08 March 2010

What's all this fuss about the Granny DJ?

Several news outlets have done a story about Ruth Flowers, the 69-year-old woman who works as club DJ. In the segments, much ado has been made about someone her age being behind the decks. I, too, was taken aback by the stooped shoulders and the white hair in a club setting. However, if you do the math, it doesn't seem so strange. If she is 69 now that means she was in her 30s when disco was hot. The presenter in the video quipped that she should be more comfortable dancing ballroom, but she was in diapers when big band was popular. She is more likely to want to listen to KC and the Sunshine Band than Glenn Miller.

I think that sometimes our stereotypes of people and situations get stuck in a certain era that doesn't jibe with their age. For instance, I had a coworker who told me the story of how she and her husband met and how she had been a cheerleader and they lived in married student housing for his last years of college. I had this picture of her in my head wearing a 1950s cheerleader uniform and having his fraternity pin on her sweater, which was ridiculous because she was the same age as I was! I also get surprised when my kids tell me that their teachers have iPhones and play XBox. Once I stop to think, it makes sense because their teachers are younger than I am, so if I play video games than they probably do, too. In my mind, however, "teacher" doesn't go in the same sentence with "XBox" or "World of Warcraft". If other people make the same misjudgments that I do, then white-haired grannies will be stuck with big band music for at least another 20 years.
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