I guessed his age at late 20s: He’d just turned 30. He made a joke about his immaturity giving it away. Which was amusing, but entirely untrue. He’s an articulate, smart, engaging man who has only been in my inbox for a very short while, but already I enjoy him a lot.
I explained it like this:
…(generalisation warning…) some younger men have a quality about them that gets lost as they get older. It’s hard to put a finger on what it is exactly. There is a particular way that they look at the world, and it’s quite lovely. I *want* to say ‘naivety’, but it’s not quite right because it has too many implications beyond what I mean.
Perhaps more accurate to say that they have an honest wide-eyed and genuine way of exploring, a way of interacting that hasn’t yet been worn down with age and experience. They haven’t yet learnt to be defensive, to pave their way with expectations, aren’t yet jaded.
I feel it as a kind of ‘breath of fresh air’, all crisp and shiny and ready to bloom.
You have it.