'Matter of Laugh or Death,' a humor column
By Bill Dunn
Interesting observations on this thing we call life
(appearing each week in the Republican-American newspaper, Waterbury, CT)
A ‘SENIOR MOMENT’ AT THE DONUT SHOP
The other day I stopped by a Dunkin Donuts at mid-morning on a weekday. The only customers inside the place were senior citizens sitting at the tables and chatting over their coffees. I overheard one guy say, “The government HAS to cut spending. But they better not touch my Social Security and Medicare!”
(I think that kind of summarizes why our nation is in big trouble. We have 310 million citizens, each of whom demands: “Cut everyone else’s spending right now! Except mine!”)
Anyway, I got to the counter and placed my order. When the young lady gave me my coffee and glazed cruller (yeah, I know at DD they call them “sticks,” but I just love the sound of the word cruller, so that’s what I call them), I was surprised the total amount was less than I expected. I thought to myself, “Hmm, I must’ve done the math wrong in my head.”
As I walked away, I glanced at the receipt and saw in big letters, “10% Senior Discount.” So that’s why the total charge was less than I figured. Immediately two conflicting emotions hit me. The first emotion was, “All right! I saved some money!” (This is probably the instinct inside most people that produces delight when we get something for nothing. It’s probably the instinct that makes people say, “Cut everyone else’s spending, except mine!”)
The second emotion was, “Hey, wait a minute! I know half my hair is turning gray and the other half is turning loose, but I’m not a senior citizen yet! I’m not here at 10 a.m. on a Tuesday because I have all day to sit around, drink coffee, and complain about politicians! How old does she think I am?! I’m not retired, lady. I’m working. I’m just in between sales calls. I have to get out there and hustle and earn some money so I can pay for HIS Social Security, and THAT GUY’S Medicare, and HIS state pension! Sheesh.”
I stood there for a moment and contemplated going back to the counter and saying, “Excuse me, ma’am, you made a mistake. I’m not a senior citizen. I don’t qualify for the discount, so here’s the extra 28 cents I owe you.”
But I decided not to do that for two reasons. One, I’m a cheapskate. And two, the people who haggle with cashiers over mere pennies, while holding up customers behind them, are typically senior citizens. So I figured if I actually went back to the counter and made a fuss by demanding that she cancel out my order and ring it up again with the correct amount, it would kind of prove that I deserved the senior discount in the first place.
So I just walked out of the store mumbling to myself. “Does she really think I look 65?” I said. “I’m not gonna be 65 for another decade! Gee, I don’t look 65, do I? Wait, aren’t people who mumble to themselves usually senior citizens? Oh no, I really am old.”
The whole episode bothered me for the rest of the day. Then a co-worker told me the senior discount at most Dunkin Donut stores starts at age 55. Oh, that’s very different. So she didn’t think I looked 65. She must’ve figured I look my actual age.
Now when I buy my daily coffee and cruller, I loudly say, “Don’t forget the senior discount! Let other people pay full price. But not me!” With that attitude, I’ll fit right in with the regulars who sit around all day drinking coffee and complaining about politicians.
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For information on Bill's novel "Purge the Evil," now available for Kindle download, click here: http://www.boomertrek.com/PurgeTheEvil.htm
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