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sunnyside
I'm thinking of pitching Shadowrun to some teens into anime who have done some forum RPing but nothing pen and paperish. But I had some concerns they wouldn't "get" it. So I started writing something up about the genre with a reference to an anime. However part of it kind of got to be a history lesson, and it occurs to me that I wasn't actually around for the 80s and barely for the early 90s.

So I thought I'd run it by you guys to see if:

-You agree with my assessment in general
-If you think I've got the history right
-If you think this is a good way to introduce the genre/setting and if there is something better

----------------------------------------------------------------------

First, lets explain the genre "postcyberpunk" and how I think we got here.

So at the root is "punk" this is was a subculture that cropped up in the 1970s mostly born out of music but also with liturature, art, fashion, zines, and all that.

Punk, like many subcultures, was a whole bunch of variations lumped together under a term, but essentially I think of punks ashippies that got pissed off. Their philosophy, like the hippies before them and the beatnicks/bohemians before the hippies, centered around themes like anti-authoritarianism, free thought, rebellion, anti-consumerism, anti-globalisation, anti-war, animal rights, anti-homophibia, non-conformity, environmentalism, feminism, and contained plenty of drugs, sex, and rock and roll.

However where hippies were very group oriented and sought to change the world through their love. Punk has an individualist bent and supports direct action like vandalizing something. Where hippies might protest by having a love in or planting flowers all over the place, punks might spraypaint graffiti all over and their protests could get violent. This aggression is reflected in their culture.


Cyberpunk


Cyberpunk is less associated with music and more with liturature in the form of books and magazines. It occured in the 80s as personal computers were just coming into existance and punks as well as punk influcenced novelists were intrigued by the possibilities of the dawning information age, even if they might be doing their writing on a typewriter.

In many ways they were spot on. Predicting things like punk kids hacking computers for cash or to change their grades, hacktivism, and social anarchist/voluteer based cybercomunities. And I wouldn't write out the themes of deliberate modification of the body with things like artificial eyes and limbs or direct neural connections to the internet.

The backdrop for the genre is generally a dystopia full of incredible and rapid techological growth and a vast information network, but plenty of poverty, corporate domination, and social mores that leave the protagonists marginalized, alienated, and probably labeled as criminals.

About this time table top role playing games were bursting onto the scene, and cyberpunk was incorporated into a number of them sometimes in the name, like Cyberpunk 2020.

Cyberpunk 2020 was the sort of game where your character could be a rock star, reporter, or hacker and a megacorp might be trying to quash your protest songs, silence the truth, or destroy some art. It also tried to dip your character into the subculture through a "lifepath" system where rolls of the dice determined your characters race, fashions, and a bunch of relationships with family, lovers, corporations, and gangs.


Postcyberpunk:

It wasn't very long before cyberpunk suffered something of an identity crisis. I think the root of this is that it was a literary movement, existing in magazines, books, short stories, and role playing games. So while it came out of the ethos of the music driven subculture, it was now thrust into the domain of people who read for fun, or on the computer front the sort that learn for fun. This was a dramatic demographic shift. These were the sorts of people that musicians would snub, hippies wouldn't give any free love to, and reading and learning have a way of leading to a future with more career success than social success.

I've sometimes seen postcyberpunk works described as having a less dystopian setting compared to cyberpunk, but I think that's entirely wrong. The poverty, megacorps, strong governments, corruption, criminality, every aspect of the cyberpunk dystopias that I can think of is still there in the typical postcyberpunk work.

No. The difference is that in postcyberpunk work the characters belong. The dystopian aspects are seen in a different light because the characters are thriving.

In anime and manga the most frequently cited example of postcyberpunk is the Ghost in the Shell franchise. It's a dark world full of poverty, refugees, corporate, and government conspiracies. But the main characters ARE the government conspiracy. The Major isn't some homeless wretch with second grade cybernetics uncovering conspiracies out of a terminal in a coffin motel like you'd see in a cyberpunk work, but is on the government's payroll, has access to top flight cybernetics, software, and equipment, and lives in what must be an insanely expensive penthouse suite.

While section 9 will go up against corporations and the government in persuit of the best interests of their country, in the TV series and manga frequently they're kicking the butts of people who would have been the protagonists of a cyberpunk work.

