Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Posts Tagged ‘seniors

Around Our Old-farts’ Facility …

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… there’s plenty of this going around:

“I don’t remember your name, but if I did, I probably wouldn’t recognize you anyhow.”


Written by Cecil Scaglione

June 7, 2018 at 7:19 am

Posted in Humor / Quote

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Us Old Farts Can Be Invisible …

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. . . if my recent visit to a bicycle shop within walking distance of home is valid.

While out on a pedal, I dropped into the shop to take a look at all the shiny new toys, ask how long and how much it would cost to tune up my bike, and check out an attachable basket that would serve to pick up a loaf of bread now and then.

After locking up my Mongoose at the front door, I poked my way in and spent some time walking around the small items – gloves, tire-changing tools, etc. – stacked around the entrance. I picked up a floor-standing tire pump and hand-held one and tried the mechanism of each (I have an old floor-stander at home).

Then I looked through the clothing section for some all-cotton biking shorts. I have a half-dozen pair I picked up at a San Diego shop that quit carrying them. Don’t know why because they’re much more comfortable and breathe better than the ubiquitous stretchy-spandex ones. And I studied the sizes and prices of helmets. Mine is a dozen or so years old and experts say you should replace them every few years because the elements make them brittle.

After that, I wended my way through the rows of bikes – mountain bikes, kids’ bikes, racing bikes, cross-over bikes, coaster bikes, heavy-duty bikes – checking their weight and viewing tires.

All the while, the guys running the shop were whirling around: one was pursuing a giant sale of bike, costume, et al to a father and daughter, another was hauling bikes and helmets in and out the front door for a potential buyer who was riding them around the parking lot, another was trolling in and out of the back room asking a pretty-looking looky-loo if he could find anything for her, another helped a fellow who came in to picked up a bike he tuned up.

I checked my watch and about 25 minutes had passed and no one ever approached me. So I purposely spent another 15 minutes trying on fluorescent-colored shirts and jackets and inspecting several styles of shoes, from sneaker types to those rigid plastic sabots that lock onto the pedals.

Then I strolled back out, unlocked my bike and pedaled off.

No one at any time even acknowledged I was in the neighborhood. Nothing. Nada. Niente.

Those guys will never see me. They didn’t see me when I was in their shop for more than half an hour and I’m not going back. I’ve already visited another bicycle shop and solved my problems.

– 30 –





Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 18, 2017 at 1:16 pm

Posted in A Musing

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Getting Through Childhood …

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on pins and needles

got us to geezerhood,


which we’re getting through on pills and needles.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 20, 2017 at 10:06 am

Be it Ever so Jumbled — er, Humble

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We’re still asked – at least a couple of times a day – why we moved to Aridzona.

And have to explain away that look of askance when the questioners learn we’ve moved here from San Diego.

This move from paradisiacal Pacific Beach cooled by a breeze that’s kissed some 7,000 miles of ocean to the middle of Aridzona was seeded years ago when Bev began a campaign to move close to daughter and grandkids.

I saw no reason to leave the Golden State and the best climate in the galaxy until …

While delivering Meals on Wheels for more than nine years (woulda got my 10-year pin this summer), I watched a couple of dozen people struggle mightily to age in their homes. They were engaging and smiling when I first knocked on their door. Gradually, they would take a bit longer to answer, the house became darker and, soon after, strangers (caregivers — usually in hospital scrubs) would take the meal from me and the man of the house, or the woman, or both might wave from a chair as they oozed too quickly into a drooling sleeping lump. Instead of being cared for in a bright, active aging-assistance community by strangers, they were being cared for in their rotting residence by a series of strangers.

I didn’t want that to happen to me.

Memories and mental images also were recalled of trauma experienced by mentaly slipping family members when they were uprooted from their homes and transported to – “tossed into” is a more accurate description – senior “facilities.”

I didn’t want that to happen to me.

Late last year, Bev had spinal surgery to alleviate (and hopefully repair) nerve damage in her right arm and hand. While she was in hospital, I realized I probably cannot live alone for any length of time. When she came home and I had to minister to her after surgery. I also realized I couldn’t maintain that level of care if she needed it for any length of time.

So the decision was made to make a move. If we were going to move into what now is called an “independent living” community, we might as well look at moving in Bev’s direction – to Aridzona.

During our Christmas visit to the Grand Canyon State with the grandkids last year, I asked everyone – almost stopped people on the street — what they liked and didn’t like about the place. Without hesitation, they all pointed out that there are four months of hell – The Summer Heat. The rest of the year is great.

We knew from visiting that everything here is cheaper than in California — gasoline, health insurance, auto insurance, groceries, taxes, housing, everything.

One day in the shower, I looked down at one of my hands. It was the hand of an old man. I also realized that, should Bev fall, I could no longer pick her up. And, if I fell, she sure as heck couldn’t pick me up.

Friends and family concerned that we “weren’t ready” for an old-farts’ facility urged us to buy a condo before hurling ourselves pell mell into a senior citizens’ complex. That didn’t solve our picking-each-other-up dilemma. If we moved into a condo, we’d still have face a move into a senior citizens’ community. And when would we be “ready.”

We came to realize that folks move into such facilities either too early or too late. In our case, it was too early. BUT, we made our own decision..

And it was time.



Written by Cecil Scaglione

June 3, 2017 at 9:09 pm

Saw a Lot of Old Farts Yesterday . . .

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Saw a Lot of Old Farts Yesterday


couple. . . and they looked just like us.

Bev and I took our first tour together of a senior-living facility. We’ll be going back … but more on that later.

