Don't Act Your Age podcast

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Having a reason to get up in the morning can make life more meaningful, enjoyable — and even add years to that life. It’s one of the secrets for positive aging. There’s even research to prove it. Maybe your reason to bounce out of bed is an energizing hobby. Or the soul enrichment found in volunteering to help others. Or it could be the satisfaction of fulfilling work — like Dan the blacksmith, the seemingly ageless artisan in our latest episode.
In the early 70s, busloads of flower children trekked cross- country from Haight-Ashbury to the sticks. With no agricultural experience, they brought nothing but grit and determination to make a go of farming. And the goal of building a utopian refuge of peace and love. True to their communal philosophy, they signed a Vow of Poverty giving up everything they owned for the common good. But instead of being soured by hard work and setbacks, they made a success of it. Just not the kind they even remotely expected.
Arm yourself during the virus crisis with a soothing agent to fight fear and frustration. You'll find it on the Unleashing Kindness Facebook group. Launched long before the virus hit by retirees Rich McGuinness and Pat Fiorello, it's a resource and reminder that treating each other with compassion and respect is not only a good habit, it’s free. Rich and Pat join us on this episode to reveal the effect their kindness crusade is having on readers worldwide, and what it’s done for their own lives. 
This story starts and ends in Woodstock. A daughter digs into the past to learn about the Mother she barely knew. She discovers a woman named Didi from a wealthy family, who rejected an upscale lifestyle to became a hippie during the 1969 music festival in rural New York. Instead of a trophy husband, two kids and house in the suburbs, the impulsive Didi went on to live a gypsy existence. As they would say in the 60s, relationships were not her bag. Writer Arden Thira takes you on a sentimental search to know a flower child who, far from being Mother Of The Year, leaves bittersweet memories. 
Sitting down with the author of the best seller "Elderhood," we found Dr. Louise Aronson pleasant but with a forceful message. It's about about disrupting stereotypes and demanding fairness from a healthcare system geared to coddle youngsters and help ease adults from their 20s through middle age. In the author's own words, it's for anyone who is "an aging, i.e., still-breathing human being." Yet, as you'll hear, Dr. Aronson delivers it all with a positive outlook about getting the most out of all your years.
One dictionary defines a gym rat as “someone who spends all leisure time playing sports or working out in a gymnasium or health spa.” The last guy you’d expect to fit that is a 97-year old Holocaust survivor named Ben Heller. But six days a week you’ll find Ben on the treadmill or cranking one of the weight machines at an Atlanta fitness club. Ben has won the respect of millennial club members amazed by his Just-Do-It determination. Especially when they learn his backstory of survival during three grim years in a WWII Nazi death camp. Ben told us about his remarkable life, right after—what else?—a long workout at the gym.
“I’m living on borrowed time.” That’s how a former GI describes his incredible luck in surviving the 1968 Tet Offensive, turning point of the Vietnam War. Fifty years later, he and a buddy relive the bloody attack that found them under siege in a house in Hue. His small unit fought a pitched battle against the Viet Cong until forced out by flames. Dodging heavy enemy fire, the two soldiers ran in opposite directions — split-second decisions that would impact the rest of their lives. Well into retirement years, they remain grateful to have survived a battle that killed so many brothers in arms. We doubt you’ll hear a war story with two such different twists.
Receiving a draft notice in the 60s felt like a death sentence. Add a growing resistance to the Vietnam War and it's easy to see why guys 18-to-26, like our friend Bob, looked for any way to avoid induction. His crafty ploy? LSD.  Rumor was that taking it could make you unfit for military service. So with the help of his girlfriend, Bob dove in. Did it work to avoid the Army? Let's just say there were unintended consequences and plot twists. And while his psychedelic escape didn't turn out how he hoped, Bob still took some positives from the experience.
You didn't have to attend high school in a small midwestern town to know a couple like Denny and Karen. They were always together, holding hands and whispering secrets. In the hall before class. After school. At the mall. Everybody knew a graduation ring would soon be followed by an engagement ring. It all rings true for Karen and Denny — except the last part.  Theirs is the story of love that was lost and found more than once. How it survived through decades, and despite marriages to others. And how finding each other again was the first step on a new road of discovery.
How are high-mileage Americans outliving the undertaker?
Most of us remember little or nothing about being 5 years old. Frank Gregor is the exception. He recalls it all too clearly. Far better than he'd like to.
Ashton Applewhite’s book (“This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Aging”) is a wakeup call for a society obsessed with youth. The stigma of wrinkles. The stereotype of being feeble and forgetful. Ashton believes our worship of everything young creates a caste system where anybody over 50 is marginalized at best and shunned at worst. While you may not agree with everything Ashton says, she delivers a cherry bomb of an argument that people of any age can’t ignore.  
Break-ups, shake-ups and couch surfing at 60. Is it too late to rebuild your life when fate knocks you around like a piñata?
Honk if you didn’t have dreams of getting rich when you were in your 20s and 30s. Well, we know a guy who turned that dream into reality. An Iowa boy from humble beginnings, he became a savvy entrepreneur, and later sold his company for the big bucks. Now in retirement, he’s found that money can buy happiness — not just for himself, but the thousands of people for whom diabetes is a daily cross to bear.
A 60-something woman trying to hold a relationship together. A crisis at 8,000 feet. A certain...eh, bodily fluid. Dealing with loss without losing your mind. It's like a whole season of a TV drama in one short and sweet episode.
Lessons learned the hard way about what’s truly important, whether you’re 25 or 75. Listen as Hospice patients look back with the perspective only someone at the end can see clearly. Even their regrets can teach us how to live with purpose and dignity.
Ebola. Even though it's no longer a scary headline doesn't mean that it's gone. But why in hell would a comfortably retired Granddad go looking for it?
Vampires, werewolves and Godzilla gave you a chance to cuddle with your sweetie at the drive-in movies. But they couldn't compare with the scare of those gory training films your friends dared you to see in Driver's Ed. class.
During the 60s, some guys escaped the Vietnam War by going to Canada. Some by swearing they were conscientious objectors. And one guy by being very lucky. Nearly 50 years later he recalls his good fortune: Part war story, part love story, and one like you've probably never heard before.  
Tom was just your average guy in the 60s: a good husband, father and breadwinner — everything society expected him to be. Except he had a secret that, in his words, "was killing me."
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Podcast Details

Created by
Rich Halten
Podcast Status
Active
Started
Mar 19th, 2016
Latest Episode
Jun 13th, 2020
Release Period
2 per year
Episodes
20
Avg. Episode Length
14 minutes
Explicit
No
Order
Episodic
Language
English

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