Kids! What Are You Gonna Do?

Tori had a dental appointment last week, and when the doctor came in he looked – how do I put this? – painfully young.

They seem to get younger every year, and to a guy like me, it starts getting uncomfortable. I remember having a slight qualm about thirty years ago when I met a priest who was a year younger than me (that’s not right, they’re all supposed to look like Bing Crosby and Barry Fitzgerald in going my way) and started seeing a doctor who was the same age as me. How would that work? Just about the time got to the age where I’d really need a doctor, he’d be retired. Or dead.

And now it’s everywhere. I’m boarding a plane, glance in the cockpit and see kids for whom the plane’s controls are just an extension of their Gameboy, a bigger video game with better graphics.

So the dentist walks in, and I swear he didn’t look significantly older than Max. Tori snapped up from the chair and said, “How old are you?”

He obviously gets this all the time, one of those people with a young physiognomy, because he took it in stride.

“I’m 22,” he said, “But I’ve done one of these before, and I spent the weekend watching youtube videos of it, so I know what I’m doing.”

Then he laughed and said he was actually 33. I’m not sure he’s quite that old, because man he looked like a kid. But he’s got a diploma on the wall so he was at least old enough to get that, and he did a good job with Tori.

But it was all I could do not to call him Skippy. And all morning, the theme song from Doogie Howser M.D. was running through my head.

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