On the role playing front, Cyberpunk 2020 had a problem. At that was that the games creators, and often the individual game masters, envisioned players staging protest concerts and whatnot, they expected players to abuse drungs, even though they cost money and could degrade character performance, and to resist selling out to the corporations, even though they dangled extra starting money if you did.

But the reality was that most players made combat oriented characters, sold out immediately, and "wrecked" the adventures by being far more deadly than anticipated, and solving problems that were supposed to take a whole session in a very short time through violence, bribery, cutting deals with the bad guys, or just not giving a crap about some hippies or punks getting kicked out of their home and their music being banned or whatever the plot hook was supposed to be.

The led to one of the more interesting game supplements I know of "Listen Up You Primitive Screwheads" which is basically the creators of Cyberpunk 2020 raging against the people who are playing their game wrong, and the game masters letting their players get away with it.




So that brings us to Shadowrun. This RPG takes the typical cyberpunk setting and throws in some fantasy with elves and magic. So you get stuff like hacker elves with cyberarms.

Shadowrunners are the deniable assets of a dark but realistic feeling future. The megacorporations, organized crime syndicates, and governments all have their own soldiers. However the consequences of overtly using them would frequently be disasterous. As a result they need people that they can deny ever knowing to do their dirty work for them.

Shadowrunners are also known to do jobs for the downtrodden...if the downtrodden can scrape together the substantial funds required to get the players to take a job.

For shadowrunners love may not be free. But that's Ok. They can afford it.
Draco18s
Ask them if they've seen Ghost in the Shell, if not, tell them to watch it. If they have, you say "like that, but" and then add magic and dragons owning corporations. Also, you're the bad guys.

Done.

GitS is pretty much the defacto standard for cyberpunk in the anime world. If you want to reference Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away, those will help too. Also, Howl's Moving Castle in some respects (spirit pact, anyone?), Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind, in a way (you got your semi-magical stuff and your powerful spirit-like entities). Then there's Lupin the 3rd, for the crime.

Also, Metropolis, for the distopia.
ggodo
I came to to say what Draco said.
Dr.Rockso
Black Lagoon would be a good bet as well; many parallels between the main characters and a typical runner team.

On a non-anime front, you can have them watch Robocop,Johnny Mnemonic, Blade Runner, etc.
3278
They probably do enough homework already. wink.gif Maybe don't tell them any of this, but just sit them down with beverages and a quiet table and some dice and just start at zero. Introduce the game as they play it, not as a history lesson. Let them form their own impressions.
Stahlseele
Have them watch Johnny Mnemonic. Terminator. Lord of the Rings. Now tell them to combine those.
Yerameyahu
Dig it, Stahlseele. smile.gif Really, though, isn't there a pretty massive list of 'watch these movies' for SR? I know the WW guys have such lists in the front of their books. I recall one here on this forum.
sunnyside
Hmmmm maybe it is as simple as referencing various works, and they don't need to know how we got here and where the term comes from.

Actual cyberpunk is much harder. You can watch stuff and not "get" it, as demonstrated by at least one player in nearly every CP2020 group ever.

But maybe postcyberpunk is easy to "get," and the high fantasy stuff certainly is.



Although, just for my own curiosity, can anybody comment on the history there?
UmaroVI
It's a dark eighties future with magic and fantasy monsters.
Yerameyahu
I think, for children, that a deep up-front understanding of the themes, philosophies, economics, and geopolitics isn't a good goal, yeah.
Method
GitS is a good starting point if they are already into anime. You might also have them watch Renaissance which isn't exactly anime, but might bridge the gap in a way that they can relate to.
Saint Hallow
If they are anime fans... watch AD Police files. The old ones. Or read the manga. A very post cyberpunk, noir, psychological feel to those stories. Ghost in the Shell works, Blame! works, & everything else mentioned above also works.
Udoshi
QUOTE (sunnyside @ Jan 19 2012, 03:24 PM) *
I'm thinking of pitching Shadowrun to some teens into anime who have done some forum RPing but nothing pen and paperish.


Give them/have them watch some Ghost in the Shell, and tell them 'the world is like this, only with magic, elves, and hot orc babes. And you're probably an action movie criminal'

Then offer to run a game.

Sold.

