Leonard Cohen makes me feel old

How do  we deal with aging, but more importantly feeling older?

A couple of colleagues at work brought it home to me in a big way. They’re both younger than me, estimate 30 ish’, smart/worldly people, I got to talking to them about the upcoming Leonard Cohen show here in Austin.


Both of them said Leonard who? I thought they were joking, alas, they were not. Never heard of Leonard Cohen, or any of his songs. Not a clue.

At first I was dumbfounded, shocked actually, and then it hit me. I’m older than I think I am and the generational divide, that I’ve mostly managed to hold at bay, burst through. I guess I thought everyone knew who Leonard Cohen is. Just took it for granted. One of the soundtracks to my life, is well, just that. A soundtrack to my life, no-one else’s.

Now I know better, and my aging, and my feeling older, has been thrust uncomfortably down my throat. For me to ponder.

I better get used to it.


~ by john on February 3, 2009.

12 Responses to “Leonard Cohen makes me feel old”

  1. Been there, as you might guess. But it is your chance to become an educator. It will be lost on some and appreciated by others.

  2. Don’t believe it. You may be n enougot young enough. There are many many people in their 20’s who love Leonard Cohen and would have loved to be there to see him perform. I wondered before I went to his recent concert if I was too young or not young enough to fit the Knowing Crowd. For many of the younger set they are well familiar with Leonard Cohen’s work, if not his name. For a lot of these, there is a wonderful discovery they have yet to make.

    I will say I like Leonard Cohen’s voice better with age on it. But if you are looking for a model of aging gracefully and with all dignity, then you could do no better than to look to Leonard Cohen for your inspiration.

  3. Leonard quien? There’s also a cultural difference. I grew up listening to the greats of Mexican music (El Chente, Jose Alfredo Jimenez, Juan Gabriel, Pedro Infante, etc.) and still do to this day. Later in life I assimilated into the rock of the English world and I consider myself a fan of quality rock and roll but just like those young ones, I don’t know who Leonard Cohen is. So it’s all around you John. Time to educate and influence! Keep the dream alive. You’ll stay younger in the end.


  4. yep, def cultural differences with some folks, of course. My point was more about generational differences, maybe my myopia or feigned indifference to getting older.

  5. Thanks for the note, I def feel old enough to appreciate him, and is a model of how an artist can grow old with grace and dignity.

  6. I bet Bob. Making them a couple of samplers as we speak. Time to turn the tide! Thanks for checking out the post and leaving a note!

  7. And remember John, those guys have probably never seen the R. Crumb Hero’s Of The Blues cards either. Their loss 🙂

  8. I’m rectifying both situations asap, this will help fully form their brains..:)

  9. i was recently speaking with a younger person and i mentioned morrissey’s new album…she said “who?”, i said “of the Smith’s.” she said “oh, never heard of them.” ????????????????

  10. […] my harrowing “how can you not have heard of Leonard Cohen, therefore I must be getting old episode,” been thinking more about the subject of getting […]

  11. time waits for none of us! Time for you to fully form their brains and show them what they’re missing.

  12. I am 60. I was at The Long Center Thursday night. A young woman walked up and tossed a bra onto the stage….

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