14-4. Nonagenarian Notions: Is 100 the new 90?

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You see articles, T-Shirts and such saying “50 Is the New 40”–my Google Alerts are coming up with centenarians, or near centenarians (in addition to nonagenarians) that make me ask, “Is 100 the new 90?”

In her website http://thenewforty.areavoices.com/ Ms. C checks herself out on Northwestern Mutual’s lifespan calculator and finds she will live to 90 “a.k.a. the new eighty” and concludes she not only needs a new bucket list but a whole bucket book. Perhaps “another husband or two (or three).”

Riffling thru my nonagenarian file brought courtesy of Google Alert I find Agnes Zhelesnik, 97–better even than a good bridge player at that late age. Agnes may well be the “oldest working teacher in America.” Can you imagine handling half a dozen four-year olds? She bakes cookies for them in the school’s oven. She’s a real “paid” teacher too, not a volunteer. Says, “I have to earn a little bit of money . . . I’m alive and have to eat and I also have to pay bills . . .” http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1376510/Agnes-Zhelesnik-97-oldest-working-teacher-America.html

101-year old Frances Adkins is an avid bridge player–duplicate that is. When someone came up to her just because he’d wanted to meet a centenarian, hadn’t met anybody that old before, Frances responded: “Neither have I and I don’t know how to act. I have no role models so I have to wing it.”
http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/local/a-bridge-to-graceful-aging

Another Google Alert brings Helen Roth, a tournament player with a “card declaring her to be a National Master of the ACBL.” Her advice for a long and healthy life includes not sitting around thinking about yourself, don’t become an introvert. http://columbustelegram.com/news/local/article_26be3724-4b2e-11e0-987e-001cc4c03286.html

I agree with that response Frances made to the young man. There are no examples on how to act. People ask me what’s it like to be 90 and I have no answer–feels like just another week gone by I guess. I have a theory that many people (including me) in their inner inner place sometimes feel like they’ve just drifted here somehow–decades have just drifted away. 

Maybe that’s just true for Pisceans.

One Response to 14-4. Nonagenarian Notions: Is 100 the new 90?

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