I received a letter yesterday from Theresa in New York who, at 65, is determined to change the term "senior citizen" to "seasoned contemporary." She and her friend, Bonnie, are on a mission to get the word out.
I wrote about this very thing back in 2008, so I told her I'd help her out. We polled people on my original blog, asking for preferred terms. Did you vote?: What to Call Senior Citizens (ugh!) Who Never Stop Learning?
Here's Theresa's letter:
It is a New Year and I will be 65 in January 2013. Happy to be on this earth. I am a woman whose mom always was proud of her age. She never lied about it. Thank goodness I have taken after her. However, a dear friend and I are turned off by the term "senior citizen." The term connotes negativity about growing older. We feel that its mere mention translates into: nursing home, gray hair, frailty, lack of goals/passion and the like.
Therefore, my friend, Bonnie, and I are bi-laterally changing this term to "Seasoned Contemporaries." Yes, we know the word contemporary means to most someone who was born around the same time and is around the same age. However, there are other definitions:
1. modern and up-to-date; 2. belonging to the same time period.
Therefore, when Bonnie and I use the word "contemporary" we mean all people who inhabit the earth at the same time. We are living here on Earth side by side with all the 5 year olds and all the 99 year olds. We are all contemporaries.
Therefore, goodbye to 2012 and to the old term senior citizens. We are seasoned contemporaries. Spread the "words."
For more on seasoned contemporaries passionate about life and learning, be sure to check out the links on the Lifelong Learner tab at the top of the page.
Happy New Year!