Here are a few items I want to tell you about that do not quite fit Saturday's Interesting Stuff and are also not big enough or meaty enough for a post of their own. Even so, I think you might be interested in some of them and unlike the Saturday post, these all relate to growing old.
If you like this, I'll do it every now and then. Let me know.
I'M NOT AGING “WELL” - I'M OLD
As you know, I insist on using the world “old” - there is nothing wrong with it or with being old. It's a perfectly good description of people from about age 60 on.
”People used to think of growing old as part of the natural progression of life from birth to death. Not anymore,” writes Erica. “Now we go directly from middle age to you’re-just-as-old-as-you-feel. “Old age” has been dropped from our vocabulary.
“'You’re not old!' people say when I describe myself that way. I’m 74 with an assortment of age-related ailments and a generous complement of sags and wrinkles. If I’m not old, who is?”
Erica wants elders to stop judging one another by how “youthful” we act or look and hurray for her:
“I’m taking a page from Martin Luther King:” she says. “I have a dream that one day elders will live in a nation where they will not be judged by the tautness of their muscles but by the content of their character.”
You can read more of her essay here.
STUDENT LOANS IMPOVERISHING ELDERS
A new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reveals that elders (age 60/62 and older) are drowning in student loan debt:
Although most student loan borrowers are young adults between the ages of 18 and 39, consumers age 60 and older are the fastest growing age-segment of the student loan Market.
“This trend is not only the result of borrowers carrying student debt later into life, but also the growing number of parents and grandparents financing their children’s and grandchildren’s college education.”
The details are horrifying, as Huffington Post explains:
”A full 68 percent of older borrowers living in poverty with Social Security garnishment are only seeing their benefit cuts devoted to interest and fees.
“The federal government is profiting from this mess. Every time a debt collector scrapes a Social Security check, the U.S. Treasury Department collects $15.
“'Our government is shoving tens of thousands of seniors and people with disabilities into poverty through garnishment every year ― and charging them $15 every month for the privilege, “ says Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. 'This is predatory and counterproductive.'”
86-YEAR-OLD INTERNATIONAL JEWEL THIEF NABBED
On 13 December 2016, reports The New York Times, 86-year-old Doris Payne
”...was arrested on Tuesday by the police in Dunwoody, an affluent suburb north of Atlanta, after she slipped a Lagos diamond necklace worth nearly $2,000 in her pocket and was stopped by a security guard, according to the Dunwoody police.”
It wasn't the first time. Payne has been stealing jewelry in the capitols of the entire world for 70 years – and getting away with a lot of it. There's even a documentary and a movie about her. Here's the trailer:
Apparently, she's really good at it. You gotta love her, criminal or not. You can watch documentary at YouTube for $3.99.
BEAUTIFUL RURAL RETIREMENT HOME IN JAPAN
In the mountains of Shizuoka Prefecture of Japan, sits an amazing retirement home for two old women.
It was designed by architect Issei Suma who is known for his intriguing buildings. This this structure shaped like five tents that due to the harmonious flow and the design that perfectly combines minimalism with an ecological style.
The building also features a spiral-shaped indoor pool that can be accessed by wheelchair and a common kitchen for both ladies, their caregiver and a cook. The 100 square meter complex is called Jikka. Take a look.
Thank lilalia who blogs at Yum Yum Cafe for this story.
TYPES OF DEMENTIA
If you read only the news media, you would think that Alzheimer's Disease is a synonym for dementia, and that just is not so.
Not long ago, Medical News Today (MNT) published a list with descriptions of types of dementia which typically involve problems with thinking, reasoning, and problem solving:
Dementia with Lewy bodies
Normal pressure hydrocephalus
I'll bet that's a longer list than you thought - it's certainly true for me. There is more useful information at MNT.
ELDERS READING MANY MORE BOOKS THAN IN THE PAST
As the Gallup organization announced recently:
”Despite Americans' ability to access more information, social networks, games and media than ever before, as well as the lingering rumors of the book's demise, Americans still say they are reading books.”
According to the Gallup report, the most meaningful reading behavior since 2002 is evident among elders, Americans who are 65 and older.
”Collectively, they are reading more books than the same age group did in 2002. The percentage reading one or more books increased from 68% to 85%, including a four-percentage-point increase in those reading 11 or more, from 33% to 37%.
Here's the chart to go with that information:
Most readers of all age groups are reading “real” books. Take a look at this chart:
You can read more details at the Gallup website.