Aging Well in the Gorge ~ July 10th, 2024

When I see my primary care provider, I’m often told I should be on a Mediterranean diet. It helps prevent heart disease and stroke; and reduces risk factors such as obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. And it might even improve my ability to remember, and process information – and I need all the help I can get!

So I’ve decided after 76 years, I’m going to turn over a new leafy green vegetable and start eating as if I were living on a Greek island in the Mediterranean.

But then I asked myself, what is a Mediterranean Diet?

I’ve learned that there is not one standard Mediterranean diet, but they all have some common factors. According to the Mayo Clinic, a Mediterranean Diet is most often high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds, olive oil, and herbs and spices are used for seasoning

The main steps to follow a Mediterranean Diet include:

  • Each day, eat vegetables, fruits, whole grains and plant-based fats.
  • Each week, have fish, poultry, beans, legumes, and eggs.
  • Enjoy moderate portions of dairy products.
  • Limit how much red meat you eat.
  • Limit how many foods with added sugar you eat.
  • Enjoy wine in moderation if you drink alcohol.

Also, Virgin olive oil, a healthy, monounsaturated fat, is the primary fat source and may help the body remove excess cholesterol from arteries and keep your blood vessels open.

Now if you decide to follow a Mediterranean Diet, there are some health concerns to be aware of.

According to MedlinePlus: an online service of the National Library of Medicine, the health concerns include:

  • Gaining weight from eating fats in olive oil and nuts,
  • Lower levels of iron. Be sure to eat some foods rich in iron or vitamin C which helps your body absorb iron.
  • Calcium loss from eating fewer dairy products. Ask your healthcare provider if you should take a calcium supplement.

The most important thing is to focus on the overall quality of your diet, rather than single nutrients or foods. So, maybe I can still sneak in the occasional burger, fries, and shake for lunch?

The third question for your “Soul Portrait”. What are your beliefs?

BRAIN TEASE: And there’s still more!! But these are the last. 23.) “64 = S on a C B”; 24.) “40 = D and N of the G F”; 25.) “76 = T in the B P”; 26.) “50 = W to L Y L”; 27.) “99 = B of B on the W”; 28.) “60 = S in a M”; 29.) “1 = H on a U”; 30.) “9 = J on the S C”; 31.) “7 = B for S B”; 32.) “21 = D on a D”; 33.) “7 = W of the A W”.

The 1954 movie, starring Marlon Brando as Terry Malloy was “On the Waterfront”. I just returned from building castles of sand at the coast, so next week I’ll list all of you who sent in correct answers for this week and last.

Another quote from one of my favorite 1952 movie comedies. For this week’s “Remember When” question, in what film did you hear this dialogue,

“You mean it’s gonna say up on the screen that I don’t talk and sing for myself?… But they can’t do that!…They can’t make a fool outta Lina Lamont! They can’t make a laughing stock outta Lina Lamont! What do they think I am, dumb or something? Why I make more money than…than…than Calvin Coolidge! Put together!” Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or drop it off while twirling an umbrella.

Well, it’s been another week, looking out for the undertow. Until we meet again, as the philosopher Charlie Brown said, “Be yourself. No one can say you’re doing it wrong.”

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, look to tomorrow, rest this afternoon.” Snoopy

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answers for last week. 12.) Dollars for Passing Go in Monopoly; 13.) Sides on a Stop Sign; 14.) Blind Mice (See How They Run); 15.) Quarters in a Game; 16.) Hours in a Day; 17.) Wheel on a Unicycle; 18.) Heinz Varieties; 19.) Digits in a Zip Code; 20.) Players on a Football Team; 21.) Words that a Picture is Worth; 22.) Days in February in a Leap Year.

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ July 3rd, 2024

This week I’m enjoying my annual family summer reunion. So once again, I’m sharing this Chinese parable – hoping you’re like me and can’t remember anything I’ve written more than a week ago!

