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March 7, 2010 @ 11:33 am

Old Strangers

This Stranger Story happened to Sister, but it made us both laugh and she said I could add it to my theme-blogging for March.

She was sitting in the drive-through line at Dunkin Donuts the other day, getting coffee on her way to work, when an old man in an SUV pulled up beside her.  He inched closer and closer until she looked up.  He rolled down his window, and in a voice that she imitated with a hoarse, slow, old-man-loud-whisper, he said, “I’m old!  I need coffee!  Can I get in front of you?”

She processed, in her mind, the fact that he was apparently retired and most likely had all day, and that he wasn’t too old to drive and manage to get to the Dunkin Donuts for his coffee, and then responded, “No.  I’m on my way to work.”

We were both raised to respect our elders, and we do.  If we see an older person standing in line at the grocery store and it seems that standing for a period of time is difficult, we’ll let them go ahead of us.  If we are in a place without enough seating for everyone and an elderly person is standing, we will give up our seat for them.  We often feel, when seeing an older person struggling in one way or another, that sense of “What if that were our mom or our dad?”, and if they needed assistance and we weren’t there, we would hope some younger person would give them a hand.

But then there are those older people who play the Old Card.  Like expecting to be allowed to move ahead in line at a drive-through, where everyone is assumed to be of at least somewhat able body and mind in order to have driven there.

We found it amusing, anyway, and we wondered what the man does with all the free time he has as a result of getting through lines so much more quickly than the younger people around him.


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