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Turning 65

You may have noticed that several restaurants, attractions, stores, etc. offer seniors a discount off their purchase of goods and services. This begs the question, “Just how OLD is a ‘senior’?” It depends on the merchant or store.

At 55, a few restaurant chains, retailers and at least one hotel chain kick provide discounts, e.g., IHOP restaurants, Best Western Hotel chain, Ross, Dress for Less, etc.

At 60, you earn more discounts on restaurants, entertainment and shopping, i.e., AMC, Regal, Burger King, Kohl’s, etc.

When you turn 62, you’ll save on travel and hospitality, e.g., Marriott, Holiday Inn, Amtrack, Greyhound, America the Beautiful pass, to name a few.

Today is my birthday. I turned 65 years old. I have to be honest, I have been struggling with the concept of getting older. When I turned 60, I knew I had moved into a special category of people, that were considered by most younger people, as a bit more seasoned. But was I “old?” Was I a “senior citizen?” I didn’t think so.

But….I am now 65 years old. The thought repulsed me. I mean, look at me. I’m youthful looking, hardly any wrinkles on my face, bright, charming, outgoing, and an adonis-like body.

At breakfast this morning, my son noticed my grimaced face as he congratulated me on turning 65. Responding to that reaction, my son shot back with a comforting comment that only a son could give in such a delicate moment:

“Oh, come on, dad! Enough of this self-pity! Look – YOU’RE OLD!!! Deal with it!”

“Uh….thanks Cameron,” I said. I should nailed him across the face with my cane for that comment. But, with age, comes patience and wisdom. Self-preservation kicks in the older you get. I don’t want to alienate him. I’ll need his help more as I get older. Probably not the best idea to damage my future assistant.

65 is the magic number. Once you hit 65, of course, you’re officially a senior citizen—and eligible for a spate of senior rates across the country, on everything from movie tickets to museum admission. And I plan to take advantage of every discount I can get.

Last night, my wife and I went to Applebees for dinner. My wife asked our perky young waitress if they offered a senior discount. She said, “Yes we do. We have a senior citizen card call the ‘Golden Apple’ discount card.”

“Well, isn’t that special!” I thought. “The ‘Golden Apple’ card. It must be for people in their ‘golden’ years (gag with a spoon).”

I smiled and said, “We would love to get one.”

She seemed taken back by our request, as her weight and head shifted back.

“Really?” she responded in disbelief. “You guys don’t look old enough to qualify.”

“Well-l-l-l” I began to say (to now my most favorite waitress, EVER), “I’m actually turning 65 tomorrow!”

“No way!” she countered. “I would have never guessed.”

She obviously was a coniving, yet brilliant, waitress jockeying for a good tip at the end of the meal. A less wise or younger man might have been taken in by this sort of flattery. But not me.

Now that I’m 65, a “senior citizen” (by definition only), I’m wiser. We took advantage of the discount. My wife and I got up to leave. We left a 20% tip on the table. My wife lead the way to the door. I hesitated at the table for a moment, and covertly dropped a couple more ones on the already generous tip, and hurried to catch up with my wife. After all, a wise man knows it’s proper to reward those who provide you extraordinary service.

Sparks Fly!

It was cold and dry this morning. I came home and greeted my wife with a kiss. Just before we kissed, without thinking she placed her finger on my face (a habit to discharge any static).

I felt a slight ‘zap’ from her finger on my cheek right before we kissed.

“Wow!” I lovingly said after the kiss. “Sparks flew between us!”

Without hesitation and thinking, she responded stoicly and in a matter-of-fact manner, “I didn’t feel a thing.”

I looked over to my daughter (standing next to us), whose eyes and mouth widened as mine sank into sadness. “WHOA!!!” she said. “Unbelievable!”

Just as my wife realized what she said, I began to sadly walk away muttering, “There went the magic…”

She laughed as she followed me. “Wait!” she said. “I didn’t mean………”

Phone Call from the I.R.S.

I receive about two phony IRS scam phone calls a week. Yesterday, I was notified that I was being investigated for tax fraud, and if I did not call a telephone number provided that I would “be taken under custody by the local cops.”

Wow! the “local cops??!!”

Not the “police?” Not by “law enforcement?” Not by “IRS agents?” but by ‘local cops!” Who knew their jurisdiction was so far-reaching?

This is when I began to think this might actually be a legitimate phone call. I know I’m a couple years behind in filing my federal income taxes. But, could it be that my disgruntled vendor who recently sent me a “zero balance due” late statement was so outraged at my deliquent balance, that he sic’d the “feds” on me?!!

Fortunately, to my relief, they were kind enough to provide me with a local area code and phone number to call to “work out payment terms.” I mean, after all, the last thing I want to do is to exacerbate my financial problem with the IRS by adding more debt making a costly long distance phone call.

I’m Gonna Die!

Fearing that his ailing father had little time left on earth, my friend and his wife visited him at the hospital. As they entered the room, they noticed that dad was wearing an oxygen mask to help him breathe. As they gathered closer to the bed, they heard him mutter, “I’M GONNA DIE!”

Trying to provide comfort, they leaned in and said, “It’s okay dad. It happens to all of us.”

Increasingly irritable, the father began to speak louder with a sense of exasperation, “No, it’s too short! It’s not long enough! There’s nothing more on the other side! This is all there is! There isn’t any more!”

My friend responded, “Dad, that’s not true. This isn’t the end. It’s just the beginning. There’s more on the other side….more than you can possibly imagine!”

It was about then they noticed the old man tugging on his oxygen tube.

Once more the father spoke out, “It’s not long enough. It doesn’t even reach the bathroom!”

They then began laughing hysterically as they realized he was talking about the short length of the oxygen tube, not his life.

I wish I were 8 again

A man was sitting on the edge of the bed, watching his wife, who was looking at herself in the mirror. Since her birthday was not far off, he asked what she’d like as a gift. “I’d like to be eight again,” she replied, still looking in the mirror.

On the morning of her birthday, he rose early, made her a nice big bowl of Coco Pops, and then took her to Adventure World theme park. What a day! He put her on every ride in the park; the Death Slide, the Wall of Fear, the Screaming Roller Coaster, everything there was.

Five hours later they staggered out of the theme park. Her head was reeling and her stomach felt upside down. He then took her to a McDonald’s where he ordered her a Happy Meal with extra fries and a chocolate shake.

Then it was off to a movie, with popcorn, a soda pop, and her favorite candy, M&Ms. What a fabulous adventure!

Finally she wobbled home with her husband and collapsed into bed, exhausted.
He leaned over his wife with a big smile and lovingly asked, “Well dear, what was it like being eight again?”

Her eyes slowly opened and her expression suddenly changed.

“I meant my dress size, you idiot!!!!”

The moral of the story: Even when a man is listening, he is gonna get it wrong.

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