One day a farmer’s horse ran away. His neighbor hears of his bad news and comes over to commiserate. “I hear that you lost your horse. That is bad news.” “Bad news, good news, who’s to say,” said the farmer.

Well, the next day the farmer’s horse returns to his stable and has brought back nine wild horses. The neighbor across the way can’t believe what he hears and decides to come over and congratulate him. “This is such good news,” he says. “Good news, bad news, who’s to say,” said the farmer.

The next day the farmer’s son decided to ride one of the wild horses, and as luck would have it, the son was thrown from the horse and broke his leg. Of course, upon hearing this sad news, their neighbor came over to offer condolences. “This is such bad news,” he said. “Bad news, good news, who’s to say,” said the farmer.

On the following day, soldiers came by commandeering an army. They took sons from most of the surrounding farms, but because the farmer’s son had a broken leg, he could not go and was spared.

The neighbor comes running over and says, “Yes! This is such good news; how lucky you are!” And the farmer replies, “Good news, bad news, who’s to say?”

Have you experienced “bad news” from which you later found some “good news”? This parable of the Chinese farmer reminds us that our situation is always fluid, and we shouldn’t become too consumed by either our good fortune or bad. There is no magic crystal ball to tell us what our future holds.

When we experience hardships and accidents, we can take comfort in looking for the hidden benefits and opportunities. Granted it may not compensate for the current hurt and pain, but we’re tough and resilient. And the “good news”? Much of what we have learned about life has come from the “bad news” we have experienced.

The second question for your “Soul Portrait”: How would you describe your attitude?

BRAIN TEASE: And there’s more! 12.) “200 = D for P G in M”; 13.) “8 = S on a SS”; 14.) “3    B M (S H T R”); 15) “4 = Q in a G”; 16) “24 = H in a D”; 17.) “1 = W on a U”; 18.) “57 = H V”; 19.) “5 = D in a Z C”; 20.) “11 = P on a F B T”; 21.) “1000 = W that a P is W”; 22.) “29 = in F in a L Y.”

HAL told Dave, “This conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye” in the 1968 science fiction movie, 2001: A Space Odyssey – which I’m finding more disturbing with the accelerating advances in Artificial Intelligence. Since I’m enjoying the family reunion, I’ll mention everyone who sent in the correct answer in two weeks.

This is a tougher movie quote. For this week’s “Remember When” question, in what 1954 movie, ranked as one of the greatest movies of all time, did Terry Malloy played by Marlon Brando say, “You don’t understand! I could’ve had class. I could’ve been a contender. I could’ve been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am.”? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or send it with a picture of longshoremen on a New York dock loading barrels of corn syrup.

Well, it’s been another week, trying to keep my end of the bargain. Until we meet again, remember the old Chinese proverb, “If you don’t know what to say, tell an old Chinese proverb”.

“Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.” The Dalai Lama

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answers to last week’s Brain Tease.

  1. Letters of the Alphabet; 2. Days of the Week; 3. Arabian Nights; 4. Signs of the Zodiac; 5. Cards in a Deck (with Joker); 6. Planets in the Solar System; 7. Piano Keys; 8.  Stripes on the American Flag; 9. Degrees Fahrenheit at which Water Freezes; 10. Holes on a Golf Course; 11. Degrees in a Right Angle.

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ June 26th, 2024

At the end of our lives, we may not be able to share our wishes as to the kind of medical care we want. So many of us have completed an Advanced Directive taking some of the burden off our loved ones during difficult medical situations.

But let’s go a step further. Imagine you are in a care facility unable to communicate. They know your medical wishes, but what do they know about you? What do your children even know about you? We often talk about our favorite family memories and funny stories, but we seldom go deeper, sharing who we are: our dreams, fears, and joys – even our favorite music.

That was the question Sally Zuck McBain addresses in her book “Soul Portrait”. Sally McBain passed away this year after an extensive career in the field of aging which she pursued with passion and energy – a lot of energy!

