at times under some very difficult circumstances.”

    Just when you thought you’d heard it all.
    Can’t help but wonder how the Obots reacted to this..

  120. madamab
    Got YOU beat! Boomer, Jewish PUMA – so there!

  121. It’s brutal cold, Micki-but thanks for the potato
    It goes great with the roasted chicken we’re having for dinner 😉

  122. A wimpy troll waited until the thread was dead to write something under Riverdaughter’s Krugman post. Please delete it when you have the chance.

  123. A tr0ll waited until the thread was dead to write something under Riverdaughter’s Krugman post. Please delete it when you have the chance.

  124. Hi Valhalla, my kindred Gen Joneser!

    shtuey, I hope you feel better soon.


    Just had my co-worker say that he’d rather have GW again than Palin because she’s even “dumber” than Bush! I couldn’t believe it and told him that he should have listened to her speeches and not the media hype. He then said all her speeches were “the same four talking points.” I looked at him in complete disbelief and mentioned that she addressed specific issues throughout the campaign and he finally had to admit that he’d never actually listened to any of her speeches. Why do people make their mind up about someone without even listening to what she has to say???

  125. Nice. You seem a special NYer and this seems a special group. Thanks for letting me visit.

    Boomers (born ’46 – ’64) – Communal, Exploring
    Gen X (born ’65 – ’82) – Material, Ironic
    Gen Y or Millenials (born ’83 – ’00) – Digital, Entitled

    Labels are just tips of the defining pyramids. Always a danger to generalize so. Boomers leaned to Hillary, Millenials of voting age heavily to Obama, Gen Xers skewed just enough to Obama to swing the primaries (the fraudulent one, that is).

  126. Okay, so I’m wondering how wearing “Palin is a c%$t” t-shirts jibes with having “disagreements politically and yet treat each other civilly.”

  127. LOL gxm, obots believe that when you receive a degree, from then on information is beamed directly into your brain. You have the magical ability to know the truth without pesky, time consuming doing research or seeking out information.

    At least the obots are consistent with their ladyparts aversion, though. Compare their records, palin has obviously done more to harm the world than bush.

  128. I think Thompson just didn’t like disco. Anyway below is an excerpt from Bloomberg Financial News today.

    “As a candidate, Obama ran as an agent of change. If he is prevented from implementing that commitment, the market consequences will be severe. That’s the price of being regarded as a messiah, even if he never sought the epithet.”

  129. Later all. Gotta head home to the safety of outside the beltway before they start shutting down roads around here!

  130. I understand , totally, the 60 and 70’s period. I, too, have never felt more freedom to be me. It never left my soul. Although, I feel the period was misunderstood by so many people, especially the one’s who followed. Even the expression, ‘burn the bra’s” is taken literally by some. For me, it was a call to be more than a bra. To be our greatest potential, this is what the term meant to me. Regardless if you wore a bra or supported a condom, it was up to each of us to grow wihin ourselves while growing in society.

  131. Hurry gxm17- They have already started closing things in Baltimore, because Obama is leaving DC (flying to NY??) and then taking the train thru Baltimore tomorrow. The city is closed down for the wave.

    Had a conversation with someone that has always seen me as her ‘political guru’. At the end of the phone call, she brought up the One and I stated that I was not a fan. She was speechless, she told me that she didn’t have any Republican friends. I told her that my vote was my own and I voted it as a protest vote this year. Then, she said that her 23 year old son was getting his masters in political science and that he like Obama so there. We are both 50 but her stupid son was all she could come up with!!! I told her that she would be telling me that I was right before long. I have always liked her, but my kids call her ‘Crazy Robin”, maybe they are right.

  132. Catarina,

    I think I’m starting to get used to the cold. It was -5 here this morning, high of 15 today. When it goes back into the 30s, it will feel balmy to me!

  133. Oh my god, they’re composing an ode to Obama buy the guy who did Star Wars’ themes. Why Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman, why?

  134. BB:

    I just washed the car a little while ago. I might mow the lawn tommorrow.

    New thread up!

  135. I’m a fellow boomer, too, LB. An early one, actually.
    But madamab, some of my best friends are genxers.
    Actually, the two people I love most in the world, my
    daughters. My son-in-laws, too. So we can all get along.lol.
    However, sorry to offend all you wonderful genxers and
    y’s and – what’s next, I lost track – but – I do believe we
    were the greatest generation.
    Just look at our music, for a start. Doors, Rolling Stones,
    Joplin, Neil Young, Iron Butterfly, Beatles, of course. I could
    go on and on. And what preceded that – Baez, Collins,
    King, and of course, the great Dylan. Grateful Dead, The
    Band. I remember my father saying this about Glenn
    Miller, etc., but nonetheless it’s true – “that was Music”.
    And of course, there was our intellectualism, curiousity,
    openness, idealism, ideas. We were sponsors of feminism –
    civil rights movement, anti-war, etc. We did have great
    dancing – but everything meant something. It was never just
    Just writing about this makes me happy.
    There was so much “hope”. Real hope.
    We really believed we were just the beginning of change.
    That people were waking up, becoming enlightened.
    Now it makes me sad. The disappointment in all we hoped
    for. Maybe that helps explain the Obama craziness.
    Everyone wants that kind of belief, idealism. Hope.
    And yes, Hillary and Bill embodied it. Which is why
    reactionary forces hate them so.
    Obots just chose the wrong symbol. So sad.

