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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Fabulous Senior Moments

James Earl Jones and Angela Lansbury 2013
James Earl Jones and Angela
Lansbury rehearse Driving Miss
Daisy
Sydney, Australia 2013.
Photo: Eva Rinaldi
Last night, I saw a great stage performance by James Earl Jones, who played a lead role as Mr. Vanderhof in You Can’t Take It With You. At age 83 (born in 1931), Mr. Jones is on Broadway stage 6 nights a week this season. Simply amazing!

I am a baby boomer librarian. If you think I came up with this week's topic from reading AARP magazine articles, you are correct. I am in awe of the mental and physical capacity of seniors born years before me.
The Trip from Bountiful movie cover
Here are some others on stage and on screen that come to my mind: Vanessa Redgrave (born in 1937) playing a bone-shivering tiger mom on screen in Coriolanus (2011); Angela Lansbury (born in 1925) in Blithe Spirit; and Cicely Tyson (born in 1933) in The Trip to Bountiful. My list is growing.

Talking about active seniors, Meryl Streep (born in 1949), another talented senior, was the voice of Eleanor Roosevelt in the recent PBS series, The Roosevelts. Am I the only one who thinks there is, or should be, a movie about Eleanor Roosevelt coming with Ms. Streep in the leading role?

Two other stories about amazing seniors in other fields come to my mind as I write this post. I was once at a lecture by Eric Kandel (born in 1929) who received Nobel Prize for his research on the physiological basis of memory storage in neurons. He shuffled to the podium in his signature red bow tie to speak to high school students. I could see in the students’ amused faces as they put at least a hundred years between them and the scientist. His lecture was so mesmerizing, he received a standing ovation when it was over. Take that, kids!

I’m a soccer nut. I used to play many years ago, and I’m known to watch games even while cooking. I once went to see a game between American and Japanese over-65 league teams. OK, the players’ feet might have been a few steps behind their minds, but we enjoyed the game because players were having so much fun. During half time, a short-skirted cheerleading team from an assisted living home performed. How great is that?

flower
Megumi L.




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