Saturday, January 06, 2007

Aging Gracefully

I was browsing the groups at Gather and saw a group for 30somethings.
I didn't join.
I've never really thought about being "30something".
Thirty just wasn't a "milestone" for me when it happened a few years ago.
Now, I fully expect an "over-the-hill" party when I turn forty - and to be much closer to a full head of gray hair.
I've been married for well over a decade. I've got three great kids. Occasionally I realize than my oldest daughter is less than a handful of years away from high school. 
Then, for a split second, I panic.
Being 30something hasn't really been a consideration in my life. I still feel like I'm 20something, and occasionally act like I'm still a kid. However, seeing the way kids behave these days makes me feel old. And saying that makes me sound old. - Yes, I used to walk up hill both ways to school in the snow.  Really. I had to walk down a hill and up a hill to get to school. To get back home I had to walk down a hill and up a hill. And I always walked to high school until I could drive.
Occasionally I'll look at what traditional-aged college graduates these days are capable of and realize that I'm not capable of keeping up with them. They have current, formal education in things I only dabble in (computers) or the technology of things I used to do has completely passed my experience level. In a writing class in college, we used top-of-the line computers and computer programs. A 286 PC and a DOS writing program. PCs now - sheesh, I can't even do the math on how much faster they are now than then. What do you multiply twelve by to get close to four thousand?
I used to work in radio broadcasting. When I left that business, they were just starting to put the commercials on computer and do some editing on computer.  Now everything is on the computer. The songs, the jingles, the commercials, even the announcer is often on computer (they used to be "canned" when I was in radio - usually on CD or cart, occasionally on the computer). If I, for some reason, went back into radio, I'd need a complete education on the equipment. Granted, I have some foreknowledge going in better than someone who'd never been in the business - but not much (at that has never really mattered, but that's a rant for a different day).
I get an alumni magazine from my college. In the back is a "Where are they now" section that updates the status of alumni: marriages, births, deaths, promotions, etc. I see graduates listed from 2006 in there.
Wait - 2006?!  That was this, I mean, last year! Ten years after I graduated!
Thinking about continuing this any further is starting to depress me: the condition of friends I had in college, the age of my nephews and niece, my opinion on things, things I find myself thinking or saying.
I'm old!!

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