(en route to Durham, NC). Yesterday, I turned forty. Since I happen to have a sick parent right now, “intimations of mortality” would be an understatement. Last time I noticed, my contemporaries were deciding what advanced degrees to pursue, looking for spouses and partners, and wondering whether our elders were paying any attention to us. Now we worry about our own kids, our parents, and our savings; and we are the elders in some of our institutions. All my Gen-X friends seem to live in grown-ups’ houses and understand grown-ups’ issues like 401(k)s, renovations, and dinner parties. We used to play at adult roles; now we inhabit them. Each day, the world seems exactly like yesterday, but a “heap” of days passes and life is completely different.