Have You Been Dropping More Things as You Get Older? Take Two

INTERESTING STUFF – 6 October 2018


Back when Murphy Brown a staple on prime time television, I was a fan. Not only was it a well-done sitcom, it was set within my then-professional milieu – network television production. It was well done and I enjoyed it.

Well, it's back. Murphy, played again by Candace Bergen has, along with the original regulars, grown as older, as we have, and they are not pretending otherwise.

The premier episode aired a week ago and it was a load of fun including this cameo from a recent presidential candidate playing “Hilary Clendon” applying for the job of Murphy's secretary. Here is that scene:

The show is broadcast Thursdays at 9:30PM on CBS.


Continuing my own personal meme from last week's Interesting Stuff, here is another television commercial that charms me – for the new, bigger iPhone:


Does anyone without a private jet think air travel is fun anymore? Or even vaguely comfortable?

I get invited to visit friends here and there, but I can't bring myself to get on an airplane. Now, perhaps, it might get a little less awful as Congress considers a bill to reduce the effect of some of the terrible things airlines inflict on passengers, Among them:

A prohibition on the use of electronic cigarettes aboard aircraft.

A ban on talking on cell phones aboard commercial flights

A requirement that the FAA establish minimum seat dimensions on passenger airlines.

It's probably not enough for me to get back on an airplane but maybe, if Congress really does this, it is a start for a return to basic needs and requirements for human beings to be shut up inside a metal tube for hours.

You can read the rest of the seven proposals at Roll Call.


My friend Chuck Nyren sent this video. Adweek calls it “comically savage” and apparently it is supposed to make young people want to vote. See what you think:

There is no question that it's a good idea to find creative ways to get people (of all ages) to vote. But to do so by demeaning one age group over another is unconscionable, and it tells us exactly what the creators think of old people.

More at Adweek.


They say Iron Ox is the first farm in the United States run entirely by robots, something that becomes more important now that there are no longer enough immigrants allowed into the country to do this kind of work. Take a look:

The farm's website is here and you can read more at the San Francisco Chronicle.


“Misjudged.” That's the title of Jill Lepore's story in the current issue of The New Yorker about Ruth Bader Ginsburg's unlikely path to the Supreme Court. It begins:

”Ruth Bader Ginsburg blinked behind giant, round eyeglasses. It was the first day of her confirmation hearings, in July of 1993, the year after the Year of the Woman, and Joe Biden, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, was very pleased to see her...

“She sat with the stillness of a watchful bird. 'Judge Ginsburg, welcome,' Biden said, heartily. 'And, believe me, you are welcome here this morning.' You can read it at the magazine or listen to it being read on the same page.

GinburgBio150In case you are as interested as I am, a new biography, Ruth Bader Ginsburg: A Life, by Jane Sherron De Hart will be published on 16 October. It was written, according to the Amazon page, with the cooperation of Justice Ginsburg and based on interviews with the justice, her husband, her children, her friends, and her associates.


And not the good kind. The Centers for Disease Control tell us this week that this past influenza season was the deadliest in at least 40 years. CNN reported,

“Influenza killed about 80,000 people in the 2017-2018 season, according to figures released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The previous high for a regular flu season, based on analyses dating back more than three decades, was 56,000 deaths.”

According to the Washington Post, the CDC's report is

”...the most detailed picture of the devastating reach of the respiratory virus, which sickened millions of people as overwhelmed hospitals pitched tents to treat patients.”

Get your flu shot this year. Don't blow it off. It's free at any pharmacy. Do it.

You can read the CDC report here.


Blake Kirby wrote on the Youtube page of this video:

“When we first saw the wild animal we thought he was a dead chicken floating in the rain tank. Then I noticed he was still alive and NOT a chicken! I knew I needed to help this beautiful bird.”

And so he did.

* * *

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” at the top 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.


I just marked my 70th birthday anniversary and I find myself absolutely no less liberal than when I first voted at age 21. That ad was so offensive I could scream.

I have seen the "base" cheering behind el presidente at his rallies and it is an insult to blame his election on older people exclusively -- even older white men of a certain privilege.

Everybody need to vote. More importantly, everybody needs to be an informed voter and that takes more work than watching inflammatory ads.

I too found that ad offensive. I first saw it on FB--there were a number of comments for older people noting that it was ageist and then counter comments that we just didn't get the humor. I commented that I understood it was sarcastic and meant to be reverse psychology but it was still ageist.

I don't find it offensive at all. At age 75, I think it's high time we take a look a what's real. If it hurts, u-m-m, maybe it's a reflection of the sentiments of letters-to-the-editors in too many newspapers. And too many of the folks that have been supporting the idiocy in state and federal government.

