I know most of us will (hopefully) all get to that age where we will get to enjoy the perks of being a senior citizen – free movies, first in line to almost anything, preferential boarding on flights, 20% discount on meals, medicines, travel, accommodations and more! Being a senior citizen has never been this good.
After all, those 60 years you’ve given to the world is worth the celebration and this reward is a fitting gesture to those who have “arrived”.
With technology and science at the forefront of advances in improving living and health conditions, this is the best time to be alive. That’s why they say that 60 is the new 40! Those that have made it to this stretch in their lives have earned it.
The senior citizen, however, should be gently reminded that whatever privilege is extended to them is not a reason to feeling entitled. I apologize if I will strike a nerve with this post. But let me say my piece.
I usually stay defensive about “senior citizenhood” because of my mom who turns 81 this year. Wherever we go, it’s wonderful to see the guards assist us or the passport queue is more convenient for her, or that her meals are discounted, among the many perks fitting her.
But there are quite a few senior citizens who have abused their privileges. With bodies more able than some of those in their forties, some abuse their entitlement at various establishments.
At the drug store the other day, I took a number and quietly queued with the crowd. I stood between two lovely senior citizens who offered wonderful smiles. When out of nowhere we heard a loud voice – a senior citizen (probably Fil-Am because she had this American twang but Filipino attitude) who was with another equally rude elderly (definitely Filipino) male. The tandem were rude. They berated the pharmacy assistant because the signs pointing to where the senior citizen lane was confusing, they demanded that there should be a better system (there is but these idiots were bickering that “in the States” they have a more efficient service for senior citizens), the woman wanted to know why the regular lane was moving faster than the senior citizen lane (because they don’t have to compute for the discounts if you don’t have all those discounts you dork), and she was hammering away with so much rudeness and the guy who came with her was echoing her rants. One rude person cheering on another.
After awhile, in the midst of her rant and demanding that there should be more Pharmacy assistants for the senior citizens (in an overcrowded drug store), I broke my silence and firmly told her “you’re not the only one queuing. The other senior citizens beside me have been here way ahead of you and they’re patiently waiting. Please wait for your turn or go buy a crown and place it on your head.” She and her companion looked at me leeringly but quieted down. The other two seniors beside me smiled and made the side comment – “buti nga” (good for them)!
I didn’t feel good telling them off. But someone had to put them in their place.
My number one general pet peeve is people who feel entitled. It is being rude. Of an ego that is bloated. Of abuse. Whatever age we are, entitlement is a form of insecurity. And the public display of rudeness should never be tolerated. It is a reflection of the kind of home environment you grow up in or the kind of friends that encourage entitlement.
When I got home, I told my mom the story of the day. The senior citizen, who came with plus one, and their attitude at the drug store. My mom retorted that there are a lot of senior citizens that are abusive of their privileges. Even if they are able bodied or they are still gainfully employed, they are, sadly – assholes.
Whoever it is, and wherever you are, it is our social and moral responsibility to put rude people in place.