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LOS ANGELES METRO NOVEMEBER 2014

lifeafter50.com

southern california

Celebrating the Season with

“Must-Know” Information For 2015 Medicare Plans

Robert Wagner and Jill St. John

Make Your 2014 Holiday Date Your 2015-And-Beyond Mate The Sweet Survival of Judy Collins


A GOOD DOCTOR IS WORTH HOLDING ON TO. Changes are happening for people who have both Medicare and Medi-Cal that may cause you to lose coverage for Cedars-Sinai. But that doesn’t have to happen. Call us and we’ll help you get coverage for L.A.’s most preferred hospital for over 20 years.*

CALL 844-CS-MEDIS (844-276-3347) ANYTIME. Or visit cedars-sinai.edu/medis for more information.

*National Research Corporation’s annual Market Insights Survey. ©2014 Cedars-Sinai.


Contents

November 2014

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21

Cover Profile

14 Celebrating the Season With Robert Wagner and Jill St. John

The couple shares insight on their lives, holiday celebrations and living in gratitude.

Features 21 “Must-Know” Information For Choosing Your 2015 Medicare Plan

This year’s open enrollment season poses more questions than ever.

27 Make Your 2014 Holiday Date Your 2015-And-Beyond Mate

One of SoCal’s premiere matchmakers offers tips on successful dating over 50.

32 The Look Of Life After 50 – The Sweet Survival of Judy Collins

The singer offers insight on the turbulence and triumphs that have led to a life she loves.

35 True Blue Gratitude

As she releases her latest album, singer Rachael Sage reveals what she is most grateful for.

Cover photo by Greg Gorman All material published within this issue of “Life After 50” and on www.lifeafte50.com is strictly for informational and educational purposes only. No individual, advice, product or service is in any way endorsed by “Life After 50” or Southland Publishing, Inc. or provided as a substitute for the reader’s seeking of individualized professional advice or instruction. Readers should seek the advice of qualified professional on any matter regarding an individual, advice, recommendations, services or products covered within this issue. All information and material is provided to readers with the understanding that it comes from various sources from which there is no warranty or responsibility by “Life after 50” or Southland Publishing, Inc. as to its or their legality, completeness or technical accuracy.

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Departments 06 50-Plus: What You Need to Know

A quick look at things 50-plusers should be aware of.

09 Financial Fitness

William Jordan says the era of investing in bonds may be coming to an end.

10 It’s The Law

Mitchell A. Karasov on Medicare and Medi-Cal Programs that can help with healthcare costs.

34 Cooking, Eating And Living Well

Jackie Keller on using all your senses to better retain memories and brain health.

37 Tuned In To What’s On

The best in November television viewing.

39 Let’s Get Out

Looking to get out and about? Our November/December calendar has some great suggestions.

42 Traveling Around…The Corner…And The World

A pilgrimage to Plymouth in honor of those who founded New England’s first colony.

46 And Finally…The Bookworm’s Best, A Look Back and Just A Thought Before We Go A book suggestion, memory, and a little something to leave you with.

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Editor’s Note...

Fans Of The Gent Discover The Lady – And Vice Versa

T

he mission of this magazine is to celebrate those who, having past the half-century mark, continue to be adventurous, engaged, connected, curious and aware that there still is a lot of life to live. Perhaps no one better personifies those traits than the man who recently teamed up with pop diva Lady Gaga to score a number one album on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart – the legendry crooner Tony Bennett. At the age of 88, Bennett has become the oldest recording artist to take the top spot on the charts with “Cheek to Cheek,” a collection of standards from the Great American Songbook he performs in duet with Gaga. It is an accomplishment that has seen him beat out none other than himself, who set the same record in 2011 when he topped the charts with “Duets II,” on which he collaborated with other young artists including the late Amy Winehouse, Norah Jones, Faith Hill, Carrie Underwood and Mariah Carey. When it comes to music, I am of the belief that age should have nothing to do with one’s interests and enjoyment. Yes, I do have peers who wouldn’t know a song or artist that has hit the charts since the Reagan (if not the Carter) Administration. But I also know many who, like me, have always kept up-to-date with, and have a great appreciation for, music of all eras. Having seen both Bennett and Gaga in concert on numerous occasions, I have firsthand knowledge that both attract diverse age groups. I have seen twentysomething couples spoon at Bennett’s shows and folks in their 70s putting their “paws up” at Gaga’s extravaganzas. And, while the older crowd isn’t showing up (thank God!) dressed in Gaga-inspired seashell bras, the torn remnants of what once were fishnet tights and 10-inch stilettos, they are enjoying the exceptional voice of this 28-year-old entertainer who was inspired by the music of George and Ira Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Cole Porter and Irving Berlin. During one of her recent visits to Los Angeles, I

Advertising Director/Associate Publisher Valarie Anderson Editor David Laurell Editorial Assistants Steve Stoliar, Marie Giusto Blauvelt, Max Andrews Associate Editor Claire Yezbak Fadden Art Director Ernesto Esquivel

asked Gaga if, in the wake of “Cheek to Cheek,” she would consider doing an album of her own original jazz compositions. “Of course,” she said emphatically. “I will definitely do that. What people forget – or don’t know – is that my roots are in jazz. It’s what I was playing when I was a teenager and when I first started out.” I think one of the greatest things that will come from the collaboration between Bennett and Gaga, as well as that of Judy Collins and Rachael Sage – who are featured in duet on Sage’s latest album, “Blue Roses” and in this issue of Life After 50 – is that people of different generations will be introduced to music and artists they may have otherwise ignored or not been aware of. I also think, with the holiday season approaching, it would be great if grandparents, parents, children and grandchildren all gave a copy of “Cheek to Cheek” to one another. My bet is, no matter what one’s age, all would come away as much a fan of the “Lady” as they are of the gent – or vice versa.

David Laurell, Editor-in-Chief

Account Executives Los Angeles/South Bay: Jackie Kooper Jackiek@lifeafter50.com Orange County: Herb Wetenkamp Herbw@lifeafter50.com San Diego County National Accounts: Phil Mendelson Phil@lifeafter50.com Ad Coordinator, Travel Landra DeLoach Landra@lifeafter50.cm VP Of Finance Michael T. Nagami Human Resources Andrea E. Baker Business Manager Linda Lam Billing Supervisor Kacie Sturek VP Of Operations David Comden

For advertising/distribution inquiries contact: Valarie Anderson (310) 822-1629 x 121, Valarie@lifeafter50.com To contact our editorial department: (818) 563-1007 davidl@lifeafter50.com 5355 Mcconnell Ave LA CA 90066 Valarie Anderson Valarie@lifeafter50.com 310 822-1629 x 121 Follow us on face book ©2014 Southland Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved

4 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


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50

Giving Up!

F

PLUS

What You Need to Know By Claire Yezbak Fadden

or the first time since the 2008 recession, charitable donations rose last year. A recent Harris Poll found that nine out of 10 Americans have made either a financial or in-kind contribution within the past two to three years. The poll showed that one in four Americans feels they have a personal responsibility to be actively involved with various issues and causes. An additional 17 percent felt they should take part in voluntary service, donating to charities or getting involved in community activities. The poll also revealed that 50-plusers are more than twice as likely as millennials and gen xers to select disaster relief as the biggest priority, while millennials are more than twice as likely as 50-plusers to prioritize global health. Fifty-plusers also proved to be more likely than other generations to focus their giving on medical research causes. For more of the poll’s results, click on www.harrisinteractive.com.

Those Wonderful Women We Watched

M

ary Tyler Moore, Sally Field, Patty Duke, Elizabeth Montgomery and Barbara Eden were among the first wave of actresses who pioneered into the world of television and became pop culture icons while blazing the trail for successive generations. The story of these women, and many more, is documented in Herbie J Pilato’s latest book, “Glamour, Gidgets, and the Girl Next Door: Television’s Iconic Women from the ‘50s, ‘60s, and ‘70s” (Taylor Trade Publishing, 2014). Pilato, a producer, actor, songwriter, entertainment executive and author of numerous mediarelated tomes, bases his new book on exclusive interviews with many of the charismatic actresses who have left their “beauty mark” on television’s landscape. The entertainment biographer and pop culture consultant traces the actresses’ careers and honors the intelligence, wit, and unique talent and style each contributed to television. An insightful and thoroughly entertaining read, Pilato offers a fascinating look at Gale Storm, Elinor Donahue, Adrienne Barbeau, Diahann Carroll, Lindsay Wagner, Dawn Wells, Diana Rigg, Goldie Hawn and many others who served as the subject of baby boomer crushes and inspirations. To order this, and all of Pilato’s books, click on www.amazon.com

Fifty Candles

F

ifty years ago this month Lyndon Baines Johnson defeated Barry Goldwater for president; Charlotte, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, abdicated the throne and was replaced by her son, Grand Duke Jean; Jack Nicklaus became the leading money winner on the Professional Golf Association tour; and the world’s longest suspension bridge – the VerrazanoNarrows Bridge – opened in New York. Notable personalities born in November 1964 who are celebrating their 50th birthday this month include actresses Calista Flockhart and Robin Givens, television news anchor Bill Hemmer, Major League Baseball pitcher Dwight “Doc” Gooden, Canadian jazz pianist Diana Krall, actors Don Cheadle, Phillip McKeon and Patrick Warburton and comedian Brad Sherwood.

6 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

The Not-So-Empty Nest

D

o you have an adult son who, after graduating from college, can’t find a job and has moved back in with you? Do your neighbors have a twentysomething child who has no plans on moving out on their own? Has a divorce resulted in the relocation of your thirtysomething daughter, with three children in tow, into your spare bedroom? If so, you are not alone. Scenarios like these, combining multiple generations living under one roof, are rapidly increasing. According to a recent Pew Research Center analysis, a record 57 million Americans, about 18 percent of the U.S. population, are now living in multi-generational households. That’s double the number who lived in similarly structured households in 1980. For about 30 years, multiple generations sharing a home moved in an uninterrupted, slow-growth pattern. That number spiked during the economic downfall of 2008 and has kept on growing in the post-recession period, although at a slower pace, says researchers Richard Fry and Jeffrey S. Passel who conducted the study. According to Fry and Passel’s report the increase in multi-generational living is apparent across genders and among all racial and ethnic groups. To read the complete study, click on www.pewsocialtrends.org.


A Little More You Need To Know

Where You Need To Go An Evening Of Seasonal Celebration With Judy Collins

New Words

Y

ou might not find them in a dictionary yet, but they’re a part of the everyday American vocabulary. Here’s what they mean. Mupload: Uploading text or photos to social media via a mobile electronic device.

Photo by Shonna Valeska

W

hile the holiday season is always stuffed like Santa’s sack with wonderful entertainment choices, this year the Segerstrom Center for the Arts is offering something very special on December 6 – an evening with Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Judy Collins. Unlike her usual shows, Collins will take to the stage of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall and celebrate the season as she presents her “Holidays and Hits” concert that will include performances by the Passenger String Quartet. Promising to be a memorable evening of beloved holiday songs, Collins will also perform selections from her fivedecade career including her legendary interpretations of “Both Sides Now,” “Send in the Clowns” and “Amazing Grace.” A captivating performer who has charmed worldwide audiences with her silvery soprano and eclectic musical offerings, Collins’ beautiful voice will fill those in attendance with the spirit of hope and wonderment of the holiday season. The New York Times states: “Watching Ms. Collins perform is like studying a jewel that reveals new facets as it is slowly turned into the light.” The Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall is located at 615 Town Center Drive in Costa Mesa. Tickets for this one-night-only show are on sale now and available by clicking on www.scfta.org or calling (714) 556-2787.

The Most Important Thing To Know This Month

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here is no need to have any sort of extra sensory perception or a crystal ball to know what most Americans will be eating on the 28th day of this month, the day after Thanksgiving – turkey sandwiches. However, there are alternatives to the standard day-after-Thanksgiving standard that you should be aware of. With just a little creative pre-shopping, anyone can transform their turkey leftovers into delicious and nutritious meals. “Simple and fresh ingredients that are full of nutrition and flavor can take leftover turkey to a different level,” says Marisa Paolillo, a NuVal Nutritional Scoring System nutritionist. Surprise your family with these two fresh and nutritious recipes that will transform your turkey leftovers into tasty meals. Spice Up Your Leftovers Pair reheated turkey with baked spiced apples. Core and slice fresh apples and combine with raisins, chopped pecans, cinnamon and lemon. Roast for 30 minutes at 375 degrees. No need to add sugar; the apples provide all the sweetness you need. Wrap Up Your Leftovers For a lighter take on the traditional leftover turkey sandwich, chop cold turkey into small pieces. Layer with raw vegetables, avocado, mustard, Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, sliced red or green bell peppers, shredded carrots and cucumbers and wrap in a wheat tortilla.

Deligious: A drink or food item that is so wildly delicious it inspires a religious experience. Cray Cray: Stemming from the word “crazy,” referring to someone as “cray cray” signifies that their craziness has gone to a whole new level.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 7


8 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


Financial Fitness William Jordan

William Jordan is a nationally recognized wealth manager and wellknown speaker on financial and investment topics. To ask a question or request a meeting to discuss “William’s Seven Percent Solution,” contact his office at (949) 916-8000 or by clicking on at www.WJIca.com. William Jordan Investments is a Registered Investment Advisor with the state of California. Past performance does not guarantee future results.

The End Of An Era

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n Friday, September 26, 2014, the king – Bill Gross – left his throne at the Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO). This move shocked the investment community as Gross abruptly departed the company he helped launch and propel to leadership in the bond community. Gross’ departure is a result of many factors, but the question most will ask is: “What does this mean to me?” I would make the argument that this is a major signal demonstrating the end of the great bond bull market and a warning to investors that it’s time to get out of bonds. Gross had the good fortune to be among the smartest guys in the right industry for the last three to four decades. The ride for bonds since the early 1980s has been smooth and extremely profitable for Gross and bond investors overall. This ride culminated in the first decade of the 21st century, where bonds outperformed stocks by a wide margin. However, the foundation for Gross’ departure from PIMCO was laid when he mistimed a move out of U.S. government bonds. As a result, 2013 was the first losing year for his flagship fund since 1999. The subsequent underperformance of his flagship fund and the public nature of his misdiagnosis seriously undermined confidence and the money began to leave PIMCO. All of this underscores a simple fact: the great bond bull market is over. Gross has admitted as much when he coined the term “new neutral” in stressing that real interest rates will be much lower in the future and rates of two percent or so should be considered excellent. Gross was just saying what everyone knows: there is no money to be made holding bonds for interest right now. Throughout the 1980s and ‘90s, fixed-income investments generated real returns above six percent. This compares to the average real return of less than two percent (above inflation) for the last century. Even in the 2000s, bonds averaged four percent as a real return – more than double their historical averages. Today, at the lowest rates in modern history, it’s time to face the facts that to invest in bonds is to court disaster. Recently, I was interviewed for an article in a financial magazine and to illustrate my point about bond investing, I offered some math. If you buy a long-term (20 year) government bond right now, you can lock in a yield of three percent for 20 years. Given where rates are today, that’s decent enough to tempt some people. However, let’s consider what happens when interest rates rise. If we assumed that the rate on a 20 year treasury rises to four percent during the next two years, the bond you purchased, which pays three percent, still has 18 years left at the lower rate. As a result, the value of that bond will fall by 37 percent! That’s right - you would earn six percent in interest (three percent for two years), but you would lose 37 percent of your principal value. At that point, you are stuck holding that bond until maturity, even if rates continue to rise. Clearly it is time to be getting out of bonds. Bill Gross is smart enough and connected enough to find small pockets of opportunity for short-term profits. However individual investors who are looking for income need to start looking elsewhere right away. The good news is there are great options for earning higher yields with short-term investments. That’s where my company is currently putting our focus as a wealth management firm.

See our digital issue at

.com

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 9


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Next issue of

• Holiday Happenings Family, Entertaining and Travel for the Holiday Season • Calendar Listings of the Seasons Cultural Events Call to get your ad in today

310-822-1629 x 121 advertise@lifeafter50.com www.lifeafter50.com

10 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Medicare And Medi-Cal Programs Can Help With Healthcare Costs

Q

My 83-year-old father is living in the modest San Fernando Valley family home I grew up in. Although he is relatively healthy for his age, he’s frail, doesn’t drive anymore, and requires help with medical appointments, errands and chores around the house. After my mom died, we discussed moving him to an assisted living facility. He decided against that because he likes living in his home, he is not in need of 24-hour care and he’s content with being solitary. That’s not to say he wouldn’t like to get out of the house occasionally to socialize or attend events. I hired a parttime caregiver about a year ago for the daytime and then I started staying with him during the night. That’s been working out pretty well, however, he’s getting concerned because paying for the caregiver is depleting his savings. He realized that if his health should worsen, he’ll need the money to pay for full-time care. All he has left is his home, an individual retirement account of about $80,000, some stocks, and an income of $1,300 a month from Social Security. A good portion of my parents’ savings went to pay for my mom’s in-home care; she suffered from Lewy Body dementia. I am aware of the programs that offer help if you personally care for someone and only use in-home supportive services. However, when I began looking into these programs, I found my father has too much money to qualify. I’d like to find a program that will allow him to stay at home for as long as he wants, while preserving his savings for potentially larger care costs in the future. I hope you can lead us in the direction of a program that helps pay for a portion, if not all, of his current caregiver’s cost.

A

Both you and your father are in luck because there are in-home and adult daytime healthcare programs that help both individuals and couples. I know of a specific program that assists with both in-home and daytime healthcare, and is available to your father because he lives in one of its covered areas. Some programs require that an individual must reside within certain zip codes in order to be an eligible applicant. The program’s case managers evaluate and coordinate on-site and off-site resources, such as medical and dental care, daytime activities, meals and home caregiver services. For eligible applicants, coverage is provided through Medicare and Medi-Cal. In order to be eligible for the Medi-Cal program, your father must be determined medically appropriate for the services available. In addition, coverage under Medi-Cal requires, like other care programs, a financial eligibility application process. I strongly urge you to seek legal advice from an attorney experienced with this program before submitting an application. This is because, based on his assets, you and your father will need to review his estate and select the appropriate eligibility option. In addition, within the eligibility options, there are reimbursement minimization and/or avoidance options that you’ll want to pursue. This is unlike Medicare, which may seek reimbursements before the recipient passes away, unless proper planning is initiated. Hence, I strongly suggest that you seek legal advice from an attorney experienced with this particular program and who holds a proven track record with admissions into this program. Once you’ve secured Medi-Cal eligibility for your dad with this program, he should be able to enjoy the benefits of living with its coordinated healthcare, transportation, day activities and caregiver services. At the same time, it will be preserving his assets for other care costs not covered by the government at this time. Along those lines, the program in his area is in the process of adding additional covered services and more zip codes. I wish you and your family all the best.


Perfect holiday entertainment is at The Wallis Jeremy Peter Johnson, Jennie Greenberry. Photo by Jenny Graham.

ME A BECO IBER CR SUBS EIVE C R TO E I A L SPEC AND GS SAVIN FITS! N BE E

THE WALLIS PRESENTS THE OREGON SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL PRODUCTION OF STEPHEN SONDHEIM AND JAMES LAPINE’S TONY AWARD-WINNING MUSICAL

INTO THE WOODS DECEMBER 2 – 21, 2014 DIRECTED BY AMANDA DEHNERT

BACK BY POPULAR DEMAND!

LOVE, NOËL: THE LETTERS AND SONGS OF NOËL COWARD DECEMBER 5 – 21, 2014

AN ENTERTAINMENT DEVISED AND WRITTEN BY BARRY DAY STARRING HARRY GROENER AND SHARON LAWRENCE DIRECTED BY JEANIE HACKETT

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November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 11


Guess who’s coming to Life After 50 on December 1? Guide book author and travel TV host

Rick Steves

What inspires a life well-lived?

America’s most respected authority on European Travel

Isn’t it all the special moments? Like waking up in your charming residence. Being greeted by name, with a warm smile. A great meal in stylish surroundings with good friends or an energizing workout. And the assurance that tomorrow’s care needs can be managed for you, right here at home. This is retirement living— tailored to you.

INDEPENDENT LIVING AND ASSISTED LIVING RESIDENCES

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In the spirit of always improving our product, Rick’s column will appear monthly in Life After 50’s travel section beginning December 1 INDEPENDENT LIVING AND ASSISTED LIVING RESIDENCES

to advertise in our travel classified section contact Landra@Lifeafter50.com

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for more information on Rick Steves visit www.ricksteves.com

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12 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Commission for the Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities

for inquiries or information call 310-822-1629 x 121 • www.Lifeafter50.com


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ªCover Profile ª

Celebrating the Season With

Robert Wagner and Jill St. John

The legendary Hollywood couple shares insight on their lives, holiday celebrations, what they are grateful for, and their upcoming Hallmark film

Story by David Laurell • Photos by Greg Gorman

H

e is the handsome actor who has been a mainstay on the big screen, television and stage for over half a century. She is the beautiful actress who, since the age of six, has performed with a Who’s Who of Hollywood’s elite and is best-known for her role as Bond girl Tiffany Case in the 1971 feature film, “Diamonds Are Forever.” Together, Robert “RJ” Wagner and Jill St. John are a couple who, next spring, will celebrate a quartercentury of marriage and this month will star as Mr. 14 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

and Mrs. Santa Claus in the Hallmark Channel’s holiday movie, “Northpole.” The first full-length, original holiday film produced through the partnership of the Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Cards, Inc., “Northpole” is an adventure that takes viewers into the magical world of Santa’s enchanting hometown. A part of the Hallmark Channel’s “Countdown to Christmas” presentation, “Northpole” chronicles a reporter who, with the help of her son, his teacher, and a clever young elf, attempts to recapture the happiness of the

holiday season and save Christmas after the world has begun to lose faith. Along with Wagner and St. John, this holiday special, which will premiere on November 15, also stars Tiffani Thiessen of “Beverly Hills, 90210,” Josh Hopkins from “Cougar Town,” Bailee Madison of “Trophy Wife” and Max Charles who provided the voice of Sherman in DreamWorks Animation’s production of “Mr. Peabody & Sherman.” “RJ and I were excited about doing ‘Northpole’ because we thought it would be fun to play Mr.


and Mrs. Claus,” says St. John as she and RJ relax at their Aspen, Colorado home during an early snowfall. “But we were most interested in doing this film because it was being done by Hallmark. We both felt there would be no one who would be a better choice to do a Christmas film than Hallmark.” Wagner agrees. “That was really what attracted us to doing the film,” he chimes in. “It has a wonderful cast. Tiffani does a great job, and it’s a magical film that sends a message people are in need of right now. Americans are really in need of regaining some faith, and that’s the film’s message. It’s very hopeful and cheerful.” Filmed last winter in Montreal, both Wagner and St. John say they were amused and fascinated to be working with a handful of characters that, in spite of their lengthy careers, neither of them had ever worked with before – reindeer. “They used real reindeer, and the filming was taking place during the time they shed their antlers,” St. John explains. “They were having a terrible time finding reindeer with beautiful intact antlers, so some of them had to have antlers glued on.” Wagner also reveals some behind-the-scenes

reindeer secrets. “There was this scene in which they needed a reindeer to turn his head and look at Tiffani,” he says. “We watched them do it and it was amazing – that they could get this reindeer to turn his head just when they needed him.” St. John bursts out in laughter. “We were so impressed that they had trained this reindeer to do that, until we noticed they had tied fishing line to its antlers and would then just gently pull on it when they needed its head to turn.” Shortly before the couple were scheduled to leave Aspen for the world premiere screening of “Northpole” at The Grove in Los Angeles, they took some time to visit with Life After 50 and share their thoughts on the holiday season, how they keep in such great shape and, with Thanksgiving right around the corner, what they are most grateful for. We began our visit be asking the couple how they came to call Aspen home. Jill St. John (JSJ): I’ve always been attracted to Aspen because of its physical beauty. The mountains are in my blood and I just love it here. Most people don’t know this, but I’ve lived here for 50 years. I just love the culture and intellectual stimulation this town offers.

Robert Wagner (RJ): I first started coming to Aspen in the 1940s to ski, and then, when Jill and I started going together, I began to spend a lot of time here. It is a very special place, as anyone who has ever been here knows, so it’s easy to fall in love with. After we got married, we really made this a “his-hers-andours” home. Life After 50 (LA50): What is a typical day for you two? JSJ: We love to be outside. RJ: We have a German shepherd, Max, and we love to go for walks. Jill is also an avid gardener and we have beautiful flowers and trees around our home that she tends to. It’s like living in a park. LA50: RJ, you refer to your home and Aspen as being a “special place.” It was evident by reading your latest book [“You Must Remember This: Life and Style in Hollywood’s Golden Age” (Viking Adult, 2014)] that you have a very special affection for places. In your book, you reminisce about so many great places that are now gone. If you could have one wish filled this Christmas and „ November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 15


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get just one of them back, what would it be? RJ: Chasen’s! JSJ: [laughing] That is exactly what I knew you would say. And I would say the same. RJ: You talk about special places – it was so great. It was a fabulous place with wonderful food and you never knew, on any given evening, who you would be seeing there. LA50: Old Hollywood royalty, a former U.S president… JSJ: Right, and on many nights, it may have been both! LA50: Okay, so with the subject of food being on the table so to speak, Jill, you have become as well known for your culinary prowess as you have for your acting skills. JSJ: Well, I am a cooker, that’s for sure. LA50: How did that come about – having such an interest in cooking? RJ: [laughing] Oh, this is a good story. JSJ: It all stemmed from my mother, God rest her soul, who was not a very good cook. Because she wasn’t a good cook, when I was very young, I wouldn’t eat. So she got worried about me and brought me to see a child psychiatrist. The doctor told her to put an alarm clock on the table, set it for an hour, and then make me sit there until I ate. And that’s what she did. But it didn’t work. I would just sit there doing my time knowing, eventually, I’d get to go and she would take the food away. Then one day, I was watching her cook. I was probably six or so, and as I watched her I thought: “I could do that.” So I did. I started cooking on my own. At first, it was just scrambled eggs and frozen vegetables, but as time went on, I really started reading recipes and making things for myself – which I loved. So, that solved my eating problem and, since then, I have studied cooking in France, I’ve written cookbooks, was USA Today’s first food editor and cooked on “Good Morning America.” So cooking is a huge part of my life, although I’m trying everything I can to get out of cooking tonight. LA50: What is the best thing she makes, RJ? RJ: Everything she does is marvelous. She actually cooks very simply and it always depends on what she finds in the market. JSJ: I never go to the market with a list. I go and see what’s fresh – what hits my fancy. LA50: And do you have a specialty? JSJ: Even though I went to school in France, my particular fondness is Italian food. RJ: And she does it great! LA50: So, with Jill being such a great cook, how do you two stay in such great shape? JSJ: I’ll tell you how. I cook healthy foods. I am a believer in moderation. I like to know that I can have everything – anything I want – but just not all at once and in small portions. LA50: Do you also maintain any sort of an exercise regimen? RJ: We do. As I mentioned before, we do spend a lot of time outside and walk quite a bit. We also work out three times a week with a trainer. JSJ: And in the summer, we swim in the pool almost every day. LA50: Okay, enough of that. Let’s get back to the food! I’m guessing that, as a cook, Thanksgiving is pretty special around here. JSJ: Well, this year it will be very special. All the kids are coming here to Aspen and we’ll have a full house – so overflowing that some will have to stay at a hotel. And this year, I have done the smartest thing I have ever done for Thanksgiving – I hired a caterer to do Thanksgiving dinner [laughs.] I will probably do a couple of the side dishes, but this year I decided I’m not cooking for 14 people! LA50: So I’m guessing among those 14 will be the grandchildren. How old are they now? RJ: They are now eight and two. JSJ: Being a grandmother is the best. We talk to them almost every day. We get pictures every day. They are such a joy.


