Reflections on Age
The Blizzard of '06

Silver Threads - 2/12/2006

Hurray for Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich who, in writing of the retirement of Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O’Connor, had this to say: “We need more wrinkled, jowly, white-haired women in power.” She continues:

“Pop culture's idea of a powerful older woman is Madonna. Or Oprah, who looks younger with every monthly magazine cover…Looking at that recent photo of O'Connor unaided by stylists or lighting specialists, I saw something I hadn't seen until then: She not only served the cause of women by becoming a justice, she served it by aging realistically in the job.”

Leonard Nimoy’s commercial got a lot better press this past week following the Super Bowl than the Rolling Stones did for the half-time show. It concerns an aging Nimoy overcoming arthritis pain, with the use of Aleve, to be able to make the Vulcan salute at a Star Trek Conference. You can see it here.

Insurance behemoth, Humana, has been accused of violating federal guidelines by paying its sales force higher commissions for selling elders managed care plans than it does for the less expensive Medicare Part D drug-only coverage. I’ll soon be choosing a Part D provider and a supplemental health coverage plan. It won’t be from Humana.

You can now wear your blog keywords or “word cloud” on your chest. Snapshirts will do it with just a click of your mouse and then print it on a teeshirt for $18 or $21. Check it out here. (Via Colleen at Loose Leaf Notes)

Cosmetics are a bigger blog topic that I would have guessed. Following up the Radiant Older Women post on TGB this week, Koan Bremner of added her own thoughts on the Blogher blog with a collection of links to other who’ve pondered the use of makeup. Jill Fallon of Legacy Matters follows up too on her Estate Legacy Vaults blog noting the advantages of word-of-mouth marketing to older women.

My old friend Yaakov Kirschen swept the Jewish and Israeli Blog Awards in four categories for his Dry Bones Blog: Best New Blog of 2005, Best Political and Current Affairs Blog, Best Jewish Humor Blog and Best Blog Overall.

Fat Old Artist has discovered that reading large-print books while she’s on the treadmill is easier and a lot more compelling that watching television, but she also laments that there aren’t more books published in large print that she wants to read.

On Monday and Tuesday, you might want to check out the luge competition from Turino. 52-year-old Anne Abernathy - also known as Grandma Luge - is competing in her sixth winter Olympics in this event. She’s the oldest woman to ever compete in the Olympics and is up against competitors less than half her age.

Doc Searls was writing about subverting hierarchies but makes an important point in passing that is disbelieved by too many - that creativity can increase with age: “Nearly all of what I'm known for I've done since I was fifty. And without the Net, there would hardly be any of it.”


Humana is likely no better or worse than most of the rest in various areas of their operation. The first comment posted on the link you provided asks the most important question: where were our congressmen and women when the writing of the plan was done and the vote was taken?

A hat tip to Ann Abernathy! :)

As a reader Of Dry Bones blog I concur with the voters. He does a fine job with his toons !

Meant to add a whole-hearted endorsement of Mary's observation about Justice O'Connor -- thanx to Mary; to you, Ronni, for making note of it; most of all to Justice O'Connor.

We should all be proud of our appearance as we age. We might make a difference in cultural attitudes if more women of all ages, especially those in the public eye, had the courage to do as Justice O'Connor. Oprah could certainly have an effect if she had the courage to do so.

thanks for doc searle on his creativity post-age fifty. i can relate to that and believe that this ought to be our mantra: creativity in the third age, the best reason for getting older.

And luge star Anne Abernathy is a proud red-hatter(!).

As to the look of real women, I was always taken by Madelaine Albright and Janet Reno--and, in a previous age, Dixie Lee Ray (Dixie Ray Lee? I can't keep her names straight). I thought it was part of the women's movement that we would free ourselves of the artifice of makeup (I dumped it in 1974), so I have been somewhat disappointed with reality as the years have flown by. (It seems such a waste of time and money!)

The local library tells me that they are limited in what they can stock in the way of large-print books, by the printers's choices of titles--especially by those who cater to libraries (where they can get a discount). I provided them with my current "to read" list of approximately 75 books that I had been unable to find on the local shelves. The librarian looked them up and told me that only 3 of them had even been published in large print. I can read normal-print books, but it is so much easier with the large print! Perhaps I should send my list to the publishers of large-print books.

You Go, Doc Searls! To whom can the saying, "Life begins at 50" be attributed? Seems apropos. Wisdom comes with age and experience. imho.
Not there yet but looking forward to the next stage of life. I'm still in my prime. (which lasts until old age).

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