Call Me Heloise Today

This Week in Elder News - 18 April 2009

In this regular weekend feature you will find links to news items from the preceding week related to elders and aging, along with whatever else catches my fancy that I think you might like to know. Suggestions are welcome with, however, no promises of publication.

A man from my state of Maine named Chuck Lakin is an advocate of do-it-yourself, home funerals including a bookcase that, when the need arises, becomes a coffin. At a workshop presentation, an attendee called out, "Why isn't every home furnished like this?" Read more here.

This feature story was first posted a couple of years ago. It is a report of a supermarket in Germany that is designed to make shopping easier for elders. An important point about all elder-friendly design is that it is almost always good for everyone else too.

The U.S. Library of Congress has recently launched a YouTube channel with contemporary and, most interestingly, some of the earliest films ever made including this recording made by Thomas Edison in 1894 of some guy named Fred Ott sneezing.

Unfortunately, these videos are unavailable to embed. Hmm – I thought the American public owned the contents of the Library of Congress. Nevertheless, it is good to have them available online. (Hat tip to Nikki Lindqvist of Nikki's Place – an American in Sweden)

Stories have been popping up in newspapers around the country about the low interest rates and much more fair business practices of local credit union credit cards. It is worth considering giving up our big, bloated bank cards for these. Read more here.

In the wake of the ignorance (not to mention hatred on some placards) expressed at the tea party protests on Wednesday, this story on the unfairness of our tax codes is worth a read. All President Obama is proposing is to raise the tax rate on highest earners to ten percent below the rate during the Reagan presidency. As the writers note at the end of the story: “Our grandparents seriously taxed the rich. Why can't we?”

If you've missed Susan Boyle, the astonishing 47-year-old singer from Britain's Got Talent TV program, you've probably been pulling a Rip Van Winkle for the past week. The audience and the judges were expecting to mock her and got the shock of their lives. YouTube has disabled embedding for some reason, but you can see her performance and interaction with the judges here. [7:07 minutes]

Over at the Wall Street Journal Op-Ed page, columnist Peggy Noonan made some predictions on how our recession/depression will change the country. Among them:

“People will be allowed to grow old again. There will be a certain liberation in this. There will be fewer facelifts and browlifts, less Botox, less dyed hair among both men and women. They will look more like people used to look, before perfection came in. Middle-aged bodies will be thicker and softer, with more maternal and paternal give. There will be fewer gyms and fewer trainers, but more walking. Gym machines produced the pumped and cut look. They won't be so affordable now.”

Wouldn't that be a relief. More here.

A new movie opened Friday starring Michael Caine as an aging magician and a lonely 10-year-old boy who become friends. It's getting nice reviews as you can read here. And, here is a trailer for it.

Much to my surprise this week, I discovered that mythster, who blogs at Rotten Apple and frequently comments on this blog has done me the honor of nominating Time Goes By in three categories at the Bloggers Choice '09 Awards. I am dumbfounded to see that 21 people have voted for Time Goes By. Here's the link I'm allowed to post which I've also added to the right sidebar.

My site was nominated for Best Blog About Blogging!

Thank you, Mythster and all who have voted. You are very kind.

I have a feeling this has been around the web and, probably, email for a long time but I hadn't seen it. I've lost track of sources – sorry – but it's good for today's belly laugh:

My name is Alice, and I was sitting in the waiting room for my first appointment with a new dentist. I noticed his DDS diploma on the wall, which bore his full name. Suddenly, I remembered a tall, handsome, dark-haired boy with the same name had been in my high school class some 30-odd years ago. Could he be the same guy that I had a secret crush on, way back then?

Upon seeing him, however, I quickly discarded any such thought. This balding, gray-haired man with the deeply lined face was way too old to have been my classmate. After he examined my teeth, I asked him if he had attended Morgan Park High School.

“Yes. yes, I did. I'm a mustang.” He gleamed with pride.

“When did you graduate?' I asked.

He answered, “In 1975. Why do you ask?”

“You were in my class!” I exclaimed.

He looked at me closely. Then, that ugly, old, bald, wrinkled-faced, fat-assed, gray-haired, decrepit son-of-a-bitch asked, “What did you teach?”


Oh, Ronni, enjoying all the items but the final provided a stress-relieving chuckle that went very deep. Thanks again!

The German grocery store was terrific--and profitable. Loved those magnifiers.

Hope Peggy Noonan's predictions come true, that we will soon see more "real" people again. And in that same vein (or should I say vain?) I would be very surprised to see the enormously talented Susan Boyle morph into some stylist's idea of who she really is.

Am still laughing over the dental encounter.

I do hope that all of you "Elder" readers will vote early and often for our own "Time Goes Go By" (Play it again Sam) at the Bloggers Choice Awards Ronni deserves it and... so do we!

I envy the customers of that German grocery store! Years ago, one of our supermarkets had these wonderful shopping carts. You'd push them up to the check-out conveyor belt. The cashier could pull down the front of the cart, and pull the groceries out of the cart onto the check-out belt. It eliminated that awkward bend-and-stretch-and-lift dance. I'd love to see those back!

I loved the story. Mom and I both got a great belly laugh out of it.

I also loved Peggy Noonan's article. For a while now I have followed a couple of blogs from people who have gone into the homesteading or voluntary simplicity or permaculture or--whatever other name you care to use. I also hope that much of Noonan's predictions come true. I am very tired of an economic system that condemns most of us to working long hours merely to get buy while giving up everything that makes life worthwhile because we are too bone tired after working to do anything but crash. I am very tired of 'multitasking,' driving 20 mph over the speed limit to avoid being run over by all those idiots going no where fast, and being bombarded by ads telling me how much I 'need' the latest gadget.

I loved the clip of that Scottish singer and the astonishment on the faces of the judges and crowd. I have never cared much for Simon who I think can be an absolutely loud-mouthed, arrogant piece of s**t. But his reaction was priceless. Maybe it is a good reminder that judging a book by its cover is not a good policy.

Ronni, I tried to vote 4 times, but that site will not let me enter my password!! I also found that I cannot comment on any blog on blogger or with google comments. What a pain!

Ronni.....loved each and every article.
Thank you so much!

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