Job #: PAL_1424485

Title: 11/3 Senior Print

Element: Life After 50 Magazine

Date In: 09-30-2014

ROUND: R3

Due Date: 10-28-2014

“Northpole” starring Robert Wagner and Jill St. John as Santa and Mrs. Claus will premiere on the Hallmark Channel November 15 at 8 p.m.

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LA50 Care to offer any grandparenting advice? JSJ: Yes, spoil the hell out of them!

Color: CMYK

Upload:

LA50: Does the eight-year-old have any concept of what legends his grandparents are? JSJ: Not a clue. To him, we’re just Nona and Nono. It was so cute, we were visiting them in L.A. recently, and my grandson asked me why people called me Jill. So I told him that was my name and then he started to call me Jill. Then I told him that he should really call me Nona because he is special. I said that everyone could call me Jill, but that only he could call me Nona, which is Italian for grandmother, although, we’re not Italian. I kind of wanted to be called “Grandma.” I just really wanted to own the whole grandma thing. But the Nona and Nono thing kind of started because he started calling RJ that – because he was always saying “no,no, no, no” to everything he was doing [laughs].

CD: Gary Kelly

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AD: Paul Masatani

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LA50: Speaking of spoiling kids, Christmas will be here before you know it. What will you be doing? RJ: We always go to California to be with the kids and watch them open their presents. APPROVAL

JSJ: It has become a tradition to get out of here because Aspen gets way too busy at Christmas.

OK

LA50: Anything on either of your Christmas lists you would like the other to know about? JSJ: I don’t need a thing. I have everything anyone could hope for – everyone in the family is healthy. That’s all I care about. CHANGES

AE: George Miranda

PM: Les Williams

Notes: 1/2 PG 4C

RJ: That’s the biggest present we could ever hope for.

APPROVAL

LA50: It is the time of year when we all are more attuned to the things we are grateful for. Along with the health, what are you two most grateful for this year? JSJ: I’m grateful to live in this country and be an American. I take that very seriously and it means a lot to me. I live my life in gratitude, for everything we have. I am so aware of it – how fortunate we are. I’m just grateful for every day I wake up.

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RJ: I agree with that. I think I am even more aware of my gratitude for being an American when we look around and see the state the world is in today. And Jill is right when she says she lives in gratitude. We both do. One of the things we do very regularly is to say thank you to one another. Just thank you for giving each other a wonderful life. We have both been blessed with each other – with wonderful lives and family. JSJ: We are lucky just to be here. There’s an old saying: Old age is a privilege not granted to everyone. I consider getting older to be a privilege – a great gift. And we’re also both very grateful to still be working.

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“Must-Know” Information for Choosing Your 2015 Medicare Plan Open enrolment season is upon us and this year it poses more questions than ever

T

is the season for millions of Americans 65 and over to start thinking about Medicare enrollment and contemplating which plan is best for them. While posing a conundrum every year, Medicare eligibles face more questions than ever this year. For example, those re-enrolling need to ask if their current plan has lived up to its promises or if there are better options. In addition, baby boomers, perhaps overwhelmed at the thought of simply being old enough for Medicare, must come to grips with an entirely new system and face questions they may not have considered when their employers provided health plan options. While challenging, by understanding the basics, doing a bit of homework and asking yourself honestly what is best, you can more easily select the best plan and be assured your choice will provide better health and value throughout the year.

What You Must Know

Medicare is a form of health insurance intended to provide basic coverage for people 65 and older, as well as those with disabilities. It was never meant to cover 100 percent of an individual’s healthcare costs, but it does cover many healthcare needs for most patients. Your age determines your eligibility for Medicare (in most cases) so it’s important to have dates and deadlines in mind when approaching age 65, because Medicare limits your ability to add or drop coverage after official enrollment periods. The only time Medicare is not contingent upon your age is if you have certain disabilities or diseases.

Special to Life After 50 by Ronald Bolding, president and CEO, Inter Valley Health Plan

How Do You Get Started?

Contact your local Social Security office to enroll in Medicare. You can find locations by clicking on www.socialsecurity.gov and use the office locator tool. It takes about four to six weeks to complete the process, so factor that into your timing. You can also find information and tools at www.medicare.gov. Some Medicare Advantage plans also have local offices and will help walk you through the process. If you receive Social Security or enrolled online or in person, you will be automatically enrolled and will receive your Medicare card three months prior to your 65th birthday. As important as it is to understand what Medicare covers, the same goes for what it doesn’t cover. Although Medicare comprises a wide range of health services, there are gaps to keep in mind. Medicare does not cover dependents, individuals under the age of 65 (unless they fit one of the categories noted), routine vision, hearing, dental care or medical services outside the U.S.

What’s New?

You may have been hearing a lot about Medicare over the last year in conjunction with the Affordable Care Act, or what some call Obamacare. Despite some dire predictions and handwringing, it’s important to note that the Affordable Care Act will NOT impact Medicare recipients. Medicare is NOT part of the “new” insurance marketplace. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misunderstanding and just plain misinformation about what the Affordable Care Act means to Medicare. In reality, it’s a myth that existing Medicare benefits will be reduced. In fact, the new rules protect the guaranteed Medicare coverage and provide new coverage options. For example, you now get more preventive services for less money. Medicare now covers preventive screenings such as mammograms and colonoscopies without charging you a coinsurance or deductible.

Know You’re A, B,C and Ds

A very common question among Medicare-eligibles are the meaning of the letters. Unlike traditional health insurance, Medicare coverage is divided into „ November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 21


four parts: A, B, C, and D. Each letter designates a specific portion of healthcare coverage. Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, nursing home, hospice care and some home health. Part B helps pay bills for physicians and outpatient services. It also covers doctors’ services in the hospital and most medicines administered while at the doctor’s office. Part C consists of a variety of private health plans, known as Medicare Advantage plans that cover Part A, B and often Part D services in one package. And Part D helps to subsidize prescription drug coverage.

Traditional Medicare Vs. Medicare Advantage

Because Medicare doesn’t cover everything, many people choose to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, also known as a Medicare HMO. These types of plans give you all the benefits of original Medicare (Parts A and B), plus offering extra benefits such as prescription drugs, wellness programs, and gym memberships. The annual enrollment period for Medicare Advantage plans runs from October 15 to December 7, 2014. During this time, those who are 65 and over, permanently disabled, or just looking to switch plans, should research their options to choose the best health plan to meet their individual needs. Any changes made during this time will take effect January 1, 2015. There are some important things to know about Medicare Advantage plans. Prescriptions may be one of your biggest ongoing healthcare costs. However, original Medicare does not cover prescription drugs unless you pay extra for Part D. Most Medicare Advantage plans, on the other hand, include drug coverage as a standard benefit. Original Medicare has no out-of-pocket maximum. You pay for a portion of the cost of services you use and keep paying for as long as you use those services. By law, Medicare Advantage plans must limit your out-of-pocket cost to a maximum of no more than $6,700 per year. About half of all healthcare plans actually have a cap of $3,400 or less. Original Medicare does not cover dental, vision, and chiropractic care – if you are interested in those services, consider a Medicare Advantage plan.

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MediGap Or Supplement Plans?

MediGap (also known as a supplement plan) can also help pay for things Medicare doesn’t, such as copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. However, a MediGap plan is NOT a Medicare Advantage plan – a Medigap policy is different; it only supplements your original Medicare benefits – it doesn’t provide any of the additional benefits that many Medicare Advantage plans offer. Medigap policies can’t work with Medicare Advantage plans. If you have a Medigap policy and join a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C), you may want to drop your Medigap policy. Your Medigap policy can’t be used to pay your Medicare Advantage plan copayments, deductibles, and premiums. If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, it’s illegal for anyone to sell you a Medigap policy unless you’re switching back to original Medicare.

What’s Best For You?

To choose the plan best-suited for your individual needs, you need to know the basics and then ask yourself these important questions: * Does the plan offer the basic coverage you need, such as physician and specialists visits, hospitalization, emergency coverage or a gym membership? Then ask yourself which of those features is important – maybe gym membership is not key for you – but an emergency room copayment is. * How much will it cost? Price is, of course, an overriding concern for most people today, so look at your budget and the cost of the plan carefully. Original Medicare pays 80 percent of the cost of most services, while you pay the remaining 20 percent. That means if you have a $10,000 hospital bill, you will have to pay $2,000 out of pocket. With a Medicare Advantage plan, your Plan B costs for services like doctor visits can be free or, with some plans, could range up to $25 a visit. Read carefully; some plans may charge copays for certain types of visits such as specialists. Understanding costs makes it easy to compare and budget – an important step if you are new to Medicare. * What costs are your responsibility? Pay attention to the so-called donut hole when it comes to your prescriptions. Medicare Part D covers all covered prescription medications up to $2,960 per year, and it pays for medications

above the annual out-of-pocket limit of $4,700. Between these amounts, you must pay a portion of the cost. This is often referred to as the “donut hole” or the coverage gap. In 2015, your copay is 45 percent for brand name drugs and 65 percent for generic drugs. However, these copays are now lower than they were in the past and will continue to fall until 2020. At that time, you will pay just 25 percent for both brand name and generic medications in the donut hole. These discounts are applied automatically, when you check out at your pharmacy. You don’t have to do anything to enjoy these savings. They are automatic. * Is your doctor in the network? Is there a chance he or she could be cut from the network? This is an important issue to examine. Some plans have been cutting doctors out of their network to save money. Some may have a narrow network in some areas, but not others. Check carefully to see if your doctor is in the network and check to see if your plan has been cutting providers; they may do so again. Also, remember to look for plans that do allow you to go outside the network in specific instances (e.g., travel, emergency care) and check pricing carefully to ensure there are no surprises. * Where is the plan located? Do they know my community – the best hospitals and doctors? Nothing is more concerning to a plan member than to call customer service to ask a question and end up speaking to a representative located cross country who knows nothing about the community where providers are located. If local knowledge is important to you, look for a plan that is located in your area, or that at least has a service office near you. * Does the plan offer personal service and care managers? Coordinating care, finding specialists, even getting to an appointment can be complicated for many older adults, especially those who no longer drive. Care managers can help you better navigate the complex health world of today and can provide much-needed assistance including helping you find out about resources in your community that can address your needs. * What extras does the plan offer and are they important to you? Some plans seek to become active members of their communities and to become a resource for their members. They aren’t a corporation thousands of miles away – but consider themselves a neighbor. They may offer special programs such as educational classes, exercise classes such as Yoga and Tai Chi or even a book „

What you think…

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club or lessons in using smart phones and social media. Such programs are important to many Medicare eligibles, especially those who have lost spouses or who have family who live out of the area. If you feel such support would be important, be sure to factor this into your decision. * What if this is your first time to sign up? If you are just turning 65, you’ll want to make sure you have a solid understanding of Medicare and look at a lot of the same issues and features as anyone shopping for a new plan. However, a big mistake many first-timers make is to only consider their health status today. Make sure you consider your future needs as well. * What if you want to switch – won’t that be difficult? Often it may seem as if the easiest thing to do is just stay with a current plan – and that could be true. However, if you have been unhappy with any feature, don’t stay out of fear of the process of changing. Switching plans is easy and quick. Look for a plan with strong customer service that will help you make the transition smoothly. Sometimes, you may need an advocate to navigate the healthcare maze. Does the plan offer such services? * What is the reputation of the plan? Often the best source of information on a plan is friends, family, current members and your own doctor or nurse – what have they seen and experienced. Some folks also prefer a plan that is not-for-profit. For-profit plans work hard to get and retain customers because their mission is to make a profit for shareholders. Non-profits often have a mission simply to help their community or keep people healthy – they must make a profit to remain in business – but they aren’t as tied to the financial bottom line as a plan owned by a corporation.

Avoiding Common Errors

Because choosing a Medicare plan can be overwhelming, even cautious consumers sometimes make mistakes. For example: * Hospitalization is one of the most expensive components of care. Pay the most attention to what a plan will or won’t cover and the hospitals in the network. You want a trusted hospital near where you and your family live. * Closely examine the prescription drug benefit. Most people over 65 are on at least two to three medications such as a statin or blood pressure medication; as you age, the number of medications may increase to five or six once you reach 70 or older. * Look at the drugs you take and even those common prescriptions you may need to be on as you age – are they on your formulary (the list of approved medications)? Are there generic alternatives for your prescription medications? What pharmacy retailers are on your plan? Today many “big box” plans also offer low-cost medications. Some may be on your plan. However, keep in mind that your plan coordinates and keeps track of all your prescriptions so that it can better manage your health, ensure you are securing your refills and send reminders if you are not. When you go out of network, you may save a few dollars – but you are losing the benefits of health coordination your plan wants to provide.

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24 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rate the quality of healthcare plans offered to Medicare beneficiaries through the Medicare Advantage program. They rate Medicare Advantage plans on a one- to five-star scale, with five stars representing the highest score (highest quality) and one star meaning poor or subpar quality. The summary score provides an overall measure of a plan’s quality, based on categories such as quality of care, access to care, plan responsiveness and member satisfaction, etc.


According to CMS, this information is gathered from several different sources. In some cases, it is based on member surveys. In other cases, it is based on reviews of billing and other information that plans submit to Medicare, or on results from Medicare’s regular monitoring activities. Medicare tries to ensure the scores are impartial and that they provide consumers with a good benchmark of quality. Most plans today (about 90 percent) receive at least three stars. Exceptional plans secure ratings of four or five. Those plans may be harder to find, but they are worth the effort. The star ratings for all Medicare health plans are posted on the internet at www.Medicare.gov, which can help consumers make an educated decision when choosing the right health plan for their needs.

Make The Decision That Is Best For You

Maintaining your health as you age is important – finding the right plan reassures you that when needed, you can access the best healthcare services and providers for you. A good plan can provide value not only in terms of cost, but also the extra services you may want and need. Don’t become overwhelmed. Give yourself time to study the options. Talk to friends and family. Some plans may offer Medicare Information Centers in your neighborhood where you can sit down and talk to an expert and ask them questions – others will offer an 800-hotline. Take advantage of all the resources and create a checklist of what matters to you. Once you’ve done your homework, review and reflect upon what you’ve learned and you can then choose the plan that best meets your needs. ª

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What you need to look for when comparing plans Benefits The list of medical expenses covered by the plan. You want a comprehensive plan that will meet all your needs now and in years to come. And don’t forget about important extras like dental, gym memberships, chiropractic, vision, or worldwide emergency coverage.

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Deductibles The amount you pay each year for all covered expenses before your benefits kick in. The amount may not be zero, but it should be reasonable. Copays The amount you pay toward the cost of a covered benefit, such as a doctor visit or prescription. Zero or low copays are always attractive. Premiums The monthly or yearly amount you pay to be in the plan. Is the premium reasonable for the benefits you receive? Are there zero premiums for select benefits? Stop - Loss Your maximum out-of-pocket costs before the health plan begins to pay 100 percent. Think about it like this: If you’re hospitalized or require ongoing treatment, can you afford the total out-of-pocket costs all at once? Doctors The list of physicians, specialists, and hospitals who participate in the plan. How big is the list? Can you keep your doctor? Can you change your doctor? Prescriptions The list of medications covered by your plan is called a “formulary.” It should be comprehensive and, ideally, include your current prescriptions.

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Ronald Bolding is the president and chief executive officer of Inter Valley Health Plan. He provides his strategic vision and expertise for every aspect of the organization and serves as a nationally recognized expert on Medicare Advantage plans. Inter Valley Health Plan is a not-for-profit, federally qualified, HMO contracted with Medicare and dedicated to providing the best value in senior healthcare coverage. Headquartered in Pomona, California, the company strives to improve the quality of life for adults throughout its service area stretching from Los Angeles to Orange County to Palm Springs, Riverside, Hemet, Victorville, Temecula, and virtually every city and town in between. One of the oldest managed-care plans in Southern California, Inter Valley Health Plan is a federally qualified Medicare Advantage Organization, contracted with Medicare and meeting all state and federal requirements. For more information, useful health education and information on wellness programs offered through local Medicare Information and Vitality Centers, click on www.IVHP.com.

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Memories – Like The Corner Of Our Senses

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an’t find your keys? Having trouble remembering some people’s names? Forgetting whether or not you fed the cat? Are you finding yourself a bit more concerned about forgetting things as of late? Before we go into how you can help cement memories more permanently in your brain, let’s take a look at some of the conditions that can diminish your brain power:

Alcoholism

Very heavy drinking over a long period of time leads to less blood flow through the brain and premature mental decline.

Diabetes

Women who have had Type 2 diabetes for more than 15 years are up to twice as likely to suffer a cognitive decline as non-diabetic women. Elderly diabetics of both genders are more likely to develop dementia than elderly people without the disease.

Heart Disease

Clogged arteries cause more rapid loss of brain cells.

Hypertension

Over time, high blood pressure damages the brain as well as the heart. Hypertension can cause mini-strokes and can stiffen blood vessels, which can reduce blood flow to the brain.

Sleep Apnea

These short interruptions of breathing during sleep, usually accompanied by snoring, deprive the brain of oxygen many times a night. This increases the risk of damage to brain cells.

Stress

Chronically high levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, may damage an area of the brain called the hippocampus, which is involved in learning and memory. Yep, lifestyle choices and taking care of your overall health can have profound results on your cognitive abilities. So, while you should be doing all you can to maintain your health, there are also some other great ways you can improve your memory. Consider the value of attaching memories to your various senses, like smell, touch, taste and sight. We all know how powerful are sensory memories can be – the smell of a favorite food being prepared, the touch of a soft object similar to one you carried around as a child or the look of a certain style of hat or dress a grandparent used to wear. We also have auditory memories (remembering the words or melody to your favorite song), and symbolic memories (like the “V” hand gesture that represents peace or victory). You may be surprised to learn that gardening can also be of help to us when it comes to memory formation and retention. How? The senses of touch and smell are very much a part of gardening and can help the brain form memories. And let’s not forget there is also another benefit that comes from working in your garden – being active, which oxygenates the brain by improving blood flow and, in turn, helps both your memory and your overall health. Associating an activity with a sensory experience, using multiple senses, using physical cues (like clenching a fist to cement a memory), repeating something out loud multiple times; these are all ways to help us help our brains better function in retaining memories. Want more memory aids? Contact me at (310) 473-1989, via email Jackie@ nutrifitonline.com or on Facebook or Twitter and I’ll be happy to share my list with you. 26 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


Make Your 2014 Holiday Date Your 2015-And-Beyond Mate One of Southern California’s premiere matchmakers offers tips on successful dating over 50 Special to Life After 50 by Sherri Murphy, CEO and VIP matchmaker at Elite Connections

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re you single? Do the upcoming holiday festivities have you feeling a bit anxious? Does the thought of attending family functions, holiday parties and other seasonal events make you feel out of place or nervous? If you answered “yes” to those questions you should know you’re not alone. We all know it’s nice to spend the holidays with the people that matter the most to us – close friends and family. However, if you’re looking for a more intimate relationship – for love – it’s important to get out of your comfort zone, stay positive, openminded and act more spontaneous. It’s A Different World Out There The dating experience for people in their 30s and 40s is far different than it is for those over 50. Back in the days when you were attending college or just starting your career, the vast number of your friends

and the people you encountered were single and you had dating choices galore. But back then, your priorities were more about having fun, graduating and getting your career in gear than walking down the aisle. As we get older, the single population starts to shrink. By the time most people are in their early 30s, they have married and started families. Sadly, however, over the next two decades, nearly half of those marriages will end in divorce, which (if there is any good news to be found in that) replenishes the single pool for people in their 40s and 50s. No longer wide-eyed romantic idealists, dating when you are older means you also have to deal with things that you never even thought of in your 20s – adult children, bigger personal responsibilities and the mingling of more complicated lives. And so, dating over 50 requires a crash course in how to do it successfully.

The “Dating After 50” Course Begins Now that you’ve survived divorce or maybe lost a spouse to death, how do you jump from the fire into the frying pan of singledom without a clue of where to start? And now that you’re starting anew, how do you know what you want or need this time around? What drove and attracted you as a 20- or 30-yearold and what’s important to you now may seem – and are – as starkly different as night and day. Not everyone who is still single after 50 or has lost a spouse or is divorced wants to get married or re-married, but let’s face it, life is sweeter when it is shared with someone you are attracted to, relate to, and have things in common with. Socially, professionally, and in many other ways, it’s easier to navigate life as a couple than going it alone. Over the years, I have found that the people who seek out our services at Elite Connections are not just looking to date; they are ready to meet “the one” who will end their quest to connect. They are frustrated and done with dating and looking for love in all the wrong places. The majority of these folks are successful, private and unwilling to venture onto the world of the Internet and its online dating sites. Are you feeling frustrated in the 50-plus dating world? Does everyone you date end up being just like your ex? If so, and you want to stop wasting precious time and actually meet someone compatible, here are some of my top dating tips for „ people over 50. November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 27


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1. Stop dating “your type.” Be open-minded and receptive to meeting someone who is out of your comfort zone. At this stage of life, to meet the right person, you have to make an effort. People tend to impose limitations on who and what fits for them and they don’t like compromising. But the very nature of being a couple means compromising, so practice letting go of your old ideals. Your “standards” may be narrowing your choices down to slim pickings, so expand your horizons and be receptive to new possibilities. 2. Give genuinely nice people who show an interest in you a chance. When you meet someone who is kind, respectful and interested in you, even if they don’t seem to be your type, get to know them by going out a few times. Ironically, many people allow niceness to be a turn-off. They say they hate drama and confrontation, and yet they end up attracting it in droves by passing over really nice people. Which leads me to my third tip… 3. Focus on what you want rather than what you want to avoid. Your thoughts are like magnets that attract what you are thinking, so if drama and conflict are what come to mind when you think of meeting new people, stop thinking that way. Instead, picture yourself with someone who is grounded and ready for a real relationship. Argumentative people get your adrenaline going and when you connect with them, they drag you down and hinder you from having a healthy relationship that builds you up. We are all creatures of habit to an extent, so reprogram your thoughts and give “nice” a chance. You will find that you will start attracting entirely different suitors, including ones you probably overlooked in the past. 4. Lose the ridiculous rules. I’m talking about the dating rules that applied 20 or 30 years ago like, “It’s okay to sleep with someone after the third date.” It takes time to get to know someone and even more time to know whether you’re both ready for intimacy. Another silly rule is not accepting an invitation after Wednesday. Professional people work hard all week and often don’t think about the weekend until Thursday or Friday. Another bad rule is not to call someone back promptly or (for women) ever initiate a call. Return every call! You would expect the same courtesy from others, so pick up the phone and call within 24 hours, even if you’re not interested, which I’ll deal with next. 5. Honesty is always the best policy. If you’re not interested in someone, say so in a way that’s honest and not hurtful or rude. Instead of telling little white lies like: “I just got back with an old flame” or “I’m too busy to date,” say you’re so flattered they called and compliment them on something you genuinely liked or noticed about them. Then ask if it’s okay with them if you are honest and then speak your truth about why you can’t accept their invitation. If you are compassionate and honest, you won’t hurt anyone’s feelings or crush their ego by graciously declining. 6. When was the last time you bought clothes? If it’s been awhile, it’s time to update your look and shop for current styles that suit you. Don’t let your clothing reveal the decade in which you stopped paying attention to fashion. This goes for shoes, hemlines, sport coats, colors, shirt collars – everything in

