A Presidential – but nonpolitical – Milestone
Disclaimer: As the title indicates, this is not a political post. There is no agenda. This essay is, as always, just about me and my vanity.
Barack Obama’s election to the Presidency was historic in all the ways that have been celebrated, discussed, and debated for the last few years.
But his election also set a personal milestone for me too – although I didn’t realize it until a few weeks ago.
I am older than the President of the United States!
And not just a little bit – as the pundits discussed the President’s fiftieth birthday, I was stricken with the fact that I am a decade older than the President of the United States.
I mean, THAT”S OLD!
In my childhood, presidents were wiser, older. Think Eisenhower. Wasn’t he about eighty?
And young presidents, like my beloved Jack Kennedy – well, he wasn’t young to me. I was twelve when he was killed. And Johnson aged before my eyes in the mid-sixties.
Presidents were old. And you believed in them because of all their vast experience.
But now I have crested that moment when suddenly I am on the other side of the age mountain, and there is no going back. I don’t think there will ever again be a president older than I.
Gradually, but steadily, my life is being overtaken by youth.
First was that all-important person, my hairdresser. I didn’t mind; I told myself that a younger woman will be hipper, and that will be good for me.
Then it was my doctor. Okay, I thought, just out of med school means he is up to date on all the latest scientific knowledge, and that will be good for me.
Then there was the police. Here certainly youth is a good thing – ensuring that our cops have the strength and reflexes to respond to dangerous situations. Like the young trooper dude who helped me break into my house when I locked myself out.
Then it was my boss. I’ve tried to look on the bright side here too. My young boss still has young kids; she’ll understand the difficult balance between work life and home life.
So I’ve given it my best shot to be philosophic about the whole thing.
But the truth is: I’m annoyed.
Government and work and medical care –and my hair – are going to be decided by people less experienced than myself. More and more over the years, more and more pieces of my life will be ruled by WHIPPERSNAPPERS. No, let me change ‘whippersnappers’ – because that makes me sound even older. My life will be ruled by PUNKS.
God, I hope they are wise punks.