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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

I won't take growing old sitting down

By Gina Barreca




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) I've lived my life with enthusiasm, courage, raucousness and passion. Why on earth would I want to grow old gracefully?

Why would I want to be "Whistler's Mother" when my whole life what I've wanted to be is Mae West?

Let's face it: It's about as likely that I'll become calm, serene and dignified as I age as it was that I'd be prim, proper and sweet in my youth.

Those were always lovely fantasies — for somebody else. But like charming dresses that would never flatter me, I don't fit into these patterns. They weren't designed with me in mind. No matter how I try to tailor them or hold my breath long enough to slip them on, I know they'd be confining, inappropriate and impossible to carry off.

But "growing old gracefully" is one of those phrases we've heard so often we've internalized the concept without examining it. I've decided that as I age, rather than becoming contemplative and introspective, to become more disruptive, seditious and boisterous instead.

Not only am I not going gentle into that good night, I am not going gracefully into that late afternoon. I intend to go as gentle as a mastodon stuck in a tar pit.

I want to be one of those women who brandish a cane. I come from a family of people with bad knees, so that particular accessory is probably in my future. But I don't plan to "carry," "rely upon," or "make occasional use" of a cane, but to brandish it. The two things a person can brandish are canes and swords, and I'm unlikely to model myself after either Xena, the Warrior Princess, or Joan of Arc at this stage (although anything is possible). Cane it is.

I might also start carrying a flask. It might contain gin; it might contain Ensure. What it contains is beside the point: What matters is that I will be able to whip out a flask.

I might also begin to dispense some of my possessions to the young under my care. This will happen in those instances where I can now afford to purchase higher quality goods. "Please take this handmade quilt. Grandma's gonna get some sheets from Frette's."

After 50, you can begin to distinguish what actually makes you happy from what you've always done to please others. Being able to define that difference is an accomplishment. It's one of those areas of expertise that takes at least 10,000 hours to learn.



After a certain age, you finally become the indisputable authority on the subject of yourself.

It's absurd to think that you're then supposed to spend all your time sitting quietly while people tell you dull stories about their kids (whom you don't know), their dogs (who have a limited range of talents, although often cuter and less self-involved than their kids) or their gall bladder surgery (more engaging than either offspring or pets).

Is it simply a lack of imagination that makes us view old age as a time of life when people are mostly worried about what will get stuck in their trachea? Or is it because we're still bound by weirdly constructed and entirely arbitrary definitions telling us how people are supposed to act at a certain age?

When I was a girl, I was told I wasn't supposed to be energetic, ambitious or competitive. I was told I wasn't supposed to be fierce, seditious or demanding. I didn't listen then; why would I listen now, when I'm being told essentially the same thing — a version of "Sit down and be quiet"?

It's easy to say that what I really want for my 80th birthday is to be surrounded by loved ones and to have my health, but what I truly believe I'll want on my 80th birthday is a leased Ferrari and a month at the Waldorf. I'm 57, so if I'm lucky, I have a little time to make plans.

But on his deathbed, my father preferred Prosecco sipped from a straw to chicken soup; he was a good role model. Like him, I'd rather be a legend than leave a legacy.

Rather than grow old gracefully, I want to grow old gaudily.

Gina Barreca is a columnist for The Hartford Courant.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.


Previously:


Hate your date? Use the mercy rule
Nobody's going to tell me to 'Ban Bossy'
When a wave and a smile are magic
Gwyneth needs to recouple with reality
Let's all take the new SATs! --- or not!
Laugh often and 19 more rules to live by
Confessions of a promiscuous shopper
Can women ever be good enough?
Why are women left holding the bag?
Check Your Bumper Sticker At The Door
How a customer became a sucker and then got mad
Using reality TV to reveal your personality
Unlearning the kindergarten lessons of life
Things everyone must stop doing right now
Six truths about summer --- it's no picnic
Anthony Weiner --- we've seen enough of you
When women shop, expectations usually out of stock






© 2013, The Hartford Courant Distributed by MCT Information Services

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