Today is (almost) my last working day of the year 2001. Hard to believe, yet another year past the millenium. When I was a kid, the year 2000 seemed so very, very far away. The impression back then was that the lifestyle in the year 2000 would be quite similar to the Jetsons, our own rocket-cars flying around, robots and other gadgets serving us, almost a comic book way of life in the space-age. So much fun and so much to look forward to. And I would be alive then (I hoped). Boy was I glad to be growing up when I was.
George, Jane, Judy, Elroy, Astro and Rosey. Henry the handyman. Spacely Sprokets and Cogswell Cogs.
Well, things have turned out slightly differently. Not quite as exciting as I had hoped as a kid, but good enough. For adults at least. For awhile I was into figuring out how old famous people had become by subtracting their date of birth from their date of death. I had this book I absolutely cherished, it was about the well-known thinkers throughout history: Plato, Kepler, Copernicus, Newton, Einstein, etc. Inside the front and back covers were pictures of each famous person with the dates of birth and death. It was a simple mathematical chore to find out how old they were at the moment of death, an extra insight into the past which fascinated me and gave me the impression I was discovering something new, something very private, about these heroes.
All of a sudden it dawned on me that I could calculate how old I would be in the year 2000, that fantastic futuristic era when I would be buzzing around in my own space vehicle. Just like the Jetsons et al. Okay, so I was born in 1957, so subtract 7 from 0 but first carry over the 1 and then another 0 minus... Hmmm, that means I would be forty-four years old. Forty-four. That's impossible, I would be an old man! Not a kid anymore. That wouldn't be fun at all. Or would it? Disillusion is hard for a child to deal with but shaken awake I decided to hang in there and make it. No matter how old and decrepit I was to become, or I thought.
Well, it is true. Here I am writing about it. Today is (almost) my last working day this year.