Age? What’s Good for Cheese Is Good for People??

I’m pissed off. About ageism, that is.

I was just at a store picking up some necessaries for my new abode and got treated like a doddering old fool at the till. And the thing is, I’m not much older than that cashier is.

I’ve noticed this more and more lately. The penchant for people to automatically think that I don’t know how to use a debit card. That I have no idea what the internet is. A couple of days ago, I was asked by a bank employee if I use online banking.

“What was that sonny? Speak up! I can’t hear you! Frontline spanking? Is that what you said? You oughtta be ashamed of yourself. What would your mother say if she knew you were talking like that to a customer?” Of course, I was just thinking this. But I felt like saying it. In a loud, high-pitched, whiny voice.


I’ve been using online banking for 15 years. I’ve had a debit card for, I don’t know, probably about 30.

People keep calling me “dear” too. Does getting older automatically imply that I’m in some sort of relationship with you? A few days ago, I politely asked a waiter to stop calling me “dear.” He kept doing it anyway.

People who use that word also have a special voice that goes along with it, too. There’s this patronizing, condescending tone, like they’re talking to a half-deaf half-wit. Just give me some pablum and a glass of warm milk and let me be on my way. Don’t let my clippy clop bother you as I head for the door, if I can find it.

Holy bloody hell.

And another thing is that my husband, who is five years older than me, doesn’t get treated like this.

He’s a guy! He still has all his faculties! His hearing! His virility! His drive! He’s vital and living!

While on the other hand, I have one foot on a banana peel and the other in my grave.

I’ve faced a lot of discrimination in my life. Nowhere near as bad as what some people have had to deal with, but still.

My guidance counsellor in high school told me that I couldn’t be a pilot. (You’re not a guy!)

People gave me suspicious looks when they heard my very French surname. (You’re not English!)

Military combat? (You’re REALLY not a guy.)

But the government says I can, so f**k off.

Yes. I’m 50-something. Yes. I’m female. It doesn’t mean that I live under a rock with only my walker and my knitting for company. And, I’m not a cheese.

So get with it, “youngsters.” Just treat us older people like … well, like people.

Have you faced ageism in action?

25 thoughts on “Age? What’s Good for Cheese Is Good for People??”

  1. A brilliant rant! Gave me a laugh even though I can sooo identify with the inane drivel spoken in the examples you mention.
    What about age targeted junk mail then? We are now receiving mail suggesting we might like to put our names down for an expensive care home; that we might like to have a stair-lift installed or wear a micro hearing aid. Oh yes, we also now qualify for the Over 50’s favourable insurance premiums on cars and household and we can partake in an Over 50’s package holiday. The future’s bright….😐

    1. Thanks, Jenny. πŸ™‚

      I haven’t experienced age – related junk mail yet (joys to come?) but have already gotten the insurance reduction which occurred automatically. There’s no privacy any more, either, is there?

  2. Yes Lynette I have, and it is not going to improve anytime soon. It is a bi-product of the narcissism pandemic.With the millennials comes an interesting philosophy that people over 40 are “done” and to some extent Western culture has reinforced this through the media. You reap what you sow and if you have that much loathing of people of age I have to be in your shoes should you live so long, because like everyone else unless you are struck with disaster or illness you too will get old and what goes around comes around. I respond by feeling sorry for them and silently knowing the price of arrogance and know their bill will come due.

    1. Yes, it can be pretty bad, can’t it? In spite of all the “isms” we have tried to eliminate, this one still doesn’t get much notice. We live in an era when pampering one’s children until they are completely self-obsessed is expected.

      Yes, they will get old, and perhaps they will then understand what they did. Then again, maybe not …

  3. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Lynette on the rampage at being treated like a wrinkly at the checkout.. I had a similar experience in a supermarket once where as soon as a woman of a certain age prepared to pack the groceries at the check out would rush over, grab the bags and take over.. I politely pointed out that I was faster, new which bag to use for which items and was grateful but no thanks.. mind you having said that.. nothing irritates me more when men or women in the checkout wait until they have paid to start packing.. that is not age or gender discrimination that is idiot recognition.. Thanks Lynette, feel so much better after that little rant..

    1. Thank you very much for the re-blog. πŸ™‚ Much appreciated.

      Yes, the whole age-related “special” treatment is really annoying.

      Sorry that I am replying so late – I have been (and am) quite sick with a bug.

  4. Wow! I am 57 and since I let my hair go natural (silver and grey) I have experienced the same thing! I hate that attitude. Good for you for speaking out. I am right there with you, by your side! ❀

  5. I do, however, really really like the senior discounts. The first time McDonalds gave me the discount, I pouted…but then…I thought…what the heck! So there are good things for us old folk too πŸ™‚ Great post!!

  6. Ha Ha so funny but true! Living where I do I get told all the time how sexy( shwe) in Thai I am as they think I don’t look anything like their mums do and we don’t… so that’s good for ego but yes the post and e-mails do defer to my age and no I don’t need a Stanna stair lift or continence pads..thank you… But wouldn’t no to discounted vino or G & T πŸ™‚

  7. Years ago, much too early, a young cashier told me–told me–she’d given me the seniors’ discount. Didn’t ask if I was eligible. It must have been a bad hair day. 😦

  8. Interesting topic. Funny. I get called Doll, Honey, Dear, Hon, etc. by a lot of female counter staff who are a lot younger than me. While I find it odd, I do not take offence to this, just assume it is a right of passage. It is strange, though in this era of Me Too, political correctness, etc. that is is still used and by the people who might take offence if a man used it in regard to them. Hell, I guess I am just happy somebody still talks to me, as I will turn 65 on the 9th. I can’t wait for my seniors discount. In Aus and NZ, they give it to you ay 60. Cheers. Allan

      1. Maybe not quite a double standard. I think many of the pet name comments by women are simple expressions they use in everyday speech and they are simply saying what comes naturally. On the other hand, many men seem to think that there every whistle or comment to a woman (they often do not even know) is a compliment. I never got why some men have the need to do this. People just need to be respectful to each other. Thanks for your birthday wishes. Allan

I'd love to hear what you have to say!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s