The topic's come up amongst my group before. Ergo Proxy and Texhnolyze may also good cyberpunky anime shows to suggest they watch. Sadly, I'm not familiar with either of the shows, so I can only pass along the recommendation, not validate it. Anyone else know about em?
Trigger
QUOTE (Method @ Jan 19 2012, 07:16 PM) *
GitS is a good starting point if they are already into anime. You might also have them watch Renaissance which isn't exactly anime, but might bridge the gap in a way that they can relate to.

I was going to recommend this movie too. I love giving it to my players to help them understand some of the tone and feel of the setting.
Wakshaani
I go with Bubblegum Crisis and AD Police, rather than GitS, personally.

But, if they're teens?

Hrm.

Hrm hrm.

"Imagine that Microsoft rules the world."
CanRay
QUOTE (Wakshaani @ Jan 19 2012, 10:54 PM) *
"Imagine that Microsoft rules the world."
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

...

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!

...

*Thud*
sunnyside
QUOTE (Yerameyahu @ Jan 19 2012, 07:05 PM) *
I think, for children, that a deep up-front understanding of the themes, philosophies, economics, and geopolitics isn't a good goal, yeah.


Well, they wouldn't want to be called "children" they're teens, which means they actually know it all, especially politics.

QUOTE (Udoshi @ Jan 19 2012, 09:32 PM) *
Ergo Proxy and Texhnolyze may also good cyberpunky anime shows to suggest they watch. Sadly, I'm not familiar with either of the shows, so I can only pass along the recommendation, not validate it. Anyone else know about em?


I watched Ergo Proxy (it's a series not a movie). It's good. But I'd say it slips out of the genre before too long, but you could debate that. Still good though.
Eimi
That guy in episode 1 of GitS:SAC? The one who hacked the geisha-bots, then fled on foot then fried his short-term memories so the police couldn't get any info or identify him?

Totally a shadowrunner.
bibliophile20
QUOTE (Wakshaani @ Jan 19 2012, 09:54 PM) *
"Imagine that Microsoft rules the world."


Wait, does that mean that VITAS was actually woodpeckers? "If builders built buildings the way programmers built programs, the first woodpecker to come along would destroy civilization."

Also, I think you broke CanRay. And I only managed to make his brain hurt. smile.gif
Adarael
Also, FastFax!

Just a smidgen of self-pimping there for me and the other contributors.
Wakshaani
Ooo. Sorry 'bout that, CanRay. I was going for punchy. Looks like I punched a wee bit too hard. smile.gif

Stahlseele
Well, in terms of Anime?
Armitage Poly Matrix. Both Parts.
Blade
QUOTE (Udoshi @ Jan 20 2012, 03:32 AM) *
Ergo Proxy and Texhnolyze may also good cyberpunky anime shows to suggest they watch. Sadly, I'm not familiar with either of the shows, so I can only pass along the recommendation, not validate it. Anyone else know about em?


The first episode of Ergo Proxy could qualify. The rest is a philosophical journey, requiring good philosophy notions to fully understand (but it's better in that department than GiTS and its pseudo-philosophical ramblings)
CanRay
QUOTE (Wakshaani @ Jan 20 2012, 02:13 AM) *
Ooo. Sorry 'bout that, CanRay. I was going for punchy. Looks like I punched a wee bit too hard. smile.gif
*Curls up in my corner, rocks back and forth, and cries*
Paul
All of this seems pretty over complicated. At the risk of sounding like a Parrot, i think 3278 hits the nail on the head. Sit down, play. Introduce elements in game. if they ask for more then start assigning movies, books or what not.
Wakshaani
QUOTE (CanRay @ Jan 20 2012, 09:05 AM) *
*Curls up in my corner, rocks back and forth, and cries*


Sings a soothing melody.
Murrdox
Ghost in the Shell is a somewhat decent analogy for the how (un)wired everything is, hacking, and cybernetics, to a degree.

Personally if I was a teenager, roleplaying in "Ghost in the Shell World" would sound incredibly boring to me. I'm not into the whole conspiracy theory thing too much, and Ghost in the Shell is a LOT of that.

Ghost in the Shell is the most "Shadowrun" anime that I can think of though.

So I guess I'd say... something like, "Take Ghost in the Shell. Instead of a Utopian future where governments are in power, it's a Distopian future where Corporations rule everything. Magic exists, and humans have transformed into Elves, Dwarves, Orcs and Trolls. Dragons rule over some corporations. Now instead of a Ghost in the Shell police officer cyborg, you're a criminal who works as part of a team that gets hired for jobs by corporations to screw each other over."
CanRay
Hit them over the head with a copy of Neuromancer and then tell them there's fantasy mixed in.