Many times she walked down the halls in care facilities seeing residents staring out windows, and wondering: What did they once enjoy? What did they like to celebrate? What made them laugh? From those experiences, she wrote Soul Portrait.

Soul Portrait consists of 40 topics to help you express who you are and as Sally wrote, “to share the deepest part of ourselves while we are still able”.

Each week I will share a question for you to write about and discuss with your children and maybe at some time share with your care provider. So, get out your pencil and paper and start writing your “Soul Portrait” as was Sally’s hope.

The first question: “What activities do you enjoy?”

But wait a minute! I can’t write. I can hardly spell. For you, Sally has some encouraging advice.

“Writing doesn’t come easily to some of us. I know, because it took me years to find my own voice. My breakthrough came when I realized the very best writing comes from the heart. I stopped trying to sound like other writers and started to write in a way that honored who I am. I don’t like rules; they hold me back. So, if the same is true for you, make your own rules. Forget grammar and sentence structure and big words. Trust what comes out, what you feel, what you need to express. You aren’t trying to impress anyone, and no one will judge your writing skills. This is your soul work.”

BRAIN TEASE: See how many of these you can solve. I’ll share the answers next week to give you more time to go nuts searching for the answers. Example: “60 = M in an H” is 60 Minutes in an Hour.

1.) “26 = L of the A”; 2.) “7 = D of the W”; 3.) “1001 = AN”; 4.) “12 = S of the Z”; 5.) “54 = C in a D (with J)”; 6.) “9 = P in the SS”; 7.) “88 = PK”; 8.) “13 = S on the A F”; 9.) “32 = D F at which W F”; 10.) “18 = H on a G C”; 11.) “90 = D in a R A”.

Johnny Weissmuller played Tarzan in twelve feature films from 1932 to 1948. I received correct answers from Stephen Woolpert, Bruce Johnson, Mike Ballinger, Donna Mollet, Tom Shaefer, Eva Summers, Jay Waterbury, Kathy Bullack, Judy Kiser, Lana Tepfer, Dave Lutgens, Kim Birge, Pat Evenson-Brady, Rhonda Spies, Linda Frizzell, and Sherry Munroe this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.

To mix it up a little, for the next three weeks, I’ll share quotes from popular movies and see if they bring back any memories.

For this week’s “Remember When” question, in what 1968 science fiction movie was it said, “Dave, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye.”? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or send it with a picture of the latest monolith found this month on a Nevada hiking trail north of Las Vegas.

Well, it’s been another week, wandering and wondering. Until we meet again, I’ve found the word is no longer on the tip of my tongue, but mischievously hiding somewhere deep in my throat.

“One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How he got in my pajamas, I don’t know.” From the Marx Brothers’ film Animal Crackers

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ June 19th, 2024

Summer is a time to enjoy the outdoors and beauty of the Gorge: fishing on the Columbia, trips to Lost Lake, and hiking the Gorge trails. But as we have experienced before, it is also wildfire season when there is less rainfall, more lighting, and more outdoor activities.

Besides the personal and economic harm, wildfires are also a health threat caused by the microscopic particles from the smoke that can penetrate deep into your lungs. These fine particles can cause a range of health problems, including burning eyes, runny nose, scratchy throat, headaches, and illnesses such as bronchitis.

To know the health risks from wildfires, the website www. AirNow.gov, and most weather apps, will give you the current AQI (Air Quality Index) which tells you how clean or polluted the outdoor air is along with associated health effects.

The AQI ranges from 0 – 500 with different levels and health concerns. If you are unusually sensitive to air pollution, when the AQI reaches 101 you may be affected, and at 151 some members of the general public may experience health effects. The higher the index the greater the health concern and if the index is above 300, the smoke is more likely to affect everyone.

So how do we prepare and protect ourselves from wildfire smoke?

