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I'm thinking of Billy Joel's song, "Why do I go to extremes?"

I'm thinking the extremes might just be where this presidential race is going and the extremes are age — generational stuff and the dreaded word: experience.

As we watch Obama and McCain take New Hampshire — and that's what the polls are saying right now — the prospect of a general election with a 45-year-old African American facing off against a 72-year-old white guy gets you to wondering.

Will the prospect of electing the first African American president trump everything or nothing?

Will electing an old guy who embodies the word experience in ways that makes Hillary green with envy be the safest bet for most Americans?

Will Obama have to face up to the terror threat or can the politics of hope convince most Americans everything will work out fine with all those people who hate us?

Will Americans decide the guy who was always against the war was right or was it the guy who was always for the surge?

Will the guy who is too young to have seen much of anything have the upper hand against the guy who is old enough to have seen everything at least twice?

Will 60-ish baby boomers come out and support the old guy?

Will 30-somethings have the numbers to cancel out the boomers and give the prize to their oratorical young guy?

A McCain-Obama contest is by no means a done deal. Giuliani is still out there as a threat to McCain, and I wouldn't count Mrs. Clinton out yet. But talk about a contest with stark contrasts — that's what a McCain-Obama race would be.

And, an added bonus: No Clintons and no Bushes — now that would be change.

That's My Word.

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