Most folks think they’re getting old when it comes time to collecting senior citizen perks, but not Bob Geldof.
The Irish musician/activist, founder of Band Aid and Live Aid back in the eighties, has a half price bus pass in Britain because he’s now a ripe old 61 years of age, and he’s mighty proud of it.
“Seen the new cool card?” he asked his interviewer in a piece published in the Daily Mail last weekend, showing off his Freedom Pass, which gives senior citizens free public travel in Britain.
“I may be ancient and decrepit but I’m 16 quid better off.”
Geldof spent part of the summer playing festivals with his old band, the Boomtown Rats, and apparently loved every minute of it. They’re due to hit the road again in Ireland and the U.K. for some smaller dates before the end of the year.
“We’re a bunch of blokes who met because we happened to live close to each other 40-odd years ago,” says Geldof of his Dublin youth. “Fate has somehow bound us together.”
Of course Geldof’s fame went global after he assembled the famed Band Aid/Live Aid efforts for African relief. He’s been an outspoken advocate for the continent ever since, along with his fellow Irishman Bono.
“A very clever man. Though a part of me still regards him as an annoying little brother – an annoyingly mega-successful little brother – I’ve come to appreciate that he has a serious brain on him and he’s, hey, a beautiful guy,” Geldof says of the U2 star.
Though he made millions through successful media investments after the Rats disbanded, Geldof still remembers what it was like to be poor and has no desire to revisit those days, hence his love of perks like free senior travel.
“It terrifies me still!” he says of being poor. “Loneliness and poverty, I’m not going back. Never. Being poor is s***. And I’m still very cautious with money because I’m not going back to the nothing I knew in my youth.
“I have what Humphrey Bogart called the ‘f*** you fund.’ The freedom to breathe in the material world. I forget I have money. The relief when I remember everything is okay is immense.”