Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

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October 17, 2012

Mark Maynard: Arriving at 55 has its benefits

ASHLAND — The first thing I did on Wednesday was drive to a popular local eatery and purchase a cup of coffee.

Not just any cup, mind you.

It was my first senior cup of coffee. It went down smooth and that jingle in my pants pocket made it that much better (although a recent increase in senior coffee there made it jingle less than I’d imagined).

Still, it was a warm welcome to the age of 55. The double-nickel has already saved me a few nickels.

Instead of cursing getting older, my aim is to take full advantage of whatever they’re giving out there. And, with the help of Mr. Google, I find there is a lot to be had for the 55-year-old whose eyes are still sharp enough to look at a computer screen (thankfully).

These milestone ages creep up on you kind of fast. Forty and 50 are way back in my rear view mirror of life. I used to think that was old. But 55? That means you’re a senior on the way to senior citizenship. Am I really that old?

It has been 38 years since being called a senior felt so good. That was when I was a senior in high school — Ashland class of 1975, by the way. But being a senior in the fall of 1974 was nothing like being a senior in the fall of 2012.

Back then it was cool to be a senior, the Big Man on Campus. Today it means I’m old. Period.

I wasn’t worried about discounts in the fall of ’74. Pride got in my path. But now that I’ve weathered a lot more birthdays, pride doesn’t matter. Give me the discounts. Hey, I earned them!

Never mind that I don’t look my age (I know, it’s a curse, live with it). I will proudly tell the young lady or gentleman who is taking my order that, yes, I qualify for the senior discount.

Some of my, uh, younger friends have had people offer them the senior discount before their time. That’s never happened to me.

But, from now on, I’ll offer it up if they don’t ask me up front. Be proud of your age!

Of course, I could have cashed in on AARP benefits for the past five years but I’ve been too cheap to sign up. No wonder I’m looking for all these discounts now.

While there aren’t as many discounts at age 55 as there will be at 60, then 62 and finally 65, several local restaurants/businesses do offer deals for the first stage of being a senior. I’ve put together a list of places that cater to us new old codgers.

I’m always looking to cash in on some food deals. Here are a few (you may have to ask if these are valid at our locations):

‰Arby’s: 10 percent off (55+).

‰Chick-Fil-A: 10 percent off or free small drink or coffee (55+).

‰Chili’s: 10 percent off (55+)

‰Denny’s: 10 percent off, 20 percent off for AARP members (55+).

‰IHOP: 10 percent off (55+)

‰KFC: free small drink with any meal (55+).

‰Long John Silver’s: various discounts at participating locations  (55+).

‰McDonald’s: discounts on coffee every day (55+)

‰Steak n Shake: 10 percent off every Monday & Tuesday (50+).

‰Wendy’s: 10 percent off (55+).

Kroger has discounts on certain days for seniors and Belk’s has 15 percent off the first Tuesday of every month (55+).

Want to go to a movie? The Cinemark has a senior discount at certain times. Kyova 10 has some senior discounts, too.

For those who travel, almost every rent-a-car has a good discount plan available for seniors (+55).

Some hotels offer deals, too. You just have to look.

Welcome to senior-hood. See, it’s not so bad getting old.

Time to run. That coffee is going right through me. Yet another “benefit” of being 55.

MARK MAYNARD can be reached at mmaynard@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2648.

 

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