I'm 41 years old, but have usually found myself surrounded by older people. Most of my friends are older than I am, so is The Other Half. Increasingly however, I am no longer the youngster in the room. My brother recently discovered that he has an 18 year old daughter. She could conceivably conceive, and make him (15 months younger than I am) a grandfather when he himself is 41. No rush though, girl! That realization, that you are grandparent age can come as something of a shock.
I'm pretty comfortable in my age bracket. It doesn't hurt that The Other Half breaks in each age for me, and it's like a comfy old shoe by the time I get there. No surprises. I look back on my younger self--as little as five-years ago "me"--and cringe. I wouldn't go back for anything, unless I could retain the brain of the me I am now. I've always been considered mature for my age--my brother called me a 40-year-old 12-year-old years ago--but I find that very hard to believe when I look back. Like the Indigo Girls song, "Watershed" says, "every five years or so, I look back on my life, and I have a good laugh."
What I'm saying in a somewhat disjointed way is, don't be afraid of any future age you might be. It is far less scary to hit the big 4-0 than you think it is. The biggest problem is dealing with the younger set. Many twenty-somethings seem to have no knowledge whatsoever about what came before them. They don't even seem to know what's going on right now. All that information at their fingertips, and they just can't be bothered.
One observation about getting older is the realization that time moves much more quickly the more of it you burn up. When you're a freshman in high school, three years means the difference between 6th and 9th grade--a tremendous change. Three years at my age happens in a blink of an eye. I have the same job, same house, same relationship, same cat, same truck. Actually, most of those things have remained the same since the turn of the century and before. I couldn't tell you what year I went to England, or precisely when we got the "new" TV or couch.
Songs from three years ago are still "new songs" to me. Maroon 5 went five years between albums, and I still think of their first hit ("Harder to Breathe") as recent. I'm often stunned that a TV show I've never watched (The King of Queens, for example) is wrapping up their run of eight years. To me, it's been a very short time since the beginning of Lindsay Lohan's and Britney Spears' careers, and they're effectively over now. I've got a very good memory for many things, but don't ask me what year Tina Fey left Saturday Night Live.
I couldn't tell you the highlights (or lowlights) of 2004 versus 2005--I can't distinguish the two! I've considered starting a journal, separate from this blog, if only to distinguish 2007 from 2009 in the future.
So in conclusion, young folks, enjoy your youth, and maybe start a diary. It'll all start to blur together, and sooner than you think. Oh, yeah, and read a book! Open the newspaper! Pay attention! Your generation is starting to look bad. I'm not sure if that is because it is, or because the older generation always thinks that of the younger. I'm thinking, a little of both. And respect your elders! Heh-heh.