Consider this: the "classic" songs played on Salt Lake's modern music radio station are all of five years old. One decade, tops.
Catering to the 18- to 24-year-old-crowd, KJQ is proud to be Grateful Dead and Bob Dylan free, according to station music director Bruce Jones, who admits only to being 20-something."Yeah, I'm kind of annoyed by the retro-hippies movement," he said. "Probably the most annoying trend right now is remakes. If I hear one more remake I'm going to puke."
The radio station, which labels itself the cutting edge, could be considered the focus for the valley's counterculture, representing a slim minority of Americans who are tired of hearing the repeated refrains of the baby boomers' songs. Nuke '60s nostalgia, they say, and bring out the heavy artillery to stop the invasion of the Vietnam movies.
The national press has spoken: the baby boom backlash has begun. Bruce Elliott, 27, Los Angeles, co-founded the National Association for the Advancement of Time, an effort to move American society into the '80s. He said continued retro-ism could turn us into a third rate, backward-looking country.
The group, inspired when a DJ at a New Wave dance club started playing old Rolling Stones songs, began by sending nasty letters asking classic rock stations to stop for the good of the country and has now progressed to monthly mailers. The effort was catupulted to the big time with national stories by The Associated Press, USA Today and CBS's "This Morning" show.
Elliott said the publicity has prompted hundreds of letters, including several from Salt Lake City, supporting the effort targeting peace sign jewelry, 1950s theme restaurants, "The Wonder Years" TV show and the theatrical revival of "Hair," produced by bald men and performed by young people wearing long wigs.
"We're anti-nostalgia, pro-contemporary and pro-future," he said, quoting the group's slogan: "Just Say Now." "Wearing love beads and watching `China Beach' isn't going to solve anything.
"We're not against history. But nostalgia is to history what prostitution is to love."
Elliott said it's bad enough for baby boomers to live in their past, but it's even worse for today's teenagers to borrow it. "What's so great about the '80s? Well, for one thing it's now playing in a theater near you. It's here. It's happening. It's now."
But while some of Salt Lake's young Brady Bunch or Bee Gees generation admit to sharing the sentiment, they say the move-ahead movement hasn't gathered much steam here.)
"I just feel apathetic myself," said Brent Corcoran, 22. "I haven't heard any chapter of that starting out here."
"I'm sick of people with long hair who lived through the '60s and can't quite move on," said Shane Pratt, 24, a University of Utah senior in mass communications. Pratt dismisses the current preoccupation with the hippie movement by many of his classmates as shallow.
Corcoran said he doesn't believe in flower power. "I'm not interested in the past lives of these people," he said. "I didn't live through it. I just don't relate."
Sound familiar? That's the refrain that has greeted parents from time immemorial, ever since the Garden of Eden, when the older generation first started launching into stories about the Good Old Days. You know, the time when they walked to and from school - uphill both ways - in waist-high snow.
But maybe the sheer numbers of the boomer generation, and their tendency toward prime-time whining, has caused the satiation level to come earlier for the younger generation.
At the University of Utah, however, interest in things '60s by students born too late to remember has a survival instinct as strong as the Blob. History Professor Sandra C. Taylor said enrollment remains high in Vietnam War classes. And just last year the department added another special studies course: "The Americans in the 1960s."
Pratt said the problem with the late '80s revival of a fallen decade is the lack of a social conscience behind it. He criticizes the "granolas," the trendy students who attempt to be mod by affecting brand-new Birken-stock sandals and tie-dyed T-shirts just purchased at Copper Rivet.
"Because there is no movement behind it, it's just a me thing, a fashion thing," Pratt said. "That was a movement during the '60s, and it had meaning behind it. But this is just a style or a fad and it bugs me."