Paul License: Some folk are in it more than others

Bob Dylan: He was so much older then...
Bob Dylan: He was so much older then...
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A FRIEND of my missus celebrated her birthday with a sideboard full of cards.

A FRIEND of my missus celebrated her birthday with a sideboard full of cards.

And among them were half a dozen proudly bearing the numbers 6 and 0.

Yup. That’s a milestone.

Not what it used to be, of course. When folk got to 60 when I was a lad, they seemed ready for the knacker’s yard.

Of course, that was from the perspective of youth. When everyone over 30 was over the hill.

But today, and I offer this from someone now proudly beyond that particular threshold, I can honestly say that 60 is the new 40. Life’s beginning anew for me.

And so, I suspected, it would for my wife’s pal.

Only there was a slight miscalculation. You see, she wasn’t 60 at all. But a mere 59.

Her mum had forgotten the momentous date when she introduced her first born to the world and was telling all who’d listen that her ‘baby girl’ was now an OAP.

Some mothers may have ’em. But some youngsters certainly do!

Now I know ladies can be sensitive to this sort of thing. But she shouldn’t.

The next 12 months will pass in the twinkle of an eye and she’ll realise that it wasn’t so bad to be considered a ‘senior’.

After all, nearly all my musical heroes now pack a bus pass in their wallets.

Not only that, the gov’nor of them all, Bob Dylan celebrates is 70 next Tuesday.

That’s right, the growling voice which rallied the youth of the world into truly believing that they were beyond the command of Mom and Dad, is about to enter his eighth decade. The times they really are a-changing!

And I can confirm that he is turning out albums which are just as raw and vibrant as they were when that denim-shirted troubadour drifted into New York City all those years ago.

Mind you, I bet he’s not without a bob or two, is Bob.

No worries about his pension.

Not like some workers at Sheffield University who were told this week what is going to happen to their pensions.

It is proposed that, in effect, a two-tier pension structure will be introduced.

And, you’ve guessed it, those at the bottom of the food chain are getting the meanest scraps.

These are university support staff, such as porters, cleaners and clerical workers.

Rising costs and falling numbers of employees choosing to opt into the pension scheme are blamed for the changes which will cost these workers thousands of pounds a year when they retire.

I think we can all get our heads round that in these days of financial realism.

Though it is a grim dose of reality for a support worker earning £15,000 a year who, under the old arrangement, expected a pension of approximately £7,500, will in future have to get by on a miserly £3,750.

But what is particularly fuelling staff’s anger is that those in the higher grades, six and above, will continue to benefit from membership of the Universities Superannuation Scheme and its final salary pension provision.

They are the better paid members of staff.

In fact, some would argue that some of them are very handsomely rewarded indeed.

Remind me. Didn’t David Cameron says, we’re all in this together?

It seems that some of them are in it more than others.