We’d made a 10 a.m. appointment with marketing rep. Anita Atkinson at Fredericka Manor in Chula Vista. Enroute, we picked up Heather at the airport, who’d decided to take an impromptu mental-health break for a day or two. We were shown several quarters, both cottages and apartments, spread out over the 24-acre community, spoke with several of the folks there, and had lunch in the dining room during our 2½- hour visit. Got most of our questions answered but will get more info when we spend two nights there as our house is tented for termites later this month. That’s how the whole program was arranged – we called about spending the time there during the termite-ing and Ms. Atkinson said that was fine as long as we took the tour first.



Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 5, 2015 at 7:09 am

No Pain Required for Muscle Gain

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Cecil Scaglione

Mature Life Features

    You may be too tired to do any exercise. Or too lazy. But you’re never too old.

And you’re never too old to benefit from lifting weights, or strength exercises, according to the National Institutes of Health’s National Institutes of Aging.
That doesn’t mean you have to adopt the regimen of a Terminator body builder.  Nor do you have to spend hours at a gymnasium.
There a strength-exercise guide called “Exercise: a Guide from the National Institute on Aging” available on the Web at book or by calling toll-free (800) 222-2225. There’s also a video available through its Go4Life program on the website.
You don’t have to rush down to an athletic-equipment or sporting-goods store to pick up sets of bar bells, or ankle and hand weights.
There are many household items you can use.
A one-pint bottle of water or a 16-ounce can of peas can substitute for a one-pound bar bell, for example. Or you can fill empty milk jugs or cartons with water or sand.
An early step to take during any exercise program is to check with your doctor, especially if you’re among the 40 percent of Americans who’ve been sedentary for the past few years.
Keep in mind that there are many forms of non-strength exercise: walking, swimming, bicycling, jogging, gardening, tennis, and bowling are examples. None of these require a medical imprimatur if you don’t have any serious handicap or disease.
But it’s not a bad idea to do a bit of muscle-building even if you participate in some other form of activity. A tip to follow at all times is to exercise different groups of muscles. Never exercise the same group – legs, arms, back, stomach, chest, shoulders, or arms, for example – two days in a row. Give your muscles time to rest.
You should exercise your major muscles groups, such as shoulders, back, arms and legs, twice a week. And start slowly. Start with one pound weights. And don’t rush up the poundage.
Do 10 to 15 repetitions of each exercise. Take about three seconds to slowly lift or push a weight, hold that position  for a second, and take another three to five seconds to return to the original position.
Exhale as you lift or push a weight. Inhale when you relax and lower the weight to your original position. Don’t hold your breath while you’re doing exercises.
Once you can lift or push a weight 15 times easily with smooth, steady motions, you may increase the weight a couple of pounds as your muscles become stronger. This can take two to three weeks.
You should experience a bit of soreness and fatigue in the beginning. That’s normal. But you should not experience sore joints, pain, or exhaustion. Those are signs that you’re overdoing it. If any of this persists, check with your doctor again.
Just remember: forget “no pain, no gain.”
                      Mature Life Features, Copyright 2004

Written by Cecil Scaglione

January 4, 2013 at 12:05 am

Posted in Health

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Slowing Down is Part of Mature Motorists’ Manual

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 By Cecil Scaglione

Mature Life Features

The “get ’em off the road” gang is after aging drivers again.

This happens every time anyone behind the wheel 75 or older gets into an accident. The more major the mishap, the more media coverage, and the louder the argument about yanking all silver-haired vehicle operators off the road.

Take away their licenses. Test them every year. Give ‘em a walker and let ‘em go.

They point to statistics that confirm their claim that senior drivers are the second-most accident-prone segment of American’s motoring public. That may be, but the single-most road-risky group are teen-aged drivers and no one suggests taking away their licenses when a group of teens are killed or maimed when their overloaded vehicle rolls over or smashes into another.

Detractors of senior drivers suggest taking driving licenses away at a certain age. How about holding back drivers’ licenses to young people until they reach a certain age? Neither of these suggestions make sense. Just as there is a majority of older drivers who pose no hazard on the road, the same is true of teen drivers.

So age is not the problem.

The problem is common sense and competence behind the wheel.

It’s been estimated that more than 20 percent – that’s one out of five – of the nation’s drivers will be older than 65 by 2030. Results of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology study indicate that most — not all, most —  older drivers limit or stop driving as they perceive their capabilities diminishing.

About 70 percent of more than 3,800 50-years-and-older drivers queried said they restricted their driving in a variety of ways. These included bad weather, heavy traffic, rush hour, at night, long distances, and freeways. Older drivers apparently develop strategies to compensate for failing vision, slower reflexes, stiffer joints, and medication, according to researchers. One thing they discovered was that older drivers are more at risk for injury to themselves as they grow fragile with age.

The transportation needs of some 70 percent of the people in this country who live in the suburbs or rural areas are a major hurdle to such simple solutions as yanking seniors out of their cars and forcing them into buses, subways, trolleys, and trains.

It’s also been proclaimed that the cost of car payments, auto insurance, fuel, upkeep, and maintenance can buy a lot of taxi-cab rides. But that alternative is not always available.

Pundits, politicians, and protestors are finding some common ground on mandating regular testing for drivers past a certain age. Older drivers can help their cause by supporting physical improvements such as signs that are larger and less complex, improved lighting and enhanced visibility at intersections, and remedial-driving programs.

Mature Life Features, Copyright 2004

Written by Cecil Scaglione

August 9, 2012 at 12:05 am

Posted in Health, Travel

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