Reverse Ageism

Much Younger UshersI am apparently Palm Beach County’s youngest usher. This isn’t based on any scientific data, just on my own casual observation. That, and the fact that an artistic director recently approached me and said “You’re too young for this job!”

And I reply, “I most heartily am not!”

Sure, there are demands on the free time of un-retired people, what with the vast majority of our time being taken up by not being retired. How to prioritize and cram in all of those other activities in just a few short waking hours?

To me, it’s not really negotiable. I can’t really afford full-price tickets, so this is the best way to see free theater. Plus, I get the benefits of making connections and helping out the harried house managers. Seriously, who doesn’t love being thanked over and over again for being such a tremendous help?

I wish more people under the age of 65 would consider being an usher. The time commitment is not much greater than the duration of the play, and you only have to sign up for one shift at a time. Maybe I’ll come up with a “student usher” program and pitch it to local theaters, high schools, and universities. Everyone needs volunteer work on their transcript, and who knows, a kid may usher for a show that changes his life.

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