On the flight to Dallas, I took advantage of my free drink tickets and ordered a beer. The flight attendant, a young black woman, asked for my ID.
I had it ready. I’m carded so often, that it’s normal for me to show my ID whenever I order alcohol. She looked for the year. 1980. That puts me well over 21.
“You look like you’re 10 years old,” she exclaimed in a surprised yet fake tone.
I didn’t say anything and took my ID back.
I know I look young. I hear that all the time. However, most times people simply say “you look younger” and leave it at that. That’s fine. However telling me I look like a ten year old — even if you are exaggerating for effect — is simply rude. It’s like telling someone, “wow, you look really tired today.” Even if it’s true, the person on the other end of that comment is gonna think, “wow, I guess I look like shit today.”
Here’s my advice: next time you meet one of us deceptively young looking people, feel free to express that you’re surprised about our actual age. Do not tell us we look like we’ve yet to hit puberty. After all, some of us probably already have a complex about looking young, not being taken seriously at work or having our competence questioned due to our youthful visage.