Old People are like Chocolate.
When you first discover chocolate-presumably as a child - you can correctly identify one thing: chocolate. As your experience with chocolate increases, you differentiate black chocolate from milk and white chocolate. If, like me, you decide to invest in your culinary love story with chocolate, it won't be long before you find yourself staring at a menu, debating the merits of the bitter Uganda 80% hot cocoa versus the Peru 65% fruity dark cocoa.
No, all chocolates are not created equal.
This lesson I first learned in the middle of the sea, in a cross-cultural program. Whenever you look at a population, it takes familiarity to see the nuances between individuals.
People who are older are the same. When we talk of ageism, in many ways, we speak of our inability as a society to catch the nuances of individuals within that "elderly" bucket. Being from a different generation, I cannot confidently speak from experience when it comes to diversity within the older age ranges. But common sense would dictate that if teenage Gerrie was different from teenage Gerture, then Granny Gerrie is indeed a very different person from Granny Gertrude. And both are different from Uncle Ben and Neighbour Norma. After all, old people are... well... (individual) people.