Time: Meet the Twixters

11-10slide1The NEWSWEEKLIES ARE AT IT AGAIN - 'discovering' a new societal trend and coining a new title for a generation. On its cover this week, Time has a photo of a young man in business casual attire sitting in a sandbox. The story is "Meet the Twixters....They Just Won't Grow Up."

You see, the "Twixters" are "betwixt and between" adolescence and adulthood. They are described as people in their 20s who are putting off the traditional moves toward permanent careers and families.

How much news is in this piece exactly? People are delaying marriage - wow - welcome to 1987. Women are waiting longer to have children - shocking. People in their 20s who live in cities move a lot and socialize regularly - contact the Christian Coalition, there is a crisis in the family people!

What was once a trait applied to Gen-Xers, Time now says is a permanent demographic shift toward extended adolescence. And while this story sent shivers of guilt and anxiety down this unmarried-still-borrowing-money from-his-parents-reporter's spine, is any of this real news?

Well, it's certainly fun to read some of these "Twixters" stories. And the fact that a lot of these folks are not only single, but also live at home is surprising (20 percent of 26-year-olds, according to the article). But how many people are in this group? Statistics are hard to come by and are mostly from a Time poll.

The provocative and intriguing part of this piece, however, isn't that young people aren't growing up like they used to, but that some think society has made it more difficult - and that maybe something is actually preventing these people from maturing. Colleges are directly implicated as missing the boat in providing practical training, while saddling students with excessive post-college debt.

Time examines other factors at work here, like basic economics, the growing need for post graduate degrees, and the way young people have been raised - promised infinite possibilities. So, despite not uncovering any earth-shattering news, Time does deliver a fresh spin on this subject, with a well reported and stimulating angle. Besides, not every cover story can be on Iraq, or diets for that matter.

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