Men’s Challenges with Aging: Blame John Wayne

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By Dave Price – Senior Contributor

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

If you are or know a male Baby Boomer who is having an extremely hard time aging, there’s a good chance that the Waynes – or more specifically, John Wayne and Bruce “Batman” Wayne – may be greatly to blame.

While it’s true that the idea of what exactly is a man has been changing over recent decades, much of the sense of masculinity in the mid-20th Century was established and reinforced through the codes of western movies and their stars such as John Wayne and the behavior of then-contemporary fictional heroes such as Batman and James Bond.

Here’s a look at five of those you-must-be-this-to-be-a-real-man concepts which were integral parts of the portrayal of the alpha male embedded in the entertainment of the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s, the early shaping decades for Baby Boomers.

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4 Quick, Simple Ways to Make Your Home Safer for Your Grandkids

This article 1st appeared in Sixty and Me

By Dave Price — Featured Contibutor

In retrospect, it was some of our scariest minutes as parents of a then three-year-old.

The experience began innocently enough when my wife Judy, our son Michael, and I visited my mother’s house on a warm spring day in 1976.

Judy and I were in the family room talking to my mother. Because Michael spent quite a bit of time at my mother’s, he had a playroom down the hall, where he immediately headed to play with his toys. Or at least that is what I thought.

After about five minutes, I headed to the playroom to check on Michael. But he wasn’t there. I heard him down the hall in my mother’s bedroom. Entering the room, I found him standing next to an open pill bottle. Pills were scattered over the floor.

Fearing the worst, I hollered for my mother and Judy. They rushed to the bedroom. Judy and I bent down to talk to Michael.

“Did you take any of these pills?” we asked him, trying to keep any tone of terror from our voices.

“No, Mommy,” he said. “I was trying to reach that brush there and the bottle fell over. I’m sorry.”

Judy grabbed the pill bottle from the floor and headed hurriedly down the hallway to call our pediatrician.

I hugged Michael and said, “Mommy, Grand mom, and I aren’t mad. We just need to know. Are you sure you didn’t take any of those pills?” I said, pointing to the scattered collection of capsules on the floor.

“No, Daddy,” he said.

Judy reentered the room. “Dr. Varga said we shouldn’t worry, but we should go to the emergency room just to be sure,” she whispered to me.

After a tense drive to the hospital and about 90 minutes of observation in the emergency room, the doctor on duty assured us that Michael was telling the truth. If he had ingested any of the pills and they were to cause any harmful effects, it would have happened by now.

Before leaving the hospital, we called my mother. You could almost feel her relief rush through the phone lines.

Now, the moral of this tale is that even the greatest grandparents (and believe me, my mother was definitely in that category) can never be too careful. But still, accidents can – and do – happen.

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Classic Rockers Talk About Rock Life in the 60s/70s

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By Dave Price — Music Editor and Senior Writer

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

Mickey Dolenz vividly recalls the first time he realized he wasn’t just an actor playing a rock and roll drummer on TV anymore, but a full-fledged rock star.

It was December of 1966 and he had been working seven days a week acting on the new hit series The Monkees.  At nights, he and is bandmates Davy Jones, Mike Nesmith, and Peter Tork had been rehearsing and recording vocal parts for the new made-for-TV American group based loosely on The Beatles.

“It was really a crazy commitment. We had been almost incommunicado for three months,” Dolenz explained.

With Christmas approaching, he needed to get a few presents for friends and family. So during a brief hiatus, he drove to a nearby Hollywood mall to engage in some holiday shopping.

As he walked in the doors, he suddenly witnessed dozens of shrieking girls rushing toward him.

‘I saw all these people screaming and running and I thought at first there was a fire. Then I realized they were coming after me. I had to get back in my car and drive off.  I had never seen anything like that before,” Dolenz says.

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The Perils of Aging for Men

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By Dave Price

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

I’ve never been big on birthdays.

Since I was young, March 26th has really just been another day in the year for me.

But on my last birthday I arrived at what most people consider a significant aging milestone.

I turned 65.

With the exception that I would now be eligible to use the Medicare card the U.S. government had sent me earlier in the month, 65 didn’t seem any different than 60, when I started a 4-year stint as a DC-based educational consultant. Or than 64 when I decided to devote myself to freelance writing. Or than 59 (when I retired from my instructional career in education after 30 years) for that matter.

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The Great Story of … Wait … I Forgot What Is Was

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By Dave Price

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

As a new member of the Over 65 Club, I think everyone younger than me (and that’s a whole lot of people) should come up with a plan to remember things. In fact, I strongly suggest you design that plan as soon as you finish reading this article.

That way, you won’t forget.

Now I know what many of you are saying: I don’t need a plan … my memory will always stay sharp and focused. Well, I felt that way once, too. But I was so much younger then – say like 63 or 64.

Now however, like the Ancient Mariner of the famous Samuel Taylor Coleridge poem or the lone surviving whaler called Ishmael in the classic novel Moby Dick, I have returned to offer you a warning.

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For Eric Burdon, Singing Is Still a Spiritual Sound

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By Dave Price

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

At age 75, he may need some assistance from a cane and the strong left arm of a loving wife to get from the dressing room to the backstage area. But once he hears the music and strides onto that stage he prowls. He growls. He moans and he howls.

He becomes the iconic, irascible Eric Burdon, the Hall of Fame rock and roll blues belter, who for more than four decades has been the voice of the much-beloved British Invasion band The Animals.

Recently, Burdon and the latest members of the Animals (all of whom were still more than two decades from being born when Burdon started his series of hits with “The House of the Rising Sun” in 1964), headlined the Flower Power music cruise, a five-day floating Summer of Love music festival sailing around the Caribbean.

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Cruising, Music, and Baby Boomers

By Dave Price

This article 1st appeared in Booming Encore

It’s almost a certainty that in 1959 when Frankie Ford sang the line from his Top-20 hit “won’t you let me take you on a sea cruise” he couldn’t have imagined that in the 21st Century those words would apply to the new, floating, multi-day music festivals now offered by several major cruise lines.

In fact, as Baby Boomers reach retirement ages, nostalgic music-themed cruises are one of the fastest growing segments of the cruise business.

There are now cruises devoted to single artists (Elvis Presley, Kiss, Lynard Skynard), genres (heavy metal, blues, southern rock), decades (50s, 60s, 70s), and themes (rock legends, Where the Action Is)

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