living in new york city, it is IMPOSSIBLE to not compare yourself to everyone around you at every moment of every day. why, you wonder, does it seem EVERYONE is more successful than you? where did you go wrong? and what should you do about it? what can you do? are you doing the right thing? should you start over? what is happening?

so the words spoken by gloria steinem (!!!!!) at monday night’s glamour women of the year awards soothed my worried soul a bit. i ate them up hungrily and gratefully and hopefully. (she’s very soft-spoken, by the way, for someone so notoriously out-spoken.) she gets on stage, looking fabulous, peers calmly out at the audience, and starts loosely and un-pretentiously ruminating on feminism today.

“when i was in my twenties,” she said softly, “you felt like a failure if you weren’t married by 30.”

she paused.

“now it seems that if you aren’t a wild success by 30, you feel like you’ve failed. am i right? i am, aren’t i?”

she must have seen a million eager heads nodding, including my own, because she shook her head kind of sadly and knowingly, and said: “let me tell you, life gets greater and greater, and more surprising, after 30. and after 40. after 50. after 60, and yes, 70. life is just one big surprise.” (she’s 77.)

loud, grateful cheers. i’m not sure i can convey how wonderfully phrased and put this was, but: god, that woman rocks.

(also: check out this recent nymag story. those pictures? i’m never cutting my hair again.)

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