It's funny, the things that you will begin to accept as you become older and calmer--the diluted version of your former self. In youth, there is a phenomenon called certainty. To any question or problem, there is always an answer, a solution. There is always a right and there is always a wrong, and the gray area is just a thin line between those two poles, and there's not any room to dawdle there. As you get older and the wisdom of disappointment and failure illuminate the black and white to the point of being indiscernible from the gray, there is never a decision that comes without the lingering knowledge that there are several more ways than yours to be right and to be wrong and to be neither.
I think that the young are referred to as idealists because they cannot be cynical until they have lived failed expectation to the point of their own ruin. Well, I hope the young have not experienced that. I suppose then that is why as oldness comes it becomes easier to accept the ritual, the normal, the quintessential because the spontaneous, the beautiful, and the unbelievable never come up to full fruition. You realize that fantasy is alive longer and better when only in your mind, when it has not made the perilous jump from day-dream to hope. Not to say that hope is a fantasy, but rather to illustrate that hope is a tangible form of the all those things you want so badly to exist in your reality. Basically, hope is the kindling of expectation, and within expectation lies the danger of disappointment. So, the young are filled with hope and the old are filled with disappointment and the in betweens are somewhere in between.
As you begin to learn that there is nothing more real than what you know from experience, the self-righteous attitudes of your youth quell and retreat. You begin to grasp that there is no real understanding without experience, and that without experience there is only the fantasy and the hope and the expectation and ultimately the danger.
I am not fully wise, I know I will never be, but I am wiser. I am older. I am more mature if not any more responsible. I will judge myself always, but I will also give myself longer reign. I wish you would do the same for me, but that is an expectation that will not realize, so I am destined to be disappointed. Thus, I am wiser again.
Time to be small, Les Matter