  1. Wear an N95 mask/respirator. When outside, they filter up to 95% of small airborne particles in the air – if it fits properly! Your mask should fit tightly around your face so you can’t smell an air freshener sprayed in the air.
  2. Choose indoor activities. Avoid strenuous activities outside – you might want to skip working in the garden or mowing the grass. Sounds good to me!
  3. Create a cleaner air space at home. Close windows and doors and if you have one, continuously run a portable air purifier in one or more rooms.

An air purifier can be expensive – unless your overprotective children buy you one! – but an inexpensive and surprisingly effective alternative is making your own DIY filtration unit. Simply seal a 20–inch square MERV-13 furnace filter (which you can find at any hardware store) to a 20–inch box fan with a bungee cord and you’re set.

To learn how to protect your health and prepare for future smoke events, the first place to go is online at SmokeReadyGorge.org. Besides a wealth of information, the site also has a map of the local air quality monitors in the Gorge, and a link to Fire.AirNow.gov, which has updated wildfire smoke forecasts and smoke safety tips.

Besides spoiling the scenic beauty of the Gorge, wildfire smoke can be detrimental to our health and should be avoided – because we know who’s at the greatest risk. Us!

BRAIN TEASE: You need to do this exercise quickly. So, get ready, set, GO!

Repeat “silk” 10 times. Now spell “silk”.

What do cows drink?

The capital of China is Beijing but until the 1970’s it was known in the Western world as Peking. I received correct answers from Judy Kiser, Pat Evenson-Brady, Donna Mollet, Dave Lutgens, Lana Tepfer, Eva Summers, Doug Nelson, and Nancy Higgins this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket. And last week I must have been out to lunch enjoying a fish sandwich because I missed Stephen Woolpert, Kathy Bullack, and Tom Schaefer.

USA Swimming Olympics Trials are being held in my hometown of Indianapolis, so this week has to be a swimming question. Before Matt Biondi, Mark Spitz, and Micheal Phelps, Johnny Weissmuller was an American hero winning five Olympic gold medals in the 1924 and 1928 Olympics. For this week’s “Remember When” question, following his retirement from swimming, what Edgar Rice Burroughs’ character did he play in twelve feature films from 1932 to 1948? Email your answer to www.mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or send it with a picture of Jane Parker played by Maureen O’Sullivan.

Well, it’s been another week, losing my head in the wind. Until we meet again, there are times when I feel like a five-year-old walking behind the grownups and trying to stay up.

“Sometimes you lie in bed at night and you don’t have a single thing to worry about. That always worries me!” – Charlie Brown

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: (¿ʞlᴉɯ ssǝnƃ noʎ op) ˙ɹǝʇɐʍ ʞuᴉɹp sʍoƆ

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ June 12th, 2024

In my family, while growing up in the Midwest, I considered a good meal to be plenty of it. And my idea of fine cuisine was a sliced banana topped with peanut butter and mayonnaise on a piece of lettuce.

That may not appeal to you – or may not appeal to anyone, but eating healthy nutritional meals can be tasty and simple. So during the rest of March, National Nutrition Month … It’s not March? Okay, let’s imagine it is March – enjoying those cool spring days I now miss!

So whether it’s March or June, if you are looking for good healthy meals and even gardening tips to grow your own healthy foods, you’ll find them online at Food Hero.com. Food Hero is an initiative of the Oregon Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) program promoted in collaboration with Oregon State University Extension Service and the Oregon Department of Human Services.

Whether you are a new or experienced cook or gardener, Food Hero has resources for everyone. You’ll find healthy recipes that are tasty, quick, and easy; low-cost gardening tips that are simple and timely; recipes from different cultures; a Food Hero Monthly with tips about featured foods; and seasonal blog posts on nutrition and gardening topics.

The recipes include the ingredients, prep and cook time, plus directions and helpful notes. What I particularly like about Food Hero is that, unlike most recipes, these recipes include nutritional information, as you would find on the label of any packaged food, to see if it fits your nutritional needs.

