Thursday, April 20, 2023

Volunteer Appreciation (Elliott & Diane)

Coming up next is the twenty-eighth part to Diane Richardson’s “When I Met My Hubby,” but first some appreciation for our volunteers. Yesterday, I went to The Philadelphia Senior Center's Volunteer Appreciation Ceremony. The most interesting thing about the event was how many older buds were present as volunteers. Of course, there were the older bud representatives of each group, but there were also several older buds and baby boomers volunteering without actually attending the Senior Center...or any senior center necessarily. Apparently,  we have a larger percentage of volunteers born between the forties and sixties than we did back in the 2000s. I believe it might be double, but don't quote me on that.

We've been getting in new prospective volunteers to write and read on behalf of older buds with visual impairments, many of whom are older buds themselves. One prospective volunteer was Nancy, who wrote for Elliott. They struck up a friendship over their shred tastes in literature, and Elliott believes she knew exactly how to write and read aloud his story as a result. I'm looking froward to sharing the story Nancy transcribed, but in the meantime, here's a classic story from older bud Elliott.

Elliott Doomes


Who Am I?

This is a story about two people who seemed to be compatible in every way. With the exception of controversial issues. They can never agree on the correct stand to take. Whichever stand one would take, the other would contradict and take the opposite. They would argue their points almost to the point of verbal hostility. They would even go so far as to judge and condemn the others’ opinions. I think that they could accept the fact that they are different people, and allow each other to be who they are and not judge them for who they think they should be. That’s the key point right there. Perhaps in that understanding and acceptance, they could begin to bond and form a lasting relationship and friendship.
Now this is the third person coming here, and this is what he says: he said “Well, sound and interesting advice, sir. But tell me, how do you stand on controversial issues?”
Well let me say this: I may not always be right, but I’m never wrong.
I’ve met people like that; they’re never wrong. I don’t care what you say, they’ve always got a way to interpret something. There’s a guy here who’s like that. He’s gone everywhere, he’s done everything, he’s even worked on a nuclear submarine if you can believe that! I call him every once in a while, and ask why he doesn’t come to the center. He says, “Most of the days, I’m down at the casino.” Well that wouldn’t be for me. Maybe one day I might go in a group, but he’s going in two, three times a week, but for what? But the stories that he tells me! He’s done everything. Whatever you say, he’s done it. One day he’s going to tell me he was Admiral or something.

We now return to our continuing story, “When I Met My Hubby, Part 28.” 

Diane Richardson


When I Met My Husband Part 28

So at this time I am on assignment at a O.B. GYN practice at H.U.P. I don’t like working O.B. GYN because there is nothing but women all day every day and I need to see some men sometimes. My agency knew I didn’t care to work the practice but not why. They needed a tech to work until they hired someone permanent which who knows how long that could be. So, they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. I agreed only because they were closed on weekends and holidays. Their regular tech was getting married and leaving the country.
The practice was owned an operated by a husband and wife team. I’ll call them Smith and Jones. The wife Smith, the husband Jones. Smith was white and Jones was black. He loved soul food, and she didn’t know how to cook it so they would go out to eat most nights after work.
After I had been there for a little while I asked if I could make a suggestion. I told them I had a trusted family member that was retired and could cook up a storm. I could talk to her and ask if she would be interested in cooking for you. She could do the grocery shopping and have dinner ready when you get home. They asked if I knew her well and if I trust her.
I answered, “Very well. I wouldn’t recommend her if I didn’t, I wouldn’t put my reputation on the line.” They said they would meet with her, and I talked to her and she agreed to meet with them. They met, loved each other, and agreed she will be their cook. Everybody was happy. I want everyone to know who the cook was,
Pearlie Mae!!!
To Be Continued …….

If you want to transcribe for Best Day, then email us at You can also share our older buds' adventures by donating to Best Day, subscribing to our newsletter, sending a note to our older buds, or following us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter. And if you or the older buds have any stories of volunteering or volunteer appreciation, then you or they can submit stories through our portal right here. We're especially interested to stories from Black older buds, but we're always looking for stories from older buds of color, older buds with disabilities, LGBTQIA+ older buds, older buds of any gender or sex, older buds of any religion, and older buds who just plain break the mold.

And don't forget to maintain contact with the older buds in your life. If you can't be there in person, please call them, email them, or message them on social media. And if they're using teleconferencing or remote events for the first time, give them a call and help them set things up. Check in on them to see how well they're getting used to these programs. Buy them a computer or an internet package if they don't have one of their own. It's a human right, after all.

Curated by Caitlin Cieri