- Your Voice
We are losing our sense of community and trust in one another. The latest Pew Research confirms it. Political polarization is even greater now than during the turbulent 1960’s.
I haven’t been the same since that time I took up bicycling. My son, the triathlete, extolled the health benefits of riding a bike. I had a bike as a kid and I liked it. It was freedom. But now, in my third age, it was about exercise. About heart health, stronger lungs, increasing brain power and living longer.
A Facebook friend wrote this week, “you know you’re getting old when both your kids are home owners.” Notice he wrote “getting old.” Most folks don’t like being considered or called, old. We live in youthful America and “oldness” is not a line to be crossed unless you’re very comfortable in your own skin.
If you stay tuned in, you get a sharp sense of what the Oro Valley community is all about.
Even far flung folks showed up in a Sun Shuttle to share in Sun City’s celebration, dedication and ribbon cutting at its new state-of-the-art activity and fitness center this month.
So, what’s it like growing old in America? Forty years ago, Dr. Robert Butler in his Pulitzer Prize winning book titled, Why Survive Being Old. declared, “Old age in America is often a tragedy.
There’s a huge floor to ceiling chalkboard at the gym where I spend most every morning. It’s like lo-tech Facebook, filled with encouraging notes of inspiration and successes about exercise. “You only get out what you put in.” Stuff like that. And lately the rewards are in the headlines on the blackboard: “Total cholesterol down from 288 to 186”, “Finally, three weigh-ins below 215-pounds.” All anonymous, of course.
Here’s one you don’t hear every day, “the smart phone will be the hub of the future of medicine. And it will be your health-medical dashboard.”
Knowing you need to change your lifestyle and doing something about it creates anxious moments for some. It’s called “the fear factor” and for those of us of a certain age, it dates back to high school - physical education class. I hated it. Especially the pull-ups and the jeering classmates betting I couldn’t even make five of them.
As veteran members of the Tucson-Mexico Trade Coalition, Councilman Joe Hornat and I travelled to Ciudad Obregon, Sonora earlier this month, at the invitation of mayor Rogelio Diaz Brown.
Albert Einstein said it best, “The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”
Age of Champions is an award-winning documentary that the Washington post calls “infectiously inspiring.” It’s about five aging athletes - one of them 100 years old - who compete in the National Senior Olympics. The film has been shown in a thousand communities around the country and on July 9 will make its debut on PBS. Don’t miss it. It will light up your heart.
I’ve spent my entire adult life reporting the news, so I was troubled when I came upon a “news” website that stated not only is news bad for your health, but that if you give up reading it you’ll be happier.
Have you seen it? Two older fellas meet for morning coffee in a McDonald’s TV commercial.
I’m seriously beginning to wonder about a popular “news” website I visit on occasion and the information stream we are bombarded with every day. Recent headlines include: “Mating tortoises knock over lamp, burn down garage.” Mr. and Mrs. O’Leary, whose cow burned down Chicago, would have gotten a kick out of that one. “Man lands in court for laughing too loudly” - “How cats make decisions” - “Could you go a year without pants?”
On behalf of the Town Council, it is our pleasure to welcome you to Oro Valley. Oro Valley is rich in history and natural beauty and we cannot think of a better location to hold your national event. Our community has a reputation as a haven for hikers, cyclists and wildlife enthusiasts.
You’ve retired from life’s hurly-burly. You’re in your 60s or 70s and the walls start closing in. Retirement will often do that - slow life down and close you off from an active social life. You end up, hour after hour, at the foot of your television either watching the soaps or increasing your anxiety about the future of the world by absorbing the clatter of “cable news”. Life has become empty and you need to fill it up.
I hit the gym at the crack of dawn Saturday. I cranked up the bike trainer to get my heart rate up. And there to expedite that on the TV screen was, Cindy Crawford having her chin held high by some handsome guy named Jean-Louis Sebagh. Turns out he’s a “cosmetic chemist.” Who knew there was such a thing. There was no sound, but I’m a quick study and after several Crawford poses titled “Cindy Crawford 45” and shots of this Sebagh guy harvesting a special melon, then holding up a test tube with melon liquid that Cindy smears on her face, I’m convinced that this is the only way to age properly.
If you’re reading this, it could only mean that the world did not come to an end on Dec. 21. In 2003, we first heard about that planet - Nibiru - supposedly heading our way and ending the Earth. It didn’t, so the date was moved up to Dec. 21, 2012 - winter solstice and the end of a cycle on the ancient Mayan calendar - not to mention that Black Friday was on a Thursday this year.
Nearly 800,000 people, and their families will experience a stroke this year. I just did. Police near Santa Fe discovered my paralyzed brother-in-law, Tom, in his home alone two days after he suffered a major stroke three weeks ago.
If you’re on the verge or newly retired, you’ve no doubt asked yourself what now? It’s an important question because you’re about to enter one of the most significant periods in your life. It’s scary and exciting and if you haven’t prepared for it, you’re in for some surprises.
Last month’s column about the cancellation of NBC’s hit show “Harry’s Law” and advertising “Tyranny” concentrating attention on the most desirable audience - those aged 18 to 49 - struck a nerve. The short shrift given older folks by popular culture is, in my view, offensive. And I’m not alone.
There’s a strong message now being circulated on social media. It’s a photo of acclaimed actress, Kathy Bates - now in her mid 60s - beneath a message to NBC Television: “You’re cancelling us because our viewers are too old?”
I think we can all agree that life is one grand sweet song. It’s no wonder we’d do anything to make it last. But history tells us that many of us quit too soon. We disengage and engineer a premature old age.
It’s not about 401ks, stock options and annuities. It’s about being alive all of your life.
As Americans we’ve become so compartmentalized and categorized by marketing, media and myth that we barely know what to think anymore.
The Imagine Greater Tucson survey needs the voice of the region’s business community to help choose how our region grows.
In a few short weeks, the people in our region – you and I – will have an opportunity to make a difference in influencing how future decisions are made that can affect the way our region will look in decades to come.
On Jan. 4, it’s important that you join the chorus of Oro Valley voices who will help plan our future. We want to hear your voice to know your thoughts.