Friday, August 18, 2006

Eons and eons and eons

We all know that America is getting older. Every day - every 24 hours - 10,000 people turn 60 and another 7,918 turn 50. So, naturally, as baby boomers have done all their lives, this age group is attracting businesses, products, and marketing. Here's one: Eons. In a Time Magazine story about Eons Daniel Kadlec focused in on the website's longevity calculator, using it to see what dietary changes he might make to boost his chances of living to be 96.

Eons has hit on one thing for sure - we don't care about trends, we care about ourselves. Most of us ignore the FDA requirements, laugh at national exercise recommendations, and are convinced that the obesity epidemic is happening to someone else. But we care about ourselves - and might even take action if we see how it directly serves our own interests. (no guarantees, of course)

Maybe we need a "community longevity calculator". A nifty online tool to tell us how certain actions would contribute to healthy and sustainable communities. Of course, in the "Eons-esque" way, such as tool would have to show us how we would individually benefit from decreasing our energy consumption, embracing diversity, reducing our waste, practicing religious tolerance, cleaning up graffiti and litter, caring for the elderly, respecting our neighbors, creating art or gardening, or the myriad other things that make communities thrive.

The "Do it because its good for the earth, the community, the whatever" message doesn't get heard by boomers. If Eons is an example, the message they (we) hear is "This serves my purpose, any tangential benefit to the rest of you is just icing on the cake." I know this isn't the cheeriest point of view - but face it, we need to do something because we're going to be facing these behaviors for, well, eons.

No comments: