Sunday, September 11, 2005

Age is so relative

I've been at my new job for a couple days past 2 months now, so I've gotten to know the people in my office a bit better now. Enough so we can have those random hallway talks that only happen in offices (you know it's true...the hallways talks at school are just different somehow).

I'm the second youngest person in my office by about 5 or 6 months. The next oldest person is almost 6 years older than me, then it skips to about 8 years older than me, and on up. So, to most everyone in my office, I'm a baby. It's hilarious. Hallway talk about "the past" puts us in totally different positions. I was talking about the Gap CD (oh yes, I'm still all over that album...I love it, remember? See the earlier post "That mysterious Gap CD"), and I made the comment (similar to what I said in my post) about it being like high school when you found the perfect album--the one you can play in its entirety because all of the songs are so good. My coworker laughed and said, "I'm sorry, high school? When I was in high school, we were still buying cassette tapes..." This floored me...has the music industry really progressed that fast? I mean, she's in her early 30s, so I guess it has. It's just weird to think about not having CDs.

But I digress.

So, in my office, I'm the baby. But, I'm now in my mid-20s. I feel old! My little brother (who's 5 1/2 years younger than me) just started college this fall. My friends are starting to get engaged. I have a full-time job that I may stay at for more than a year. I have my own apartment. I pay electric bills for god's sake! I feel so old in comparison to what I've been used to in the past. I realize that in the great grand scheme of things I'm young, but in my mind, "young" is high school. "Young" is my mother's second graders. "Young" is even undergrads now. "Young" is not me.

Isn't it funny how you can be old or young just by changing your surroundings and the people you're with? And I can literally change from young to old in a manner of minutes, after leaving the office and hopping the T with the school kids going home and while I walk home near Harvard with all of the college students. It's a little disorienting sometimes. There's a brief period in which I feel almost ageless...neither young nor old, neither experienced nor naive. Just me. It's kind of an interesting part of my day actually...but that's a topic for another post...

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