A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A SENIOR CITIZEN BACKGROUND: I’m eighty-two years of age and live with my wife of fifty-eight years in Orleans (East Ottawa). We have five grown children, three girls and two boys. The girls live in Calgary and Vancouver, the boys reside in Ottawa. SATURDAY: JANUARY 23, 2010 I feel apprehensive today because I’ll be taking my driver’s licence test this coming Thursday. Ontario’s seniors on reaching eighty are obligated to take the test based on Canada’s traffic act. They must take the test and the lecturers that accompanies it every second year after reaching eighty. To my knowledge Ontario is one of the few jurisdictions in the world that impose this stressful, condescending, hypocritical situation on their senior citizens. I’ll wager that before the boomers become eighty this law requiring seniors to be humiliated in this fashion will have been rescinded – or maybe not. The government might become even more probing and invasive in the years to come. 12:00 P.M. My wife and I eat lunch and reminisce as we often do about the good old days, the days between 1945 and 1965. People then didn’t worry about global warming, cholesterol, trans fats, smoking (we worried a little, cigarettes were called coffin nails), sodium in food or losing a job. In the late sixties inflation swept in and the prices on just about everything went upward. Unionization of workers meant larger pay cheques resulting in cost increases for goods and services. Earning more money was a mixed blessing, most everything cost more but if money was managed carefully people could put aside a little for a rainy day. 1:00 P.M. Number two son Jeff phoned and invited us to go shopping with him, I declined, I prefer to stay home and brood, spouse jumped at the chance to go out leaving me to brood alone. pg. 1 3:00 P.M. Spouse is back and I suggest we go to Boston Pizza for dinner. She reminds me number one son, John is coming at 5:30 for his bi-weekly visit on the weekend. I said, we’ll leave him a note explaining where we are and when we’ll be back. 4:30 P.M. We leave for Boston Pizza, it’s just up the street so we’ll be there in no time. Boston Pizza was founded in Edmonton Alberta, why wasn’t it named Edmonton Pizza? The restaurant is busier than usual at this time of day. Seniors often go early to restaurants to avoid the crowds, some also go to bed earlier and rise earlier. We’re escorted to a table in the center aisle. I reject this and tell the waitress we prefer a booth. She leaves to confer with other waitresses. Another waitress comes back and directs us to a booth that will accommodate at least seven people. I reject this also, saying we’d look too conspicuous in such a large booth. Finally, the waitress sits us in a booth for four people, that’s much better. Yet another waitress (this is our third) arrives to take our order. She seems tentative no doubt she has been forewarned about old crankypants. Our order is taken including the side order for John, his favourite – ‘Homestyle Lasagne’. I feel a draft on the back of my neck and look up to find I’m directly under an air conditioning unit. Fortunately the A.C. is turned off within a few minutes, so I won’t have to complain further, I’m relieved and I’m sure spouse is very relieved that compla ints have ceased, at least for the moment. Our meal is served along with John’s side order. I had ordered whole wheat pasta noodles with spinach and red pepper bits in tomato sauce. The serving given me is huge, there’s enough on the plate to last me through one more supper maybe two more. I eat what I can but refused the offer to take the remainder home. Our bill is brought, the waitress gives it to my wife, who gives it to me and I sign the visa slip. In spite of everything that’s gone amiss, I give a 12% tip – see, I’m not so bad. While we walk toward the exit I notice many waitresses are smiling, could it be they’re happy Mr. Crankypants is leaving the premises? When we get to the car, my wife realizes she’s forgotten John’s lasagne and goes b ack to the restaurant to retrieve it. pg. 2 5:45 P.M. John is waiting for us, his mother serves him the – ‘Homestyle Lasagne’ which he immediately devours with gusto. 7:00 P.M. John and I watch the hockey game, Toronto Maple Leafs versus Florida Panthers. It’s an incredibly boring game. Bob Cole the play by play announcer was challenged in trying to make the game sound exciting, only rarely did his voice register above a monotone. I switch channels to watch a movie. The movie is called ‘Father of the Bride’ and stars Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor. We watch the movie to its conclusion then enjoyed a few laughs thinking back to our own wedding days. Jeff’s wedding was similar to the movie in that the wedding plans were continually being changed. Jeff and his wife Sue honeymooned in Hawaii, the movie couple were going to honeymoon in a fishing village in Nova Scotia, the movie bride was not happy about that destination. My wife and I went to Niagara Falls. We weren’t enthused about it for we had been there on a few occasions, but that’s what we could afford so that’s where we went. 10:45 P.M. I’m going to bed. Perhaps I’ll dream and in the dream I’ll resolve all my inner conflicts and awake next morning transformed into Mr. Happypants. pg. 3
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A Day in the Life of a Senior Citizen

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BACKGROUND: I’m eighty-two years of age and live with my wife of fifty-eight years in Orleans (East Ottawa). We have five grown children, three girls and two boys. The girls live in Calgary and Vancouver, the boys reside in Ottawa.
SATURDAY: JANUARY 23, 2010
I feel apprehensive today because I’ll be taking my driver’s licence test this coming Thursday.