  136. Regency, Yoyo Ma and Pearlman, Noooooooooooo.
    Honora, my ten year old granddaughter loves Obama,
    too. When I asked her why she said “America should have
    a black president.” (Gen ZZZ?)
    As smart as I think she is, I thought she needed a debrief-
    ing, or simply, to be educated correctly. What is with these
    people who allow their kids to teach them instead of the
    way it’s meant to be?

  137. Honora
    My best friend and her husband don’t talk to me any more.
    They were brainwashed by their son.
    He has a political science degree and is a total Obot.
    May I also add that he has never held a full time job and lives with them in a cloud of pot smoke?
    They were all completely disgusted by my refusal to support Obama.
    The husband told me to go fuck myself.
    Good luck with Crazy Robin *sigh*

  138. John Williams is the guy who wrote the music to “Star Wars.” I’ve always thought he was the most overrated film composer ever. (He’s got multiple Oscars and has written music for every Spielberg film.) Williams is, in fact, a hack who takes other established composer’s ideas and spins them into “his own.” If you listen to his stuff you’ll start recognizing Wagner, Brahms, Bruckner, Prokofiev. Usually he’s not even hiding it! One of his scores I like in spite of myself is for “Schindler’s List,” but the main theme is lifted directly out of Mahler’s 8th Symphony. And he then recycled it as the main theme in “Harry Potter.” He is the biggest hack. It’s not surprising he’ll be writing something For the Glory of Obama.

  139. catarina> Wow, I guess now you know they weren’t really your friends!

  140. Great post, LB. Got us all thinking, that’s good.
    I hate it when I have to do real work and miss this blog.
    After catching up a bit, I had the thought – was this all
    planned. Another distraction.
    Everone has to hate someone. So get us all to
    separate by generations. Instead of uniting across
    generations. To fight Obama.
    Could be, huh? Divide us in any way they can. I still
    find it all so sad. But- I am still ready to fight.

  141. Thanks for this one LBNYC, you always lift me up!

  142. Catarina, I’m sorry about your friends. I still have contact with my friends, but it’s not like it used to be. Whether it’s all my lack of BO support, or other things mixed in, I don’t know. What I do know is there is a kind of political silence now that wasn’t there before. And lots of assumptions about what I think just because I’m a lesbian.

    I was at a party and the comments about Palin were flowing like wine. People were laughing at her and talking about her foibles. Apparently, having a potential in-law with a prescription drug problem counts as one of Sarah’s foibles. Wow.

    I am really evaluating relationships differently now, and testing the waters: how much difference of opinion are friends willing to tolerate, and how easily do they write me off.

    Thank god my girlfriend was Hillary to the bitter end.

  143. Lady Boomer NYC – Thanks for this beautiful, and thoughtful post. I’m glad you shared your background in music, too. I feel very honored to have shared my songs with you and others at the PUMA PAC meet up this summer.

    I’m getting caught up after being away in D.C. to an annual conference, always held at the same hotels, including “the scene of the crime”, or the Marriott Wardham Hotel near Woodley Park. I went to the same street where we rallied outside on May 31st during the DNC RBC meeting. I even took some photos, including a view from the entrance for those with passes, where us riff-raff were not even allowed to come into the lobby, out of the rain and thunderstorms.

    I also took photos down at the Hilton, in the “Hall of Presidents”, where photos (or photos of historic paintings) of all the presidents and their first ladies hung along both sides of the hall. Particularly poignant were the ones of Bill and Hillary. I recalled looking at them a couple of years ago (last time I attended), and thinking how cool it would be if we had Hillary first, as the first woman President, and Bill alongside as the First Gentleman. For some strange reason, Laura Bush was missing this year alongside George W., and yet there were two vacant picture hooks down from them, probably waiting for the Obamas.

    I’ll admit, it was all painful, and felt sadder still, because there were no PUMAs around (that I knew of) with whom to share the sense of loss, etc. To offset this experience, I was lucky to hear Hillary’s SOS confirmation hearing on C-Span radio, and stayed up later to watch re-broadcast on their TV channels. Bittersweet is one word that comes to mind, but doesn’t quite capture the entire feeling.

    Somehow, I catch myself seeing Hillary, then hearing about Obama, and saying aloud: Hillary was supposed to be President. Perhaps others have a similar reaction.

    Lady B, please know that just reading your post is theraputic, especially coming off that D.C. scene. Also, note that I’ve been trying to encourage some young music appreciation, talents (via a school mentor program); no political references allowed, though. You help remind me to get back in touch with my own music to balance out these tough times. (Will check out the other video next, if only to see the pumas.)

    Re: Dancers – thinking about Jackson Browne’s song, “For A Dancer” (although I didn’t like that he went out for Obama so early on…) Still a good song; good to hear at a funeral.

    FYI – I’d like to find a guy PUMA who can sing, perhaps play an instrument. Wish I could put that on Match.com. Hmmm…

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