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Adventures in Retirement: Senior Interns

Written by Bill Leavitt. Posted in Business, Featured, Senior Living

Published on November 04, 2015 with No Comments

A good movie for seniors is “The Intern.”  The movie’s main character is a 70-year-old widower who is retired from a company that once published phone books.  He (Robert DeNiro) is bored with retirement and decides to go back to work.  He applies for a job as an intern for an e-commerce company that occupies the same building where he formerly worked.  His boss is the owner of the company, a young woman.

What’s fascinating about this movie is that he begins as a stereotypical retiree who doesn’t do well with computers and other electronic devices.  Surprisingly, the movie illustrates the tremendous qualities retired people have.  He begins to relate to the younger employees because of his long experience with understanding people, his outstanding work ethic, his honesty, his ability to listen and learn, and his ability to observe.

He advises young people on how to improve their romantic relationships, he recognizes problems and solves them, and he understands the value of personal appearance.  Where employees where jeans and t-shirts, he wears a suit and tie.

At first, his boss is uncomfortable with him, because he notices everything—good things and bad.  But he eventually endears himself to her by helping her in unexpected ways.  He notices her driver has been drinking and becomes her new driver.  He gives her advice about negotiations, and ends up traveling with her to important meetings.  He even finds out that her husband is cheating on her, and helps her repair her relationship.  Most of all, he helps her to combine a demanding job with the ability to enjoy life.

The movie addresses memory issues, sexism, the high-tech work world, and contemporary communication.  He successfully deals with all these issues by applying his life experience, knowledge and logic, and becomes a hero.

My favorite scene is when he “hooks up” with a middle-aged masseuse at the e-company.  She and he are the two oldest employees.  When he takes her on a first date, it is to a funeral of one of his friends.  This is somehow appropriate in that you can’t really put on airs at a funeral.  However, several of his elderly would-be girlfriends are taken aback by his bringing a younger woman as a date.

The movie is humorous and smart, and the writers obviously understand what it is like to be a retired senior in today’s world.  There are a lot of laughs and maybe even a couple of tears.

 

 

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About Bill Leavitt

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All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Chronicle. Bill Leavitt is a technical writer from Valparaiso. After retiring from a large corporation in Chicago, he did technical writing consulting for many companies. He currently teaches part-time at Purdue University Calumet. You can order Leavitt’s book, “Retirement: Life’s Greatest Adventure,” by sending $16.65 (includes shipping and sales tax) made payable to Write On Technical Writing, Inc., P.O. Box 132,Valparaiso, IN 46384-0132. Or, visit RetirementLifesGreatestAdventure.com for more information.

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