I’ll guarantee you’ll find something you like whether it is a recipe for Breakfast Burritos, Banana Berry Smoothie, (which I’m drinking now), Applesauce French Toast, or Slow Cooker Pulled Pork. And they’re healthy. It’s like a guilty pleasure without the guilt! So sometime next week, go online to FoodHero.com and start exploring!

We all have a story to tell – and many of those stories have been featured in this paper’s monthly column “Through the Eyes of an Elder”. The Aging in the Gorge Alliance is looking for more stories from older adults about their life experiences. Maybe it’s about meeting Bob Wills at a honkey-tonk bar, knocking down outhouses on Halloween, or falling in love again at 80 and never feeling happier in your life – wonderful stories I’ve heard but were never written down.

For more information about sharing your story for “Through the Eyes of Elder” or even help writing it, contact Grace Wesson at Grace.Wesson@OregonState.edu.

Even if you decide this is not your cup of coffee, still consider writing about those special moments in your life to share with your children and grandchildren. When remembering your parents or grandparents, how often have you thought, I wish I had known more?

BRAIN TEASE: This one is for the music lovers in the audience.

A pregnant lady named her children: Dominique, Regis, Michelle, Fawn, Sophie, and Lara. What will she name her next child? Jessica, Katie, Abby, or Tilly?

The name of the “Queen of Disco” who “works hard for the money” was Donna Summer. I received correct answers from Judy Kiser, Tina Castanares, Dave Lutgens, David Liberty, Doug Nelson, Rebecca Abrams, Lana Tepfer, Donna Mollet, and this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket, Jess Birge.

And I knew I would miss someone and this week the honor goes to Rebecca Abrams.

If you are under 50, you may have always known the capital of China as Beijing. But before the Western world converted to the Pinyin romanization system in the mid-70s, the West used a different spelling and pronunciation. For this week’s “Remember When” question, how was the capital of China previously spelled in the Western world? Email your answer to www.mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or send it with the top 10 most used Chinese characters.

Well, it’s been another week trying to stay within the boundaries – if I only knew where they were. Until we meet again, as with eating, it is often best to keep your mouth shut.

“When the waitress asked if I wanted my pizza cut into four or eight slices, I said, ‘Four. I don’t think I can eat eight.’”—Yogi Berra

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: ˙ᴉ┴ uǝɥʇ puɐ ‘ɐ˥ ‘oS ‘ɐℲ ‘ǝW ‘ǝɹ ‘op ǝlɐɔs ǝɥʇ ʍolloɟ oʇ sɯǝǝs ǝɥS ˙ʎllᴉ┴

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ June 5th, 2024

I’m so easily distracted whether is a text message on my phone, my wife calling me, or a buzzard gliding past my window. It breaks my concentration and worse, I can’t remember what I was doing or thinking Then I follow the familiar routine of trying to turn back the hands of time, hoping to jog my memory.

I don’t remember this being a problem when I was younger, but then I don’t remember much of when I was younger – although I do remember my senior year in high school: the intramural basketball team called “Nads” (think about it!); dress down day when I was suspended for wearing a pair of torn and worn out jeans; and when we often wore to school pleated pants, tie, and sports coat with a button down Gant shirt just to be cool.

But what was I talking about? Oh yeah, distractions. 

As we age we become more easily distracted and have a harder time focusing on one thing. These distractions can occur in what we observe around us: seeing a billboard along the freeway while driving. Or they can be internal distractions: worrying about a family member while walking down the steps.

Distractions are a serious concern. But it is not all bad news. 

Surprisingly, one way distractions can be beneficial is that older adults remember irrelevant information more than younger adults. Now you may be asking, what is that good for? Well, it can be helpful if the distracting information becomes relevant later. For example, hearing on the radio about a road closure which is not relevant while washing dishes, may be relevant and helpful later when choosing your route to the grocery store. 