Kids need to learn to read more today anyhow.
Stahlseele
A~Ki~Ra~!
Saint Sithney
Surprised no one mentioned Cowboy Bebop.. A bunch of world-class talent, beholden to no one, roaming around in pursuit of cash and eventually helping people out despite themselves is very SR to me.


Anyway, I've always loved the Joseph Campbell anthropology influence more than anything when it comes to SR.
To me, the setting is, "What if everything that people ever thought existed, magic and monsters and worlds composed of thought, all really existed? What if myth came alive and began reshaping human advancement? How would future man come to terms with a world with alien rules and intelligences?"

Then again, this has basically nothing to do with current day SR4. There is no culture to speak of in SR4 except contemporary US culture.
toturi
QUOTE (CanRay @ Jan 20 2012, 11:05 PM) *
*Curls up in my corner, rocks back and forth, and cries*

Aaaaand it's all over! It's a TKO for Wakshaani. We have a new heavyweight champion of brain hurt!
Neko Asakami
I'd say GiTS:SAC and Armitage the Third as well. The second Armitage has the plot for a decent shadowrun, too.
Murphy01
QUOTE (CanRay @ Jan 20 2012, 12:38 PM) *
Hit them over the head with a copy of Neuromancer and then tell them there's fantasy mixed in.

Kids need to learn to read more today anyhow.


Seconded Also Count Zero for the fight scene in the desert with the Yakuza and the fighting robots (aka drones).
Udoshi
QUOTE (Neko Asakami @ Jan 20 2012, 10:29 PM) *
I'd say GiTS:SAC and Armitage the Third as well. The second Armitage has the plot for a decent shadowrun, too.


I would second Armitage. I saw that a Looooonnnng time ago, but it was pretty good.
pbangarth
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Jan 20 2012, 09:39 PM) *
Surprised no one mentioned Cowboy Bebop.. A bunch of world-class talent, beholden to no one, roaming around in pursuit of cash and eventually helping people out despite themselves is very SR to me.
Alright! Didn't even think of that, but of course.

QUOTE
Anyway, I've always loved the Joseph Campbell anthropology influence more than anything when it comes to SR.
To me, the setting is, "What if everything that people ever thought existed, magic and monsters and worlds composed of thought, all really existed? What if myth came alive and began reshaping human advancement? How would future man come to terms with a world with alien rules and intelligences?"

Then again, this has basically nothing to do with current day SR4. There is no culture to speak of in SR4 except contemporary US culture.

Then...yet?... again, we are free to shape it in our own games, aren't we? And the Germans seem pretty active. What are they doing with it?
Glyph
I think a lot of mainstream non-cyberpunk films give a good notion of the basic premise of the game. Seriously, nearly any action movie shows how shadowrunners in most games work. You have the grim, gritty antihero with a bit of a soft side, who works under the table or on the shady side of the law (but still has his own ruggedly individualistic code of honor), as your protagonist. He has to deal with a bunch of criminal rivals who are a lot less sympathetic than him, employers who work for corrupt institutions or criminal empires, who look down on him and often betray him. You have a veneer of grime and dsytopia, but it's only the backdrop for the protagonist as he stands there with his black trenchcoat flapping in the wind. Similarly, you have some intrigue and a bit of occasional sneaking around, but most of the set pieces involve violent confrontation.

All Shadowrun does is add some near-future sci-fi and some urban fantasy elements.
Udoshi
The Starhunter 2300 show was on youtube for a while. I think it perfectly fit the dynamic of a dysfunctional and constantly broke runner team having misadventures in the search for cash - despite it being in space, it had a lot of neat things, like smartguns.

Was free for a bit, but I think its since been removed
Eimi
QUOTE (Udoshi @ Jan 21 2012, 01:03 AM) *
I would second Armitage. I saw that a Looooonnnng time ago, but it was pretty good.


Whenever I see the Shock Hands cyberlimb weapon and remember that I can't punch someone for punchy damage and shock them for shocky damage at the same time, I remember Armitage and I feel sad.
3278
Why is Ghost in the Shell a better introduction to Shadowrun than, say, Shadowrun sourcebooks? I haven't seen it, so the near-universal support for it here as an introduction to the setting is striking.

QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Jan 21 2012, 02:39 AM) *
Anyway, I've always loved the Joseph Campbell anthropology influence more than anything when it comes to SR.

They don't really have half-book-long treatises on neo-anarchist economics anymore, either. It's a different type of writer, who gives birth to Shadowrun in 1989, versus animating its zombie now. Neither better nor worse, just very different.

QUOTE (Udoshi @ Jan 21 2012, 09:44 AM) *
The Starhunter 2300 show was on youtube for a while. I think it perfectly fit the dynamic of a dysfunctional and constantly broke runner team having misadventures in the search for cash - despite it being in space, it had a lot of neat things, like smartguns.

What the hell?! I thought I was the only person in the world to have ever seen Starhunter! biggrin.gif
ravensmuse
My combination has been one part Bebop, one part Burn Notice, one part Ghost in the Shell, and one part Archer.

"Seriously? This is like, Babytown Frolics."
Udoshi
QUOTE (Eimi @ Jan 21 2012, 03:12 AM) *
Whenever I see the Shock Hands cyberlimb weapon and remember that I can't punch someone for punchy damage and shock them for shocky damage at the same time, I remember Armitage and I feel sad.


Shit, man, you're not doing it right.

I have a sort of mad scientist hacker with firefight, and our GM okayed using the Vicious Blow maneuver with weapons - in particular, tasers. He can now zorch the fuck out of cars. I've been considering giving him an ares shockbeam just to have a hollywood-esque anti-vehicle death ray.
This is because we run a very silly game where nearly anything goes as long as its cool.

The same technique applies to shock hands though, all for a 7bp investment in Martial Arts (quality + maneuver)

QUOTE (3278 @ Jan 21 2012, 07:37 AM) *
What the hell?! I thought I was the only person in the world to have ever seen Starhunter! biggrin.gif

It seems to be rare, but its just amusing. What did you like about it?
3278
QUOTE (Udoshi @ Jan 21 2012, 05:04 PM) *
It seems to be rare, but its just amusing. What did you like about it?

It's set in space. Otherwise, it's tough to think of anything. wink.gif Seriously, it's hugely Shadowrun-esque, particularly in the first season [when it was just Starhunter], with shadowy organizations, a thread of the mystical, secret pasts, and regular missions for shady underworld figures.
Glyph
QUOTE (3278 @ Jan 21 2012, 06:37 AM) *
Why is Ghost in the Shell a better introduction to Shadowrun than, say, Shadowrun sourcebooks? I haven't seen it, so the near-universal support for it here as an introduction to the setting is striking.

Ghost in the shell (more the first manga series and the two television series than the second manga series or the movies) is good at presenting a future of covert warfare versus shadowy factions. It is good at showing ubiquitous cyberware, tactically integrated hacking, and cool-looking guns in a fractured near-future world. And even though they are technically legit, Section 9 still functions as a team, just like shadowrunners.


That said, there are lots of differences between it and Shadowrun. Obviously, there is no magic, and no awakened critters or metatypes. The tech is more advanced, with full-body cyborgs. Plus, instead of Shadowrun's "Cyberware eats your humanity!", it's "Are you sure machines can't become human?" Sure, there's the occasional bit of philosophizing about what it means to be human, but overall, Motoko seems to be pretty happy to be a super-cyborg. Also, Section 9 are not like shadowrunners - they are more like Firewatch or the Tir Ghosts (although with a bit more of a maverick quality, and with idealism that hasn't been beaten out of them). Nation-states are still dominant, even if they're the worse for wear. Corporations, like they are today, are powerful, but not extraterritorial or above the law (although, again like today, they are often effectively above the law).
pbangarth
QUOTE (ravensmuse @ Jan 21 2012, 11:49 AM) *
My combination has been one part Bebop, one part Burn Notice, one part Ghost in the Shell, and one part Archer.

Great combination!

I just watched the last half of a pretty bad movie, Wyvern. Bad script, bad acting, stupid victims who deserve to die. But the last scene
[ Spoiler ]
Saint Hallow
There's a British sci-fi show called Demons. It's like a Buffy the Vampire Slayer, except the hero is a dude. His mentor uses a microwave/pulse pistol & they fight the supernatural. Some parts of the show are good for the "Mundane vs Magic" concepts/drama of how SR has this odd relationship with Magic.

