HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY EVERYONE
I completely missed Valentines Day until I had finished writing today's Interesting Stuff but I caught myself. So here is a holiday ditty - well-suited to such a blog as this - from Henry Lowenstern who contributes a lot of amusing rhymes to The Elder Storytelling Place:
I'm looking for a Valentine
who'll overlook all faults of mine,
and love me as I am
or does not give a damn
that I am in decline.
A BAD WEEK FOR MEDIA
Yesterday I wrote an entire blog post about three important media stars departing, each in his own way, from our landscape this past week.
No sooner had it been published here Friday morning than I discovered a report of the untimely death on Thursday evening of 58-year-old New York Times media columnist, David Carr.
I had been relying on him for news of the media world for years and finally, just a month ago, created a news alert for his name so that I could stop hunting around for his stories.
You can read about both his professional work and his compelling personal story here.
One of the hard things about growing old is losing the cultural touchstones of our generation, the people who helped define our era who are, inevitably, replaced by others of younger generations with whom our connection is necessarily more tenuous, and the sensibility of the world around us becomes increasingly less familiar.
87 YEAR OLD SENATE AIDE
In yesterday's post, I mentioned I was pleased that the late CBS News correspondent Bob Simon was still working at age 73. So few of us get the chance.
However, here is at least one other: 87-year old Barbara O'Malley who has been working as a U.S. Senate aide since 1987.
O'Malley is on the staff of Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and known to pretty much everyone on Capitol Hill:
”Mrs. O’Malley has greeted, trained, baked for and even scolded some of the hundreds of lawmakers and constituents who pass by her desk,” reports the Wall Street Journal.
“'She’s so funny—and she’s tough,' said retired Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D., W.Va.) who visited Mrs. O’Malley every day he was in Washington. 'When she thinks the conversation has gone on too long, she goes, 'Go to your office and do some work,’ he said.”
The median age of Senate staffers is 29, notes the paper, and O'Malley is thought to be the longest serving receptionist in Congress:
“'It’s incredibly unusual because that is a starter position,' said Ivan Adler, a principal at the McCormick Group who specializes in recruiting congressional staffers to downtown lobbying shops. “Most people stay in there until they find the next step up and she’s never worried about that.
“She has trained generations of staffers, estimated at somewhere between 50 and 75 aides who are now dispersed among the hallways of Capitol Hill and offices of downtown Washington.”
ANY HARRY BOSCH FANS HERE?
If you like detective stories or police procedurals and have not discovered him, Harry Bosch is a Los Angeles Police detective in the 17 books by Michael Connelly.
In rearranging my television habits since cutting the cable cord, I discovered a new series last week, an original from Amazon Instant Video, titled Bosch. Here's the trailer. That's Titus Welliver starring as Bosch:
I've read most of the books over a long period of time and although Welliver is a little less physically scruffy than I have pictured Bosch, I like him. I'll be tuning in for the full season as it unfolds on Amazon.
You can read more about the series here.
ROCKS IN RICE
When I reported on an odious dental procedure (before the one this week), doctafil, who blogs at Jive Chalkin', emailed to tell me this true story:
“I broke a big upper tooth a couple years ago and was freaking out about it. Lost some pounds in the process, because it took a few days to see my dentist and it hurt to eat.
“My dentist managed to repair the tooth, but it wasn't easy. The next step, he said, would be an implant. So far, the tooth is fine.
“I took my dentist bill to the restaurant where I broke the tooth. My husband came with me. He was sure the manager wouldn't believe me. The place was packed.
“Cashier asked if he could help me. I told him I bit into a rock in their rice, showed him the dentist bill and asked for the manager. He leaned over and told me he had warned the new owners that they were cutting corners.
“Cashier took my dentist bill into the back room. Minutes later the cashier came out and handed me an envelope. I opened it. It was a full refund of my dental bill. 'We apologize and hope to serve you again.'
“Beware of rocks in rice.”
Wow, doctafil, nicely done. Congratulations to you and the restaurant manager.
KIDS REACT TO TYPEWRITERS
I found this on Senior Planet a few weeks ago. The headline is all you need to know. Enjoy.
PRESIDENT OBAMA SELFIES
And more foolishness. On Tuesday Buzzfeed, notorious for lightweight quizzes and listicles, interviewed President Barack Obama. They covered many serious issues and then this emerged:
How did Buzzfeed get the president to agree to all this silliness? I'm sure you noticed the commercial for Obamacare signup in middle. Enrollment ends tomorrow, Sunday.
Darlene Costner sent this beautiful video of paragliding made by Jean-Baptist Chandelier. Well, the first few seconds are gorgeous and I suspect the rest of it is too but I can't guarantee a gorilla won't pop up in the middle. Personal problem with heights so I stopped watching.
EVENT TO ADOPT OLD PETS
Last Sunday, an event called Oldies Only Senior Pet Adoption Drive, was held in Singapore. In connection with that, a survey was taken to see how people feel about adopting aging animals.
”Out of the 109 families interviewed,” reports Asiaone, “only a mere 2 per cent were open to adopting pets above the age of six.”
Apparently age biases apply not just to humans but to cats and dogs. My Olliecat will be 11 years old this year and I'm hoping he will be with me for as many more. If I am still alive and healthy when he does leave this realm, I will adopt an old pet. How about you?
CUTE, ADORABLE, STRANGE, WONDERFUL ANIMAL FRIENDSHIPS
Many of them. Dozens of still photos.
Interesting Stuff is a weekly listing of short takes and links to web items that have caught my attention; some related to aging and some not, some useful and others just for fun.
You are all encouraged to submit items for inclusion. Just click “Contact” in the upper left corner of any Time Goes By page to send them. I'm sorry that I won't have time to acknowledge receipt and there is no guarantee of publication. But when I do include them, you will be credited and I will link to your blog IF you include the name of the blog and its URL.