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Everyday Ageism: CHRISTA D’SOUZA asks if ‘silver surfers’ become less tolerant as they get older

Everyday Ageism: CHRISTA D’SOUZA asks if ‘silver surfers’ become more erratic and less tolerant as they age

  • Hive Beach Cafe has revoked a ‘silver surfer’ deal over abuse of young staff
  • A woman over 55 brought a teenage waitress to tears with her rudeness
  • Christa D’Souza says she needs to keep reminding herself that ageism can go both ways


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It is the last tolerated prejudice. But Femail has had enough. It’s time we call out those everyday moments when we’re being patronized for not being young anymore. . .

You would think older people would have better manners than their younger counterparts, right? Not if you worked at the Hive Beach Cafe on the Dorset coast, which recently withdrew a ‘silver surfer’ deal due to the abuse its young staff received from the customers it attracted.

A female customer in her 60s started cursing when asked if she wouldn’t mind standing in line. Another woman over 55 brought a teenage waitress to tears with her rudeness. At some point it apparently became physical.

Christa D'Souza (pictured) admits she needs to keep reminding herself that everyday ageism goes both ways

Christa D’Souza (pictured) admits she needs to keep reminding herself that everyday ageism goes both ways

This got me thinking: do we, healthy, perfectly mobile ‘silver surfers’, who want to be treated like everyone else, really believe that since we’ve been around for a long time, we deserve preferential treatment? We secretly imagine that most young people are lazy, entitled, and don’t know how lucky they are. and in our time blah blah blah…

Do I become more fickle and less tolerant as I get older? If so, I’ll have to keep an eye on that. Because otherwise I am only contributing to widening that pernicious chasm. Everyday ageism – I have to keep reminding myself: it goes both ways.

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