I never go around thinking how old I am. When you're busy living life that's one of the last things on your mind. The question of age usually pops up at random and only then are you suddenly focused on the dreadful subject. While watching an interview with Dame Maggie Smith last evening, the actress revealed she was now 78 years of age. I almost thought, damn! That's old - until I realized I was the same age.
The Walt Disney Studio in the year 2013 is quite a bit different from the fifties studio where Walt and the Nine Old Men roamed the hallways of the Animation Building. Today, it would appear that most employees were born in the eighties. This is a scary thought when I realize I still remember clearly what I was working on back during the decade most of these kids were born. I still have scripts and sketches on my drawing table that I created during the years, 1984 to 1989. Even today, I still meet young Disney employees who reminds me that I probably worked with their father or mother. In most cases they're exactly correct because I did work with their mom or dad.
However, I find these young people delightful because they're infused with energy and enthusiasm. I envy their innocence and their optimistic view of the future. I clearly remember how I felt during my kid days at the mouse house and what a glorious time it was. I never wanted to turn into a cynical, grumpy old timer. Sadly, that attitude can often be found today in many of my colleagues. Guys who blame their lack of success in the business on anything or anyone but themselves. Then again, when has the cartoon business ever been fair? Sure, I continue to rag on the animation business and on studio management in particular. But, that's not because I'm sour on the business. In actuality I love it more than ever and I'm delighted that I've been the recipient of more good times than I can remember.
Yet, the years roll past and this morning a young woman reminded me I was old enough to be her father. This was topped by another woman who reminded me I was old enough to be her grandfather. I could only smile. That's what happens when you stick around long enough. And, sticking around is something I'm more than happy to do.