If you understand and agree with the concept of life improving as you get older (as long as you live it like Clint Eastwood, that is — amply funded, constant flexing of creative muscles, working out daily, cracking jokes and all that), leaving this mortal coil at age 70 is, I feel, a profoundly sad thing. Yesterday’s departure of 70 year-old actress Dixie Carter (Designing Women, That Evening Sun, Desperate Housewives) is noted in this context. A spokesperson wouldn’t say where or how, but husband Hal Holbrook‘s use of the term “tragedy” rather than, say, “quiet passing” suggests that she met with an unexpected, unfair-seeming affliction.