Just look at the leadership in Congress.

Ironically (and maddeningly), the vast majority of participants who work with me on local and national political issues are above the age of 50 (and female, interestingly). Our age group comprises the majority at all of our gatherings, seriously. We are doing post card parties, canvassing, voter registration, letter writing, petition circulating, marching—all to get the Republicans out. One of our most active compadres is in her 90’s and she unfailingly shows up laden with clipboards and petitions. I noticed another lady walking slowly to our meeting place for post card writing (to flip a neighboring red district) with an oxygen tank. This ad is offensive. A real slap in the face. However, I can’t help hoping that it may help get young voters out to bring on a blue tide.

I looked forward to Murphy Brown, and her first guest celeb really was cute. But I didn't know who the one was this week (playing an inebriated assistant) which just shows I've been out of the loop somehow. And quite honestly the jokes seem a bit lame this time. I'll try watching again. Maybe the topics hailing from 6 months ago has something to do with it.

I was also offended by the ad. So offended that I am going to write to the organization whose name is listed at the end. The hawk rescue went a long way toward bringing me back around from the mood inflicted by the ad! Lastly, I grew up in a semi-rural area and cannot wrap my head around that kind of farming. I'm sure it is where we will end up, but I think we will have lost something if we allow family farms to fall away.

A blog full of good stuff for my early morning reading. Thanks for this wide selection of interesting items.

And I often think that the comments from other readers can be as interesting. Thank you, fellow readers, for sharing your thoughts and feelings and reactions. Some are similar to mine and others make me stop and think in new and interesting ways. It's like having mini conversations with a wide variety of people every morning.

Got my flu shot, enjoyed the hawk video very much - as for the voting ad, I was not offended any more than young people should be offended by it. If the shoe fits....and it does for many people I know in both age groups. Of course there are elders who are active and progressive. I'm in a very active group myself, and we all vote and write letters to the editor and encourage others to vote and contact our elected and appointed officials. But many of my relatives fit the stereotypes in this ad. And the old privileged white men in Congress...sorry, but that's what they are.

The Hawk rescue was what I needed today. I love to see happy endings - especially welcome today as the Republicans and one Democratic hypocrite are going to push their personal future and their party ahead of our country by voting for Kavanaugh. I hope K is right in saying "What goes around, comes around" and they all lose their seats next election.

Sorry to get off topic, but I am still reeling from this shameful spectacle that I never expected to see in my entire life.

That said, it is an ageist video on getting out the vote. Perhaps just this once it may be okay to point out that the statistics say that the older vote helped the Republican candidates stay, or get in office. If it motivates young people to vote Democrat I can't fault it too much.

Beats me how any woman could be a Republican these days, but that said, the ad was just stupid and tiresome. Young people today are too smart to fall for reverse psychology (if they listen at all). Frankly I've tuned out all the political ads.

After an exhausting week of political fighting, I found the hawk rescue uplifting. I can always look to nature and the outdoors for respite from human chaos.

Whether one considers the voting ad ageist or not, it was painful. It was painful because, as Brian Long noted, it contained so much truth.

For instance: five of us old women have known one another for 50-60 years. No geniuses among us, and I am the only college graduate; but all are intelligent, middle-class people.

One opined, after Trump turned out to be such a disaster that, her grandmother and her mother always voted Republican and she just could not vote for someone without an R beside their name. I'm not sure that the other three don't still support Trump. And, I'm betting, that if Trump runs in 2020, he will again garner four of our five votes.

I'd love to see how the tomatoes are harvested on the robotic farm; clipped rather than picked, I assume, but how interesting to see how ripeness would be sensed.

Scooping the hawk out with the open cage was sheer brilliance. Hooray!

The irony for me: The commercial is ageist but I want twenty-somethings to get out and vote. Does the end justify the means? Good fodder for an ethics class.

Wow, Cop Car, that is REALLY discouraging! How can they still support such a flawed man to hold the office of president? Occasionally, I cannot avoid footage from one of the Orange Apparition's "mob rallies" for a minute or two. They are pure demonstrations of raw Tribalism above all, which I find extremely scary.

That ad is SO offensive! I wonder how old the "creative" person was who came up with the idea. Another good reason why I don't watch TV -- or do most social media.

I am not offended by the ad - it is mostly true. I do wish that more of us above the ages of 55 would be less likely to keep voting for the status quo - and to be less "offended" by what is happening and do something about it.

The hawk episode is mesmerizing. The humans model care, respect, kindness, and compassion — among best traits of the species. Thank you. I am avoiding the horrors and focusing on the splendors— TGB and the video are among them.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)