Baby Boomers in Hip-Hop shorts
IT'S STARTING TO HEAT UP IN 2004. I’m not talking
about the approaching start of Spring, I’m talking
about the Election Season. It’s that time again,
folks. For the rest of the year we will be subjected
to all kinds of campaigning on TV, radio, and the newspapers.
Don’t get me wrong. I believe the political process
is VERY IMPORTANT to our country. Without our system
of checks and balances, we could end up being in the
same boat as one of the countries we push our idea of
democracy on. So do your part - register to vote and
then actually do it.
America is the greatest country on Earth, but we certainly
can get some chuckles out of the political process.
Heck, look at California and the shape they are in.
California is a funny state. I can’t believe they
were making fun of Florida a few years back.
I went into Wal-Mart a few days ago and was walking
past the men’s department and noticed they were
selling shirts by the folks that brought us the Super
Bowl halftime show, namely MTV. These particular shirts
were for the band Punk’d. Now I’m thinking
Wal-Mart is always going on about how they don’t
sell shirts that carry offensive slogans. Hmmm. If anyone
knows anything about our language, slang in particular,
then they know the term “punked” refers
to being raped in prison. If that is not an offensive
term then I don’t know what is. So off I go in
search of the Manager to inquire about this particular
It turns out the Store Manager was not there but, the
Men’s Department Manager was…Ah Hah! So
I asked him about the shirts in question. He was not
aware what the term “punked” refers to,
and vowed to call Wal-Mart’s corporate offices
in Bentonville to ask about their policy concerning
these shirts. It has been a week now and the shirts
are still on display at Wal-Mart. Could this be another
corporate marketing myth exposed? I shall investigate
further and report the results next month.
This brings us to the business of how our society and
the idea of what is acceptable continues to evolve.
Wal-Mart seems to be taking over the suburban shopping
experience in America, driving a lot of the smaller
stores out of business. It concerns me is that we may
eventually have very little to choose from other than
those items Wal-Mart deems we should be offered. K-Mart
is pretty much gone. All the grocery stores around Wal-Mart
Supercenters pretty much close down after Wal-Mart builds.
I like low prices as much as the next person, but at
what price? Is freedom of choice the price we pay in
the long run? When I went to Wal-Mart the other day,
I also happened to look at the men’s shorts. I
had a choice of big baggy hip-hop shorts or old-men-type
walking shorts. I kind of like to think of myself as
somewhere in between those two extremes (If you count
being as far away from hip-hop as possible as being
somewhere in-between). But therein lies the point of
the problem. Wal-Mart doesn’t see many of the
in-betweens in their marketing plan or demographics.
Are we doomed to eventually see old men in hip-hop
clothing walking around? I think not. As we Baby-Boomers
get older and become the largest demographic group to
ever reach the graying stage, we are going to start
squawking, and it is not going to be pretty. I can see
the 60’s activism spark rekindled in a bunch of
aging Baby-Boomers, and geriatric sit-ins taking place
all over the country. And we will be sitting there a
lot longer than we did in the 60’s because we
won’t be able to get back up so easy.
Myself? I am thinking about buying a van, carpeting
the inside and maybe adding a black light or two.