Month: September 2019

That Age Old Question

Who doesn’t want discounts? Ah, but be careful for what you wish for, because even discounts come with a price!

Apparently I’m a senior.

Well, according to my local Rexall Drug Store, I am.

I picked up a few things on my way home from the library, and was asked by the cashier if I was a senior.

I didn’t get mad when asked. My current lack of stable employment and constant address hopping is stressful. As I pointed out in a previous writing, stress can prematurely age an individual. I will admit I look older than my actual age.

I smiled and politely said, “I’m not 65”. The cashier then told me that both Rexall and Shopper’s Drug Mart offer a senior’s discount to anyone 55 and over

Well, does David want to save money on his expenses? Yep! David’s a senior, then!

While saving money is never a bad thing, there is another side to this anecdote to consider. I wouldn’t have been asked by the cashier if I was a senior if I didn’t look the part.

A casual rewind of past events in recent memory has brought to my attention a few things that indicate the cashier was not the only one who took notice of my age.

For example, over the last two years I’ve been asked fairly often by fellow transit riders if I would like to have their seat. While I have no trouble standing while taking the bus and still go on very long walks to keep in shape, I took the seat with thanks out of courtesy and to reinforce positive behaviour.

If I accidentally bump into someone or commit some other social faux pas, even when clearly it’s my fault, I appear to receive a pass on that more often. “Oh, no worries, buddy!” one might say. “You didn’t do anything wrong, sir!”, chirps a polite student. Well, yes, yes I did. I bumped into someone because I misjudged my distance.

Don’t get me wrong. I like the idea society still has some respect for the elderly old age-challenged those with a few years on them. How society treats that age group is one indicator of how close society is to being a dystopia.

The concern I have is this heightened sense of awareness to my current appearance may also be present in the minds of interviewers and others who I interact with in my job search. “Is he a senior?” each might ask.

A question asked not to give me a discount, but to be discounted for potential opportunities of employment which, as mentioned in another post, is clearly discriminatory and based on false reasoning.

Thanks for reading!