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Fifty Is The New Twenty

I did a little travel last week. Time away from home with the most important people in my life is good for my soul. I love driving and seeing the countryside go by. But I learned something too.

What Sauvignon Blanc looks like before it goes to the store. (image by Agne27, CCby SA 3.0)

I recognized that being in my fifties has its privileges and burdens. That’s not so different than any other age. So, in the way that so many have declared so many things the new something else, I am declaring that fifty is the new twenty.

There came a time in the trip where a bottle of wine was just what an unremarkable hotel room needed. I stopped by a grocery, grabbed a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and headed for the check out lanes. The self check out scanner line was short. I scanned the bottle, the price came up on the screen, followed by a prompt to show my identification to the cashier.

Now, I think I already established that I’m a bit older. No one is going to mistake me for a twenty-one year old. I understand the liability issues that force stores to confirm that every one who buys a bottle of wine is over twenty-one; I just happen to believe there is room for common sense in that confirmation process.

There’s room for common sense in establishing that a customer is twenty-one and I shouldn’t have to walk two registers away to do it. So when the screen read “present I.D. to the cashier”, I waited until the cashier’s screen told him that I was buying wine. He looked at me as if he expected me to come to him with my driver’s license, birth certificate or perhaps my mother to prove that I was old enough to buy wine. I didn’t produce any of those acceptable forms of identification. I stood where I was and pointed at my way-over-twenty-one-year-old face. The cashier hit a button and my register screen said “I.D. validated”.

I hate these things, but they started it. (Image via gallowolf CCbySA 3.0)

Young enough to get carded, old enough to not have to use a card. Age has its privileges.

Fifty is the new twenty.

As the trip progressed, we moved on to a second hotel. I went to the front desk and gave my reservation number. After putting it in the computer, the clerk said “yes Mr. Omawarisan, we have you in a king bed room, upper floor requested, one night.”

I told her that was correct and picked up a pen to sign the forms that I knew were coming off the printer. She paused, looking at her computer screen, then looked at me. “Sir, we have you down for our AARP rate.” I told her that’s what I’d booked. “May I see your AARP card?”

Maybe she was a good actress, but I’m choosing to believe that she was truly surprised that I could produce a card because it feeds my ego.

Old enough to have to a card to use, young enough to get carded. Age has its privileges.

Fifty is the new twenty.

 

 

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13 Comments on “Fifty Is The New Twenty”

  1. My local liquor store has a 100% carding policy. I was there with my 84 year old father in law and they carded him. There is some sort of program in the register which won’t let them ring up any booze without entering a birth date. This a good measure but it won’t keep the octogenarians from getting a snootful and wrecking their Jazzy Scooters.

  2. Dan Hennessy says:

    I was with my 80 year old aunt buying wine . Same deal . She thought at first that the clerk was being funny saying he wanted to see her ID . No , he needed to see her ID . That’s just plain idiotic . Right — common sense should strike once in awhile .

  3. Betty says:

    I love that you just pointed at your face – hilarious!

  4. Great piece, loved the wry wise humour:-) H x

  5. lrose says:

    When I get asked, I thank them for the compliment. Sometimes I say, “You can see that and any other card you wish, too!” One clerk took me up on it, so along with the library card, health insurance card and another credit card, I pulled out my AARP card. His eyes widened and he exclaimed, “No SH**?!” Yes, indeedy. 50 is mos’def da new 20.

  6. spencercourt says:

    You get carded for AARP because you look young. I don’t look 62 but I do have very gray hair.

    Because of the gray, cashiers automatically offer me a senior discount. They say, “You’re a senior, right” and I say “yes” and there’s a discount. No card.

    BTW, you do know about Walgreen’s “Senior day” right? Go early or you’ll not find any Depends left…lol! 😉

  7. Sadly, I haven’t been asked for ID in a long time. Not even in a liquor store. However, recently a cashier asked me if I got the seniors discount. I know my face turned white and I said, “Excuse me?” She knew her blunder immediately but my vanity would not let her off the hook. When I was done giving her advice on using discretion with this question I went back outside and into the car where He-Who was waiting for me. I was so grateful he wasn’t inside when it happened. I sulked in silence the rest of the day while he tried to figure out what he did wrong.

  8. If 50 is the new 20, you should have bought some Boone’s Farm. =)


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