The Cost of Things

I’m sitting at the Dallas Love Field Airport waiting for my return flight home following an absolutely wonderful time at the National Association of Activity Professionals annual conference. Knowing I would not have an opportunity to eat until late evening, I decided to get something to drink and something small to eat.

My first stop was Starbucks. I was surprised to learn that their prices were not any higher than a Starbucks outside of an airport. My drink of choice is a hot green tea. At times I joke that I’m really 90 years old, but green tea makes me look decades younger. I enjoy my occasional Starbucks green tea even though I know I can go to Wal-Mart and buy a box of 20 tea bags (making 20 servings) for less.

With my drink in hand I stopped at a store near my departure gate to buy a yogurt parfait. I should have walked away when the clerk said, “That will be $6.78!” I can buy two quarts of yogurt at Wal-Mart for that price. A few minutes later I had a brilliant idea. I can become an airport yogurt distributor, save the airport stores and their customers a lot of money and make so much money that the funding needs of Elder Source will be solved.

Of course I am not serious, but I do wonder at times how we can continue with the cost of things. I worry about the generations to follow. The “must haves” of life have grown so much over my lifetime. How will the young survive? I know a partial answer, a few experts, who would be glad to help. They are my parents’ generation, those who were young during the Great Depression. They may not have a handle on the latest technology, but they know how to make do and how to make something out of much of nothing. They wouldn’t have purchased an expensive cup of yogurt because they would have brought some snacks with them to bridge their hunger, knowing that what they brought cost them a fraction of anything available in the airport.

It’s too bad the accumulated wisdom and experience of that fading generation goes largely untapped. Okay, that was little too politically correct. Allow me to restate. Shame on us for ignoring this generation! We deserve the trouble we find when we don’t respect those who have come before us! Yes, the landscape of life has changed over the years, but the basic issues of life have not. Spend some time listening to a senior! You just may learn a thing or two, and you will make their day by simply showing a little genuine interest in them. 

Stan Means
Elder Source Senior Ministries