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Seniors also need help, Mr. Obama

We are a new demographic population: The Third Third.

We are an elderly population that's living long beyond expectations -- sometimes living long beyond quality of life.

We are blowing the actuarial tables, still living and breathing. The medical profession may take credit for some of our longevity, and we can thank increased sanitation, safety and nutrition efforts that have improved over the years.To whatever we want to credit our longer lives, we are living healthier, longer, supposedly happier lives.

At least we try to make them happier.Times are difficult for many in this economy. Now that I'm living in an adult congregate living facility, my finances are skewed. I don't directly buy the food I eat, and it's lumped in with other expenses like transportation, exercise and entertainment.So when I recently accompanied a friend to the supermarket, I was surprised to see what her wallet was up against.

While there, I took a look at some of the new cooking pots, pans and equipment. I think I'd have to take a class to use some of these.Feeling deflated in my knowledge of grocery shopping and cooking acuity in today's economy, I turned my research to another section of the store, the cleaning aisle.I noticed the box of laundry soap had shrunk.

It had the same logo and the same eye-catching coloring but the package was seemingly half as before. "Double strength, " the label declared. In reality, it didn't perform that way in my wash, although I'm sure it must have in their lab.

Trying to maintain quality of life as we get older, we send this message to President Barack Obama: Hold onto the billons of dollars you may so nobly offer to the auto companies who have had the run of the road for the past decade. Instead, consider the needs of those of us in The Third Third for coffee and soap powder and give us a break.

We have sustained our dignity, but now our bank account is nearly dry and we have no reservoir to tap.We've raised our families, educated them and showed them how to save for tomorrow by buying a house for the future.

We've often invested with them. And now we see there's nowhere to go, not even to the family we raised. Many of our children have needed money from us to get by. Help us get through this.We who lived through the Great Depression and two world wars beseech you to throw us a lifeline -- or at least a little hope to buoy us in the Third Third.