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Baby Boomers Running In Place

December 16, 1990

Baby boomers are a large and heterogenous group, and I am tired of the media's broad portrayals of snot-nosed baby boomers whining over their failed expectations ("The Dead-End Kids," by Karen Tumulty, Oct. 28).

There are many of us, professional and nonprofessional alike, who do not subscribe to the narrow vision of success that defines itself by the manic pursuit of promotions and power. Those in my peer group are not so lost in fantasy to believe that we can all make it to the top; we know that a career "plateau" is as inevitable as death or taxes, and to suggest that many or most members of the baby-boom generation react to such an event with horror is vexing.

The confrontation of personal limitations and failed expectations, furthermore, cannot be avoided; it is a rite of passage into maturity and not an experience invented anew for the baby-boom generation, as the media continues to suggest.

The 1980s hype suggesting that baby boomers believed the world (and our ambitions) were without limits--and that we could all succeed and be fabulously rich--was an invention of the media.

Most of us never did believe in such a world, and we do not mourn the loss of such an illusion .

HELGA THORDARSON

Long Beach

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