No Longer Hip?

A mid-morning show discussion with Kelly started me to thinking about this topic. I was finishing up the planning for tonight’s “Check It Out” segment – going through the “Ticket” insert of today’s Tribune-Review, when I happened upon a review of band playing in Millvale this weekend.

“Hey, the Squirrel Nut Zippers!” says Kelly.

“Who are they?” I asked.

“You have never heard of the Squirrel Nut Zippers?”


She then proceeded to hum a few bars of one of their more popular tunes – and tell me that she had actually met their former sax player. The group (the photo above is courtesy of the Trib and you can see them perform on YouTube) is returning to performing after a six-month hiatus and playing at Mr. Small’s in Millvale. Even after watching the You Tube video, I still had no clue who they were — and I began to wonder about something else: Am I becoming clueless?

I like to think I’m hip to what’s happening. After all, I anchor the morning news and pretty much tell viewers every morning what’s new and what’s happening. Somehow though, I wonder if I am missing the boat. Sure, I have an iPod, play video games and I’m an avid blog reader. But not a day goes by when the younger members of our newsroom will say something to me and I will have this blank look on my face.

I guess it comes with age — and it works both ways. Kelly’s story Wednesday about the opening of the McDonald’s museum in Westmoreland County gave me a prime example. While over 100 teens were waiting outside for the museum to open, Ronald and Kelly tried to get them to sing the Big Mac song (you know: two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on sesame seed bun) and found none of the kids knew the words or the melody. Am I really that old – or are they really that young?

Maybe the answer lies in one of our camera people. His name is Gary O’Data. Tonight, he celebrates his 60th birthday – but he has become the guy best known for running up and down the sidelines and shooting video of high school games for “Operation Football”. He doesn’t look 60 and he says being a part of the action with the kids keeps him young. I guess being hip isn’t about successfully relating to the younger people — it’s about being willing to try to relate.
I’m off Friday … so I will blog with you next Monday. Have a great weekend.

One Response

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