28 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


your closet. Think about it: you want to be seen with someone with good taste and style, right? Well so does everyone. So look in the mirror, clean out your closet and invest in a few stylish and age-appropriate pieces that can take you to brunch on the weekend or out to a mid-week dinner. Update your hairstyle and eyewear, too. If you’re not sure of what may be best-suited for you (and this is mostly for men) consult with a personal stylist and ask the person who does your hair if there’s a style and/or color that may be more flattering to your face and skin tone. If you aren’t already treating yourself to a manicure and pedicure, make an appointment. And, hello, this goes for men as well as women! 7. Step out with style and confidence on each and every first date. Make sure you leave yourself time to freshen up, shower or make a change from work clothes to an evening-out ensemble. Don’t rush home from work all disheveled and preoccupied by what your day or the traffic was like. Set your date for a day and time when you can show up looking your best – when you will be relaxed and provide good company. Honor your date by showing him or her that you took the time to be looking and feeling your best for them. 8. Don’t be judgmental about age. Both women and men over 50 carry around arbitrary numbers in their heads about their age and that of perspective mates. They tend to refuse to date anyone who they feel is out of their acceptable range – both by being too young or too old. Take the example of a 51-year-old woman declining a man who is over 60, regardless of how he looks, acts or thinks. There are a lot of people out there today who are in their 60s or 70s and are fit, healthy and active. So put the numbers aside. As long as it is someone with qualities, the personality or interests that appeal to you, don’t rule them out due to age until you’ve give them a chance. 9. Plan fun dates. Meeting for coffee doesn’t provide the ideal scenario for making a good impression. Nor does choosing a place that’s overly romantic, too extravagant or too casual. The best option is a place to meet for drinks and appetizers that is lively, yet not too noisy and not too quiet either. For a second or third date, doing something active like going for a hike, a bike ride or playing golf or tennis is a great way to get to know someone. Theater, museum and concert outings can also make for a memorable evening and reveal a lot about a person. 10. Manage your expectations and don’t get so serious. First dates are designed for discovery – both about the other person and yourself. Go into each with the intention to make a new friend who may or may not be someone you romantically click with. You never know what take-away there will be from an encounter with anyone. Be inquisitive, be yourself and keep it upbeat and lighthearted rather than intense or too personal. Even if it doesn’t work out, who knows, you might meet someone wonderful through them. I have seen this happen on numerous occasions. 11. Do something adventurous and new. You never know where you may meet a person you will click with, so go on a trip, by yourself, with a friend, or a tour group, and see the world. I recently went on a 280-foot sailboat with my „

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husband through Spain and the South of France. There were 100 passengers on board and many were single. A few were from the U.S., including an eligible gentleman from California. We all had a great time and made friends from all over the globe. My point is to get out of your rut, make new friends and enjoy yourself. Do something different, go somewhere new, even if it’s in your own city. Donate your time to a charity you’re passionate about or help out at a fundraiser. What’s the worst thing that could happen? You’ll become a more interesting and happier person who is far more likely to attract someone of the opposite sex along the way! 12. Become the type of person you’d like to attract. AvTake good care of yourself, stay active, eat healthy, manage stress, pursue passions, strive for balance instead of excess, be respectful, practice good manners and be gracious and reciprocate. Ladies: if he treats you to a nice dinner, say thank you in a way that tells him you’re sincerely appreciative and not entitled. On the next date, think of something nice to do for him to show your appreciation. You could surprise him with concert or sporting event tickets, or after a few dates, you could offer to make dinner for him. Men: if you really like her, give her your full attention and go the extra mile to make her feel special. Opening doors, pulling out chairs and picking up the tab shows her chivalry is still alive and well with you. Also, don’t wait too long to call and ask her out again. Think of somewhere you’d like to go next and invite her out within a few days. 13. Keep it positive. Don’t talk about your ex or the lousy dates you’ve been on. Even when asked, don’t delve into unpleasantries. No one wants to hear the details about an alcoholic ex who wrecked your self-esteem. If uncomfortable topics come up, change the subject and move on to talking about recent trips, where you grew up or what books you have recently read. I’ve had people call me and say: “All she did was talk about her job and how she wants to get married.” This was after I, as her matchmaker and consultant, suggested she zip it on the marriage issue. She might as well have come right out and asked: “Will you marry me?” There is no reason to talk about serious subjects on the first few dates, so keep it low-key and fun. 14. Don’t get too personal by asking interrogating questions. Want to ruin a date really fast? Ask: “Why haven’t you ever been married?” “Why have you been divorced three times?” “Why have you never had children” or “Who did you vote for in the last election?” By all means, do show an interest by asking appropriate questions aimed at getting to know the person, but don’t pry into deep subjects too soon. In fact, if you learn to practice active listening and become really attuned, you can learn a lot just by having casual conversation. 15. Make dating a priority. The older we get, the more set in our ways we become. You may be used to working a lot, traveling, spending time with your friends and family. Then you meet a nice person and they ask you out. You’re so busy with work, your aging parents or your children, that your schedule may be jammed for weeks to come. If that is the case, it’s pretty obvious that you either: (A) Have no time for anyone else or (B) Are not all that interested in meeting someone. My husband, Bill, asked me out for New Year’s Eve on the afternoon of December 31. We had been skiing together that day and, when he asked, I ran down to the lodge to make a phone call cancelling my other date in favor of accepting Bill’s invitation. I’ve learned something that is important to men: they want to be with someone who really wants to be with them. You have to make time for dating. More importantly, you have to make room and time for including them in your life. I have met people who say they want to meet someone and get married, but they sabotage those hopes. They simply don’t make time to cultivate a lasting relationship. If meeting your friends for drinks or doing things with your family members is more important than getting to know someone who is interested in you, you will stay single for a long time.

30 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


Get The “Welcome Mat” Out Having been a professional matchmaker for over 20 years, I’ve watched people make the same mistakes I did when I was single. I was divorced for seven years and was a working mother of two. During that time, all I did was work and take care of my family. Then, because I was so busy, I sought the services of a matchmaker. My future husband, Bill, was the first one they introduced me to. Bill is handsome, smart, talented, very kind and giving – very different from the men I’d been with in the past – so, of course, I uttered those famous words: “He’s not my type.” Then, my wise and insightful friend, Irma, said: “Then go out with him again! He sounds like just the man you need, because your type is all wrong for you!” Remember, there are great single people of all ages everywhere. You just have to get out there and meet them. Think positive, have fun and they just may walk into your life when you least expect it, as long as you have the “welcome mat” ª out and invite them in to stay awhile.

Meet Murphy The Matchmaker

S

herri Murphy is the CEO and founder of Elite Connections. Her philosophy is that there is someone out there for everyone, but you won’t find them while sitting at home. “Most of the people that join Elite Connections are serious about finding the right person for a serious relationship,” says Sherri. “They are exhausted by other dating avenues and come to us for help.” Sherri believes that if you are not meeting the right person, you need to be proactive, have an open mind and try a new route. Her style of matchmaking has worked for many Elite clients. She herself met her husband through a personal matchmaker and that inspired her to launch her own company in 1994. She opened her first Elite Connections office in Beverly Hills in 1996 and now has six locations in Southern California, New York and Miami. Sherri works with her daughter Tammi as the company’s VIP matchmakers. Together, the duo will be hosting their upcoming 15th annual black-tie holiday fundraiser, “Party With A Purpose.” The event will take place on November 29 at a private estate in Calabasas and proceeds will provide holiday gifts for homeless children in the Los Angeles area. For information on Elite Connections or the “Party With A Purpose” event, call Sherri at (800) 923-4200 or click on www.EliteConnections.com.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 31


Photo by James Veysey

The Sweet Survival of Judy Collins The Grammy-winning singer and songwriter reflects on the turbulence and triumphs that have led to a life she loves By David Laurell

I

’ve had very difficult times in my life,” says singer and songwriter Judy Collins. “I’ve lived through terrible heartaches and tragedies that I don’t know how I survived. But suffering is something everyone deals with. It’s the price we pay for being given life – for being alive.” Collins’ life began in Seattle, Washington on May 1, 1939, when she was the first of what would be five children born to Marjorie and Charles Collins, the former a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat who was always ranting about something; the latter, a radio entertainer, musician and composer who had been blind since childhood and battled a losing war against alcoholism as an adult. Living in Seattle until 1949, Charles’ work brought the Collins family to Denver, Colorado, and it was there that young Judy contracted polio and spent two months in an isolated hospital room. Following her recovery she began showing both an interest in, and a budding talent for, music. She studied classical piano with renowned symphony conductor Antonia Brico and made her public debut at age 13. While her training may have been classical, by the time Collins was in her mid-teens, she had developed a deep love for the folk music of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger. Adding the guitar to her talent portfolio, Collins’ late teens also saw her marry a University of Connecticut teacher, Peter Taylor, a union that would produce her only child, Clark. It was also a time that saw the beginning of what would become a two-decade addiction to alcohol that resulted in depression, blackouts and suicidal thoughts. In spite of the inner demons she was fighting, Collins always presented herself as a calming songstress who regularly played gigs at the University of Connecticut and on the campus radio

32 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

station. Eventually making her way to the epicenter of the early 1960s folk revival – New York’s Greenwich Village – she worked the popular clubs of the era, was signed by Elektra Records, and in 1961, at the age of 22, released her first album, “A Maid of Constant Sorrow.” While Collins career was taking off, her marriage was crumbling. In 1962, shortly after her concert debut at Carnegie Hall, she was diagnosed with tuberculosis and spent six months recuperating in a sanatorium. Once back on her feet, an increasingly demanding recording and touring schedule, coupled with her escalating alcohol use, led to a 1965 divorce in which she lost custody of Clark. By the latter part of the 1960s, Collins’ first three albums had garnered her legions of fans, but it was the 1967 album, “Wildflowers,” containing her cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides, Now,” that propelled her into international prominence with a Top 10 hit and a Grammy Award for Best Folk Performance. The following year, she released “Who Knows Where the Time Goes,” an album that featured a back-up guitarist – Stephen Stills of Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills & Nash.

Woodstock – Presence Without Performance

In the summer of 1969, as the turbulent decade began its slide into history, a music and art fair held on an alfalfa farm in New York’s Catskill Mountains served as a defining coda for the era. Billed as “An Aquarian Exposition: Three Days of Peace and Music,” Woodstock attendees never got the opportunity to enjoy the music of Judy Collins, although it could easily have happened.

“I was there, but I never went to the stage,” Collins says. “I was out in the production offices with Bill Graham [who booked many of the festival’s acts]. He asked me if I wanted to go over to the stage, but made it clear I would not be singing. So I just said: ‘No thank you.’ ” Asked if there had been some behind-the-scenes rift between her and the famous concert promoter, Collins waves the query off with indifference. “To this day, I have no idea what that was all about,” she says. “All I know is he was never a fan of mine, and, for me, whenever his name comes up, the word ‘stupidity’ comes to mind.” While Collins never made it to the Woodstock stage, her presence was in evidence – in the very early morning hours of the festival’s third day – when Crosby, Stills & Nash performed “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” a song Stills, who had a romantic relationship with Collins, wrote for her. Asked when she first became aware of that song, Collins says that Stills, whom she had broken up with, visited her while she was staying at a Los Angeles hotel. “It was on my birthday, in May of 1969,” she recalls. “He sang it to me and I thought it was so beautiful that I was weeping buckets. We had been having a hard time and he had written it to get me back – which didn’t happen. But I thought it was a gorgeous song.” Collins says she had no idea that Crosby, Stills & Nash had recorded it. “The first time I ever heard the recording I was in a taxi cab in New York,” she reveals. “It came on the radio and I almost fell out of the car.” Collins pauses for a moment and sighs. “Stephen and I are still friends; which is nice,” she says. “I will always feel very honored that he wrote that song for me.” With the Woodstock snub behind her, Collins entered the 1970s with a string of successful albums


Photob By Hayley Sparks

and hits including Stephen Sondheim’s “Send in the Clowns.” The song, written for the Broadway musical “A Little Night Music,” was included on her 1975 album “Judith.” It would go on to win a 1975 Song of the Year Grammy Award, continue to nonconsecutively chart through 1977, and then earn Collins another Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

Surviving Suicide and Sustaining Sobriety

Although Collins had won over millions of fans, by 1978 she was dealing with bulimia and clearly losing her battle with alcohol. Coming to terms with that fact, she was persuaded to seek professional help and enter a rehabilitation program that has seen her maintain her sobriety ever since – even through the most traumatic event of her life – the death of her son, who, after a long bout with clinical depression and substance abuse, committed suicide in 1992 at the age of 33. “I recognized I had a serious problem, got sober and have been able to maintain sobriety,” says Collins. “When you are dealing with alcoholism, you can go to all the treatment centers in the world, but if you don’t come to terms with the fact that you have a problem – that you are an alcoholic – you’ll never be helped. Alcoholism is a terrible illness, which is affecting something like 33 million people in America today. Talking about these issues – addictions and mental health and depression and suicide – is important. It gives us a new perspective and understanding that these things affect almost every family in some way.” Pressed on how she was able to maintain her sobriety and even her very sanity after Clark’s death,

Collins says it is still somewhat incomprehensible to her that she did survive. “His suicide cracked me open and I don’t really know how I got through it. But I did have a lot of help,” she reasons. “I had been meditating for many years by then, which was a blessing; and I was 13 years sober by then. I know I would not have lived through that time if I were still drinking. I’m sure of that. I also had access to therapy, and support groups, and my inner tools, one of which was writing.”

Embracing Health and Stability

Today, at the age of 75, Collins continues to record, tour and stir audiences with her vocals, songwriting, personal triumphs and commitment to social activism. She has become an accomplished painter, filmmaker, musical mentor, and an in-demand keynote speaker on the topics of overcoming addictions, mental healthcare and suicide prevention. She has also authored several books including the powerful and inspiring, “Sanity and Grace: A Journey of Suicide, Survival, and Strength” (Tarcher, 2003), “Morning, Noon and Night: Living the Creative Life” (Tarcher, 2005), and “Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music” (Three Rivers Press, 2012) in which, with unflinching candor, she recalls her turbulent childhood, rise to fame, romance with Stills, epic victories over depression and alcoholism, and her redemption through embracing a healthy and stable lifestyle. “There are a lot of things that can be done to rearrange and reorganize our lifestyle to get rid of the substance, or the trouble, or the pressure, or the physical or mental damage that comes with addiction,” says Collins. “For most people who are

depressed and have an addiction to drugs or alcohol, I’m convinced the addiction itself must be dealt with first. I’m a believer in talk therapy, which, sadly, most insurance companies usually won’t pay for. They would rather just throw pills at people. I think prescription medications are ruining lives, especially the lives of kids. We are seeing an entire generation growing up who the pharmaceutical companies have gotten hooked early, so they grow up believing that pills can solve anything. The pharmaceutical and insurance companies have Americans over a barrel, and our food has been wrecked by the sugar industry and their lobbyists who has made sure that the addictive drug that is sugar is in practically everything. It’s no wonder obesity is such a problem in this country. Michelle Obama is trying to help bring awareness to this problem, but has gotten no help from the Republicans who have literally chastised her for promoting good nutrition. America is sorely missing the boat when it comes to nutrition, just like we are in treating mental health and addiction problems.”

Practicing What She Preaches

Collins says she is cautious about what she eats and is committed to exercise. “I eat three meals a day and I never eat sugar, grains, flour or junk,” she says. “As for exercise, I’m always active – ruining, swimming, doing the Jane Fonda workout. I do that seven days a week. I believe eating properly and exercising are the closest things we have to a fountain of youth.” Having mentioned that she attributes writing as having been one of the things that has helped her overcome her past demons, Collins says that, unlike songwriters such as Don McLean or Bob Dylan, „

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 33


who have stated that their best writing was produced when they were younger, she believes she is writing as well as ever. “I don’t think you write the same types of songs when you are 20 or 30 that you do at 60 or 70,” says Collins. “But I think we have the capacity to always get better as we get older. I am currently working on a series of songs with an old friend of mine, Hugh Prestwood, who wrote some of the songs I recorded in the ‘80s – ‘Hard Time for Lovers’ and ‘Dorothy’ and ‘Drink A Round to Ireland.” His writing is as fresh and wonderful today as it ever was. I think when it comes to writing, inspiration may come and go, but that age has no bearing on that. Dylan has said he had a wonderful period for 10 years and then it left. But I certainly am not the only one who thinks he has written some wonderful songs as he has gotten older.”

Photo by Shonna Valeska

The Collins/Clinton Connection

While the channels of inspiration continue to flow for Collins, she says she was extremely honored to learn that one of her most popular recordings, “Chelsea Morning,” inspired the naming of a child born in 1980 – Chelsea Clinton. “I found out about that in a magazine article,” Collins recalls. “I can’t remember if it was in TIME or Rolling Stone, but it was in ‘92, when Bill Clinton was running for president. I didn’t know him at the time, although I had met him once – the previous year, when he was the governor of Arkansas. He had come to see me in concert and then came backstage. I remember he was very enthusiastic. He told me he had been a fan for a long time and had first seen me in concert in 1964 in Washington. We didn’t talk long and he never mentioned that he named Chelsea after my recording. The one thing I clearly remember is that before he came backstage for this quick meet-and-greet, someone told me who he was and that he would be president one day. I never gave that any thought at the time. I mean, who knew the governor of Arkansas?” Proving what a dramatic difference a short time can make, just a year later, every American knew who the governor of Arkansas was and, at his presidential inauguration, in January of 1993, Collins was invited to sing “Amazing Grace” and “Chelsea Morning” as a part of the official inaugural celebration. As to her feelings on the possibility of someday performing at the presidential inauguration of another Clinton, Collins says she hopes it happens. “I am very enthusiastic about Hillary running, just as so many others are,” she says. “I think it would be wonderful, because we are so overdue in having a woman president. I mean, let’s see, how many countries – over 30 – have had women presidents and leaders. I think it’s pretty embarrassing that it hasn’t already happened.”

Loving Life and Staying Young

Collins and her husband of 18 years, Louis Nelson, an artist who has designed everything from album covers to the Korean War Veterans Memorial’s mural in Washington, D.C., today live on New York’s Upper West Side. When she is not touring or recording, she says she loves to read, write and have lunch with friends. “We just love New York. We love to go to concerts, the movies, eat out at great restaurants,” she says. “I also love to stay home and cook and watch PBS. We really enjoy our time together. I’m also a great grandmother of an eight-month-old now. He’s in California, but I do get out there frequently to see him. And I love to work. I really enjoy touring. Some singers say they hate life on the road, but I love everything about it – always being on the move. I’m very grateful to still be working and have people of all ages come to our shows.” As for her feelings on the passage of time, Collins laughs when asked if she has adopted a philosophy on aging. “I don’t age! Just leave it at that,” she states emphatically. “I think if you love life and your work, you just want to keep doing it and constantly keep educating yourself on how to do it all even better. If you keep your mind working and keep interested in life, age is irrelevant. That is how you stay young, and I have determined I will stay young. I’m for getting a facelift, changing your hairstyle, falling in love, traveling, starting a new career – whatever it takes to stay active and really be alive.” Southern Californians will have the opportunity to celebrate the holiday season with Judy Collins as she make her debut appearance at Orange County’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts on December 6. Tickets for the evening, that will include traditional holiday songs and music from her five-decade career, are on sale now and available by clicking on www.scfta.org or calling (714) 556-2787. ª

34 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014


True Blue Gratitude Rachael Sage’s newly released album, “Blue Roses,” reveals the singer and songwriter’s gratefulness for the people who have impacted her life Story and photo by David Laurell

R

acheal Sage is dressed, glittered and ready to take the stage, which she will do in less than 90 minutes. Emerging from her dressing room, she is the picture of relaxed composure as she takes a seat at a small table on an adjacent patio overlooking Los Angeles’ Fairfax Avenue. “I’m so excited about it,” she says after being congratulated on “Blue Roses,” her 11th album, which has just been released by MPress Records, the company she founded close to two decades ago. “This album represents a very deliberate effort on my part not to repeat myself,” she says. “It was made after touring for a year with the best band I have ever played with. These are folks I would have lived with in a commune or driven across country with in a mini-van in the ‘70s. It was a pleasure to be surrounded by human beings I admire and whose musicianship constantly kicks me in the tuchus. I was in a very positive place making this album – in a huge moment of gratitude and appreciation for the many people who have had a huge impact on my life.”

The Antenna Of A Musical Journalist

An innovative singer and songwriter, Sage is one of the busiest artists in independent music. Her 10 prior albums, along with numerous tours throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia, have earned her a loyal fan base who love her quirky feather-boa-and-glitter sartorial style and sense of humor, which The New York Times has called a channeling of “her inner-Fanny Brice.” Sage’s latest album, which includes songs that celebrate the various ways people can positively inspire and impact the destiny of others – especially during times of uncertainty – is a creative offering the four-time Independent Music Award winner considers to be “personally and creatively transformative.” “I’ve always been extremely focused and had an urgency in what I’ve wanted to express artistically,”

she says. “And while I’m still the same person I was when I made my first album in my 20s, I think my telescope has widened a bit. I’m finding myself less interested in me and my life than I am in the lives of my friends and family and things going on in the world, and our connected concerns about the environment and the confusion and chaos – the wars and feeling helpless – the whole range of things that people have on their minds these days that gives us a sense of searching. I see so many people seeking and looking for answers, and I think, the beautiful thing about that is how, when we do seek, we can find people who can give us assurance, and help, and answers.” Revealing her feeling that she has been a bit precious about her songwriting in the past, Sage says “Blue Roses” represents a departure from that. “I used to feel that songs were only good if they

sprang forth after I was devastated by a breakup or some tragic or inspirational thing,” she says. “With ‘Blue Roses,’ I was much more interested in expanding my range as a songwriter. I think that comes from where I currently am in my life – in my career – and also from where we all are in our world. Today, everyone has questions about what is happening around us. That provides a songwriter with an incredible opportunity to listen to everyone and transform what you’re hearing into art. I feel like a musical journalist in a lot of ways. My antenna is up in a way that it has never been before.” In the album’s title cut, “Blue Roses,” Sage tells the story of two people who connect in a special way, albeit not successfully as lovers. “The inspiration for that song came when someone gave me a blue rose,” says Sage. “A blue rose! That is so me. But it was also so manmade, intentional, deliberate and transformational. That rose sat in a vase and dried up, but I would look at it and it came to be a metaphor to symbolize the concept of shedding expectations and having the ability to „ November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 35


control the dynamics of our lives and not writing people off just because they don’t live up to what we may want from them or expect them to be – that we have the ability to change our color, and through empathy, and compassion, and the love we share with others, to evolve and be transformed. I made it a point to surround myself with people I admire while I was working on this record. I relished the process and was totally in the present. That energy – a very positive energy – was incredible throughout the process.”

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36 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

One of those people for whom Sage has great admiration is a fellow singer and songwriter – Judy Collins – who has described Sage as “a great gift of talent and beauty.” The duo, who have toured and performed together over the years, team up for the final track on “Blue Roses” with a beautiful cover of Neil Young’s “Helpless.” “There are some exceptionally talented women in music today,” says Collins. “I think Katy Perry is a very interesting artist. I really like her and her song choices. I love Adele. I think she is phenomenal. And Rachael Sage is marvelous. I’m a huge fan. Her songs, her lyrics, and melodies and voice can lift you up and carry you away like you’ve never dreamed.” Sage says that Collins’ willingness to accept her invitation to appear on her album is an honor and something she is very grateful for. “It was just such an amazing gift that she would do this,” says Sage. “I’ve toured quite a bit with her and we’ve become pretty close. She has been a mentor – like a folk fairy godmother. She’s in her 70s, and yet she is so hip and goes out of her way to listen to new young artists. She is so gracious and open as a person, and also such a professional – an incredibly hard worker. I have such great admiration for her strength – to endure such challenges and losses, and yet be so kind and giving. I always feel like I’m an apprentice when I’m around her. I watch her from the wings and see how she brings different nuances to a song and plays off different audiences by having a respect for the difference between each audience.”

Back To The Beginning For A New Start

Sage sneaks a peek at her blue watch. “I’ve got to get going in a few minutes – to warm up and get some more glitter on,” she says with a sweet smile. Before doing a quick photo shoot, it is mentioned that, with the theme of gratitude “Blue Roses” presents, the month of Thanksgiving has really been the perfect time for its release. “Thanksgiving has always been a special time for me,” she says. “Every Thanksgiving has been memorable for me because I love the holidays so much. When I was little, we would always spend Thanksgiving in Boston, with this group of my cousins who were all older than me. I remember sitting around the table and listening to them talk about the books they were reading and the things they were doing in school. I was very young – four or five. And I remember being simultaneously overwhelmed and in awe of how well-spoken and intellectual they were, and yet also alienated, because I was very shy and only felt I could express myself at the piano, which I had already started doing at that age.” With plans to spend this Thanksgiving with her family in New York, Sage is quick with a response when asked what she is most grateful for as this year draws to a close. “I’m thankful for so many things – the abundance of what we enjoy in this country that we really don’t recognize until you look around at so much of the rest of the world,” she says. “And, of course, I’m so grateful for having the opportunity to express myself though my music. None of my passions, and I have lot of them, consume me like composing music and performing live. With ‘Blue Roses’ being my 11th record, I approached it as if it were my first one – like it was a new start for me. While I was doing this album, I really dug into why I wanted to do this in the first place, and there was one simple reason: As a little kid I wanted to be a part of a community, to have something to say and have people notice what I had to say – like I did with my cousins around the Thanksgiving table. I didn’t know how to express myself like they did, but when I played the piano things happened and I found my voice. I really wanted to get back to that place, and I’m very grateful that I have.” ª For more information on Rachael Sage, her tour schedule and to order your copy of “Blue Roses,” click on www.rachaelsage.com.


Olive Kittridge – Miniseries, HBO – Premieres Sunday

November 2 at 9 p.m. (repeat showings, also OnDemand)

Based on the Pulitzer prize-winning novel by Elizabeth Strout, HBO will air this four-part drama over two consecutive nights. This rich drama tells the poignantly sweet, acerbically funny and devastatingly tragic story of a seemingly placid New England town wrought with illicit affairs, crime and tragedy, told through the lens of math teacher Olive, played by Frances McDormand, whose wicked wit and harsh demeanor mask a warm but troubled heart and staunch moral center. The series boasts a stellar cast including Richard Jenkins, Bill Murray, John Gallagher Jr., Peter Mullan, Rosemarie DeWitt and Zoe Kazan.

