Here is the Ad I posted in our local paper last week: “Wanted! Strong, hard-working, high school senior who wants to earn extra money after school, moving heavy boxes, cleaning roof gutters and other yard work. $15/hour.”
Only ONE person answered my ad. The guy pictured above. Yup. Not only was he older than I am, he arrived at my doorstep wearing a back brace AND a knee brace!
“Um,” I smiled as I opened the door. “You aren’t exactly a high-school senior,” I said.
“Oh,” he countered. “I didn’t see the ‘high school’ part. I just saw ‘senior’….and I’m definitely that!” Understatement.
According to Fact Tank, by 2022, 31.9% of the work force will be people over 65! If my gentleman caller today is any indication, they are right. Putnam Investments recently published a survey, which found that 7 million previously retired folks have even returned to the work force! That rate is projected to jump to 67.5 percent by 2022.
Scientific studies prove that when men, in particular, retire their risk of clinical depression and even suicide rises sharply. The research shows that, “A man is about as likely to ask for help for depression as to ask for directions, and for much the same reason. It’s part of the male code, part of masculine culture.” So I’m glad that my retiree showed up for his sake, as much as mine.
Well, my ‘senior’ spent about 4 hours at my place and did one heck of a job. (Though I was a bit nervous when he first headed up the ladder). In fact, he was far more thorough than the last high school senior I hired. Not only that, we had interesting, thought-provoking conversations and given our ages, we certainly had lots in common.
But here is my real concern: how come not one, single teenager responded to my Ad? Are they over-booked? Or do they just not need the money? If things were ‘right’ in the world, people over 65 would not HAVE to labor for $15/hr. If things were even ‘righter,’ teenagers would!!!