The Beatles on the human condition . . . youth . . . aging . . . illness . . . life and death . . . and the song goes on . . .
Today, the beach motel opens. Another summer begins, even as the cool spring lingers. I work the evening shift, and I’m happy to have the job.
It’s my 65th summer on Spaceship Earth. I’m fully aware that the seasons are numbered, like the fastballs in a pitcher’s arm. You don’t know how many you have left.
“No matter how long you live, it goes by fast.” My favorite great-grandmother — the only great-grandmother I knew — said that. Most people don’t get to know a great-grandmother.
(Cora Hayden was my great-grandmother’s name. Her maiden name was Cora Cash. She was indeed a grand lady, matriarch of a great family. I was a child and she was a very old woman, so it’s not as if we had any deep conversations. Or any conversations at all, of more than a few words. Adults talked; children listened. Still, my life would have been much smaller except for her.)
I take each season as it comes now. “It’s a long season, and you’ve gotta trust it.” On Opening Day, all things seem possible, no matter the number of seasons. Is it the home runs you remember, or the strikeouts?
Yes, I’m not writing well right now. But some days and nights are like that.
– John Hayden
The importance of walking and value of walkable communities, especially for older folks. http://blog.walkscore.com/2013/03/seniors-walkability-benefits-for-an-aging-public/
Couldn’t resist posting one more video. A most energetic and inspiring older couple. I guess local food and organic food is possible. All you need is dirt and work.
An official-looking envelope arrived in the mail this week. (Yes, despite reports to the contrary, we still have mail delivery in the USA.)
Inside the envelope, my Medicare card! Thank God! But how did this happen? How did I ever get to be this old? Never mind.
Amazing thing is, I didn’t even apply for Medicare. Continue reading
The Super Bowl has come and gone, and Groundhog Day as well. And what do I have to show for the winter?
It’s been, first of all, a lazy winter. That would be an objective report.
However, I prefer to look at it as a winter of reading, thinking, planning. I haven’t done as much blogging as I’d like. On the other hand, I’ve finally joined Twitter, and I’m even beginning to see its usefulness. Feel free to follow along on Twitter @BJohnHayden.
I’ve joined the local gym, and I’m showing up on a regular basis. That’s important, because I’m now beyond denial. I recognize that if I want to do any useful work in the years I have remaining, it’s imperative that I exercise and conserve my health.
Mostly, I’ve been thinking about and preparing for retirement, Continue reading
Showed up at the gym two days in a row! A sense of being overwhelmed by work and pressed for time has been the undoing of my exercise programs over the years. These days, I’m not as busy, but my mind keeps telling me to hurry. Ignore that voice! No fitness goals or expectations! The only goal is to keep showing up every day. – John
The 12-month gym contract. Been there, done that. Doing it again. When it comes to success at the gym, showing up is half the battle. In life generally, I like to set my goals a little bit high. But at my age, starting at zero fitness, I think a goal of simply showing up is appropriate. I accomplished showing up today. Now my goal is to show up six days a week, five days minimum. — John
Aging wears you down, I can report, based on 64 years of experience. One doctor told me our bodies are designed to wear out. Too much exercise might wear out your knees faster. But I’ve suddenly realized that I won’t be able to get out of a chair in five years, unless I take up strength training (in moderation). Yesterday, I joined my local gym. Now if I can only manufacture some self-discipline. – John
Nature reclaims a house by the side of the road, in the middle of a cornfield, somewhere on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.
– John Hayden
You want romance and character development? See Bull Durham. Justin Timberlake and Amy Adams in Trouble With The Curve aren’t in the same league with Kevin Costner and Susan Sarandon in Bull Durham.
Trouble With The Curve is all Clint Eastwood. The romance is fluff. Baseball is only the setting. Trouble With The Curve is about life and loss, failure and decline, maybe even aging gracefully. Not that I’m calling Clint Eastwood graceful.
Trouble With The Curve begins as a baseball movie that only a grumpy old man could love. But it fools you like a curveball in the dirt, and turns into, of all things, a chick flick. It might be the best baseball/romance combination since Bull Durham. Both movies are about life-changing events, about going with the curveballs life throws at you.
How do you get away with casting Clint Eastwood and Justin Timberlake in the same film? You add Amy Adams as daughter of the old man and love interest of the young one.
People are living longer, therefore the U.S. needs to raise the Social Security retirement age.
The above statement fills me with despair. It can be spoken with a straight face only by a young person or a rich person who doesn’t understand: a) What it feels like to be sixty-something in the 21st century, and b) The place of the American worker in the market for human labor, given the new-normal, flat-world economy.
Full disclosure: I come at this retirement age question from a Baby Boomer point of view. I celebrated (?) a 64th birthday in June. For which I’m grateful. It means I’m one of the survivors. I am now enjoying my 65th summer on the planet Earth, which is one of my favorite planets.
This just in: Nearly half of older Americans have a net worth of less than $10,000 when they die.
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