Worricker – New Miniseries, PBS – Premieres Sunday November 9 at 9 p.m. (part two airs November 16) The original “Page Eight,” written and directed by David Hare, aired on PBS in 2011 and followed the story of Johnny Worricker, an MI-5 agent who discovers a potentially explosive report that alleges the British Prime Minister has details about the U.S. government torturing prisoners in secret overseas prisons. A moral crisis ensues, Worricker’s boss and mentor figure dies, and he ends up leaving the country to destinations unknown to face an uncertain future. We now have two feature-length sequels – “Turks & Caicos” and “Salting The Battlefield” – with Bill Nighy reprising his role. He is joined by an all-star cast that includes Christopher Walken, Helena Bonham Carter, Ralph Fiennes, Rupert Graves, James Naughton, Felicity Jones and Judy Davis.

Northpole – New Movie, Hallmark Channel

– Premieres Saturday November 15 at 8 p.m. Real-life husband and wife Robert Wagner and Jill St. John are Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus whose magical home, Northpole, has grown into a huge city powered by the magic of holiday happiness around the world. Yet the city is in trouble, as people everywhere are too busy to enjoy festive time together. One of these stressed-out souls is Chelsea, played by Tiffani Thiessen, a single mom who is trying to get noticed at her new reporting job while helping her 10-year-old son Kevin, played by Max Charles, adjust to a new school. When he starts talking about real elves and actual sleigh rides, she worries that his imagination has gotten out of control. With a little added help from Kevin’s charming teacher, a mysterious elf and a gospel singer, Chelsea may learn that even chasing down the facts can lead to holiday magic.

The Best In November Television Viewing By Sandi Berg

Ascension – New Limited Series, SyFy Network – Premieres Monday November 24 at 9 p.m.

This new six-part miniseries stars Syfy stalwart Tricia Helfer of “Battlestar Galactica” fame and is aimed at both boomers and their kids. The intriguing premise revolves around a covert U.S. space mission in 1963 that sent hundreds of men, women and children on a century-long voyage aboard the starship Ascension to populate a new world. Nearly 50 years into the journey, as they approach the point of no return, the mysterious murder of a young woman causes the ship’s population to question the true nature of their mission. Also starring are Brian Van Holt, Andrea Roth, Jacqueline Byers, Brandon P. Bell, Tiffany Lonsdale and PJ Boudousque.

Tuned In To What’s On

One Christmas Eve – New Hallmark Hall of Fame, Hallmark Channel – Premieres Sunday November 30 at 9 p.m.

This original movie marks the first time that the Hallmark Hall of Fame will be presented on the Hallmark Channel. Ann Heche stars as a recently divorced mom who wants her two kids’ first Christmas without their father to be perfect. An unfortunate series of events makes it seem inevitable that this hope will not come to pass. Fortunately, however, things have a way of working out, and the family has its most memorable and heartwarming Christmas ever.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 37


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Let’s Get OUt A Preview of Upcoming Events for November/ December By Claire Yezbak Fadden

LA/Ventura November/December 2014

eNteRtAINMeNt SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 15 RACING DEMON The first play in David Hare’s trilogy dealing with British social institutions in the aftermath of Thatcherism focuses on four Church of England clergymen who are attempting to minister to an economically and racially mixed parish in South London’s Southwark diocese. L.A. Theatre Works at the James Bridges Theater, UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television, 235 Charles E. Young Drive, Los Angeles. Also Nov.16. $15-$60. (310) 8270889. latw.org. THE TEMPEST One of Shakespeare’s final works, “The Tempest” tells the tragicomic tale of Prospero, The Duke of Milan and his daughter, Miranda, who are marooned on an island by Prospero’s brother, Antonio. When Antonio’s ship is run aground by a massive storm, he and his comrades must navigate an isle rife with spirits and temptation. A Noise Within, 3352 East Foothill Blvd., Pasadena. Wed.-Sun. through Nov. 22. $34-$40. (626) 356-3100. anoisewithin.org. HANSEL AND GRETA (SIC) BLUEGRASS A new version of the classic story set in depression-era Kentucky features the rollicking bluegrass sounds of The Get Down Boys. 24th Street Theatre, 1117 West 24th St, Los Angeles. Also Nov. 16. $10-$24. (213) 745-6516. 24thstreet.org. MEMPHIS From the underground dance clubs of 1950s this musical bursts off the stage with explosive dancing, irresistible songs and a thrilling tale of fame and forbidden love. A radio DJ wants to change the world and a club singer who is ready for her big break. Inspired by actual events. Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, Fred Kavli Theatre, 2100 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. Wed.-Sun. through Nov. 23. $34-$74. (805) 449-2775. cabrillomusictheatre.com.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 15

DOWNTOWN ON ICE

Get your glide on at this holiday season at L.A.’s biggest outdoor community skating rink. Enjoy festive, free events including a holiday concert series, the Snoopy Showcase, deejay nights, a Winter Holiday Festival, championship skating exhibitions and broomball games. Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive, Los Angeles. Through Jan. 19. $9/one-hour skate session. $3 skate rental. (213) 624-4289. pershingsquareicerink.com.

time, Thelma desperately works to convince her daughter that life is worth living. Whitmore Eclectic at The Lost Studio, 130 South La Brea Ave. Los Angeles. Also Nov. 16. $30. (818) 826-3609. whitmoreeclectic.com. SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 16

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST A satire of the Victorian era, this is considered one of the best-loved comedies in the English literary canon. Wilde’s play savages the intricacies of manners and social mores of that time and is one of the first encapsulations of what we now know as gay sensibility, generally considered to be a cornerstone of theatrical work. A Noise Within, 3352 East Foothill Blvd., Pasadena. Wed.-Sun. through Nov. 22. $34-$40. (626) 356-3100. anoisewithin.org.

WEDDING BAND As World War I rages in Europe, two individuals wage their own battle against America’s racist color line, risking their lives for the right to marry. Alice Childress’ masterpiece tells the story of two people in love who yearn to be together as husband and wife, but are kept apart by society’s mores and laws prohibiting interracial marriage. The Antaeus Company, 5112 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. Thurs.-Sun. through Dec. 7. $30-$34. (818) 506-1983. antaeus.org.

‘NIGHT MOTHER A supposedly normal evening in the motherdaughter Cates household is shattered when 40-something Jessie announces to her mama that she plans to kill herself before the night is over. Over the course of 90-minutes, in real

BROOMSTICK Set in Appalachia and written entirely in verse, this charming and mesmerizing solo play stars Jenny O’Hara as a wacky, bizarre old woman, who just may be a witch, living in an odd little shack. A funny, poignant and spell-binding tale

of the magic of the human heart. The Fountain Theatre, 5060 Fountain Avenue, Los Angeles. Thurs.-Sun. through Nov. 30. $34. (323) 6631525. fountaintheatre.com. RENAISSANCE: REAWAKENED The Los Angeles Master Chorale, led by Artistic Director Grant Gershon, presents a program of soaring Renaissance gems, including William Byrd’s “Sing Joyfully,” Josquin des Prez’s “Ave nobilissima creatura,” John Taverner’s “Western Wind Mass,” Thomas Tallis’s “If Ye Love Me” and Orlande de Lassus’s “O Crux Splendidor,” among other 16th and 17th century works that helped lift mankind out of the Middle Ages. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. $29-$129. (213) 972-7282. lamc.org. WESTERN MUSIC ASSOCIATION JAM Musicians and cowboy poets perform stories and songs of the romantic days of the Old West, contemporary music of the American West and songs of the open range and the American cowboy. The Autry National Center, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Griffith Park, Los Angeles. $6-$10. (323) 667-2000. theautry.org.

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 18 STOP KISS Sara and Callie are walking through New York City’s West Village very late at night, when they share their first kiss. This leads to a vicious attack by an angry bystander, in which Sara is horribly injured. Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena. Tues.-Sun. through Nov. 30. Prices vary. (626) 356-7529. pasadenaplayhouse.org. WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 19 THE DANCE OF DEATH Written in 1900, “The Dance of Death” depicts the dissolution of a marriage between Edgar, an artillery captain, and Alice, a former actress. This couple, married for a quarter century, lives on a remote Nordic island – the ideal setting for feelings of claustrophobia and dysfunction. When Kurt, Alice’s cousin arrives in their manipulative marital landscape, the intensity escalates into a deadly battle of wills. A Noise Within, 3352 East Foothill Blvd., Pasadena. Through Nov. 23. $34-$40. (626) 356-3100. anoisewithin.org.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 39


CALeNDAR

November/December 2014 LA/Ventura

HERSHEY FELDER AS IRVING BERLIN The remarkable story of Irving Berlin, “America’s Composer.” From the depths of anti-Semitism in Czarist Russia, to New York’s Lower East Side, Berlin’s story epitomizes capturing the American dream. Featuring the composer’s most popular and enduring songs from “God Bless America” to “White Christmas” and beyond, Hershey Felder’s masterful creation of character and musical performance makes this an unforgettable journey. Gil Cates Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Los Angeles. Tues-.Sun. through Dec. 21. $37-$82. (310) 208-5454. geffenplayhouse.com. GLENDALE NOON CONCERTS Jacqueline Suzuki, violin; Susan Svrcek, piano. First Baptist Church of Glendale, 209 N. Louise St., Glendale. Free. (818) 242-2113. glendalenoonconcerts.blogspot.com. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 21 OTHELLO Disinformation, deceit and blunt ambition: Washington politics as usual? Talk show pundits? No, it’s Shakespeare’s classic tale of power, lust and jealousy. Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. Fri.Sun. through Dec. 14. $25-$30, (310) 4772055 x2. odysseytheatre.com. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 22 LAST COMIC STANDING TOUR Performances by the five finalists (Rocky LaPorte, Lachlan Patterson, Nikki Carr, Rod Man and Joe Machi) from season eight of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing.” Saban Theatre at BHPAC 8440 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills. $39-$75. (888) 645-5006. sabantheatre.org.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28

REINDEER ROMP

See real reindeer in Los Angeles, and enjoy a flurry of seasonal festivities and yuletide flourishes, plus occasional visits by Santa Claus. All activities, except Santa photos, are free with paid zoo admission. The Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Griffith Park, 5333 Zoo Dr., Los Angeles. Dates vary through Jan. 4. $14-$19. (323) 644-6042. lazoo.org.

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 23 WHAT THE BUTLER SAW In the consulting room of a private psychiatric clinic, Dr. Prentice (Paxton Whitehead) is interrupted by his wife just as he is about to seduce a beautiful, young woman who is applying for a job as a secretary. His botched efforts to conceal his actions spiral outrageously out of control Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum at the Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles. Through Dec. 21. $25-$70. (213) 628-2772. centertheatregroup.org. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 25 VENTURA BLUEGRASS JAMS Milano’s Italian Restaurant, Patio, Ventura Harbor Village, 1559 Spinnaker Dr., Ventura. (805) 658-0388. milanositalianrestaurant.com. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28 L.A. ZOO LIGHTS The Los Angeles Zoo changes its stripes from a daytime adventure to a nighttime wonderland aglow with animal-themed illumination. While zoo animals themselves are asleep, L.A. Zoo Lights depicts them in displays made of millions of lights that beckon guests to stroll through a section of the zoo where they’re surrounded by dazzling sights

40 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

and colors for a “don’t-miss” experience destined to become a beloved Los Angeles holiday tradition. The Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Griffith Park, 5333 Zoo Dr., Los Angeles. Dates vary through Jan. 4. $11$13. (323) 644-6042. lazoo.org.

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 3

I LOVE LUCY This live-on stage theatrical experience is filled with the sidesplitting antics of America’s favorite foursome: Lucy, Ricky, Fred and Ethel. It’s 1952, inside Desilu Studios. The audience is experiencing firsthand the filming of two “I Love Lucy” episodes. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, Cerritos. Also Nov. 29. $50-$70. (562) 4678818. cerritoscenter.com.

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 4

DECEMBER MONDAY, DECEMBER 1 PEPPERDINE JAZZ FESTIVAL Pepperdine University, Lindhurst Theatre, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. Free. arts.pepperdine.edu.

GLENDALE NOON CONCERTS First Baptist Church of Glendale, 209 N. Louise St., Glendale. Free. (818) 242-2113. glendalenoonconcerts.blogspot.com.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST This classic musical love story is filled with unforgettable characters, lavish sets and costumes and dazzling production numbers including “Be Our Guest” and the beloved title song. Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, Fred Kavli Theatre, 2100 Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks. Through Dec. 7. Prices vary. (805) 449-2775. theaterleague.com. CULVER CITY DOWNTOWN HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTING See Santa Claus as he makes a very special visit from the North Pole. There will be hot cider, hot cocoa, cookies and other festive treats to make everyone feel merry; performances by local choirs; and appearances by the mayor and city council members. Downtown locations:

Town Plaza, Downtown Culver City (Culver Blvd. and Van Buren Pl., Culver City. Free. downtownculvercity.com. CHRISTMAS CONCERT Pepperdine Choir and Orchestra. Pepperdine University, Smothers Theatre, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. $10. arts.pepperdine.edu. FRIDAY, DECEMBER 5 A CHRISTMAS CAROL Charles Dickens’ time-honored tale of forgiveness is a timeless holiday classic. Dickens’ masterpiece about the redemptive and transformative power of love is matched by evocative original music by composer Ego Plum. A Noise Within, 3352 East Foothill Blvd., Pasadena. Through Dec. 23. $48-plus. (626) 356-3100. anoisewithin.org. TOWER OF POWER Delivering their unique brand of music since 1968, the band’s leader and founding member, Emilio Castillo, has labeled their sound “Urban Soul Music.” Saban Theatre at BHPAC 8440 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills. $35-$75. (888) 645-5006. sabantheatre.org.


CALeNDAR

November/December 2014 LA/Ventura mash-up of music, dance, technology and silent film that offers a fresh take on this timeless tale. Original songs and powerful live performances blend with the 1925 silent film to create a show-stopping-spectacle that brings the Lon Chaney classic to threedimensional, high-decibel life. Los Angeles Theatre Center, 514 S Spring St., Los Angeles. Also Dec. 13. $40-$75. (844) 869-7625. voxlumiere.com. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 13 COLORS OF CHRISTMAS The lively annual tradition returns with Peabo Bryson, Taylor Dane, Jennifer Holliday and Ruben Studdard in a program full of holiday cheer and seasonal favorites. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, Cerritos. $55-$100. (562) 467-8818. cerritoscenter.com.

eXHIBItIONs

BLUE MOON DIAMOND

Cut from a 29.6-carat rough, the internally flawless gem is fashioned in a cushion-cut shape at a noteworthy 12 carats. Diamonds with a strong saturated color represent only a tiny percentage of all natural diamonds – and only a minute percentage of all natural color diamonds are blue. The stone was found in a mine northeast of Pretoria, South Africa, known for discovering some of the most recognized blue and other color diamonds in the world. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Gem Vault, 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles. Through Jan. 6. $9-$12. (213) 763-3466.nhm.org.

AN IRISH CHRISTMAS In an enchanting presentation of Ireland’s culture, history, and holiday customs, the show mingles ancient traditions with the modern artistry of the country’s finest performers. The evening of merriment is filled with seasonal songs, Celtic music, lively storytelling and spirited dancing. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, Cerritos. $35-$65. (562) 467-8818. cerritoscenter.com. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 6 WREATH MAKING Make a beautiful wreath from natural materials for your winter decorating. Registration deadline is Nov. 29. Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Dr., La Cañada Flintridge. $40 includes materials. (818) 9494200. descansogardens.org.

Harbor Village, 1559 Spinnaker Dr., Ventura. (805) 658-0388. milanositalianrestaurant.com. WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 10 SLEEPING BEAUTY An updated version of the classic story featuring family-friendly magic, a comedic twist and contemporary music. Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena. Tues.-Sun. through Jan. 4. Prices vary. (626) 356-7529. pasadenaplayhouse.org. THURSDAY, DECEMBER 11

FREE FIRST SUNDAY Free admission to the Museum of Ventura County including its galleries and any special events. Museum of Ventura County, 100 East Main St., Ventura. First Sunday of each month. (805) 653-0323. venturamuseum.org.

CYRANO DE BERGERAC For over a century this soaring story of passion, honor, romance and the heartbreak of unrequited love has celebrated the optimism and resilience of the human spirit like no other. Hamish Linklater stars as Cyrano, France’s greatest swordsman and a distinguished poet whose many talents and whimsical aptitude for the spoken word are overshadowed by an attribute that is iconic, outrageous and gigantic - his nose. L.A. Theatre Works at the James Bridges Theater, UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television, 235 Charles E. Young Dr., Los Angeles. Through Dec. 14. $15-$60. (310) 827-0889. latw.org.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 9

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 12

VENTURA BLUEGRASS JAMS Milano’s Italian Restaurant, Patio, Ventura

VOX LUMIERE “The Phantom of the Opera”: An explosive

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 7

BRUCE DAVIDSON/PAUL CAPONIGRO “Two American Photographers in Britain and Ireland.” The exhibition features approximately 150 works by the photographers to examine the work of two master photographers as they trained American eyes on enduring landscapes and changing cultural scenes. Huntington Library, Art Collection and Botanical Gardens, MaryLou and George Boone Gallery, 1151 Oxford Road, San Marino. Through March 9, 2015. $12-$15. (626) 405-2100. huntington.org. KIM STRINGFELLOW’S JACKRABBIT HOMESTEAD Through photography and audio interviews, this exhibition details how the desire to flee the urban sprawl of Los Angeles and stake a claim in the fierce California desert resulted in both a collection of derelict cabins in the 1950s and the reclamation of the land for a burgeoning artistic community today. The exhibition also explores issues of land use and ecology that continue to complicate the settlement of the arid West. The exhibition also explores the commercial promotion of homesteading alongside the reality of life in the desert through primary sources including vintage magazines and audio interviews with area residents. The Autry National Center, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Griffith Park, Los Angeles. Through Aug. 23, 2015. $6-$10. (323) 667-2000. theautry.org. PRIDE AND JOY “The Texas Blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan” With his astonishingly accomplished guitar playing, Stevie Ray Vaughan ignited the blues revival of the 1980s and bridged the gap between blues and rock like no other artist had since the late 1960s. His tragic death in 1990 at age 35 cut short a brilliant career in blues and American rock ‘n’ roll, just as he was on the brink of superstardom. Exhibition includes: several guitars, including Vaughan’s “Number One” Fender Stratocaster, early family photographs, original stage outfits, including Vaughan’s famous Indian headdress and handwritten lyrics. The Grammy Museum at L.A. Live, Fourth Floor, 800 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles. Through July 2015. $12-$13. (213) 765-6803. grammymuseum.org. BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE

This exhibition brings together the works of Ellen Brooks, Jo Ann Callis and Eileen Cowin. Long known for using photography to narrative ends, Brooks, Callis and Cowin, who emerged simultaneously in 1970s Southern California, challenge both the role of women and their chosen medium in multi-layered, provocative images. Pasadena Museum of Art, 490 East Union Street, Pasadena. Through Jan. 11. $5-$7. Wed.-Sun. (626) 568-3665. pmcaonline.org. ROUTE 66: THE ROAD AND THE ROMANCE Learn the facts and fiction surrounding the most famous road in America through more than 200 artifacts that trace the history of the road and its impact on American popular culture. See the oldest existing Route 66 shield along with vintage gas pumps and neon art. Read from the pages of John Steinbeck’s original handwritten manuscript for “The Grapes of Wrath” and Jack Kerouac’s typewriter scroll of “On the Road.” Be moved by Dorothea Lange’s powerful photographs and Woody Guthrie’s Martin guitar, along with countless objects adorned with the Route 66 moniker or acquired along the route. The Autry National Center, Gamble Firearms Gallery, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Griffith Park, Los Angeles. Through Jan. 4. $6-$10. (323) 6672000. theautry.org. MEXICAN-AMERICAN BASEBALL IN VENTURA COUNTY Baseball was a way to build unity, strengthen friendships, hone skills and to forget - for nine innings - that they were different. It became a source of pride for the players as well as the residents of the barrios and ultimately was the great equalizer. This exhibit focuses on the American sport that saturated communities across the nation including the Mexican barrios of Ventura County. The exhibit features artifacts, photographs and stories from local communities. Museum of Ventura County, 100 E. Main St., Ventura. Through Nov. 30. $3-$4. (805) 653-0323. venturamuseum.org. ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT Selections from the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation. This exhibition spotlights a diverse group of contemporary artists who comment on our relationship to the natural world. It features works by artists such as Ed Ruscha, Joe Goode, Peter Alexander, Chuck Arnoldi, and many younger talents. Pepperdine University, Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art, 24255 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu. Tues.-Sun. through Nov. 30. Free. arts. pepperdine.edu. CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ The Sounds of Laurel Canyon 1965-1977: Explore the story of the Los Angeles rock scene from the mid-1960s to mid-1970s, a golden age of music, creativity and culture. The Grammy Museum at L.A. Live, Special Exhibits Gallery, 800 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles. Through Nov. 30. $12-$13. (213) 765-6803. grammymuseum.org. Get the Word Out. E-mail your announcements to Claire Fadden, cfadden@lifeafter50.com. Include a brief description, location, date, time, cost, phone and website. Submission does not guarantee publication. Deadline for the December/January calendar is November 1.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 41


Traveling Around…The Corner…And The World

A Pilgrimage To Plymouth

The land of the Pilgrims offers visitors a look at the courage and faith of those who founded New England’s first colony By Max Andrews

F

or some, it would be of monumental significance to spend December 25 in the central West Bank Palestinian city of Bethlehem, July 4 in Philadelphia, Downtown New York on September 11 or Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor on December 7. For many Americans, a similar significance would be found in spending Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts, where the disembarkation of William Bradford and the Mayflower Pilgrims who founded Plymouth Colony has been memorialized. While the focal point of that memorialization is Plymouth Rock, on which, legend says, the Pilgrims first set foot in 1620, there are no historical documented references to such a landing. The rock itself is not mentioned in either “Mourt’s Relation,” senior Pilgrim leader Edward Winslow’s account of the landing, nor in Bradford’s journal “Of Plymouth Plantation,” the most complete and accepted journal of the story of the Pilgrims and the colony they founded. The first known documented reference to Plymouth Rock was recorded in 1715, in the town boundary, that simply records it as “a great rock.” While local legends had swirled around Plymouth that the rock had been the Pilgrims’ landing site for many years, the story didn’t receive much traction outside of Massachusetts until over a century had past. By the latter part of the 18th century, the legend surrounding the Pilgrims’ arrival had become rock solid with many Plymothians and, in 1774, a group of preservationists made the decision to have the rock removed and put on display in the town square. While attempting to remove the rock by a team of oxen, it was broken in half. Faced with the prospect of doing it further damage, only the upper portion of the rock was removed for display. As the years went by and the legend grew, souvenir seekers caused further damage to the rock by chipping away pieces. For that reason, it was moved to a secured area enclosed by an iron fence at the 42 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Pilgrim Hall Museum in 1834. During that move, it was again damaged, falling off its conveyance and obtaining its distinctive crack. As for the bottom part of the rock, The Pilgrim Society acquired it in 1859 and, eight years later, a canopy structure was completed at the Plymouth Harbor waterfront to house it. Poor design planning caused the rock to be too large for the canopy and the rock was purposely reduced in size with pieces chipped off and sold as souvenirs. Finally, in 1880, the upper chunk and lower sections of the rock were cemented together and “1620” was permanently carved into the surface. Plymouth Rock was again moved during the celebration of Plymouth’s tercentenary in 1921 to its final resting place – under a new canopy that had been built in Pilgrim Memorial State Park, the smallest, and yet one of the most heavily visited parks in the Massachusetts parks system. Though battered by time and mired in murky legend, Plymouth Rock remains a powerful symbol and tribute to the courage and faith of the 102 Mayflower passengers who founded the first New England colony and is visited by nearly a million people annually.

Welcome Aboard

Just a short walk from Plymouth Rock, the Mayflower II, a replica of the ship that brought the first Pilgrims to Massachusetts, is anchored at State Pier. The details of the ship, from the solid oak timbers and tarred-hemp rigging, to the wood and horn lanterns and hand-colored maps, have been meticulously recreated to provide a better understanding of what the original vessel was like. Visitors are welcomed aboard the ship, where they learn about the Mayflower’s voyage while exploring

the cramped quarters. The ship is open from the end of March until the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

From Recreation To The Real Thing

After visiting the Mayflower II, a drive over to 75 Court Street takes visitors to the Pilgrim Hall Museum that houses artifacts of the actual Mayflower. Among its treasures are William Bradford’s Bible, Myles Standish’s sword, the cradle of New England’s first-born child, and the earliest sampler made in America. The museum also contains a superb collection of American history paintings, ranging from Henry Sargent’s heroic “Landing of the Pilgrims” to Jennie Brownscombe’s “First Thanksgiving.” The museum is open every month except January.

A Commemorating Colossus

No visit to Plymouth would be complete without a visit to the National Monument to the Forefathers, an 81-foot granite edifice that memorializes a Victorian-era interpretation of the pursuits that motivated the Pilgrims to leave England and start their own colony. Under construction from 1859 to 1888, the monument’s main pedestal features Faith surround by four seated figures representing the principles on which the Pilgrims based the Commonwealth: Freedom, Morality, Law and Education. ª


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You won’t mind this short drive!

