Too old?

My friend is 62 and frustrated, not by his age, mind you, but by the effect it has on potential employers. To protect his identity, I’ll just call him Joe.

Joe is a stockily built guy with an upbeat personality, to put it mildly. He smiles constantly, loves hugs both giving and receiving. Children and older people adore him, and so does everyone else who comes in contact with him. I have never seen anyone, not even an active  child, with more pep. He’s like the Energizer Bunny. Joe volunteers without hesitation for whatever needs help or leadership. Constantly looking for ways to help. Outstanding work ethic.

Smart, too. Working night and day, he earned his Ph.D. in education. Joe is talented, wise and versatile, does many things well. As you might expect, his people skills are superb.

This morning I caught up with him at our church, where he was taking care of several odd jobs that needed care. As we both were leaving the building, I saw his usual smile fade and his brow wrinkle. “I’m 62 years old,” he declared, “and no one will hire me!” He cited 12 tries for employment in recent weeks. He hates sitting at home idle. Who wouldn’t?

We know what’s wrong with this picture. Living in what we regard as an enlightened, progressive community, we still today witness discrimination based on age. Can someone fix this, please?

If I were an employer, I would pounce on an opportunity to hire this man.

Today’s word: A punctuation issue: Place the punctuation inside the quotation marks. Harry said, “I can’t do this”. Wrong. Harry said, “I can’t do this.” Correct. This also applies to commas, question marks, exclamation points, semicolons, you name it.

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