Getting grayer

Is it just my imagination or are junior scientists getting older and older? Certain meetings that I used to attend that were usually showcasing younger scientists now seem to be stages for those well-past even the kindest effort to classify as “young.” The fact that I have noticed this – as my age (like the price of milk; although the causal relationship has not yet been established) has also altered upwards. Certainly there is data indicating that, over the past few decades, the age when one secures his or her first major independent grant has steadily krept upwards. There are lots of reasons for this statistic – but now I am beginning to wonder if the broader cultural phenomenon of keeping one’s progeny as children untile their 3rd or 4th decade is creeping into academic science. Maybe there is something akin to “helicopter mentoring” going on? Or maybe it is that as we older members of communities infantalize the younger by witholding responsibility via the witholding of opportunities is contributing to the gray tones of academic science?