Guess who’s coming to Life After 50 on December 1? Guide book author and travel TV host

Rick Steves

America’s most respected authority on European Travel Rick Steves advocates smart, affordable,

perspective-broadening travel. As host and writer of the popular public television series Rick Steves’ Europe, and best-selling author of over 50 European travel books, he encourages Americans to travel as “temporary locals.” In the spirit of always improving our product, Rick’s column will appear monthly in Life After 50’s travel section beginning December 1

to advertise in our travel classified section contact Landra@Lifeafter50.com for more information on Rick Steves visit www.ricksteves.com for inquiries or information call 310-822-1629 x 121 • www.Lifeafter50.com November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 45


And Finally... The Bookworm’s Best A Life After 50 book review

by Terri “The Bookworm” Schlichenmeyer

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End By Atul Gawande

L

ast night’s dessert was spectacular. As with many finales, that perfect ending to a perfect meal left you satisfied for the rest of the evening. It was, like some conclusions – a little nightcap, a final chapter, a last dance, the lingering notes of a favorite song – a thing to savor. Can the end of life be so sweet? Perhaps; there are steps to make it so, as you’ll see in the new book “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” by Atul Gawande. The average lifespan for North Americans has been increasing. Modern medicine has taught doctors how to save lives but, until relatively recently, it didn’t teach them how to deal with life’s end. That, opines Gawande, is unfortunate. In many cases, doctors feel extremely uncomfortable discussing the end of life with their patients. That often leads to protocol that precludes quality of life when there isn’t much life left to have. We’ve come to this point, this reluctance to face death, because we’re no longer familiar with it. A century ago, people died at home, often after self-treating their ailments. “Hospitals were not places to get better,” writes Gawande. “Medicine back then usually had little impact on life or death. When penicillin, sulfa, and other drugs became available, however, hospitals became places for cure. Nursing homes were for people who needed additional care before going home.” But medicine isn’t the only thing that’s changed: aging has, too. We live longer, we expect our parts to last longer, and we’re surprised when health fails. But does that make aging a medical problem? To a geriatrician, it might be – but Gawande believes there aren’t enough doctors who specialize in geriatrics and, without them, we have a lessened chance to sidestep problems that could diminish the quality of life in later years. He writes: “The elderly don’t dread death so much as they dread the losses leading up to it: loss of independence, of thought, of friends.” But long before that happens, Gawande strongly recommends, there are conversations that need to be had; namely, what treatments should or should not be done and how far a person would want a physician to go to prolong life. Let me tell you how much I loved this book: I can usually whip through a book of this length in a night. “Being Mortal” took me three. Part of the reason for that is that Gawande offers lingering food for thought in practically every paragraph – whether he writes about the history of aging and dying, one of his patients, or someone in his own family. I just couldn’t stop thinking about the points he made with his anecdotes and with this information, how it could radicalize our lives, and how it fits for just about everybody. We are, after all, not getting any younger. I think if you’re a caretaker for an elderly relative or if you ever plan on growing old yourself and want to maintain quality of life, this book is an absolute mustread. I can assure you, “Being Mortal” is informative to the very end. “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” by Atul Gawande, 2014, Henry Holt, $26.00, 304 pages. The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer, who lives on a hill with two dogs and more than 12,000 books. You can read all of Terri’s book reviews, updated weekly, at www.lifeafter50.com. Just click on “Entertainment” and then “Book Reviews.”

A Look Back

I

n November of 1964, Americans were lining up at theaters nationwide to catch the latest James Bond thriller, “Goldfinger.” In the third of what would become the neverending cinematic franchise based on Ian Fleming’s British secret agent 007, Sean Connery may have been the film’s star, but the buzz and excitement of the feature surrounded actress Shirley Eaton, who played Jill Masterson, Goldfinger’s aide-de-camp. Caught and seduced by Bond, whom she ultimately betrays, Masterson met her demise by “skin suffocation” after being completely covered in gold paint. Although her role was small, the nude and gilded Eaton as Masterson became the film’s most iconic image – so much so, she graced the November 6, 1964 cover of Life magazine in all her golden glory. Today, at the age of 77, Eaton, has just completed her latest book, “Shirley Eaton Bond’s Golden Girl “Her Reflections,” (Shirley Eaton, 2014). A beautifully illustrated book, that covers all the actress’s 29 films, personally signed copies are exclusively available by clicking on www.shirleyeaton.net. 46 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Just A Thought Before We Go

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”

– John Fitzgerald Kennedy


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November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 47


The Arts connect heaven & earth

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A Shen Yun performance features 100 world class performers, over 400 sets of exquisite hand-made costumes, a unique orchestra blending East and West, and dazzling animated backdrops – creating a spectacular performance beyond your imagination. Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today, where traditional culture has been devastated. Yet the nonprofit Shen Yun has become an international phenomenon, bringing the wonders of 5,000 years of civilization to millions across the globe. Experience divine culture! Experience Shen Yun!

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“Demonstrating the highest realm in arts, Shen Yun inspires the performing arts world.” — Chi Cao, principal dancer with the Birmingham Royal Ballet

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ªCover Profile ª

Celebrating the Season With

Robert Wagner and Jill St. John

The legendary Hollywood couple shares insight on their lives, holiday celebrations, what they are grateful for, and their upcoming Hallmark film

Story by David Laurell • Photos by Greg Gorman

H

e is the handsome actor who has been a mainstay on the big screen, television and stage for over half a century. She is the beautiful actress who, since the age of six, has performed with a Who’s Who of Hollywood’s elite and is best-known for her role as Bond girl Tiffany Case in the 1971 feature film, “Diamonds Are Forever.” Together, Robert “RJ” Wagner and Jill St. John are a couple who, next spring, will celebrate a quartercentury of marriage and this month will star as Mr. 54 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

and Mrs. Santa Claus in the Hallmark Channel’s holiday movie, “Northpole.” The first full-length, original holiday film produced through the partnership of the Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Cards, Inc., “Northpole” is an adventure that takes viewers into the magical world of Santa’s enchanting hometown. A part of the Hallmark Channel’s “Countdown to Christmas” presentation, “Northpole” chronicles a reporter who, with the help of her son, his teacher, and a clever young elf, attempts to recapture the happiness of the

holiday season and save Christmas after the world has begun to lose faith. Along with Wagner and St. John, this holiday special, which will premiere on November 15, also stars Tiffani Thiessen of “Beverly Hills, 90210,” Josh Hopkins from “Cougar Town,” Bailee Madison of “Trophy Wife” and Max Charles who provided the voice of Sherman in DreamWorks Animation’s production of “Mr. Peabody & Sherman.” “RJ and I were excited about doing ‘Northpole’ because we thought it would be fun to play Mr.


and Mrs. Claus,” says St. John as she and RJ relax at their Aspen, Colorado home during an early snowfall. “But we were most interested in doing this film because it was being done by Hallmark. We both felt there would be no one who would be a better choice to do a Christmas film than Hallmark.” Wagner agrees. “That was really what attracted us to doing the film,” he chimes in. “It has a wonderful cast. Tiffani does a great job, and it’s a magical film that sends a message people are in need of right now. Americans are really in need of regaining some faith, and that’s the film’s message. It’s very hopeful and cheerful.” Filmed last winter in Montreal, both Wagner and St. John say they were amused and fascinated to be working with a handful of characters that, in spite of their lengthy careers, neither of them had ever worked with before – reindeer. “They used real reindeer, and the filming was taking place during the time they shed their antlers,” St. John explains. “They were having a terrible time finding reindeer with beautiful intact antlers, so some of them had to have antlers glued on.” Wagner also reveals some behind-the-scenes

reindeer secrets. “There was this scene in which they needed a reindeer to turn his head and look at Tiffani,” he says. “We watched them do it and it was amazing – that they could get this reindeer to turn his head just when they needed him.” St. John bursts out in laughter. “We were so impressed that they had trained this reindeer to do that, until we noticed they had tied fishing line to its antlers and would then just gently pull on it when they needed its head to turn.” Shortly before the couple were scheduled to leave Aspen for the world premiere screening of “Northpole” at The Grove in Los Angeles, they took some time to visit with Life After 50 and share their thoughts on the holiday season, how they keep in such great shape and, with Thanksgiving right around the corner, what they are most grateful for. We began our visit be asking the couple how they came to call Aspen home. Jill St. John (JSJ): I’ve always been attracted to Aspen because of its physical beauty. The mountains are in my blood and I just love it here. Most people don’t know this, but I’ve lived here for 50 years. I just love the culture and intellectual stimulation this town offers.

Robert Wagner (RJ): I first started coming to Aspen in the 1940s to ski, and then, when Jill and I started going together, I began to spend a lot of time here. It is a very special place, as anyone who has ever been here knows, so it’s easy to fall in love with. After we got married, we really made this a “his-hers-andours” home. Life After 50 (LA50): What is a typical day for you two? JSJ: We love to be outside. RJ: We have a German shepherd, Max, and we love to go for walks. Jill is also an avid gardener and we have beautiful flowers and trees around our home that she tends to. It’s like living in a park. LA50: RJ, you refer to your home and Aspen as being a “special place.” It was evident by reading your latest book [“You Must Remember This: Life and Style in Hollywood’s Golden Age” (Viking Adult, 2014)] that you have a very special affection for places. In your book, you reminisce about so many great places that are now gone. If you could have one wish filled this Christmas and „ November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 55


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get just one of them back, what would it be? RJ: Chasen’s! JSJ: [laughing] That is exactly what I knew you would say. And I would say the same. RJ: You talk about special places – it was so great. It was a fabulous place with wonderful food and you never knew, on any given evening, who you would be seeing there. LA50: Old Hollywood royalty, a former U.S president… JSJ: Right, and on many nights, it may have been both! LA50: Okay, so with the subject of food being on the table so to speak, Jill, you have become as well known for your culinary prowess as you have for your acting skills. JSJ: Well, I am a cooker, that’s for sure. LA50: How did that come about – having such an interest in cooking? RJ: [laughing] Oh, this is a good story. JSJ: It all stemmed from my mother, God rest her soul, who was not a very good cook. Because she wasn’t a good cook, when I was very young, I wouldn’t eat. So she got worried about me and brought me to see a child psychiatrist. The doctor told her to put an alarm clock on the table, set it for an hour, and then make me sit there until I ate. And that’s what she did. But it didn’t work. I would just sit there doing my time knowing, eventually, I’d get to go and she would take the food away. Then one day, I was watching her cook. I was probably six or so, and as I watched her I thought: “I could do that.” So I did. I started cooking on my own. At first, it was just scrambled eggs and frozen vegetables, but as time went on, I really started reading recipes and making things for myself – which I loved. So, that solved my eating problem and, since then, I have studied cooking in France, I’ve written cookbooks, was USA Today’s first food editor and cooked on “Good Morning America.” So cooking is a huge part of my life, although I’m trying everything I can to get out of cooking tonight. LA50: What is the best thing she makes, RJ? RJ: Everything she does is marvelous. She actually cooks very simply and it always depends on what she finds in the market. JSJ: I never go to the market with a list. I go and see what’s fresh – what hits my fancy. LA50: And do you have a specialty? JSJ: Even though I went to school in France, my particular fondness is Italian food. RJ: And she does it great! LA50: So, with Jill being such a great cook, how do you two stay in such great shape? JSJ: I’ll tell you how. I cook healthy foods. I am a believer in moderation. I like to know that I can have everything – anything I want – but just not all at once and in small portions. LA50: Do you also maintain any sort of an exercise regimen? RJ: We do. As I mentioned before, we do spend a lot of time outside and walk quite a bit. We also work out three times a week with a trainer. JSJ: And in the summer, we swim in the pool almost every day. LA50: Okay, enough of that. Let’s get back to the food! I’m guessing that, as a cook, Thanksgiving is pretty special around here. JSJ: Well, this year it will be very special. All the kids are coming here to Aspen and we’ll have a full house – so overflowing that some will have to stay at a hotel. And this year, I have done the smartest thing I have ever done for Thanksgiving – I hired a caterer to do Thanksgiving dinner [laughs.] I will probably do a couple of the side dishes, but this year I decided I’m not cooking for 14 people! LA50: So I’m guessing among those 14 will be the grandchildren. How old are they now? RJ: They are now eight and two. JSJ: Being a grandmother is the best. We talk to them almost every day. We get pictures every day. They are such a joy.


Job #: PAL_1424485

Title: 11/3 Senior Print

Element: Life After 50 Magazine

Date In: 09-30-2014

ROUND: R3

Due Date: 10-28-2014

“Northpole” starring Robert Wagner and Jill St. John as Santa and Mrs. Claus will premiere on the Hallmark Channel November 15 at 8 p.m.

S E N I O R R E W A R D S P RO G R A M

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LA50 Care to offer any grandparenting advice? JSJ: Yes, spoil the hell out of them!

Color: CMYK

Upload:

LA50: Does the eight-year-old have any concept of what legends his grandparents are? JSJ: Not a clue. To him, we’re just Nona and Nono. It was so cute, we were visiting them in L.A. recently, and my grandson asked me why people called me Jill. So I told him that was my name and then he started to call me Jill. Then I told him that he should really call me Nona because he is special. I said that everyone could call me Jill, but that only he could call me Nona, which is Italian for grandmother, although, we’re not Italian. I kind of wanted to be called “Grandma.” I just really wanted to own the whole grandma thing. But the Nona and Nono thing kind of started because he started calling RJ that – because he was always saying “no,no, no, no” to everything he was doing [laughs].

CD: Gary Kelly

CD: Romeo Cervas

AD: Paul Masatani

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LA50: Speaking of spoiling kids, Christmas will be here before you know it. What will you be doing? RJ: We always go to California to be with the kids and watch them open their presents. APPROVAL

JSJ: It has become a tradition to get out of here because Aspen gets way too busy at Christmas.

OK

LA50: Anything on either of your Christmas lists you would like the other to know about? JSJ: I don’t need a thing. I have everything anyone could hope for – everyone in the family is healthy. That’s all I care about. CHANGES

AE: George Miranda

PM: Les Williams

Notes: 1/2 PG 4C

RJ: That’s the biggest present we could ever hope for.

APPROVAL

LA50: It is the time of year when we all are more attuned to the things we are grateful for. Along with the health, what are you two most grateful for this year? JSJ: I’m grateful to live in this country and be an American. I take that very seriously and it means a lot to me. I live my life in gratitude, for everything we have. I am so aware of it – how fortunate we are. I’m just grateful for every day I wake up.

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OK CHANGES

RJ: I agree with that. I think I am even more aware of my gratitude for being an American when we look around and see the state the world is in today. And Jill is right when she says she lives in gratitude. We both do. One of the things we do very regularly is to say thank you to one another. Just thank you for giving each other a wonderful life. We have both been blessed with each other – with wonderful lives and family. JSJ: We are lucky just to be here. There’s an old saying: Old age is a privilege not granted to everyone. I consider getting older to be a privilege – a great gift. And we’re also both very grateful to still be working.

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LA50: So is the word “retirement” even a part of your vocabulary? SJS and RJ (in unison): No! JSJ: It never even enters the picture.

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“Must-Know” Information for Choosing Your 2015 Medicare Plan Open enrolment season is upon us and this year it poses more questions than ever

T

is the season for millions of Americans 65 and over to start thinking about Medicare enrollment and contemplating which plan is best for them. While posing a conundrum every year, Medicare eligibles face more questions than ever this year. For example, those re-enrolling need to ask if their current plan has lived up to its promises or if there are better options. In addition, baby boomers, perhaps overwhelmed at the thought of simply being old enough for Medicare, must come to grips with an entirely new system and face questions they may not have considered when their employers provided health plan options. While challenging, by understanding the basics, doing a bit of homework and asking yourself honestly what is best, you can more easily select the best plan and be assured your choice will provide better health and value throughout the year.

What You Must Know

Medicare is a form of health insurance intended to provide basic coverage for people 65 and older, as well as those with disabilities. It was never meant to cover 100 percent of an individual’s healthcare costs, but it does cover many healthcare needs for most patients. Your age determines your eligibility for Medicare (in most cases) so it’s important to have dates and deadlines in mind when approaching age 65, because Medicare limits your ability to add or drop coverage after official enrollment periods. The only time Medicare is not contingent upon your age is if you have certain disabilities or diseases.

Special to Life After 50 by Ronald Bolding, president and CEO, Inter Valley Health Plan

How Do You Get Started?

Contact your local Social Security office to enroll in Medicare. You can find locations by clicking on www.socialsecurity.gov and use the office locator tool. It takes about four to six weeks to complete the process, so factor that into your timing. You can also find information and tools at www.medicare.gov. Some Medicare Advantage plans also have local offices and will help walk you through the process. If you receive Social Security or enrolled online or in person, you will be automatically enrolled and will receive your Medicare card three months prior to your 65th birthday. As important as it is to understand what Medicare covers, the same goes for what it doesn’t cover. Although Medicare comprises a wide range of health services, there are gaps to keep in mind. Medicare does not cover dependents, individuals under the age of 65 (unless they fit one of the categories noted), routine vision, hearing, dental care or medical services outside the U.S.

What’s New?

You may have been hearing a lot about Medicare over the last year in conjunction with the Affordable Care Act, or what some call Obamacare. Despite some dire predictions and handwringing, it’s important to note that the Affordable Care Act will NOT impact Medicare recipients. Medicare is NOT part of the “new” insurance marketplace. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misunderstanding and just plain misinformation about what the Affordable Care Act means to Medicare. In reality, it’s a myth that existing Medicare benefits will be reduced. In fact, the new rules protect the guaranteed Medicare coverage and provide new coverage options. For example, you now get more preventive services for less money. Medicare now covers preventive screenings such as mammograms and colonoscopies without charging you a coinsurance or deductible.

Know You’re A, B,C and Ds

A very common question among Medicare-eligibles are the meaning of the letters. Unlike traditional health insurance, Medicare coverage is divided into „ November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 59


Medicare doesn’t, such as copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. However, a MediGap plan is NOT a Medicare Advantage plan – a Medigap policy is different; it only supplements your original Medicare benefits – it doesn’t provide any of the additional benefits that many Medicare Advantage plans offer. Medigap policies can’t work with Medicare Advantage plans. If you have a Medigap policy and join a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C), you may want to drop your Medigap policy. Your Medigap policy can’t be used to pay your Medicare Advantage plan copayments, deductibles, and premiums. If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, it’s illegal for anyone to sell you a Medigap policy unless you’re switching back to original Medicare.

What’s Best For You?

four parts: A, B, C, and D. Each letter designates a specific portion of healthcare coverage. Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, nursing home, hospice care and some home health. Part B helps pay bills for physicians and outpatient services. It also covers doctors’ services in the hospital and most medicines administered while at the doctor’s office. Part C consists of a variety of private health plans, known as Medicare Advantage plans that cover Part A, B and often Part D services in one package. And Part D helps to subsidize prescription drug coverage.

Traditional Medicare Vs. Medicare Advantage

Because Medicare doesn’t cover everything, many people choose to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, also known as a Medicare HMO. These types of plans give you all the benefits of original Medicare (Parts A and B), plus offering extra benefits such as prescription drugs, wellness programs, and gym memberships. The annual enrollment period for Medicare Advantage plans runs from October 15 to December 7, 2014. During this time, those who are 65 and over, permanently disabled, or just looking to switch plans, should research their options to choose the best health plan to meet their individual needs. Any changes made during this time will take effect January 1, 2015. There are some important things to know about Medicare Advantage plans. Prescriptions may be one of your biggest ongoing healthcare costs. However, original Medicare does not cover prescription drugs unless you pay extra for Part D. Most Medicare Advantage plans, on the other hand, include drug coverage as a standard benefit. Original Medicare has no out-of-pocket maximum. You pay for a portion of the cost of services you use and keep paying for as long as you use those services. By law, Medicare Advantage plans must limit your out-of-pocket cost to a maximum of no more than $6,700 per year. About half of all healthcare plans actually have a cap of $3,400 or less. Original Medicare does not cover dental, vision, and chiropractic care – if you are interested in those services, consider a Medicare Advantage plan.

MediGap Or Supplement Plans?

MediGap (also known as a supplement plan) can also help pay for things 60 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

To choose the plan best-suited for your individual needs, you need to know the basics and then ask yourself these important questions: * Does the plan offer the basic coverage you need, such as physician and specialists visits, hospitalization, emergency coverage or a gym membership? Then ask yourself which of those features is important – maybe gym membership is not key for you – but an emergency room copayment is. * How much will it cost? Price is, of course, an overriding concern for most people today, so look at your budget and the cost of the plan carefully. Original Medicare pays 80 percent of the cost of most services, while you pay the remaining 20 percent. That means if you have a $10,000 hospital bill, you will have to pay $2,000 out of pocket. With a Medicare Advantage plan, your Plan B costs for services like doctor visits can be free or, with some plans, could range up to $25 a visit. Read carefully; some plans may charge copays for certain types of visits such as specialists. Understanding costs makes it easy to compare and budget – an important step if you are new to Medicare. * What costs are your responsibility? Pay attention to the so-called donut hole when it comes to your prescriptions. Medicare Part D covers all covered prescription medications up to $2,960 per year, and it pays for medications above the annual out-of-pocket limit of $4,700. Between these amounts, you must pay a portion of the cost. This is often referred to as the “donut hole” or the coverage gap. In 2015, your copay is 45 percent for brand name drugs and 65 percent for generic drugs. However, these copays are now lower than they were in the past and will continue to fall until 2020. At that time, you will pay just 25 percent for both brand name and generic medications in the donut hole. These discounts are applied automatically, when you check out at your pharmacy. You don’t have to do anything to enjoy these savings. They are automatic. * Is your doctor in the network? Is there a chance he or she could be cut from the network? This is an important issue to examine. Some plans have been cutting doctors out of their network to save money. Some may have a narrow network in some areas, but not others. Check carefully to see if your doctor is in the network and check to see if your plan has been cutting providers; they may do so again. Also, remember to look for plans that do allow you to go outside the network in specific instances (e.g., travel, emergency care) and check pricing carefully to ensure there are no surprises. * Where is the plan located? Do they know my community – the best hospitals and doctors? Nothing is more concerning to a plan member than to call customer service to ask a question and end up speaking to a representative located cross country who knows nothing about the community where providers are located. If local knowledge is important to you, look for a plan that is located in your area, or that at least has a service office near you. * Does the plan offer personal service and care managers? Coordinating care, finding specialists, even getting to an appointment can be complicated for many older adults, especially those who no longer drive. Care managers can help you better navigate the complex health world of today and can provide much-needed assistance including helping you find out about resources in your community that can address your needs. * What extras does the plan offer and are they important to you? Some plans seek to become active members of their communities and to become a resource for their members. They aren’t a corporation thousands of miles away – but consider themselves a neighbor. They may offer special programs such as educational classes, exercise classes such as Yoga and Tai Chi or even a book club or lessons in using smart phones and social media. Such programs are important to many Medicare eligibles, especially those who have lost spouses or who have family who live out of the area. If you feel such support would be important, be sure to factor this into your decision. * What if this is your first time to sign up? If you are just turning 65, you’ll want to make sure you have a solid understanding of Medicare and look at a lot of the same issues and features as anyone shopping for a new plan. However, a


big mistake many first-timers make is to only consider their health status today. Make sure you consider your future needs as well. * What if you want to switch – won’t that be difficult? Often it may seem as if the easiest thing to do is just stay with a current plan – and that could be true. However, if you have been unhappy with any feature, don’t stay out of fear of the process of changing. Switching plans is easy and quick. Look for a plan with strong customer service that will help you make the transition smoothly. Sometimes, you may need an advocate to navigate the healthcare maze. Does the plan offer such services? * What is the reputation of the plan? Often the best source of information on a plan is friends, family, current members and your own doctor or nurse – what have they seen and experienced. Some folks also prefer a plan that is notfor-profit. For-profit plans work hard to get and retain customers because their mission is to make a profit for shareholders. Non-profits often have a mission simply to help their community or keep people healthy – they must make a profit to remain in business – but they aren’t as tied to the financial bottom line as a plan owned by a corporation.

Avoiding Common Errors

of all your prescriptions so that it can better manage your health, ensure you are securing your refills and send reminders if you are not. When you go out of network, you may save a few dollars – but you are losing the benefits of health coordination your plan wants to provide.

Because choosing a Medicare plan can be overwhelming, even cautious consumers sometimes make mistakes. For example: * Hospitalization is one of the most expensive components of care. Pay the most attention to what a plan will or won’t cover and the hospitals in the network. You want a trusted hospital near where you and your family live. * Closely examine the prescription drug benefit. Most people over 65 are on at least two to three medications such as a statin or blood pressure medication; as you age, the number of medications may increase to five or six once you reach 70 or older. * Look at the drugs you take and even those common prescriptions you may need to be on as you age – are they on your formulary (the list of approved medications)? Are there generic alternatives for your prescription medications? What pharmacy retailers are on your plan? Today many “big box” plans also offer low-cost medications. Some may be on your plan. However, keep in mind that your plan coordinates and keeps track

Look To The Stars

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rate the quality of healthcare plans offered to Medicare beneficiaries through the Medicare Advantage program. They rate Medicare Advantage plans on a one- to five-star scale, with five stars representing the highest score (highest quality) and one star meaning poor or subpar quality. The summary score provides an overall measure of a plan’s quality, based on categories such as quality of care, access to care, plan responsiveness and member satisfaction, etc. According to CMS, this information is gathered from several different sources. In some cases, it is based on member surveys. In other cases, it is based on „

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PERFORMANCES AT THE CENTER

reviews of billing and other information that plans submit to Medicare, or on results from Medicare’s regular monitoring activities. Medicare tries to ensure the scores are impartial and that they provide consumers with a good benchmark of quality. Most plans today (about 90 percent) receive at least three stars. Exceptional plans secure ratings of four or five. Those plans may be harder to find, but they are worth the effort. The star ratings for all Medicare health plans are posted on the internet at www.Medicare.gov, which can help consumers make an educated decision when choosing the right health plan for their needs.

Make The Decision That Is Best For You

Maintaining your health as you age is important – finding the right plan reassures you that when needed, you can access the best healthcare services and providers for you. A good plan can provide value not only in terms of cost, but also the extra services you may want and need. Don’t become overwhelmed. Give yourself time to study the options. Talk to friends and family. Some plans may offer Medicare Information Centers in your neighborhood where you can sit down and talk to an expert and ask them questions – others will offer an 800-hotline. Take advantage of all the resources and create a checklist of what matters to you. Once you’ve done your homework, review and reflect upon what you’ve learned and you can then choose the plan that best meets your needs. ª

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What you need to look for when comparing plans Benefits The list of medical expenses covered by the plan. You want a comprehensive plan that will meet all your needs now and in years to come. And don’t forget about important extras like dental, gym memberships, chiropractic, vision, or worldwide emergency coverage.

