Remember “Yumpie?” – Young Upwardly Mobile Professional? It was the short-lived precursor to “Yuppie” – Young Urban Professional, the dreaded “Y” word that became a symbol of the ’80s’ “Greed is Good” generation.
I first heard “Yumpie” in the early ’80s from the lips of a Ford Motor Co. executive who was in town as part of a national sortie to convince American motorists that Japanese cars were just a fad.I didn’t believe him about the cars, but I thought “Yumpie” was kind of clever. Barely days later, I heard, for the first time, someone referred to as a “Yuppie” and I knew it would catch on. I never heard anyone talk about “Yumpies” after that.
Now it’s the ’90s and “Yuppie” has been banned from the lexicon of all right-thinking people. But maybe it needs a replacement. Are you ready for . . . Scuppie? – Socially Conscious Upwardly Mobile Person?
Scuppie is the brainchild of Chuck Failla, a fundraiser for a New York cultural arts center. On the weekends he heads for Connecticut to spend some time in the country. In other words, he’s a Yuppie.
But Failla says he prefers to think of himself as part of a growing clan that disdains the materialism of Yuppies in favor of saving the environment and other admirable social goals.
In other words, a Scuppie is a Yuppie with a conscience.
Failla contends that Scuppies can be thought of as the next logical stage of an evolutionary process that began 30 years ago with the Hippies. Hippies supposedly were idealistic and had little interest in acquiring material things (except, perhaps, tie-dyed T shirts, sandals, Volkswagen micro-buses and marijuanna). A few years later, the flower-child culture metamorphosed into the BMWs and Gucci loafers culture.
Thus the pendulum is swinging back to the center in which a balance will be made of the two extremes. No longer will the nation’s best and brightest focus entirely on getting rich at the expense of the environment and social concerns.