Generation X describes the population of planet Earth born during the period from when Paul McCartney first dominated the charts with The Beatles in the mid-1960s, until his solo song "Mull of Kintyre" finally dropped out of the top ten in the early 1980s. They are noted for having the coolest generational name; before Gen X were the Baby boomers, named because they liked to shout at babies, while after Gen X come the Millennials that are sometimes called "Generation Y", constantly questioning why their future seems to hold nothing but hard graft and lifelong poverty — when they are not being distracted by taking endless selfies, or "liking" selfies of their tens of thousands of online friends.
Generation X are the only generation capable of both hacking computer code and assembling a wardrobe, but are the only generation that do not understand emojis. They turned the Internet from a frustratingly slow form of pornography, into a way of making billions without making anything at all. Gen X were also notable for their experimental pill-popping, and even today remain very much the pillar of the statin community.
The term "Generation X" has been used at various times throughout history to describe alienated youth, such as 1950s youth who had their futures X-ed out by World War II, introverted kids in the '60s who picked X-Men comics over the more popular Superman, and Billy Idol's 1970s punk band Generation X. However, the term did not come into its modern definition until after the release of Generation X: For Want of a Better Term for Us (or Them? I Was Born in 1961, So It's Never Clear What "Generation" I'm In; Depending on Who You Ask, I'm Either a Stuffy Late Boomer or a Youthful Early Xer) Obnoxious Little Bastards, a 1991 novel by Canadian author Douglas Coupland. Demographer Neil Howe, known for coining the similar multi-million-dollar generational buzzword "Millennials", noted the delay in naming this demographic cohort saying, "Over 30 years after their birthday, they didn't have a [non-shitty] name. I think that's nothing short of what they deserve." Previously, the cohort had been referred to as Post-Boomers, Boom-Boxers, Bombastic Buggers, the New Lost Generation, Latchkey Kids, the MTV Generation, the Slacker Generation, the Pointless Generation, the Friday the 13th Generation, the Reality Bites Generation, and the "I hate my parents, I hate work, I hate you, and I hate myself; let's go get a pizza" Generation.
Terms such as "Xennials", "Oregon Trail Generation", "Generation Catalano", "Cold Y Generation", and "Generation Eurotrash" have been used to describe those born from 1977 to 1983 (or 1985, or 1987, depending on when the author of the specific Xennial thinkpiece was born), who don't really fit in with the softness and optimism of their Millennial younger siblings but don't quite fit with the cynicism and angst of their Tru Gen XTM older siblings either. Xennials are distinct in that they had "both an analog childhood and a digital childhood", getting a taste of life before little kids became symbiotically intertwined to tablets and social media.
Gen X was a generation raised by the emergence of MTV, home computers, and video games as their latchkey single mothers were busy earning the rent and had little time to look after their kids. Baby boomers described Gen X young adults as "bleak, cynical, and disaffected", but that was hardly surprising from that generation, who had spent more time in the divorce court than stopping their kids fighting over Hungry Horace. Such stereotypes prompted sociological research at Stanford University to study the accuracy of the characterization of Gen X young adults.
Using the national General Social Survey, researchers, who had clearly nothing better to do with taxpayer's money, concluded that Gen Xers did exhibit higher levels of cynicism, however, they also found that cynicism and disaffection had increased among all age groups surveyed over extended periods — making this an effect of having to sit through a completely meaningless test, not a cohort effect. In other words, adults of all ages were more cynical and disaffected after a week of stupid questions, it was just that Generation X would tell them so after the first hour, then go to the pub.
Generally, Gen Xers are the children of the Silent Generation and older Baby boomers, while Xers' children are younger Millennials and Gen Zers. Despite the coddled parenting of the Boomers, Xers still had their Greatest Generation grandparents (at least whoever was left after years of social drinking and smoking gave them all liver disease and lung cancer) to teach them the right ways and give them a tough outlook on life, and thus weren't too bad off. Millennials, on the other hand...
Generation X broke new ground with musical genres such as hip-hop, the blackest of black music featuring samples from other songs, phat beats, and deadpan spoken-word poetry that addressed social issues of the time, and grunge, the whitest of white music that resembles hip-hop on the surface level: whining about social issues, only with an alt-rock backdrop.
Back when Gen X were young, MTV actually played music videos frequently, but this began to die out in the late 1990s thanks to Early Millennials hitting adolescence at the time. Grunge angst stopped selling, and sissy pap like the Spice Girls, Britney Spears, Hanson, and NSYNC took over the airwaves as a result, with MTV reducing music video airtime solely to a few hours on the phony call-in-your-own-music show TRL. You can add "MTV" and "pop music" to the ever-growing list of things those dastardly Millennials have killed, along with avocado toast.