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Deductibles The amount you pay each year for all covered expenses before your benefits kick in. The amount may not be zero, but it should be reasonable. Copays The amount you pay toward the cost of a covered benefit, such as a doctor visit or prescription. Zero or low copays are always attractive. Premiums The monthly or yearly amount you pay to be in the plan. Is the premium reasonable for the benefits you receive? Are there zero premiums for select benefits?

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Stop - Loss Your maximum out-of-pocket costs before the health plan begins to pay 100 percent. Think about it like this: If you’re hospitalized or require ongoing treatment, can you afford the total out-of-pocket costs all at once? Doctors The list of physicians, specialists, and hospitals who participate in the plan. How big is the list? Can you keep your doctor? Can you change your doctor? Prescriptions The list of medications covered by your plan is called a “formulary.” It should be comprehensive and, ideally, include your current prescriptions.

Ronald Bolding is the president and chief executive officer of Inter Valley Health Plan. He provides his strategic vision and expertise for every aspect of the organization and serves as a nationally recognized expert on Medicare Advantage plans. Inter Valley Health Plan is a not-for-profit, federally qualified, HMO contracted with Medicare and dedicated to providing the best value in senior healthcare coverage. Headquartered in Pomona, California, the company strives to improve the quality of life for adults throughout its service area stretching from Los Angeles to Orange County to Palm Springs, Riverside, Hemet, Victorville, Temecula, and virtually every city and town in between. One of the oldest managed-care plans in Southern California, Inter Valley Health Plan is a federally qualified Medicare Advantage Organization, contracted with Medicare and meeting all state and federal requirements. For more information, useful health education and information on wellness programs offered through local Medicare Information and Vitality Centers, click on www.IVHP.com.


November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 63


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Memories – Like The Corner Of Our Senses

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an’t find your keys? Having trouble remembering some people’s names? Forgetting whether or not you fed the cat? Are you finding yourself a bit more concerned about forgetting things as of late? Before we go into how you can help cement memories more permanently in your brain, let’s take a look at some of the conditions that can diminish your brain power:

Alcoholism

Very heavy drinking over a long period of time leads to less blood flow through the brain and premature mental decline.

Diabetes

Women who have had Type 2 diabetes for more than 15 years are up to twice as likely to suffer a cognitive decline as non-diabetic women. Elderly diabetics of both genders are more likely to develop dementia than elderly people without the disease.

Heart Disease

Clogged arteries cause more rapid loss of brain cells.

Hypertension

Over time, high blood pressure damages the brain as well as the heart. Hypertension can cause mini-strokes and can stiffen blood vessels, which can reduce blood flow to the brain.

A NEW STUDY FOR PEOPLE WITH MILD TO MODERATE ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

Sleep Apnea

These short interruptions of breathing during sleep, usually accompanied by snoring, deprive the brain of oxygen many times a night. This increases the risk of damage to brain cells.

NOBLE is a clinical study to evaluate an investigational drug for patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. Participants will receive the study drug or a placebo. During this study, if you taking Aricept or Namenda, you will continue to take it along with the study drug or placebo. Studies already done have shown that this investigational drug appears safe. It may work by protecting brain cells which would result in improved memory. But, this has not been proven yet. We are doing this study to find out if this is true. The study will enroll 450 patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease at many research sites across the United States. Total participation time is about 14 months, which includes screening, about one year of study treatment, and follow up to check safety.

Stress

Chronically high levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, may damage an area of the brain called the hippocampus, which is involved in learning and memory. Selected eligibility criteria:

Women and men aged 55-85 years old with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s Disease

Receiving donepezil (Aricept) treatment for at least 6 months

Living in the community (not nursing homes)

Have a study partner that has regular contact with you about 10 hours per week and who will come to study visits with you.

Weight of no more than 220 pounds

For more information or to volunteer, contact:

To find participating sites for this study in the U.S., go to http://www.adcs.org/Studies/Noble.aspx, www.clinicaltrials.gov or contact the Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center (ADEAR), a service of the National Institute on Aging. (800) 438-4380 | www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers

66 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

This study is sponsored by Toyama Chemical Co., Ltd and is being conducted by theAlzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study (ADCS).

Yep, lifestyle choices and taking care of your overall health can have profound results on your cognitive abilities. So, while you should be doing all you can to maintain your health, there are also some other great ways you can improve your memory. Consider the value of attaching memories to your various senses, like smell, touch, taste and sight. We all know how powerful are sensory memories can be – the smell of a favorite food being prepared, the touch of a soft object similar to one you carried around as a child or the look of a certain style of hat or dress a grandparent used to wear. We also have auditory memories (remembering the words or melody to your favorite song), and symbolic memories (like the “V” hand gesture that represents peace or victory). You may be surprised to learn that gardening can also be of help to us when it comes to memory formation and retention. How? The senses of touch and smell are very much a part of gardening and can help the brain form memories. And let’s not forget there is also another benefit that comes from working in your garden – being active, which oxygenates the brain by improving blood flow and, in turn, helps both your memory and your overall health. Associating an activity with a sensory experience, using multiple senses, using physical cues (like clenching a fist to cement a memory), repeating something out loud multiple times; these are all ways to help us help our brains better function in retaining memories. Want more memory aids? Contact me at (310) 473-1989, via email Jackie@ nutrifitonline.com or on Facebook or Twitter and I’ll be happy to share my list with you.


Make Your 2014 Holiday Date Your 2015-And-Beyond Mate One of Southern California’s premiere matchmakers offers tips on successful dating over 50 Special to Life After 50 by Sherri Murphy, CEO and VIP matchmaker at Elite Connections

A

re you single? Do the upcoming holiday festivities have you feeling a bit anxious? Does the thought of attending family functions, holiday parties and other seasonal events make you feel out of place or nervous? If you answered “yes” to those questions you should know you’re not alone. We all know it’s nice to spend the holidays with the people that matter the most to us – close friends and family. However, if you’re looking for a more intimate relationship – for love – it’s important to get out of your comfort zone, stay positive, openminded and act more spontaneous. It’s A Different World Out There The dating experience for people in their 30s and 40s is far different than it is for those over 50. Back in the days when you were attending college or just starting your career, the vast number of your friends

and the people you encountered were single and you had dating choices galore. But back then, your priorities were more about having fun, graduating and getting your career in gear than walking down the aisle. As we get older, the single population starts to shrink. By the time most people are in their early 30s, they have married and started families. Sadly, however, over the next two decades, nearly half of those marriages will end in divorce, which (if there is any good news to be found in that) replenishes the single pool for people in their 40s and 50s. No longer wide-eyed romantic idealists, dating when you are older means you also have to deal with things that you never even thought of in your 20s – adult children, bigger personal responsibilities and the mingling of more complicated lives. And so, dating over 50 requires a crash course in how to do it successfully.

The “Dating After 50” Course Begins Now that you’ve survived divorce or maybe lost a spouse to death, how do you jump from the fire into the frying pan of singledom without a clue of where to start? And now that you’re starting anew, how do you know what you want or need this time around? What drove and attracted you as a 20- or 30-yearold and what’s important to you now may seem – and are – as starkly different as night and day. Not everyone who is still single after 50 and who has lost a spouse or is divorced wants to get married or re-married, but let’s face it, life is sweeter when it is shared with someone you are attracted to, relate to, and have things in common with. Socially, professionally, and in many other ways, it’s easier to navigate life as a couple than going it alone. Over the years, I have found that the people who seek out our services at Elite Connections are not just looking to date; they are ready to meet “the one” who will end their quest to connect. They are frustrated and done with dating and looking for love in all the wrong places. The majority of these folks are successful, private and unwilling to venture onto the world of the Internet and its online dating sites. Are you feeling frustrated in the 50-plus dating world? Does everyone you date end up being just like your ex? If so, and you want to stop wasting precious time and actually meet someone compatible, here are some of my top dating tips for „ people over 50. November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 67


3. Focus on what you want rather than what you want to avoid. Your thoughts are like magnets that attract what you are thinking, so if drama and conflict are what come to mind when you think of meeting new people, stop thinking that way. Instead, picture yourself with someone who is grounded and ready for a real relationship. Argumentative people get your adrenaline going and when you connect with them, they drag you down and hinder you from having a healthy relationship that builds you up. We are all creatures of habit to an extent, so reprogram your thoughts and give “nice” a chance. You will find that you will start attracting entirely different suitors, including ones you probably overlooked in the past. 4. Lose the ridiculous rules. I’m talking about the dating rules that applied 20 or 30 years ago like, “It’s okay to sleep with someone after the third date.” It takes time to get to know someone and even more time to know whether you’re both ready for intimacy. Another silly rule is not accepting an invitation after Wednesday. Professional people work hard all week and often don’t think about the weekend until Thursday or Friday. Another bad rule is not to call someone back promptly or (for women) ever initiate a call. Return every call! You would expect the same courtesy from others, so pick up the phone and call within 24 hours, even if you’re not interested, which I’ll deal with next. 1. Stop dating “your type.” Be open-minded and receptive to meeting someone who is out of your comfort zone. At this stage of life, to meet the right person, you have to make an effort. People tend to impose limitations on who and what fits for them and they don’t like compromising. But the very nature of being a couple means compromising, so practice letting go of your old ideals. Your “standards” may be narrowing your choices down to slim pickings, so expand your horizons and be receptive to new possibilities. 2. Give genuinely nice people who show an interest in you a chance. When you meet someone who is kind, respectful and interested in you, even if they don’t seem to be your type, get to know them by going out a few times. Ironically, many people allow niceness to be a turn-off. They say they hate drama and confrontation, and yet they end up attracting it in droves by passing over really nice people. Which leads me to my third tip…

5. Honesty is always the best policy. If you’re not interested in someone, say so in a way that’s honest and not hurtful or rude. Instead of telling little white lies like: “I just got back with an old flame” or “I’m too busy to date,” say you’re so flattered they called and compliment them on something you genuinely liked or noticed about them. Then ask if it’s okay with them if you are honest and then speak your truth about why you can’t accept their invitation. If you are compassionate and honest, you won’t hurt anyone’s feelings or crush their ego by graciously declining. 6. When was the last time you bought clothes? If it’s been awhile, it’s time to update your look and shop for current styles that suit you. Don’t let your clothing reveal the decade in which you stopped paying attention to fashion. This goes for shoes, hemlines, sport coats, colors, shirt collars – everything in your closet. Think about it: you want to be seen with someone with good taste

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FIVE PERFORMANCES ONLY!

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and style, right? Well so does everyone. So look in the mirror, clean out your closet and invest in a few stylish and age-appropriate pieces that can take you to brunch on the weekend or out to a mid-week dinner. Update your hairstyle and eyewear, too. If you’re not sure of what may be best-suited for you (and this is mostly for men) consult with a personal stylist and ask the person who does your hair if there’s a style and/or color that may be more flattering to your face and skin tone. If you aren’t already treating yourself to a manicure and pedicure, make an appointment. And, hello, this goes for men as well as women! 7. Step out with style and confidence on each and every first date. Make sure you leave yourself time to freshen up, shower or make a change from work clothes to an evening-out ensemble. Don’t rush home from work all disheveled and preoccupied by what your day or the traffic was like. Set your date for a day and time when you can show up looking your best – when you will be relaxed and provide good company. Honor your date by showing him or her that you took the time to be looking and feeling your best for them.

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8. Don’t be judgmental about age. Both women and men over 50 carry around arbitrary numbers in their heads about their age and that of perspective mates. They tend to refuse to date anyone who they feel is out of their acceptable range – both by being too young or too old. Take the example of a 51-year-old woman declining a man who is over 60, regardless of how he looks, acts or thinks. There are a lot of people out there today who are in their 60s or 70s and are fit, healthy and active. So put the numbers aside. As long as it is someone with qualities, the personality or interests that appeal to you, don’t rule them out due to age until you’ve give them a chance. 9. Plan fun dates. Meeting for coffee doesn’t provide the ideal scenario for making a good impression. Nor does choosing a place that’s overly romantic, too extravagant or too casual. The best option is a place to meet for drinks and appetizers that is lively, yet not too noisy and not too quiet either. For a second or third date, doing something active like going for a hike, a bike ride or playing golf or tennis is a great way to get to know someone. Theater, museum and concert outings can also make for a memorable evening and reveal a lot about a person.

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10. Manage your expectations and don’t get so serious. First dates are designed for discovery – both about the other person and yourself. Go into each with the intention to make a new friend who may or may not be someone you romantically click with. You never know what take-away there will be from an encounter with anyone. Be inquisitive, be yourself and keep it upbeat and lighthearted rather than intense or too personal. Even if it doesn’t work out, who knows, you might meet someone wonderful through them. I have seen this happen on numerous occasions. 11. Do something adventurous and new. You never know where you may meet a person you will click with, so go on a trip, by yourself, with a friend, or a tour group, and see the world. I recently went on a 280-foot sailboat with my husband through Spain and the South of France. There were 100 passengers on board and many were single. A few were from the U.S., including an eligible gentleman from California. We all had a great time and made friends from all „

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over the globe. My point is to get out of your rut, make new friends and enjoy yourself. Do something different, go somewhere new, even if it’s in your own city. Donate your time to a charity you’re passionate about or help out at a fundraiser. What’s the worst thing that could happen? You’ll become a more interesting and happier person who is far more likely to attract someone of the opposite sex along the way!

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12. Become the type of person you’d like to attract. AvTake good care of yourself, stay active, eat healthy, manage stress, pursue passions, strive for balance instead of excess, be respectful, practice good manners and be gracious and reciprocate. Ladies: if he treats you to a nice dinner, say thank you in a way that tells him you’re sincerely appreciative and not entitled. On the next date, think of something nice to do for him to show your appreciation. You could surprise him with concert or sporting event tickets, or after a few dates, you could offer to make dinner for him. Men: if you really like her, give her your full attention and go the extra mile to make her feel special. Opening doors, pulling out chairs and picking up the tab shows her chivalry is still alive and well with you. Also, don’t wait too long to call and ask her out again. Think of somewhere you’d like to go next and invite her out within a few days. 13. Keep it positive. Don’t talk about your ex or the lousy dates you’ve been on. Even when asked, don’t delve into unpleasantries. No one wants to hear the details about an alcoholic ex who wrecked your self-esteem. If uncomfortable topics come up, change the subject and move on to talking about recent trips, where you grew up or what books you have recently read. I’ve had people call me and say: “All she did was talk about her job and how she wants to get married.” This was after I, as her matchmaker and consultant, suggested she zip it on the marriage issue. She might as well have come right out and asked: “Will you marry me?” There is no reason to talk about serious subjects on the first few dates, so keep it low-key and fun. 14. Don’t get too personal by asking interrogating questions. Want to ruin a date really fast? Ask: “Why haven’t you ever been married?” “Why have you been divorced three times?” “Why have you never had children” or “Who did you vote for in the last election?” By all means, do show an interest by asking appropriate questions aimed at getting to know the person, but don’t pry into deep subjects too soon. In fact, if you learn to practice active listening and become really attuned, you can learn a lot just by having casual conversation.

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15. Make dating a priority. The older we get, the more set in our ways we become. You may be used to working a lot, traveling, spending time with your friends and family. Then you meet a nice person and they ask you out. You’re so busy with work, your aging parents or your children, that your schedule may be jammed for weeks to come. If that is the case, it’s pretty obvious that you either: (A) Have no time for anyone else or (B) Are not all that interested in meeting someone. My husband, Bill, asked me out for New Year’s Eve on the afternoon of December 31. We had been skiing together that day and, when he asked, I ran down to the lodge to make a phone call cancelling my other date in favor of accepting Bill’s invitation. I’ve learned something that is important to men: they want to be with someone who really wants to be with them. You have to make time for dating. More importantly, you have to make room and time for including them in your life. I have met people who say they want to meet someone and get married, but they sabotage those hopes. They simply don’t make time to cultivate a lasting relationship. If meeting your friends for drinks or doing things with your family members is more important than getting to know someone who is interested in you, you will stay single for a long time.


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Get The “Welcome Mat” Out Having been a professional matchmaker for over 20 years, I’ve watched people make the same mistakes I did when I was single. I was divorced for seven years and was a working mother of two. During that time, all I did was work and take care of my family. Then, because I was so busy, I sought the services of a matchmaker. My future husband, Bill, was the first one they introduced me to. Bill is handsome, smart, talented, very kind and giving – very different from the men I’d been with in the past – so, of course, I uttered those famous words: “He’s not my type.” Then, my wise and insightful friend, Irma, said: “Then go out with him again! He sounds like just the man you need, because your type is all wrong for you!” Remember, there are great single people of all ages everywhere. You just have to get out there and meet them. Think positive, have fun and they just may walk into your life when you least expect it, as long as you have the “welcome mat” out and invite them in to stay awhile. ª

Meet Murphy The Matchmaker

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herri Murphy is the CEO and founder of Elite Connections. Her philosophy is that there is someone out there for everyone, but you won’t find them while sitting at home. “Most of the people that join Elite Connections are serious about finding the right person for a serious relationship,” says Sherri. “They are exhausted by other dating avenues and come to us for help.” Sherri believes that if you are not meeting the right person, you need to be proactive, have an open mind and try a new route. Her style of matchmaking has worked for many Elite clients. She herself met her husband through a personal matchmaker and that inspired her to launch her own company in 1994. She opened her first Elite Connections office in Beverly Hills in 1996 and now has six locations in Southern California, New York and Miami. Sherri works with her daughter Tammi as the company’s VIP matchmakers. Together, the duo will be hosting their upcoming 15th annual black-tie holiday fundraiser, “Party With A Purpose.” The event will take place on November 29 at a private estate in Calabasas and proceeds will provide holiday gifts for homeless children in the Los Angeles area. For information on Elite Connections or the “Party With A Purpose” event, call Sherri at (800) 923-4200 or click on www.EliteConnections.com.

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Olive Kittridge – Miniseries, HBO – Premieres Sunday

November 2 at 9 p.m. (repeat showings, also OnDemand)

Based on the Pulitzer prize-winning novel by Elizabeth Strout, HBO will air this four-part drama over two consecutive nights. This rich drama tells the poignantly sweet, acerbically funny and devastatingly tragic story of a seemingly placid New England town wrought with illicit affairs, crime and tragedy, told through the lens of math teacher Olive, played by Frances McDormand, whose wicked wit and harsh demeanor mask a warm but troubled heart and staunch moral center. The series boasts a stellar cast including Richard Jenkins, Bill Murray, John Gallagher Jr., Peter Mullan, Rosemarie DeWitt and Zoe Kazan.

Worricker – New Miniseries, PBS – Premieres Sunday November 9 at 9 p.m. (part two airs November 16) The original “Page Eight,” written and directed by David Hare, aired on PBS in 2011 and followed the story of Johnny Worricker, an MI-5 agent who discovers a potentially explosive report that alleges the British Prime Minister has details about the U.S. government torturing prisoners in secret overseas prisons. A moral crisis ensues, Worricker’s boss and mentor figure dies, and he ends up leaving the country to destinations unknown to face an uncertain future. We now have two feature-length sequels – “Turks & Caicos” and “Salting The Battlefield” – with Bill Nighy reprising his role. He is joined by an all-star cast that includes Christopher Walken, Helena Bonham Carter, Ralph Fiennes, Rupert Graves, James Naughton, Felicity Jones and Judy Davis.

Northpole – New Movie, Hallmark Channel

– Premieres Saturday November 15 at 8 p.m. Real-life husband and wife Robert Wagner and Jill St. John are Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus whose magical home, Northpole, has grown into a huge city powered by the magic of holiday happiness around the world. Yet the city is in trouble, as people everywhere are too busy to enjoy festive time together. One of these stressed-out souls is Chelsea, played by Tiffani Thiessen, a single mom who is trying to get noticed at her new reporting job while helping her 10-year-old son Kevin, played by Max Charles, adjust to a new school. When he starts talking about real elves and actual sleigh rides, she worries that his imagination has gotten out of control. With a little added help from Kevin’s charming teacher, a mysterious elf and a gospel singer, Chelsea may learn that even chasing down the facts can lead to holiday magic.

The Best In November Television Viewing By Sandi Berg

Ascension – New Limited Series, SyFy Network – Premieres Monday November 24 at 9 p.m.

This new six-part miniseries stars Syfy stalwart Tricia Helfer of “Battlestar Galactica” fame and is aimed at both boomers and their kids. The intriguing premise revolves around a covert U.S. space mission in 1963 that sent hundreds of men, women and children on a century-long voyage aboard the starship Ascension to populate a new world. Nearly 50 years into the journey, as they approach the point of no return, the mysterious murder of a young woman causes the ship’s population to question the true nature of their mission. Also starring are Brian Van Holt, Andrea Roth, Jacqueline Byers, Brandon P. Bell, Tiffany Lonsdale and PJ Boudousque.

Tuned In To What’s On

One Christmas Eve – New Hallmark Hall of Fame, Hallmark Channel – Premieres Sunday November 30 at 9 p.m.

This original movie marks the first time that the Hallmark Hall of Fame will be presented on the Hallmark Channel. Ann Heche stars as a recently divorced mom who wants her two kids’ first Christmas without their father to be perfect. An unfortunate series of events makes it seem inevitable that this hope will not come to pass. Fortunately, however, things have a way of working out, and the family has its most memorable and heartwarming Christmas ever.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 73


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Photo by James Veysey

The Sweet Survival of Judy Collins The Grammy-winning singer and songwriter reflects on the turbulence and triumphs that have led to a life she loves By David Laurell

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’ve had very difficult times in my life,” says singer and songwriter Judy Collins. “I’ve lived through terrible heartaches and tragedies that I don’t know how I survived. But suffering is something everyone deals with. It’s the price we pay for being given life – for being alive.” Collins’ life began in Seattle, Washington on May 1, 1939, when she was the first of what would be five children born to Marjorie and Charles Collins, the former a dyed-in-the-wool Democrat who was always ranting about something; the latter, a radio entertainer, musician and composer who had been blind since childhood and battled a losing war against alcoholism as an adult. Living in Seattle until 1949, Charles’ work brought the Collins family to Denver, Colorado, and it was there that young Judy contracted polio and spent two months in an isolated hospital room. Following her recovery she began showing both an interest in, and a budding talent for, music. She studied classical piano with renowned symphony conductor Antonia Brico and made her public debut at age 13. While her training may have been classical, by the time Collins was in her mid-teens, she had developed a deep love for the folk music of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger. Adding the guitar to her talent portfolio, Collins’ late teens also saw her marry a University of Connecticut teacher, Peter Taylor, a union that would produce her only child, Clark. It was also a time that saw the beginning of what would become a two-decade addiction to alcohol that resulted in depression, blackouts and suicidal thoughts. In spite of the inner demons she was fighting, Collins always presented herself as a calming songstress who regularly played gigs at the University of Connecticut and on the campus radio

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station. Eventually making her way to the epicenter of the early 1960s folk revival – New York’s Greenwich Village – she worked the popular clubs of the era, was signed by Elektra Records, and in 1961, at the age of 22, released her first album, “A Maid of Constant Sorrow.” While Collins career was taking off, her marriage was crumbling. In 1962, shortly after her concert debut at Carnegie Hall, she was diagnosed with tuberculosis and spent six months recuperating in a sanatorium. Once back on her feet, an increasingly demanding recording and touring schedule, coupled with her escalating alcohol use, led to a 1965 divorce in which she lost custody of Clark. By the latter part of the 1960s, Collins’ first three albums had garnered her legions of fans, but it was the 1967 album, “Wildflowers,” containing her cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides, Now,” that propelled her into international prominence with a Top 10 hit and a Grammy Award for Best Folk Performance. The following year, she released “Who Knows Where the Time Goes,” an album that featured a back-up guitarist – Stephen Stills of Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills & Nash.

Woodstock – Presence Without Performance

In the summer of 1969, as the turbulent decade began its slide into history, a music and art fair held on an alfalfa farm in New York’s Catskill Mountains served as a defining coda for the era. Billed as “An Aquarian Exposition: Three Days of Peace and Music,” Woodstock attendees never got the opportunity to enjoy the music of Judy Collins, although it could easily have happened.

“I was there, but I never went to the stage,” Collins says. “I was out in the production offices with Bill Graham [who booked many of the festival’s acts]. He asked me if I wanted to go over to the stage, but made it clear I would not be singing. So I just said: ‘No thank you.’ ” Asked if there had been some behind-the-scenes rift between her and the famous concert promoter, Collins waves the query off with indifference. “To this day, I have no idea what that was all about,” she says. “All I know is he was never a fan of mine, and, for me, whenever his name comes up, the word ‘stupidity’ comes to mind.” While Collins never made it to the Woodstock stage, her presence was in evidence – in the very early morning hours of the festival’s third day – when Crosby, Stills & Nash performed “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” a song Stills, who had a romantic relationship with Collins, wrote for her. Asked when she first became aware of that song, Collins says that Stills, whom she had broken up with, visited her while she was staying at a Los Angeles hotel. “It was on my birthday, in May of 1969,” she recalls. “He sang it to me and I thought it was so beautiful that I was weeping buckets. We had been having a hard time and he had written it to get me back – which didn’t happen. But I thought it was a gorgeous song.” Collins says she had no idea that Crosby, Stills & Nash had recorded it. “The first time I ever heard the recording I was in a taxi cab in New York,” she reveals. “It came on the radio and I almost fell out of the car.” Collins pauses for a moment and sighs. “Stephen and I are still friends; which is nice,” she says. “I will always feel very honored that he wrote that song for me.” With the Woodstock snub behind her, Collins entered the 1970s with a string of successful albums


Photob By Hayley Sparks

and hits including Stephen Sondheim’s “Send in the Clowns.” The song, written for the Broadway musical “A Little Night Music,” was included on her 1975 album “Judith.” It would go on to win a 1975 Song of the Year Grammy Award, continue to nonconsecutively chart through 1977, and then earn Collins another Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

Surviving Suicide and Sustaining Sobriety

Although Collins had won over millions of fans, by 1978 she was dealing with bulimia and clearly losing her battle with alcohol. Coming to terms with that fact, she was persuaded to seek professional help and enter a rehabilitation program that has seen her maintain her sobriety ever since – even through the most traumatic event of her life – the death of her son, who, after a long bout with clinical depression and substance abuse, committed suicide in 1992 at the age of 33. “I recognized I had a serious problem, got sober and have been able to maintain sobriety,” says Collins. “When you are dealing with alcoholism, you can go to all the treatment centers in the world, but if you don’t come to terms with the fact that you have a problem – that you are an alcoholic – you’ll never be helped. Alcoholism is a terrible illness, which is affecting something like 33 million people in America today. Talking about these issues – addictions and mental health and depression and suicide – is important. It gives us a new perspective and understanding that these things affect almost every family in some way.” Pressed on how she was able to maintain her sobriety and even her very sanity after Clark’s death,

Collins says it is still somewhat incomprehensible to her that she did survive. “His suicide cracked me open and I don’t really know how I got through it. But I did have a lot of help,” she reasons. “I had been meditating for many years by then, which was a blessing; and I was 13 years sober by then. I know I would not have lived through that time if I were still drinking. I’m sure of that. I also had access to therapy, and support groups, and my inner tools, one of which was writing.”

