Sunday, February 08, 2009

Age, Experience and Heroes

As I wander through the want ads and job applications I am encountering a dull discrimination against middle age job seekers. It can wear your psyche down when you are told that you are "over-qualified" for a position. Even though age discrimination is illegal it happens all the time in subtle ways.
Remember then the story of this year's hero-Captain 'Sully' Sullenberger, The 58 year old Captain that saved the lives of all the passengers on that jet that landed perfectly in the Hudson River .
"Sullenberger credited his lifetime of experience as a pilot with preparing him to see the terrifying accident's to a successful outcome. But he said he was still uneasy about being called a hero.
"I don't feel comfortable embracing it, but I don't want to deny it," he told Couric. "I don't want to diminish their thankful feeling toward me. Something about this episode captured peoples' imagination. I think they want good news; they want to be hopeful again, and if I can help in that way, I will.""
Sometimes EXPERIENCE counts.
He has inspired me to hold my head up high.
"During the ordeal, Sullenberger, 58, displayed the steely self-confidence that befits a former fighter pilot from the Air Force Academy.
In the moments after a flock of large birds snuffed out the Airbus A320's two engines, blanketing the cockpit with an eerie silence, Capt. Sullenberger took control of the jet from co-pilot Jeffrey Skiles, 49. For 3½ minutes, they desperately tried to restart the engines and find a safe place to land.
"The physiological reaction I had to this was strong, and I had to force myself to use my training and force calm on the situation," Sullenberger said.
Once he picked the Hudson as the only suitable place to put down, Sullenberger said he didn't doubt he could bring the plane down safely.
"I was sure I could do it," he said. "I think, in many ways, as it turned out, my entire life up to that moment had been a preparation to handle that particular moment.""

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