For the corporations & mega-urban sprawls & metroplexes... Akira or certain episodes of Burn Notice & how the different locales affect the story.

For cyberware, matrix/VR/AR, & futuristic science/transhumanism... Ghost in the Shell tv series.

For the attitude, grit, noir, & general emotional feel... i think that varies from person to person.
Draco18s
QUOTE (Glyph @ Jan 21 2012, 06:49 PM) *
Plus, instead of Shadowrun's "Cyberware eats your humanity!", it's "Are you sure machines can't become human?" Sure, there's the occasional bit of philosophizing about what it means to be human, but overall, Motoko seems to be pretty happy to be a super-cyborg.


The philosophizing is some of the best parts. I love it when the Tatchkoma ponder the meaning of life.

(And then later perform the ultimate sacrifice and crash their own AI-core-satelite into a nuke).
sunnyside
QUOTE (3278 @ Jan 21 2012, 09:37 AM) *
Why is Ghost in the Shell a better introduction to Shadowrun than, say, Shadowrun sourcebooks? I haven't seen it, so the near-universal support for it here as an introduction to the setting is striking.


You should take that as a sign you need to go see and/or read it. smile.gif

Though I think maybe the reason it's getting brought up so much is that I'd mentioned that I was looking to pitch to anime fans, and it's one of the more popular series out there. Come to think of anime/manga franchises that AREN'T just aimed at the kiddies I can't think of any other that's made it as big, having broken into US theatres, Adult Swim, etc.

QUOTE
They don't really have half-book-long treatises on neo-anarchist economics anymore, either. It's a different type of writer, who gives birth to Shadowrun in 1989, versus animating its zombie now. Neither better nor worse, just very different.


Yeah, maybe the end of that little history bit I wrote should be something like, "and then Shadowrun went beyond genre and flavor. You have a cyberlimb and a gun, have some fun and don't think about it ".

The teens listen to gangster rap like as not, the dytopia of SR4 probably hardly even needs explaining.

Maybe I'm just still in the more explanitory mode I was in back in the 90s in rural Iowa where I'd be explaining things to people who didn't bother locking their houses or taking the keys out of the ignition.
CanRay
I had to explain the Cold War to some Teens awhile back, and describe how I measured the wind to find out if I was in the "Die within a day" area or the "Die slowly" area of the radiation zone if the US and the USSR started launching nukes.

"USSR?" "Communist Russia." "Why would Russia nuke Canada? They're a pretty decent country that's a democracy." *Headwall Headwall Headwall*
Stahlseele
That's wrong even if they had meant canada *runs* ^^
bibliophile20
QUOTE (CanRay @ Jan 23 2012, 12:34 PM) *
I had to explain the Cold War to some Teens awhile back, and describe how I measured the wind to find out if I was in the "Die within a day" area or the "Die slowly" area of the radiation zone if the US and the USSR started launching nukes.

"USSR?" "Communist Russia." "Why would Russia nuke Canada? They're a pretty decent country that's a democracy." *Headwall Headwall Headwall*


The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2015

QUOTE
The Mindset List for the Class of 2015

Andre the Giant, River Phoenix, Frank Zappa, Arthur Ashe and the Commodore 64 have always been dead.

Their classmates could include Taylor Momsen, Angus Jones, Howard Stern's daughter Ashley, and the Dilley Sextuplets.

