Crabby Old Lady Faces Cancer Season
ELDER MUSIC: Johnny Cash

INTERESTING STUFF – 12 October 2019


Last Thursday evening, CNN held an equality town hall with the Democratic presidential candidates. Elizabeth Warren was asked about marriage equality and she knocked it out of the park. Take a look:


When cats need a shrink...


Here's the latest episode of the bi-weekly chats with my former husband, Alex Bennett. This one was recorded last Tuesday.


The Social Security Administration announced this week that the 2020 cost-of-living (COLA) increase for most Social Security beneficiaries will be 1.6 percent. Investment News noted that

”In 2020, individuals will be able to earn up to $18,240 per year if they are under full retirement age for the full year without forfeiting any benefits. That's up from $17,460 this year...

“The latest Medicare Trustees' report projects that basic Medicare Part B premiums will increase by about $8.80 a month to $144.30 per month in 2020. The official announcement about Medicare premiums for 2020 will be issued later this year.”

The Part B premium is deducted from the monthly Social Security benefit.


China has more roadway than any other country in the world – 84 thousand miles including a bridge that is 34 miles long. This is amazing to see:


Meercats are the cutest little animals and a few BBC cameramen got some up close and personal fun with them. Flixxy, where I found this video, tells us,

”After being studied for years, the small mammals have no fear of humans, and simply treat them as a part of the scenery.

“The meerkat is a small mammal belonging to the mongoose family. Meerkats live in all parts of the Kalahari Desert in Botswana, in much of the Namib Desert in Namibia and southwestern Angola, and in South Africa. A group of meerkats is called a 'mob', 'gang' or 'clan'".


I am thrilled when I find what individuals are doing to help the planet. Take a look at this one:

If groups of us everywhere got together, we could do this cleanup part. Easy.


As many of you know, last December I took a psilocybin (magic mushrooms) session with a guide in an effort to make peace with the fear of dying that was crippling me after I had been handed a death sentence due to pancreatic cancer.

It worked. I can't say I am completely sanguine about dying, but I am a lot more comfortable with it and now see death as part of a larger phenomenon.

Throughout this year since my session, the medical community has been showing more and more interest in how psychedelics can help treat PTSD, anxiety, pain and many other conditions. Next year, legalization of psilocybin for therapeutic use in on the ballot in Oregon, in Denver and perhaps a few other locations.

This Sunday, tomorrow, the CBS News program 60 Minutes will present a segment about psylocybin. TGB reader Gary G. Trabucco sent this item for us including a trailer for Sunday's report:

Almost simultaneously, I found out about this feature-length documentary, Fantastic Fungi – The Magic Beneath Us. It's about fungi in general but also includes information about psychedelic mushrooms. (Even if you don't care about fungi, you should watch this for the stunning photography.)

Dates and venues for theater screenings of the documentary in the U.S. are listed at the film's website.


A full month after Hurricane Dorian killed an estimated 50 people and devastated the Bahamas,

”A drone flew over the wreckage, using an infrared camera to try to identify heat — a sign of possible life hidden amid the rubble," reported the Washington Post.

“Then, the drone operated by Florida-based shelter Big Dog Ranch Rescue sensed heat. A volunteer trudged more than half a mile over debris to where an air-conditioning unit and piles of metal had trapped the survivor: a 1-year-old mixed-breed puppy.”

The Washington Post continues:

”The dog had survived only on rainwater that filled a hole in front of him after the hurricane, so rescuers gave him some fluids to stabilize him before the hour-long flight [to Florida].

“When he arrived at Big Dog Ranch, Simmons said, his muscles had wasted away from a month of immobility and his body weight had plummeted from about 45 pounds to 22 pounds.”

The rescuers named him (her?) Miracle.

* * *

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.


The video of China's motorway left me speechless. Not only could I probably never drive there without a panic attack, but the rate at which they're building suggests that we're probably all doomed, not just Britain. They may be an old civilization, but they're full of young people with new infrastructure. Britain and the U.S. are aging countries full of crumbling infrastructure. Napoleon was correct in his prophetic warning centuries ago. The sleeping giant not only has awoken, but has multiplied its power and strength exponentially. It's just a matter of time.

Wow, wow, what a great compilation. Therapy cats, meerkats and mushrooms, oh my!

You are obnoxious to your ex husband. Not enjoyable to watch at all. You can delete me if you like....but that is how I feel.

The Social Security raise makes me chuckle. It probably, for me, won't be enough to cover the raise in Medicare.

I get a small SS check due to my public teacher's pension. Reagan decided, while president, that there should be no double-dipping by teachers into government pensions, even though I had 20 years of SS deposits. So, my SS check is small, at least I get enough to pay for Medicare and to have my hair done.

What really irks me, though, is that between my husband and I, our medicare insurance is more than any insurance cost I ever had while working. Oh, well, it is what it is.

Having discovered this site just a week ago (and spending these past several days binging on your wonderful writings), this was my first 'Alex & Ronni Show'. Can't tell you how much I enjoyed it, and the wonderful exchange. My problem is, you both make such good arguments (in regards to age-limits for the presidency) that I don't know what I think!

The video about China's (so new) road & bridgework humbles & truth be told, frightens me a little. I'm 58 years old, today's China is nothing what I learned in school. It's TOO amazing.

Finally I almost didn't watch that 'cats in therapy' video because I suppose I'm a little bit of an ageist too & thought it'd be too 'cutesy'. Haha, so wrong--I laughed my a-- off!

The puppy rescue showed the kindness of these humans and the magnificence of Miracle.

I had the exact opposite reaction to Gail above. In today's episode, I can understand why he's an ex-husband.

I go into Medicare Advantage next year. I don't plan to file for SSA until the year after. I will be paying out of pocket for the Medicare Advantage premium.

I hope the puppy survived!

An excellent book about the symbiotic relationship between fungi and trees is The Hidden Life of Trees. Also, Michael Pollan wrote an excellent book about psychedelics called How to Change Your Mind. We read both for a nonfiction book club I go to.

Interesting variety of video topics, as you so often provide. Meerkats always intrigue me. Recall one (a meerkat, I think) that was on the old Carson Show, perched on Johnny’s head, then relieved itself. Guess you don’t want to let them sit up there too long!

Enjoyed the dialogue and the exchanges between you and ex. Good example of stimulating thinking for both parties on issues and how to have civil discourse, remain friends with differing points of view. We surely do need more in this country capable of this rather than retreating solely to group of same thinkers.

Felt you really disrespected Alex today. Did not enjoy seeing that.

I love your give and take with Alex always. I wish I could have had those kinds of conversations with my ex.

Meerkats. Who can resist them and their matriarchal society.

. Meerkat Manor, the BBC series your trailer was based on is available on you tube.

Somehow I missed this Interesting Things episode. Thus I missed the 60 minutes.

I Kerman’s thinking that, one more time, before I die, I want to do LSD again. I had plenty in my 20s but I really wonder how it would be now .

I just don’t know where to get it.

I passed the mushroom trailer on to a friend who does classes in scientific drawing. I missed her mushroom drawing class this fall.

And to my tattoo artist grand daughter who is always eager to learn more about mushrooms.

Be well Ronni.

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