“My cup runneth over.” — Romona played by Gena Rowlands, Hope Floats
Greetings, Friends! Autumn has arrived in Oklahoma! This is my favorite time of the year and part of me wishes it could last forever. Pumpkins on porches, colorful fall leaves ironed between pieces of wax paper, cool-weather pansies and football. Every day is a gift. Juliette, my 18-year-old, is rocketing through her senior year and college recruitment brochures arrive in the mail every day. Bridgette is getting ready for her first baton twirling competition and Sullivan – be still my heart – continues to be a calming presence in the gale-forces of my life. In the midst of the utter chaos of not being able to find my keys, wallet or mind, he’ll put his hand on my shoulder and say, “You’re such a beautiful woman.”
Just look at him in this picture! It reminds me of that precious line from Hope Floats when Birdie’s father who has Alzheimer’s looks at a picture of his granddaughter Bernice and says, “She is marked for success.” I feel this way about all three of my kids. I dream about a day when they all have kids of their own and a mess of a cousins among them. This is why it’s so important to me to teach them about the Armor of God — so they can preserve themselves for a bright future. As hard as life has been for Generation X (primarily because of the broken homes of the latchkey years that fueled a profoundly unstable adulthood), I believe life is 100 times harder for Generation Z. (The years are 1995 or so to present.) I believe the only way to navigate it and survive is to put on that armor every single day. This requires a spiritual discipline I myself do not have. But, I pray for it and strive for it — more now than ever — knowing all the while that it is God who grows us. We cannot grow ourselves. We can only submit and surrender.
From the Apostle Paul’s letter to the saints at Ephesus:
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God,
Here’s the latest round-up of Generation X blog posts and news stories. Enjoy!
Back to the Future Pepsi
Pepsi will release a 30th Anniversary bottle in celebration of Back To The Future’s anniversary. It will be available on October 21, for about $16.
Historic Hallmark Images Available
Hallmark Cards has launched Gillham Studios, a new online stock image agency featuring exclusive works from its art collection. There are some wonderful images and illustrations that Gen-Xers may find interesting or mildly amusing including this one of an avocado green stove.
Never Before Seen Royal Wedding Photos
Click here to see a 12 never-before-seen photos of Princess Diana’s wedding day. I wish we could have seen Princess Diana evolve into a 50-something grandmother.
The Pope, Cuba and Generation X
Patty Villa, a Gen X writer, wrote a piece for the South Florida Reporter, Pope Francis, It’s Me, Patty. It’s about the Pope’s recent visit to Cuba in which he called for a Revolution of Tenderness. The headline of the story is taken from the Generation X coming-of-age youth novel by Judy Blume, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. The same can be said for this here blog. =)
Salon published a story about the new host of the Daily Show, Trevor Noah Buries Generation X: Sorry Guys, The Daily Show Belongs To Millennials Now.” In case you missed it, Jon Stewart, beloved by at least half of Generation X (the moderate to liberal half), aired his last episode of the show on August 6, 2015.
Generations See Emails Differently
A story about Hilary Clinton’s emails appears in the Wall Street Journal and it’s pretty amusing. Read, Millennial, Gen X or Boomer: How the Hillary Clinton Emails Read to Different Generations.
Generation Z in the New York Times
The New York Times published a story with a very colorful picture of Miley Cyrus. Read How To Spot A Member of Generation Z.
Gen X Turning 50
The Roanoke Times published a clever title — one of many spins on Smells Like Teen Spirit. Read Smells Like Middle Age: Generation X Turns 50. The opening paragraph put a smile on my face. This is a cathartic read for any Gen-Xer who has ever felt like a member of what Fight Club called the middle child of history. Excerpt:
“Back in the prehistoric era known as the 1980s, when cave women discovered hair mousse and dinosaurs sported mullets, there was a popular television show called “thirtysomething.”
Pulled From the Pages of Club Mid, Autumn Vigils
Club Mid started out as The Mid, but then the founders of The Mid bought Scary Mommy and The Mid became the ghastly-named Club Mid. Still, they are providing a great outlet for Generation X essays. I read one recently that I really liked, Autumn Vigil by Leslie Kendall Dye.
The X Files Returns January 24
Scully and Mulder return after seven years in a two-night special that starts Sunday, January 24. From TV Guide:
In the seven years since we last saw Mulder and Scully, their lives have grown drastically apart. No longer with the FBI, Scully has found work at a D.C. hospital and only has occasional contact with Mulder, whose loss of purpose since the X-Files shuttered has sent him into an isolating depression.”
Finally, it’s almost Halloween, a wonderful celebration of costumes and fall decorations. Here are a few Gen-Xers in their Halloween costumes from ages past. If you’re new around here, don’t miss my Vintage Halloween posts, a curated collection of Generation X during its Trick-or-Treating years.
In 2004, the blogger at Pirate wench, wrote a post about the wonderful costumes her father made her as a kid. These really are special! She wrote:
There was the huge paper maché clown head, which, looking back on, was pretty scary, but that was years before I was stalked by a Ringling Brothers graduate, so I liked it. And it came in handy when my bag alone could not contain all my candy. Oh, glorious candy-filled clown head!
But the piece de resistance was Joan of Arc. (Did you hear the heavenly choir singing when I said that? Cuz I did.) I didn’t even really know anything about her, but I was a girl and I was wearing armor, for Pete’s sake! How hardcore was I! There was a black cardboard horse that went around my waist, via suspenders under my aluminum armor. And this was no fem, merry-go-round horse, man. This stallion was fierce! With angry eyes and flairing nostrils! And it had a black curtain around the bottom so you couldn’t see my real legs underneath, and there were fake, armored legs attached to the side so it looked like I was sitting astride my noble steed!
Check out Clothes Maiden’s post on film-inspired Halloween costume ideas. This one from The Stepford Wives, 1975, is totally doable!
May the Lord bless and keep you, Xer, through the beautiful autumn vigils.