Longreads

When Jaya Saxena and her husband visited his grandparents in their Florida retirement community, they found what the author calls “the early bird life.” Early bed time, inexpensive meals, look-alike housing, this was a land where predictability isn’t a dreary monotony to avoid. It’s a sign of success. For Eater, Saxena describes how they experienced this Florida by embracing its comforting routine, rest and the early bird special, the lifestyle’s affordable, predictable, culinary centerpiece. Surprisingly, they found a meal in decline. Once beloved by retirees, aging Boomers don’t take the same interest in this meal, or need to save money, or share previous generations’ visions of retirement, and their disinterest threatens this culinary icon. As diners pass away, will their early bird special go with them?

Whether rich, poor, or merely one of the declining middle class, though, few of the new Olds want to embrace their age…

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