Ontario’s seniors on reaching eighty are obligated to take the test based on Canada’s traffic act. They must take the test and the lecturers that accompanies it every second year after reaching eighty. To my knowledge Ontario is one of the few jurisdictions in the world that impose this stressful, condescending, hypocritical situation on their senior citizens.
I’ll wager that before the boomers become eighty this law requiring seniors to be humiliated in this fashion will have been rescinded – or maybe not. The government might become even more probing and invasive in the years to come.
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A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A SENIOR CITIZEN BACKGROUND: I’m eighty-two years of age and live with my wife of fifty-eight years in Orleans (East Ottawa). We have five grown children, three girls and two boys. The girls live in Calgary and Vancouver, the boys reside in Ottawa. SATURDAY: JANUARY 23, 2010 I feel apprehensive today because I’ll be taking my driver’s licence test this coming Thursday. Ontario’s seniors on reaching eighty are obligated to take the test based on Canada’s traffic act. They must take the test and the lecturers that accompanies it every second year after reaching eighty. To my knowledge Ontario is one of the few jurisdictions in the world that impose this stressful, condescending, hypocritical situation on their senior citizens. I’ll wager that before the boomers become eighty this law requiring seniors to be humiliated in this fashion will have been rescinded – or maybe not. The government might become even more probing and invasive in the years to come. 12:00 P.M. My wife and I eat lunch and reminisce as we often do about the good old days, the days between 1945 and 1965. People then didn’t worry about global warming, cholesterol, trans fats, smoking (we worried a little, cigarettes were called coffin nails), sodium in food or losing a job. In the late sixties inflation swept in and the prices on just about everything went upward. Unionization of workers meant larger pay cheques resulting in cost increases for goods and services. Earning more money was a mixed blessing, most everything cost more but if money was managed carefully people could put aside a little for a rainy day. 1:00 P.M. Number two son Jeff phoned and invited us to go shopping with him, I declined, I prefer to stay home and brood, spouse jumped at the chance to go out leaving me to brood alone. pg. 1 3:00 P.M. Spouse is back and I suggest we go to Boston Pizza for dinner. She reminds me number one son, John is coming at 5:30 for his bi-weekly visit on the weekend. I said, we’ll leave him a note explaining where we are and when we’ll be back. 4:30 P.M. We leave for Boston Pizza, it’s just up the street so we’ll be there in no time. Boston Pizza was founded in Edmonton Alberta, why wasn’t it named Edmonton Pizza? The restaurant is busier than usual at this time of day. Seniors often go early to restaurants to avoid the crowds, some also go to bed earlier and rise earlier. We’re escorted to a table in the center aisle. I reject this and tell the waitress we prefer a booth. She leaves to confer with other waitresses. Another waitress comes back and directs us to a booth that will accommodate at least seven people. I reject this also, saying we’d look too conspicuous in such a large booth. Finally, the waitress sits us in a booth for four people, that’s much better. Yet another waitress (this is our third) arrives to take our order. She seems tentative no doubt she has been forewarned about old crankypants. Our order is taken including the side order for John, his favourite – ‘Homestyle Lasagne’. I feel a draft on the back of my neck and look up to find I’m directly under an air conditioning unit. Fortunately the A.C. is turned off within a few minutes, so I won’t have to complain further, I’m relieved and I’m sure spouse is very relieved that compla ints have ceased, at least for the moment. Our meal is served along with John’s side order. I had ordered whole wheat pasta noodles with spinach and red pepper bits in tomato sauce. The serving given me is huge, there’s enough on the plate to last me through one more supper maybe two more. I eat what I can but refused the offer to take the remainder home. Our bill is brought, the waitress gives it to my wife, who gives it to me and I sign the visa slip. In spite of everything that’s gone amiss, I give a 12% tip – see, I’m not so bad. While we walk toward the exit I notice many waitresses are smiling, could it be they’re happy Mr. Crankypants is leaving the premises? When we get to the car, my wife realizes she’s forgotten John’s lasagne and goes b ack to the restaurant to retrieve it. pg. 2 5:45 P.M. John is waiting for us, his mother serves him the – ‘Homestyle Lasagne’ which he immediately devours with gusto. 7:00 P.M. John and I watch the hockey game, Toronto Maple Leafs versus Florida Panthers. It’s an incredibly boring game. Bob Cole the play by play announcer was challenged in trying to make the game sound exciting, only rarely did his voice register above a monotone. I switch channels to watch a movie. The movie is called ‘Father of the Bride’ and stars Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor. We watch the movie to its conclusion then enjoyed a few laughs thinking back to our own wedding days. Jeff’s wedding was similar to the movie in that the wedding plans were continually being changed. Jeff and his wife Sue honeymooned in Hawaii, the movie couple were going to honeymoon in a fishing village in Nova Scotia, the movie bride was not happy about that destination. My wife and I went to Niagara Falls. We weren’t enthused about it for we had been there on a few occasions, but that’s what we could afford so that’s where we went. 10:45 P.M. I’m going to bed. Perhaps I’ll dream and in the dream I’ll resolve all my inner conflicts and awake next morning transformed into Mr. Happypants. pg. 3
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