I am a pomo bobo — and every day in every way I'm happier and happier about it. I'm betting you are one too, though you may not know it — yet.
There's no arguing that we live in a postmodern, or pomo, society, but we live and breathe a bourgeois bohemian (BoBo) zeitgiest as well. In his book Bobos in Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There, David Brooks traces the development of a hybrid cultural "upper class" first generated from the baby boomer generation after they put away their frayed bell bottoms and acid tabs and became "responsible" adults with a house, a mortgage, two cars, and 3.5 children, mostly in the 'burbs.
But they didn't merely "become their parents," for their hippie ideals stayed with them even as their fortunes grew and they obtained professional status. They are what the right wing would call the "liberal elite," and Brooks maintains that their belief system colors our cultural, moral, intellectual, and economic world inexorably.
For starters, I'd surmise that typically their paper is the liberal "paper of record," the New York Times.The Times' television ads, though populated by Gen Y and X'ers, are chock full of bobo: A 30-something man in those deliberately ugly pomo glasses that are supposed to make you look brainy says, "I'm fluent in three sections, actually..." Another Asian 20-something says she used the travel section to help plan her trip to Spain, and a young couple who apparently met over the Times swaps the book review and the magazine while lazing on their couch on a Sunday afternoon.
The Times' leftist, liberal leanings are not the only thing that makes it the bobo bible. I started to have the Times delivered every day recently, which I love, along with the fact that it comes wrapped in a PC, recyclable blue baggie.
I failed to get the Sunday weekly TV section which I thought they included as the Post and News do, so I peruse the daily TV page in the Arts section. Just as I remember from my precocious childhood, Times movie reviews are delivered in pithy, snarky sound bites. But to my dismay, I saw that the one-page listing only went from 7PM to midnight — reflecting, I suppose, the bobo's reluctance to admit to too much TV watching — and the typical bobo's schedule: dinner at 6 with the family, settling in for a dose of prime time at 7, to bed at midnight to gird one's mental loins for another day of lucrative work that might entail something suitably bobo like software development or college dean, or something more bourgeois such as a doctor, lawyer, professor, banker, trader, journalist, or other New Yorkish profession; up at six for a jog, and off to the rat race.