I turned 56 recently. I was trying to send a fedex the other day, and for the first time ever,the helpful clerk told me that if I was 55 or older, i could get a 10% discount. gulp. My first discount based on age.

When Ted Kennedy took the stage last night at the Democratic National Convention, I, like so many, saw the journey of my life flash in front of me…his brother John’s inauguration and assassination, his brother Robert’s assassination, the personal tragedies, the long tenure in the Senate, and now his bout with cancer. To see him on that stage, with a big chunk of his hair not yet grown back from the brain surgery, his voice so firm and filled with life, was amazing. The span of my life seems to fit so completely within the span of his. And it is so dreamlike: where did the time go? What makes a lifetime?

I so admired his commitment in coming, and his expressing his passion and dedication. Of course I am very interested in the concept of lineage, and it is striking to see a sense of lineage in his passing the torch of his family’s mission of public service to Barack Obama.

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