TITLE: Old Enough to Know AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: September 06, 2013 8:37 AM DESC: ----- BODY: A trip to my alma mater for a reunion this weekend brings to mind these words from Roger Ebert:
There is a part of me that will forever want to be walking under autumn leaves, carrying a briefcase containing the works of Shakespeare and Yeats and a portable chess set. I will pass an old tree under which once on a summer night I lay on the grass with a fragrant young woman and we quoted e.e. cummings back and forth.
I was more likely carrying Keats than Yeats and quoting Voltaire than cummings, but the feeling's the same. There is something about the age as we enter adulthood that becomes permanent in us, more so than any other time. I'm old enough to know that these memories can't hurt a thing. I sent one daughter off to college a couple of years ago and will send another next year. In this experience, I feel more like the wistful father who penned My Dear Son. Indeed, "every age has its gifts for the man who is willing to work for them and use them temperately".
Attributions. The Ebert passage comes from his review of the film Liberal Arts. (Ebert calls it "an almost unreasonable pleasure"; I agree.) John Mellencamp wrote the line "old enough to know...". -----