  1. There has always been an Internet ramp onto the information highway.
  2. Ferris Bueller and Sloane Peterson could be their parents.
  3. States and Velcro parents have always been requiring that they wear their bike helmets.
  4. The only significant labor disputes in their lifetimes have been in major league sports.
  5. There have nearly always been at least two women on the Supreme Court, and women have always commanded U.S. Navy ships.
  6. They “swipe” cards, not merchandise.
  7. As they’ve grown up on websites and cell phones, adult experts have constantly fretted about their alleged deficits of empathy and concentration.
  8. Their school’s “blackboards” have always been getting smarter.
  9. “Don’t touch that dial!”….what dial?
  10. American tax forms have always been available in Spanish.
  11. More Americans have always traveled to Latin America than to Europe.
  12. Amazon has never been just a river in South America.
  13. Refer to LBJ, and they might assume you're talking about LeBron James.
  14. All their lives, Whitney Houston has always been declaring “I Will Always Love You.”
  15. O.J. Simpson has always been looking for the killers of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman.
  16. Women have never been too old to have children.
  17. Japan has always been importing rice.
  18. Jim Carrey has always been bigger than a pet detective.
  19. We have never asked, and they have never had to tell.
  20. Life has always been like a box of chocolates.
  21. They’ve always gone to school with Mohammed and Jesus.
  22. John Wayne Bobbitt has always slept with one eye open.
  23. The Communist Party has never been the official political party in Russia.
  24. “Yadda, yadda, yadda” has always come in handy to make long stories short.
  25. Video games have always had ratings.
  26. Chicken soup has always been soul food.
  27. The Rocky Horror Picture Show has always been available on TV.
  28. Jimmy Carter has always been a smiling elderly man who shows up on TV to promote fair elections and disaster relief.
  29. Arnold Palmer has always been a drink.
  30. Dial-up is soooooooooo last century!
  31. Women have always been kissing women on television.
  32. Their older siblings have told them about the days when Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera were Mouseketeers.
  33. Most have grown up with a faux Christmas Tree in the house at the holidays.
  34. They’ve always been able to dismiss boring old ideas with “been there, done that, gotten the T-shirt.”
  35. The bloody conflict between the government and a religious cult has always made Waco sound a little whacko.
  36. Unlike their older siblings, they spent bedtime on their backs until they learned to roll over.
  37. Music has always been available via free downloads.
  38. Grown-ups have always been arguing about health care policy.
  39. Moderate amounts of red wine and baby aspirin have always been thought good for the heart.
  40. Sears has never sold anything out of a Big Book that could also serve as a doorstop.
  41. The United States has always been shedding fur.
  42. Electric cars have always been humming in relative silence on the road.
  43. No longer known for just gambling and quickie divorces, Nevada has always been one of the fastest growing states in the Union.
  44. They’re the first generation to grow up hearing about the dangerous overuse of antibiotics.
  45. They pressured their parents to take them to Taco Bell or Burger King to get free pogs.
  46. Russian courts have always had juries.
  47. No state has ever failed to observe Martin Luther King Day.
  48. While they’ve been playing outside, their parents have always worried about nasty new bugs borne by birds and mosquitoes.
  49. Public schools have always made space available for advertising.
  50. Some of them have been inspired to actually cook by watching the Food Channel.
  51. Fidel Castro’s daughter and granddaughter have always lived in the United States.
  52. Their parents have always been able to create a will and other legal documents online.
  53. Charter schools have always been an alternative.
  54. They’ve grown up with George Stephanopoulos as the Dick Clark of political analysts.
  55. New Kids have always been known as NKOTB.
  56. They’ve always wanted to be like Shaq or Kobe: Michael Who?
  57. They’ve often broken up with their significant others via texting, Facebook, or MySpace.
  58. Their parents sort of remember Woolworths as this store that used to be downtown.
  59. Kim Jong-il has always been bluffing, but the West has always had to take him seriously.
  60. Frasier, Sam, Woody and Rebecca have never Cheerfully frequented a bar in Boston during primetime.
  61. Major League Baseball has never had fewer than three divisions and never lacked a wild card entry in the playoffs.
  62. Nurses have always been in short supply.
  63. They won’t go near a retailer that lacks a website.
  64. Altar girls have never been a big deal.
  65. When they were 3, their parents may have battled other parents in toy stores to buy them a Tickle Me Elmo while they lasted.
  66. It seems the United States has always been looking for an acceptable means of capital execution.
  67. Folks in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City have always been able to energize with Pepsi Cola.
  68. Andy Warhol is a museum in Pittsburgh.
  69. They’ve grown up hearing about suspiciously vanishing frogs.
  70. They’ve always had the privilege of talking with a chatterbot.
  71. Refugees and prisoners have always been housed by the U.S. government at Guantanamo.
  72. Women have always been Venusians; men, Martians.
  73. McDonalds coffee has always been just a little too hot to handle.
  74. “PC” has come to mean Personal Computer, not Political Correctness.
  75. The New York Times and the Boston Globe have never been rival newspapers.


*looks at list* *shakes head* Yeah...
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