Embracing Health and Stability

Today, at the age of 75, Collins continues to record, tour and stir audiences with her vocals, songwriting, personal triumphs and commitment to social activism. She has become an accomplished painter, filmmaker, musical mentor, and an in-demand keynote speaker on the topics of overcoming addictions, mental healthcare and suicide prevention. She has also authored several books including the powerful and inspiring, “Sanity and Grace: A Journey of Suicide, Survival, and Strength” (Tarcher, 2003), “Morning, Noon and Night: Living the Creative Life” (Tarcher, 2005), and “Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music” (Three Rivers Press, 2012) in which, with unflinching candor, she recalls her turbulent childhood, rise to fame, romance with Stills, epic victories over depression and alcoholism, and her redemption through embracing a healthy and stable lifestyle. “There are a lot of things that can be done to rearrange and reorganize our lifestyle to get rid of the substance, or the trouble, or the pressure, or the physical or mental damage that comes with addiction,” says Collins. “For most people who are

depressed and have an addiction to drugs or alcohol, I’m convinced the addiction itself must be dealt with first. I’m a believer in talk therapy, which, sadly, most insurance companies usually won’t pay for. They would rather just throw pills at people. I think prescription medications are ruining lives, especially the lives of kids. We are seeing an entire generation growing up who the pharmaceutical companies have gotten hooked early, so they grow up believing that pills can solve anything. The pharmaceutical and insurance companies have Americans over a barrel, and our food has been wrecked by the sugar industry and their lobbyists who has made sure that the addictive drug that is sugar is in practically everything. It’s no wonder obesity is such a problem in this country. Michelle Obama is trying to help bring awareness to this problem, but has gotten no help from the Republicans who have literally chastised her for promoting good nutrition. America is sorely missing the boat when it comes to nutrition, just like we are in treating mental health and addiction problems.”

Practicing What She Preaches

Collins says she is cautious about what she eats and is committed to exercise. “I eat three meals a day and I never eat sugar, grains, flour or junk,” she says. “As for exercise, I’m always active – ruining, swimming, doing the Jane Fonda workout. I do that seven days a week. I believe eating properly and exercising are the closest things we have to a fountain of youth.” Having mentioned that she attributes writing as having been one of the things that has helped her overcome her past demons, Collins says that, unlike songwriters such as Don McLean or Bob Dylan, „

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who have stated that their best writing was produced when they were younger, she believes she is writing as well as ever. “I don’t think you write the same types of songs when you are 20 or 30 that you do at 60 or 70,” says Collins. “But I think we have the capacity to always get better as we get older. I am currently working on a series of songs with an old friend of mine, Hugh Prestwood, who wrote some of the songs I recorded in the ‘80s – ‘Hard Time for Lovers’ and ‘Dorothy’ and ‘Drink A Round to Ireland.” His writing is as fresh and wonderful today as it ever was. I think when it comes to writing, inspiration may come and go, but that age has no bearing on that. Dylan has said he had a wonderful period for 10 years and then it left. But I certainly am not the only one who thinks he has written some wonderful songs as he has gotten older.”

The Collins/Clinton Connection

While the channels of inspiration continue to flow for Collins, she says she was extremely honored to learn that one of her most popular recordings, “Chelsea Morning,” inspired the naming of a child born in 1980 – Chelsea Clinton. “I found out about that in a magazine article,” Collins recalls. “I can’t remember if it was in TIME or Rolling Stone, but it was in ‘92, when Bill Clinton was running for president. I didn’t know him at the time, although I had met him once – the previous year, when he was the governor of Arkansas. He had come to see me in concert and then came backstage. I remember he was very enthusiastic.

He told me he had been a fan for a long time and had first seen me in concert in 1964 in Washington. We didn’t talk long and he never mentioned that he named Chelsea after my recording. The one thing I clearly remember is that before he came backstage for this quick meet-and-greet, someone told me who he was and that he would be president one day. I never gave that any thought at the time. I mean, who knew the governor of Arkansas?” Proving what a dramatic difference a short time can make, just a year later, every American knew who the governor of Arkansas was and, at his presidential inauguration, in January of 1993, Collins was invited to sing “Amazing Grace” and “Chelsea Morning” as a part of the official inaugural celebration. As to her feelings on the possibility of someday performing at the presidential inauguration of another Clinton, Collins says she hopes it happens. “I am very enthusiastic about Hillary running, just as so many others are,” she says. “I think it would be wonderful, because we are so overdue in having a woman president. I mean, let’s see, how many countries – over 30 – have had women presidents and leaders. I think it’s pretty embarrassing that it hasn’t already happened.”

Loving Life and Staying Young

Collins and her husband of 18 years, Louis Nelson, an artist who has designed everything from album covers to the Korean War Veterans Memorial’s mural in Washington, D.C., today live on New York’s Upper West Side. When she is not touring or recording, she says she loves to read, write and have lunch with

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friends. “We just love New York. We love to go to concerts, the movies, eat out at great restaurants,” she says. “I also love to stay home and cook and watch PBS. We really enjoy our time together. I’m also a great grandmother of an eightmonth-old now. He’s in California, but I do get out there frequently to see him. And I love to work. I really enjoy touring. Some singers say they hate life on the road, but I love everything about it – always being on the move. I’m very grateful to still be working and have people of all ages come to our shows.” As for her feelings on the passage of time, Collins laughs when asked if she has adopted a philosophy on aging. “I don’t age! Just leave it at that,” she states emphatically. “I think if you love life and your work, you just want to keep doing it and constantly keep educating yourself on how to do it all even better. If you keep your mind working and keep interested in life, age is irrelevant. That is how you stay young, and I have determined I will stay young. I’m for getting a facelift, changing your hairstyle, falling in love, traveling, starting a new career – whatever it takes to stay active and really be alive.” Southern Californians will have the opportunity to celebrate the holiday season with Judy Collins as she make her debut appearance at Orange County’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts on December 6. Tickets for the evening, that will include traditional holiday songs and music from her five-decade career, are on sale now and available by clicking on www.scfta.org or calling (714) 556-2787. ª

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True Blue Gratitude Rachael Sage’s newly released album, “Blue Roses,” reveals the singer and songwriter’s gratefulness for the people who have impacted her life Story and photo by David Laurell

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acheal Sage is dressed, glittered and ready to take the stage, which she will do in less than 90 minutes. Emerging from her dressing room, she is the picture of relaxed composure as she takes a seat at a small table on an adjacent patio overlooking Los Angeles’ Fairfax Avenue. “I’m so excited about it,” she says after being congratulated on “Blue Roses,” her 11th album, which has just been released by MPress Records, the company she founded close to two decades ago. “This album represents a very deliberate effort on my part not to repeat myself,” she says. “It was made after touring for a year with the best band I have ever played with. These are folks I would have lived with in a commune or driven across country with in a minivan in the ‘70s. It was a pleasure to be surrounded by human beings I admire and whose musicianship constantly kicks me in the tuchus. I was in a very positive place making this album – in a huge moment of gratitude and appreciation for the many people who have had a huge impact on my life.”

The Antenna Of A Musical Journalist

An innovative singer and songwriter, Sage is one of the busiest artists in independent music. Her 10 prior albums, along with numerous tours throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia, have earned her a loyal fan base who love her quirky feather-boa-and-glitter sartorial style and sense of humor, which The New York Times has called a channeling of “her inner-Fanny Brice.” Sage’s latest album, which includes songs that celebrate the various ways people can positively inspire and impact the destiny of others – especially during times of uncertainty – is a creative offering the four-time Independent Music Award winner considers to be “personally and creatively transformative.” “I’ve always been extremely focused and had an urgency in what I’ve wanted to express artistically,” she says. “And while I’m still the same person I was when I made my first album in my 20s, I think my telescope has widened a bit. I’m finding myself less interested in me and my life than I am in the lives of my friends and family and things going 80 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

on in the world, and our connected concerns about the environment and the confusion and chaos – the wars and feeling helpless – the whole range of things that people have on their minds these days that gives us a sense of searching. I see so many people seeking and looking for answers, and I think, the beautiful thing about that is how, when we do seek, we can find people who can give us assurance, and help, and answers.” Revealing her feeling that she has been a bit precious about her songwriting in the past, Sage says “Blue Roses” represents a departure from that. “I used to feel that songs were only good if they sprang forth after I was devastated by a breakup or some tragic or inspirational thing,” she says. “With ‘Blue Roses,’ I was much more interested in expanding my range as a songwriter. I think that comes from where I currently am in my life – in my career – and also from where we all are in our world. Today, everyone has questions about what is happening around us. That provides a songwriter with an incredible opportunity to listen to everyone and transform what you’re hearing into art. I feel like a musical journalist in a lot of ways. My antenna is up in a way that it has never been before.”

In the album’s title cut, “Blue Roses,” Sage tells the story of two people who connect in a special way, albeit not successfully as lovers. “The inspiration for that song came when someone gave me a blue rose,” says Sage. “A blue rose! That is so me. But it was also so manmade, intentional, deliberate and transformational. That rose sat in a vase and dried up, but I would look at it and it came to be a metaphor to symbolize the concept of shedding expectations and having the ability to control the dynamics of our lives and not writing people off just because they don’t live up to what we may want from them or expect them to be – that we have the ability to change our color, and through empathy, and compassion, and the love we share with others, to evolve and be transformed. I made it a point to surround myself with people I admire while I was working on this record. I relished the process and was totally in the present. That energy – a very positive energy – was incredible throughout the process.”

A Sage Mentor

One of those people for whom Sage has great admiration is a fellow singer and songwriter – Judy Collins – who has described Sage as “a great gift of talent and beauty.” The duo, who have toured and performed together over the years, team up for the final track on “Blue Roses” with a beautiful cover of Neil Young’s “Helpless.” “There are some exceptionally talented women in


music today,” says Collins. “I think Katy Perry is a very interesting artist. I really like her and her song choices. I love Adele. I think she is phenomenal. And Rachael Sage is marvelous. I’m a huge fan. Her songs, her lyrics, and melodies and voice can lift you up and carry you away like you’ve never dreamed.” Sage says that Collins’ willingness to accept her invitation to appear on her album is an honor and something she is very grateful for. “It was just such an amazing gift that she would do this,” says Sage. “I’ve toured quite a bit with her and we’ve become pretty close. She has been a mentor – like a folk fairy godmother. She’s in her 70s, and yet she is so hip and goes out of her way to listen to new young artists. She is so gracious and open as a person, and also such a professional – an incredibly hard worker. I have such great admiration for her strength – to endure such challenges and losses, and yet be so kind and giving. I always feel like I’m an apprentice when I’m around her. I watch her from the wings and see how she brings different nuances to a song and plays off different audiences by having a respect for the difference between each audience.”

Back To The Beginning For A New Start

Sage sneaks a peek at her blue watch. “I’ve got to get going in a few minutes – to warm up and get some more glitter on,” she says with a sweet smile. Before doing a quick photo shoot, it is mentioned that, with the theme of gratitude “Blue Roses” presents, the month of Thanksgiving has really been the perfect time for its release. “Thanksgiving has always been a special time for me,” she says. “Every Thanksgiving has been memorable for me because I love the holidays so much. When I was little, we would always spend Thanksgiving in Boston, with this group of my cousins who were all older than me. I remember sitting around the table and listening to them talk about the books they were reading and the things they were doing in school. I was very young – four or five. And I remember being simultaneously overwhelmed and in awe of how well-spoken and intellectual they were, and yet also alienated, because I was very shy and only felt I could express myself at the piano, which I had already started doing at that age.” With plans to spend this Thanksgiving with her family in New York, Sage is quick with a response when asked what she is most grateful for as this year draws to a close. “I’m thankful for so many things – the abundance of what we enjoy in this country that we really don’t recognize until you look around at so much of the rest of the world,” she says. “And, of course, I’m so grateful for having the opportunity to express myself though my music. None of my passions, and I have lot of them, consume me like composing music and performing live. With ‘Blue Roses’ being my 11th record, I approached it as if it were my first one – like it was a new start for me. While I was doing this album, I really dug into why I wanted to do this in the first place, and there was one simple reason: As a little kid I wanted to be a part of a community, to have something to say and have people notice what I had to say – like I did with my cousins around the Thanksgiving table. I didn’t know how to express myself like they did, but when I played the piano things happened and I found my voice. I really wanted to get back to that place, and I’m very grateful that I have.” For more information on Rachael Sage, her tour schedule and to order your copy of “Blue Roses,” click on www.rachaelsage.com.

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Am I eligible? • The A4 study will enroll 1,000 people between the ages of 65 through 85 with normal thinking and memory function but with evidence of amyloid plaque buildup in the brain. • Physicians and researchers will use PET amyloid imaging scans to determine whether a potential participant has evidence of elevated amyloid buildup • Individuals with elevated amyloid on the PET scan will be eligible to become participants in the A4 clinical study. • People who do not show evidence of elevated brain amyloid may be asked to participate in a separate study. This group will not receive the study drug but will complete the same memory tests every six months to compare changes in cognition over time.

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Let’s Get OUt A Preview of Upcoming Events for November/ December By Claire Yezbak Fadden

eNteRtAINMeNt SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 15 PERICLES, PRINCE OF TYRE Pericles is a startling epic of the trials, heartbreak, and redemption of a warrior who must navigate the insanely dangerous corruptions of men and fate. Love, betrayal, laughter and adventure unfold in this engrossing, yet seldom produced, gem of Shakespeare. Old Globe Theatre, Sheryl and Harvey White Theatre, Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park, San Diego. Through Nov. 23. $16-$19. (619) 2345623. theoldglobe.org. ZEALOT Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The British consul pours tea for the American undersecretary of state, avoiding her questions—with answers to ones she hasn’t even asked. This is diplomacy at work. In the street below, a group of Saudi women sets in motion a carefully planned protest and the results are devastating enough to ignite a battle of wills and wits—now that a life hangs in the balance. South Coast Repertory, Segerstrom Stage, 655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. Also Nov. 16. $22plus. (714) 708-5555. scr.org. DINNER WITH MARLENE San Diego playwright Anne-Charlotte Harvey imagines a magical dinner in Paris with Marlene Dietrich and an intriguing party of artists, writers and socialites just before the outbreak of World War II. Lamb’s Players Theatre, 1142 Orange Ave., Coronado. $22-plus. Also Nov. 16. (619) 437-6000. lambsplayers.org. OKLAHOMA! This Rogers and Hammerstein classic tells the story of cowboy Curly McLain and his romance with farm girl Laurey Williams. Features songs “Oh, What A Beautiful Morning,” “Surrey With the Fringe On Top” and “I Can’t Say No.” Welk Resorts Theatre, 8860 Lawrence Welk Dr., Escondido. Also Nov. 16. $45-$75. (888) 802-7469. welktheatre.com. THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES The world-renowned sleuth returns in a new dramatic telling of the most famous and admired detective story ever written. The supremely rational Sherlock Holmes is thrust into an atmosphere of lonely moors, ancient secrets, deadly threats, and ghostly apparitions. Can Sherlock find the science behind the “supernatural” menace? LifeHouse Theater, 1135 N. Church St., Redlands. Also Nov. 16. $14-$18. (909) 335-3037 ext. 21. lifehousetheater.com. SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 16 PIPPIN With a beloved score by Tony nominee Stephen Schwartz, this musical shares the story of a young prince on a death-defying journey to find meaning in his existence. Will

San Diego/Orange County/Inland Empire

November/December 2014

he choose a happy but simple life? Or will he risk everything for a singular flash of glory. This captivating new production features sizzling choreography in the style of Bob Fosse and breathtaking acrobatics by Les 7 Doigts de la Main. Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Segerstrom Hall, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa. Through Nov. 23. $29-plus. (714) 556-2787. scfta.org. WICKED Based on the best-selling 1995 novel by Gregory Maguire, this musical has won more than 50 major awards. Long before that girl from Kansas arrives in Munchkinland, two girls meet in the Land of Oz. The one born with emerald green skin is smart, fiery and misunderstood. The other is beautiful, ambitious and very popular. How these two friends grow to become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good makes for a delightfully entertaining performance. San Diego Civic Theatre, Third and B St., 1100 Third Ave., downtown San Diego. Through Dec. 7. Prices vary. (619) 570-1100. broadwaysd.com. THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” is the only stage collaboration from two masters of the American musical theatre, composer Alan Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz. In this brand new production, a lush, emotionally rich score highlights the music’s orchestral power and choral beauty in an intimate retelling of the famous love story. La Jolla Playhouse, UCSD Campus, Weiss Theatre, 2910 La Jolla Village Dr., La Jolla. $87-$99. Through Dec. 14. (858) 550-1010. lajollaplayhouse.org. THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 20 JAZZ AT THE MERC Old Town Temecula Community Theater, The Merc, 42051 Main St., Temecula. $15. (866) 653-8696. temeculatheater.org.

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 15

DRIVING AND DEMENTIA Learn when it is time for your loved one to stop driving, and tips on how to have this difficult conversation. Alzheimer’s Association, 6632 Convoy Ct., San Diego. Also Dec. 18. Free. Register (800) 272-3900. alz.org/ sandiego.

This wonderful, whimsical musical is based upon the classic Dr. Seuss book. The Old Globe Theatre is once again transformed into the snow-covered Whoville, right down to the last can of Who-hash. This family favorite musical features “This Time of Year,” “Santa for a Day” and “Fah Who Doraze.” The Old Globe, Donald and Darlene Shiley Stage, Old Globe Theatre, Conrad Prebys Theatre Center, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park, San Diego. $29-plus. Through Dec. 27. (619) 234-5623. theoldglobe.org.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 21 WINTER WONDERETTES When Santa turns up missing, the Wonderettes must use their talent and creative ingenuity, plus some great holiday tunes such as “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” “Run Rudolph Run,” “Winter Wonderland” and 20 other seasonal favorites, to save their holiday party. Welk Resorts Theatre, 8860 Lawrence Welk Dr., Escondido. Dates vary through Dec. 28. $45-$75. (888) 802-7469. welktheatre.com. WIN, PLACE OR DIE . . . Interactive mystery comedy dinner theater

DR. SEUSS’ HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS!

set at the Thoroughbred Club at Upson Downs Race Track. Everyone who’s anyone is here, including movie stars, a gossip columnist, a politician, a debt-ridden track owner and a jockey who may be in for the ride of his life. Mystery Cafe Dinner Theater, Imperial House Restaurant, 505 Kalmia St., San Diego. $60. Fri.-Sat. through Nov. 29. (619) 466-2200. mysterycafe.net. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 22 ABSURD PERSON SINGULAR Meet three couples in their kitchens on Christmas Eve of three successive years.

What they have in common are their behindthe-scenes disasters. Riverside Community Players, 4026 14th St., Riverside. Weekends through Nov. 30. $15-$18. (951) 686-4030. riversidecommunityplayers.org. WOODSTOCK, THE CONCERT This live tribute to Woodstock, the 1969 rock festival that changed the way the world views rock concerts, features local musicians Tim Flannery, Eve Selis, Berkley Hart, The Back to the Garden Band and dozens of special guests. Poway Center for the Performing Arts Foundation, 15498 Espola Rd., Poway. $29$44. (858) 748-0505. powayarts.org.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 83


CALeNDAR

November/December 2014 San Diego/Orange County/Inland Empire professional musicians. Old Town Temecula Community Theater, The Merc, 42051 Main St., Temecula. Sundays. $12. (866) 653-8696. temeculatheater.org.

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 23 INTIMATE CLASSICS Featuring Sirena Huang, Paul Galbraith, Jeffrey Siegel, Jiayan Sun and Han Bin Yoon, the singular series focuses on virtuosos of various classical instruments including the violin, guitar, piano, and cello. California Center for the Arts, Escondido at The Center Theater, 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido. Prices vary. Sundays through May 3. (800) 988-4253. artcenter.org.

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 10 DR. SEUSS’ HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS! THE MUSICAL Max the Dog narrates as the mean and scheming Grinch, whose heart is “two sizes too small,” decides to steal Christmas away from the holiday-loving Whos. Features the hit songs “You’re a Mean, One Mr. Grinch” and “Welcome Christmas.” Magnificent sets and costumes inspired by Dr. Seuss’ original illustrations help transport audiences to the whimsical world of Whoville. Center for the Arts, Segerstrom Hall, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa. Through Dec. 14. $29-plus. (714) 556-2787. scfta.org.

CLASSICS AT THE MERC Chamber performances by the region’s best professional musicians. Old Town Temecula Community Theater, The Merc, 42051 Main St., Temecula. Sundays. $12. (866) 653-8696. temeculatheater.org. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 25 ART OF ÉLAN: ENTRACTE An evening of interludes and intermezzos features the return of The Myriad Trio (Demarre McGill, Julie Smith Phillips and CheYen Chen) and friends. This programmatic journey includes Caroline Shaw’s “Entracte” and Luigi Boccherini’s “Fandango Quintet.” San Diego Museum of Art, 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park, San Diego. $20-$25. (619)2327931. sdmart.org. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28 SECOND CITY’S NUT-CRACKING HOLIDAY REVUE The perfect antidote to the annual office party. This hilarious new holiday production captures all the magic, mystery and mayhem of the season with original songs, sketches and improv. La Jolla Playhouse, UCSD Campus, Mandell Weiss Forum, 2910 La Jolla Village Dr., La Jolla. $87-$99. Through Dec. 21. (858) 550-1010. lajollaplayhouse.org. FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS More than 400 animated angels, elves and carolers come alive in a cascade of color featuring nearly four million lights decorating the facade of the historic Mission Inn. Horse-drawn carriage rides, ice skating, live entertainment including Dickens’ carolers, an elaborately decorated Christmas tree, and of course, Santa Claus. Mission Inn, 3649 Mission Inn Ave., Riverside. Through Jan. 6. (800) 843-7755. missioninn.com. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 29 IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE The unforgettable folks of Bedford Falls come to life in this toe-tapping tribute to a beloved American tale. The true spirit of Christmas touches George Bailey and all who witness his amazing encounter with a wayward angel. LifeHouse Theater, 1135 N. Church St., Redlands. Weekends through Dec. 30. $14-$18. (909) 335-3037 ext. 21. lifehousetheater.com. SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 30 LIVE JAZZ ON THE PATIO Mojo Sessions. Bernardo Winery, Tasting Room Patio, 13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte, San Diego. Free. bernardowinery.com.

84 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

IN THE REALM OF NATURE

Kay Sekimachi (1926-) and Bob Stocksdale (1913-2003). Throughout her 60-year career, Sekimachi has created unique works of art using skeletal leaves, hornet’s nest paper and grass. The exhibition includes examples of her translucent sculptural hangings and room dividers, along with other woven forms— accordion-formatted books, vibrant scrolls, seamless nesting boxes and jewelry. Hailed as a father of American woodturning, Stocksdale revitalized the craft of lathe-turned bowls. In his works, Stocksdale unveiled a compelling beauty in diseased and rare woods. Mingei International Museum, Balboa Park 1439 El Prado, San Diego. Through March 15. Closed Mondays. $5-$8. (619) 239-0003. mingei.org.

