Recently the Blindboy Podcast caught my attention. At first, I found the host really disturbing. I thought I was listening to a computer-generated voice – a spooky one. It could’ve been Siri or Alexa’s aging cousin from Ireland. Anyway, I checked Blindboy out on the internet to see if he’s real. Sure, enough he is! But that’s when I discovered something even more disturbing and that’s his unique approach to anonymity. He wears a plastic bag over his head to conceal his identity. Kids, you know what I’ve always said about putting plastic bags on your heads. I maintain my stance. Don’t try it.
I didn’t think Irish people said f*ck and f*cking
After establishing that this dude is not normal except for the frequent use of the word f*ck and f*cking, his voice and his stories quickly become addictive. In fact, the boy is very impressive given that he has created more that 250 podcasts since 2017. That knowledge left me with a problem? Where do I start? I left the choice to my right index finger. When the scroll paused on the episode titled Coalbrookdale by Night that was it! After some research, I discovered that this is the name of an oil painting about an environmental disaster painted in 1801 by Philip James de Loutherbourg.
As I was listening, I was learning a lot about Blindboy. Surname Boatclub. And his ‘spooky’ voice was no longer spooky. It was captivating and relaxing. I couldn’t turn my ears off it. Not only that, his stories are interesting, funny and shocking. He is great at shedding light on the big issues with humour but sensitivity at the same time. His topics include culture (especially the arts, music and film), social issues, health and wellbeing and personal stories. All the same kinds of things that I’m interested in.
In Season 1, Episode 183, Blindboy stumbles upon the musty old piece of art, the subject of which likely started global warming. Then he talks about getting old. He uses the term ‘geriatric millennial’ to describe himself. Apparently, it’s a thing but I’d never heard of it before. Imagine my shock when I realised all my kids are now geriatric millennials. It’s true. Millennials are people born between 1981 and 1996. My kids were born in 1983, 1985 and 1986 which puts them at the end of the geriatric spectrum and makes them practically vintage.
How does it make you feel?
As the parent of geriatric millennials, it doesn’t just make me feel old. I am old.
I never really thought about this until I started listening to the Blindboy Podcast.
Thanks Blindboy. But for geriatric millennials themselves, it’s not so bad. They are now qualified to give advice to the younger generation who smirk behind their hands and think what do they know. And as for my own geriatric millennials, they have careers, mortgages, babies and understand the importance of a good night’s sleep. They could be considered the lucky ones but only I know how hard they worked to get to that level of stress.
Geriatric millennials’ toys
When my geriatric millennials were little, we adopted a couple of Cabbage Patch Kids. They were born in the 1980s under a cabbage patch somewhere and arrived with their ID stamps on their bums, adoption papers and birth certificates. It wasn’t long after that when Teddy Ruxpin joined the clan. This talking illiop had a bit too much to say. In fact, when he first arrived, I spent a lot of time extracting the cassette tape tucked away in his back under his vest and rewinding it with a pencil so he could keep on talking. They had heaps of other toys but Teddy Ruxpin took the prize for being the most annoying.
This generation learnt patience and discovered the joy of being surprised because popular culture taught them that. MTV was launched in the early 1980s along with the TV show Rage so they could watch back-to-back music videos on Sundays from midnight until breakfast. Part of the fun of Rage was you never knew what was coming up next. Forest Gump understood the same joy with a box of chocolates. And there was no binging on favourite TV shows. They had to wait for a week for the next episode of Dawson’s Creek or Friends or Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The long wait heightened the anticipation and excitement.
When a phone was just a phone
Geriatric millennials were born at a time when people actually talked to each other. Texting and sharing photos as a means of communication was not a thing. And a phone was just a phone that you dialled or pressed numbers on to make a phone call. They were born before smart phones and the internet were invented. But along with all these technological advances they witnessed the explosion of social media.
This generation has had to adapt to so much change, not only in terms of technological advancement but other major historical and current events that have changed the world. As Tasmanians and primary school students at the time, the Port Arthur massacre was something that affected my kids deeply because it was so close to home. Other major events that have shaped their future include AIDS, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the abundance of paedophiles in positions of trust and ongoing climate change that threatens our very existence.
All these changes have equipped geriatric millennials with the knowledge and the ability to face future challenges. I’m so proud of my own geriatric millennials as they strive to create a better future for themselves, their children and following generations.
That all got a bit serious towards the end!
Quote from Forest Gump
“Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.” – Forrest Gump