Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Those Old White Guys

One of my best friends from high school lost her dad today. He was 90 and died peacefully at home with 2 of his five children by his side; not a bad way to go, right?

When I heard the news, I noted the date, because me and dates? We have something going. Just the other day, I ran into a couple of friencquaintences (yes! by all means give me credit for that portmanteau word) at Target, and I had the occasion  to impress them with my knowledge of their birthdays. I wish I could take more credit for it, but (shrug) it's just how my brain works.

So, today, I thought of Nixon resigning. It was August 8, 1974, (Bobby Bloomer's birthday), and we had been to Great Adventure theme park with my aunt and cousins. That hot, sweaty night, with all the window fans blowing, we watched on TV as the president made a speech from the oval office that he would resign the next day. It was history.

How old was my friend's dad then? I wondered, and I calculated that he was 51, my age exactly. He was a fortunate man, and I personally wouldn't turn down another 39 years like those, but then I got to thinking. How old was Nixon then?

The answer-- 61. Just 10 years older than I am now. Hmm. So he was... 55 when he was elected. That seems impossible. How could that be? NIXON was only 4 years older than I am when he ran for president? But wait. The first time he ran, when he was that stodgy alternative to the young and vibrant JFK? He was just 47!

So, I did a bit of research into all those old, white guys who have led our nation. (Thank you, Wikipedia.) The median age is actually a youthful 54 and 11 months, which falls between Herbert Hoover and Lyndon Johnson. (Really? Really!) Seriously... Tyler, Fillmore, Grant, Garfield, Arthur, Cleveland, BOTH Roosevelts (FDR? C'mon!), Cleveland, Kennedy, Clinton, and Obama were all my age, or YOUNGER!, when elected president.


You know how politics are these days. I'm already following "Ready for Hillary" on Twitter, and I am ready for her-- mostly because she's a woman, but also because she will kick that median age up a notch.

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