DECEMBER WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 3 STRIKING TWELVE Ring in the holidays with Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fable “The Little Match Girl” with a modern-day New Year’s Eve twist. Laguna Playhouse, Moulton Theatre Main Stage, 606 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach. Through Dec. 6. $36-$66. (949) 4972787. lagunaplayhouse.com. FRIDAY, DECEMBER 5 A MERRI-ACHI CHRISTMAS Mariachi Sol de Mexico presents a colorful celebration of Mexico’s Christmas traditions, embracing the romanticism of Mexico’s land, culture, and people. This show includes seasonal song and dance along with select Mariachi classics. California Center for the Arts, Escondido, Concert Hall, 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido. Prices vary. (800) 988-4253. artcenter.org. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 6 DAVID BENOIT CHRISTMAS TRIBUTE TO CHARLIE BROWN Usher in the holidays with classic Peanuts Christmas tunes performed by a great contemporary jazz pianist. Poway Center

for the Performing Arts Foundation, 15498 Espola Rd., Poway. $33-$49. (858) 748-0505. powayarts.org. JUDY COLLINS: HOLIDAYS AND HITS Known for her silvery soprano and eclectic tastes, Judy Collins fills the season with the spirit of hope, performing beautiful songs of the season as well as some of her greatest hits. She will be joined by Passenger String Quartet. Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa. $39-plus. (714) 5562787. scfta.org. COUNTRY LIVE! Old Town Temecula Community Theater, The Merc, 42051 Main St., Temecula. $15. (866) 653-8696. temeculatheater.org. HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTING AND WINTER WONDERLAND FESTIVAL An annual event to celebrate the holiday season with real snow, costumed performers, live entertainment and, of course, Santa. California Center for the Arts, Escondido, Concert Hall, 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido. (800) 988-4253. artcenter.org. SUNDAY, DECEMBER 7 CLASSICS AT THE MERC Chamber performances by the region’s best

MERLE HAGGARD The country music icon retains the grit, heart and honesty that first won him fans and the standing as “the poet of the common man.” California Center for the Arts, Escondido, Concert Hall, 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido. Prices vary. (800) 988-4253. artcenter.org. THURSDAY, DECEMBER 11 LIVE! AT THE MUSEUM Angels of Venice. Laguna Beach Live, The Ranch at Laguna Beach, 31106 S. Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach. $7. (949) 715-9713. lagunabeachlive.org. HAPPY HOUR MOCK TAIL SOCIAL Holiday Pub Party. San Dimas Community Center, 245 E. Bonita Ave., San Dimas. (909) 394-6290. FRIDAY, DECEMBER 12 THE NUTCRACKER Festival Ballet Theatre’s breathtaking production features superb colorful sceneries and dazzling costumes, which make this age-old tradition sparkle like new. This full-length, traditional production features a cast of professional dancers and more than 100 Southern California children. Irvine Barclay Theatre, 4242 Campus Dr., Irvine. Through Dec. 24. $42-$45. (949) 854-4646. thebarclay.org. SUNDAY, DECEMBER 14 LIVE JAZZ ON THE PATIO Chini and Camberos. Bernardo Winery, Tasting Room Patio, 13330 Paseo Del Verano Norte, San Diego. Free. bernardowinery.com.

eXHIBItIONs FRIDAY. NOVEMBER 21 INGENIOUS! THE WORLD OF DR. SEUSS The highly popular traveling Dr. Seuss exhibition will include signature elements for the Balboa Park Centennial, emphasizing San Diego as the renowned author’s home and


November/December 2014 San Diego/Orange County/Inland Empire

CALeNDAR

Theodor Geisel as the world’s most celebrated children’s author and an innovator. The lively and whimsical exhibition features rare early works, ephemera, illustration and editorial cartoons, as well as two newly released Geisel illustrations. The Seuss-land gallery features giant bronze Seuss character sculptures, anchoring interactive family activities that emphasize the important themes and innovative nature of Seuss books. San Diego History Museum, Casa De Balboa, Balboa Park, 1649 El Prado, San Diego. Through Dec. 31, 2015. $6-$8. (619) 232- 6203. sandiegohistory.org. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 22 NAKED Twentieth Century Nudes from the Dijkstra Collection. Taken from the wide-ranging art collection of Bram and Sandra Dijkstra, this exquisite group of works contributes to the museum’s wide focus on artwork concerning figurative and portrait themes. This group of works spans the 20th century including figurative paintings, drawings, and photographs specifically featuring the nude human figure, created by a wide array of artists Oceanside Museum of Art, 704 Pier View Way, Oceanside. Through March 8. $5$8. (760) 435-3720. oma-online.org. SCENIC VIEW AHEAD The Westways Cover Art Program, 1928-1981. One of the largest exhibitions of works from the member magazine of the Automobile Club of Southern California. The cover art program began in 1928, with the Auto Club commissioning paintings from major artists working in Southern California for the cover of each issue of its member magazine. With 55 artworks on view, the exhibition traces prominent styles of art through most of the 20th century, such as California scene painting, Pop Art, and assemblage art. The Irvine Museum, 18881 Von Karman Ave., Ground Floor, Irvine. Tues-Sat. through Jan. 15. (949) 476-2565. irvinemuseum.org. ELIZABETH TURK: SENTIENT FORMS In a multi-media installation, Turk continues her exploration of the recurring themes of time, matter and space. The exhibition features marble sculptures from her “Cage and Collars” series, the fragility and fluidity of which are a stark contrast to the heavy materials from which they are made. It also includes X-ray mandala LED illuminated prints, an installation of scholar stones, and a “cabinet of curiosities” consisting of objects and drawings that have played a part in the artist’s imaginative and working processes. Laguna Art Museum, Main Level Gallery, 307 Cliff Dr., Laguna Beach. Through Jan. 25. Closed Wednesdays. $5-$7. (949) 494-8971. lagunaartmuseum.org. THE AVANT-GARDE COLLECTION In the 1960s it was cutting-edge to employ imagery from popular culture, and by the 1970s performance and installation were the bywords of innovation. In the 1980s new media and appropriation appeared on everybody’s radar for the first time, while the 1990s in retrospect were all about identity politics and post-colonialism. Due to the

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28

THE FLAMES OF PARIS

The Mikhailovsky Ballet of St. Petersburg performs this legendary work that demands spectacular theatricality and great virtuosity from its dancers. Ivan Vasiliev stars in some performances as Philippe, along with Leonid Sarafanov as the Actor. The Flames of Paris takes place during the French Revolution, as the people begin their assault on the aristocracy. Scenes take place in the Royal Palace, Versailles and the squares of Paris. Center for the Arts, Segerstrom Hall, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa. Through Nov. 30. $59-plus. (714) 5562787. scfta.org.

pluralist tendencies of the 21st century that make the notion of avant-garde seem quaint, the challenge for artists to produce work that conceals the influence of generations past is more demanding than ever. Orange County Museum of Art, 850 San Clemente Dr., Newport Beach. Through Jan. 4. $10-$12. (949) 759-1122. ocma.net. NEW VISIONS Art and Invention in the 19th Century. Photography captured people, places and architecture of the 19th century. This exhibition displays how pioneering photographers brought the world to people with images. The Grand Tour of Europe, Egypt and the Holy Lands, and the American West are presented in the selection that includes featured artists: James Anderson, Eadweard Muybridge, Samuel Bourne, Francis Frith and William Henry Jackson. Museum of Photographic Arts, Balboa Park, 1649 El Prado, San Diego. Through Feb. 8. $7-$8. (619) 2387559. mopa.org. LITA ALBUQUERQUE: PARTICLE HORIZON The exhibition highlights Pigment Figure No. 1, consisting of a human figure in a horizontal position and is made of plaster and covered

of Artists, Santa Fe Art Colony, and California Impressionists including E.I. Couse, Walter Ufer, Edgar Payne, Carl Oscar Borg, Guy Rose, Granville Redmond, and Maynard Dixon among others. Palm Springs Art Museum, Annenberg Wing, 101 Museum Dr., Palm Springs. Through Jan. 4. $4-$5. (760) 3224800. psmuseum.org. in blue pigment. The figure lies in a state of suspended reality, at one time referencing the past self, at another alluding to the future, the never-ending now. The sculpture and the earth around it give form and shape to the matter that surrounds and composes the everyday. Laguna Art Museum, Segerstrom Gallery, 307 Cliff Dr., Laguna Beach. Through Jan. 25. Closed Wednesdays. $5-$7. (949) 494-8971. lagunaartmuseum.org. A GRAND ADVENTURE: AMERICAN ART OF THE WEST The exhibit brings together 40 significant classic and traditional artworks from private collections. The artworks span nearly 100 years dating from the latter half of the 19th century through the early decades of the 20th century. Landscape and genre paintings of the American west by Bierstadt, Moran, Russell, Remington and Henry F. Farney are featured with artworks from the Taos Society

THE DISCOVERY OF KING TUT The discovery of King Tutankhamun’s tomb in 1922 is considered the most famous discovery in the history of archaeology, and in modern times, the context of its discovery has been lost. The exhibit allows visitors to experience a rush of excitement as they step into a moment only ever witnessed by Howard Carter, Lord Carnarvon and a handful of others. Through stunning and scientifically produced replicas, the exhibition invites visitors to enjoy the magnificent splendor of these priceless Egyptian treasures. San Diego Natural History Museum, 1788 El Prado, Balboa Park, San Diego. 15-$27. Through April 26. (619) 232-3821. sdnhm.org. Get the Word Out. E-mail your announcements to Claire Fadden, cfadden@lifeafter50.com. Include a brief description, location, date, time, cost, phone and website. Submission does not guarantee publication. Deadline for the December/January Calendar is November 1.

November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 85


Traveling Around…The Corner…And The World

A Pilgrimage To Plymouth

The land of the Pilgrims offers visitors a look at the courage and faith of those who founded New England’s first colony By Max Andrews

F

or some, it would be of monumental significance to spend December 25 in the central West Bank Palestinian city of Bethlehem, July 4 in Philadelphia, Downtown New York on September 11 or Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor on December 7. For many Americans, a similar significance would be found in spending Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts, where the disembarkation of William Bradford and the Mayflower Pilgrims who founded Plymouth Colony has been memorialized. While the focal point of that memorialization is Plymouth Rock, on which, legend says, the Pilgrims first set foot in 1620, there are no historical documented references to such a landing. The rock itself is not mentioned in either “Mourt’s Relation,” senior Pilgrim leader Edward Winslow’s account of the landing, nor in Bradford’s journal “Of Plymouth Plantation,” the most complete and accepted journal of the story of the Pilgrims and the colony they founded. The first known documented reference to Plymouth Rock was recorded in 1715, in the town boundary, that simply records it as “a great rock.” While local legends had swirled around Plymouth that the rock had been the Pilgrims’ landing site for many years, the story didn’t receive much traction outside of Massachusetts until over a century had past. By the latter part of the 18th century, the legend surrounding the Pilgrims’ arrival had become rock solid with many Plymothians and, in 1774, a group of preservationists made the decision to have the rock removed and put on display in the town square. While attempting to remove the rock by a team of oxen, it was broken in half. Faced with the prospect of doing it further damage, only the upper portion of the rock was removed for display. As the years went by and the legend grew, souvenir seekers caused further damage to the rock by chipping away pieces. For that reason, it was moved to a secured area enclosed by an iron fence at the 86 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Pilgrim Hall Museum in 1834. During that move, it was again damaged, falling off its conveyance and obtaining its distinctive crack. As for the bottom part of the rock, The Pilgrim Society acquired it in 1859 and, eight years later, a canopy structure was completed at the Plymouth Harbor waterfront to house it. Poor design planning caused the rock to be too large for the canopy and the rock was purposely reduced in size with pieces chipped off and sold as souvenirs. Finally, in 1880, the upper chunk and lower sections of the rock were cemented together and “1620” was permanently carved into the surface. Plymouth Rock was again moved during the celebration of Plymouth’s tercentenary in 1921 to its final resting place – under a new canopy that had been built in Pilgrim Memorial State Park, the smallest, and yet one of the most heavily visited parks in the Massachusetts parks system. Though battered by time and mired in murky legend, Plymouth Rock remains a powerful symbol and tribute to the courage and faith of the 102 Mayflower passengers who founded the first New England colony and is visited by nearly a million people annually.

Welcome Aboard

Just a short walk from Plymouth Rock, the Mayflower II, a replica of the ship that brought the first Pilgrims to Massachusetts, is anchored at State Pier. The details of the ship, from the solid oak timbers and tarred-hemp rigging, to the wood and horn lanterns and hand-colored maps, have been meticulously recreated to provide a better understanding of what the original vessel was like. Visitors are welcomed aboard the ship, where they learn about the Mayflower’s voyage while exploring

the cramped quarters. The ship is open from the end of March until the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

From Recreation To The Real Thing

After visiting the Mayflower II, a drive over to 75 Court Street takes visitors to the Pilgrim Hall Museum that houses artifacts of the actual Mayflower. Among its treasures are William Bradford’s Bible, Myles Standish’s sword, the cradle of New England’s first-born child, and the earliest sampler made in America. The museum also contains a superb collection of American history paintings, ranging from Henry Sargent’s heroic “Landing of the Pilgrims” to Jennie Brownscombe’s “First Thanksgiving.” The museum is open every month except January.

A Commemorating Colossus

No visit to Plymouth would be complete without a visit to the National Monument to the Forefathers, an 81-foot granite edifice that memorializes a Victorian-era interpretation of the pursuits that motivated the Pilgrims to leave England and start their own colony. Under construction from 1859 to 1888, the monument’s main pedestal features Faith surround by four seated figures representing the principles on which the Pilgrims based the Commonwealth: Freedom, Morality, Law and Education. ª


SEE THE WORLD WITH LIFE AFTER 50 Compiled by Ed BOITANO, Travel Editor INTERNATIONAL ALPHA YACHTING GREECE offers for charter crewed motor yachts, sailing yachts, & cabin cruises in Greece, France, Italy, Croatia, Turkey, Spain and the Mediterranean Sea. We are proud to offer a wide selection of luxury charter yachts for hire in Greece (group and private Mediterranean yacht charter cruises) to meet all your needs. All our yachts are fully equipped and well maintained; our crew members can help you with all your travel needs. (954) 234-2203 or www.alphayachting.com

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Adventure Class, and knowledgeable tour guides. The railroad has transported passengers through Alaska for close to a century. Open year-round, the Alaska Railroad’s adventure packages and day trips include the finest accommodations and sightseeing tours along the rail belt. (800) 544-0552 or www.AlaskaRailroad.com THE BEACH HOUSE INN is an intimate oceanside property located on the Pacific Coast Hwy 1 in Fort Bragg, California. Choose from 30 luxurious rooms with amenities such as fireplaces, large TVs, HBO, extended cable, WI-FI, private balconies and large soaking tubs for two. Framed by an Estuary, natural creek views are captured by the balcony

windows - with the beach and bicycle path just a 500 foot walk away. Ideal for travelers and bird fans alike, the Beach House Inn is minutes by car to Fort Bragg or Mendocino. Designated pet-friendly rooms are also available. Enjoy the upcoming coming holidays at the Beach House Inn. Ask about our Life After 50 special. (707) 961-1700 or www.beachinn.com

THE BEACHCOMBER MOTEL ON THE BEACH is nestled on the dramatic Mendocino Coast with direct access to the beach and the ten-mile Coastal Trail. Steps from the Pacific Ocean, guests enjoy spectacular views from every suite and room. Luxuriate on spacious decks, ideal for watching the sunset or barbecuing your catch of the day. New Pet THE ALASKA RAILROAD Suites available. Be sure to visit Glass Beach and MacKerricher State Park. The Beachcomber Motel offers the perfect location to enjoy the upcoming holidays. Ask about our Life After 50 special. (800) 400-SURF (7873) or www.TheBeachcomberMotel.com

ENJOY GETTING THERE as much as being there.

THE DUDE RANCHERS’ ASSOCIATION - Dude ranches are a popular destination vacation for families, couples, singles and groups. All seem to fit in nicely with the easygoing ranch atmosphere. Since most ranches offer a wide variety of activities such as horseback riding, fishing, river rafting, swimming pools, children’s programs, cattle drives, cookouts, line dancing, spas and plain relaxing on the porch swing, everyone is sure to find something that appeals to them. (866) 399-2339 or www.DudeRanch.org COLORADO TRAILS RANCH - What you need is a week unwinding and exploring the wonders of our first class guest ranch. Colorado Trails Ranch is not far from Durango, in lovely Southwest Colorado. Set in the spectacular panoramas of the San Juan Mountains, our dude ranch resort offers lifetime experiences for singles, groups and entire families. There isn’t one difficult activity in our perfectly personalized programs. The food is delicious, the comfort is wonderful and you’ll feel like a well cared member of the family. (800) 323-3833 or www.ColoradoTrails.com

DOLPHIN BAY RESORT & SPA - Set along the rugged California Coast, just south of San Luis Obispo on California’s Scenic Highway 1, Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa is centrally located in Pismo Beach. The Dolphin Bay is the ideal hotel for romantic getaways or family vacations where guests stay anywhere from two nights to months at a time. With 60 spacious 1 and 2 bedroom BrYcE CaNyOn NaTiOnAl PaRk, UtAh suites featuring all of the BrYcE CaNyOn GrAnD HoTeL amenities of a home, Lido Restaurant, The Spa at Dolphin HiStOrIc RuBy’S InN Bay and an array of activities, guests can experience the best of the Central Coast. (800) 516-0112 or www.thedolphinbay.com ClOsEsT AcCoMmOdAtIoNs To BrYcE CaNyOn NaTiOnAl PaRk 1.866.878.9398 | RuBySiNn.CoM RIvERSIDE DOWNTOWN PARTNERSHIP – Riverside On the Stunning is home to a number of Mendocino Coast historic landmarks and special attractions, ranging from fascinating museums to one-of-a-kind outdoor adventures. Visitors to downtown Riverside can enjoy Luxurious Beachfront Lodging • 50 Yards from the Pacific Ocean! its historic architecture while Whalewatch from Your Private Balcony! • Designated Pet Rooms Fireplaces & 2-Person Spa Tubs • Easy Walk to Downtown Fort Bragg shopping in a number of unique boutiques, dining at a range Mountain bike trails within 20 miles of the motel Kayaking, Sportfishing & Surfing of restaurants, or enjoying performances at venues such SurfSandLodge.com • 707.964.9383

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Downtown Riverside is an oasis of authenticity. It’s a real place, with real history, real culture, real cuisine, and real discoveries.

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as the Fox Performing Arts Center. Many other Southern California attractions are within easy driving distance so Riverside is a great base for vacations in Southern California. For more information visit www.RiversideDowntown. org, www.facebook.com/ riversidedowntownpartnership or call 951-781-7335 RUBY’S INN & Rv PARK For a unique winter escape come to historic Ruby’s Inn at Utah’s incredible Bryce Canyon National Park. During winter, you’ll witness the natural forces that slowly created the delicate rock formations. The crisp air lets you see mile after mile of towering red rocks decorated with white snow. Avoid the crowds, enjoy winter

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activities and save with discounted rates at Ruby’s Inn this winter. 866-878-9389 or www.RubysInn.com SURF & SAND LODGE is located on the beach in Fort Bragg, and Northern California’s spectacular and rugged Mendocino Coast – the ideal location to explore Fort Bragg, Glass Beach, Macke richer State Park and the Mendocino Coast. We have 30 beautiful and luxurious rooms, 24 with an ocean view. We also have rooms with fireplace and spa tub for two. Enjoy the magnificent ocean, whale watching, and beautiful sunsets, all from your own private balcony. Remember, it’s fun to spend the holidays at the beach. Ask about our Life After 50 special. (707) 964-9383 or www.surfsandlodge.com

HOUsING & RELOcATION SUN CITY, ARIZONA, the community that started them all offers the BEST VALUE in active adult living. The unincorporated community, northwest of Phoenix offers Low Cost of Living: Low Taxes • Lowest Fees. Great Health Care: Banner Boswell Medical Center • Core Institute. Golf Courses: 5-Regulation • 3-Executive • 3-Country Clubs. 7-Recreation Centers: swimming • tennis • bowling • Pickelball • Fitness Centers • 120+ Clubs and Activities. (800) 437-8146 or www.suncityaz.org

SUNRIvER - ST. GEORGE is southern Utah’s premier master-planned active adult lifestyle community. Built in an unspoiled, rural location, SunRiver St. George provides a quiet, superbly planned community with occupancy (8 golf courses within 6 miles of each other!) limited to at least one resident 55 or Call For More Information Make older. From the golf course layout and 1-800-437-8146 Sun City, AZ community center design to the floor www.sunaz.com/golf Your Active Adult plans of our sensational SunRiver Destination www.suncityaz.org/usa St. George homes, the active adult lifestyle is our central point of focus. SunRiver St. George is “building a lifestyle, not just homes.” (888) 6886556 or www.SunRiver.com

You won’t mind this short drive!

Guess who’s coming to Life After 50 on December 1? Guide book author and travel TV host

Rick Steves

America’s most respected authority on European Travel Rick Steves advocates smart, affordable,

perspective-broadening travel. As host and writer of the popular public television series Rick Steves’ Europe, and best-selling author of over 50 European travel books, he encourages Americans to travel as “temporary locals.” In the spirit of always improving our product, Rick’s column will appear monthly in Life After 50’s travel section beginning December 1

to advertise in our travel classified section contact Landra@Lifeafter50.com for more information on Rick Steves visit www.ricksteves.com for inquiries or information call 310-822-1629 x 121 • www.Lifeafter50.com November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 89


And Finally... The Bookworm’s Best A Life After 50 book review

by Terri “The Bookworm” Schlichenmeyer

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End By Atul Gawande

L

ast night’s dessert was spectacular. As with many finales, that perfect ending to a perfect meal left you satisfied for the rest of the evening. It was, like some conclusions – a little nightcap, a final chapter, a last dance, the lingering notes of a favorite song – a thing to savor. Can the end of life be so sweet? Perhaps; there are steps to make it so, as you’ll see in the new book “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” by Atul Gawande. The average lifespan for North Americans has been increasing. Modern medicine has taught doctors how to save lives but, until relatively recently, it didn’t teach them how to deal with life’s end. That, opines Gawande, is unfortunate. In many cases, doctors feel extremely uncomfortable discussing the end of life with their patients. That often leads to protocol that precludes quality of life when there isn’t much life left to have. We’ve come to this point, this reluctance to face death, because we’re no longer familiar with it. A century ago, people died at home, often after self-treating their ailments. “Hospitals were not places to get better,” writes Gawande. “Medicine back then usually had little impact on life or death. When penicillin, sulfa, and other drugs became available, however, hospitals became places for cure. Nursing homes were for people who needed additional care before going home.” But medicine isn’t the only thing that’s changed: aging has, too. We live longer, we expect our parts to last longer, and we’re surprised when health fails. But does that make aging a medical problem? To a geriatrician, it might be – but Gawande believes there aren’t enough doctors who specialize in geriatrics and, without them, we have a lessened chance to sidestep problems that could diminish the quality of life in later years. He writes: “The elderly don’t dread death so much as they dread the losses leading up to it: loss of independence, of thought, of friends.” But long before that happens, Gawande strongly recommends, there are conversations that need to be had; namely, what treatments should or should not be done and how far a person would want a physician to go to prolong life. Let me tell you how much I loved this book: I can usually whip through a book of this length in a night. “Being Mortal” took me three. Part of the reason for that is that Gawande offers lingering food for thought in practically every paragraph – whether he writes about the history of aging and dying, one of his patients, or someone in his own family. I just couldn’t stop thinking about the points he made with his anecdotes and with this information, how it could radicalize our lives, and how it fits for just about everybody. We are, after all, not getting any younger. I think if you’re a caretaker for an elderly relative or if you ever plan on growing old yourself and want to maintain quality of life, this book is an absolute mustread. I can assure you, “Being Mortal” is informative to the very end. “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End” by Atul Gawande, 2014, Henry Holt, $26.00, 304 pages. The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer, who lives on a hill with two dogs and more than 12,000 books. You can read all of Terri’s book reviews, updated weekly, at www.lifeafter50.com. Just click on “Entertainment” and then “Book Reviews.”

A Look Back

I

n November of 1964, Americans were lining up at theaters nationwide to catch the latest James Bond thriller, “Goldfinger.” In the third of what would become the neverending cinematic franchise based on Ian Fleming’s British secret agent 007, Sean Connery may have been the film’s star, but the buzz and excitement of the feature surrounded actress Shirley Eaton, who played Jill Masterson, Goldfinger’s aide-de-camp. Caught and seduced by Bond, whom she ultimately betrays, Masterson met her demise by “skin suffocation” after being completely covered in gold paint. Although her role was small, the nude and gilded Eaton as Masterson became the film’s most iconic image – so much so, she graced the November 6, 1964 cover of Life magazine in all her golden glory. Today, at the age of 77, Eaton, has just completed her latest book, “Shirley Eaton Bond’s Golden Girl “Her Reflections,” (Shirley Eaton, 2014). A beautifully illustrated book, that covers all the actress’s 29 films, personally signed copies are exclusively available by clicking on www.shirleyeaton.net.

90 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

Just A Thought Before We Go

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”

– John Fitzgerald Kennedy


November 2014 LIFEAFTER50.COM 91


The Arts connect heaven & earth

Jan 22-Feb 8, 2015

All-New 2015 Show With Shen Yun Orchestra 30 Country World Tour

Hollywood Northridge Costa Mesa Thousand Oaks Long Beach

“5,000 Years... in one night!”

Feb 26-27, 2015 Bakersfield

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Las Vegas

“Incredible!

Tickets: ShenYun.com/LA 800-880-0188

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T

A gIft fRom heAveN

he people of China have long held that their magnificent culture was a gift from the heavens. Art was primarily a means to explore the connection between humankind and the higher universe. Through the universal language of music and dance, Shen Yun weaves a wondrous tapestry of heavenly realms, ancient legends, and modern heroic tales, taking you on a journey through 5,000 years of genuine Chinese culture. Its stunning beauty, purity, and tremendous energy leave audiences greatly uplifted and deeply inspired.

A Shen Yun performance features 100 world class performers, over 400 sets of exquisite hand-made costumes, a unique orchestra blending East and West, and dazzling animated backdrops – creating a spectacular performance beyond your imagination. Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today, where traditional culture has been devastated. Yet the nonprofit Shen Yun has become an international phenomenon, bringing the wonders of 5,000 years of civilization to millions across the globe. Experience divine culture! Experience Shen Yun!

“AbSolutelY the No.1 Show IN the woRld.” —Kenn Wells, former lead dancer of the English National Ballet

“I probably have reviewed over 3,000-4,000 shows, none can compare to what I saw tonight. Five Stars! ‘Mind-blowing’!” — Richard Connema, Talkin’ Broadway

92 LIFEAFTER50.COM November 2014

“Demonstrating the highest realm in arts, Shen Yun inspires the performing arts world.” — Chi Cao, principal dancer with the Birmingham Royal Ballet

“Really out of this world! There is no word to describe it... if I had to, the words might be ‘divine,’ ‘reborn’ and ‘hope.’ You have to see it to believe it.”

“I just wish there is a way I could cry out to mankind, and say they owe it to themselves to experience Shenyun!”

— Christine Walevska, Goddess of Cello, watched Shen Yun four times

— Jim Crill, veteran producer watched Shen Yun two times

Life After 50 - November 2014  
Life After 50 - November 2014  
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