Regardless of the benefits, to remember anything you must first encode the information into your brain by avoiding distractions and focusing on what you are doing whether it is driving on the freeway, walking down the stairs, or remembering to turn off the stove after you’ve finished cooking.

Consequently, the appearance of a memory problem may just be because our ability to focus worsens as we get older, and we are more easily distracted. But it is also important to understand that making sense of what we know and forming reasonable arguments and judgments remains intact.

BRAIN TEASE: Jack walks out of his house and over to his beautiful tulip garden. He holds out his right hand, and a bee lands in it. What is in his eye?

Back in the ’50s and ‘60s, I was constantly reminded to wait an hour before “swimming”. I received correct answers from Sandy Haechrel, Judy Kiser, Ken Jernstedt, Donna Mollet, Kathy Bullack, Rhonda Spies, Dave Lutgens, Rose Schulz, Lana Tepfer, Linda Frizzell, Kim Birge, Craig Terry, Keith and Marlene Clymer, Deborah Medina, David Liberty, and Bruce Johnson. 

And for the week before, the chairman and president of American Motors Corporation when they introduced America’s first successful compact car, the Rambler American; and later served as governor of Michigan was George Romney. I received correct answers from Ken Jernstedt, Judy Kiser, Bruce Johnson, Doug Nelson, Tom Schaefer, Jim Tindall, Donna Mollet, Dave Lutgens, Lana Tepfer, Marny Weting, Rose Schulz, Bill Bullack, and Linda Frizzell. The winners of a quilt raffle ticket for the last two weeks were Ralph Winans and Ken Jernstedt.

And I missed Rose Schulz and I’m sure she won’t be the last.

I wasn’t a big fan of disco during the ‘70s, I never even watched Saturday Night Fever, but I did enjoy this singer. 

For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the Queen of Disco who had the breakout hits “Love to Love You Baby” and “I Feel Love” co-written by Giorgio Moroder who was known as the Father of Disco? Email your answer for this week’s “Remember When” question to www.mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or send it with the German adaption of the musical Hair in which she performed.

Well, it’s been another week seeing what I can pull out of the hat. Until we meet again, keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road.

“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: (ɹǝploɥ ǝǝq) ɹǝploɥǝq ǝɥʇ ɟo ǝʎǝ ǝɥʇ uᴉ sᴉ ʎʇnɐǝq ǝsnɐɔǝq ʎʇnɐǝq

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ May 29th, 2024

How many push-ups can you do? Or are you like me: the bigger challenge is just getting back up off the floor with some kind of grace and dignity!

Many of you are already active and can testify that you don’t have to relive your junior high P.E. class to enjoy the benefits of exercise and movement. It can be as simple as walking around the block or throwing away the TV remote – or even the TV. It can include water aerobics, gardening, dancing, or movement classes. By engaging in 30 minutes a day of moderate physical activity you can improve or maintain your strength, balance, flexibility, and cardiovascular fitness.

The first step is to avoid the excuses. Even with physical limitations, doing something is always better than doing nothing. If it becomes boring, mix it up and be creative. And even though you haven’t lost any weight or that extra inch around the waist, keep moving. It is still good for you.

There are also plenty of inexpensive ways to keep moving: a few plants here and a walking stick there or classes at your community center. And if you just don’t have the get up and go, to get out and move, reward yourself. Buy yourself a large chocolate milkshake. (Just kidding!)

And exercise with friends. The social connections will make it fun, more interesting, and a little peer pressure can be the motivation that keeps you going. And start small. You’re not getting any younger. Just because you were able to do something twenty years ago, doesn’t mean you can expect to start at that same level today.

The point is that it is never too late to start being more active. Start small, make it fun, and be persistent. At our age we may no longer be the youthful hare of Aesop’s Fables. But we can still follow the tortoise’s example where slow and steady wins the race.

A quick reminder. Shingles is not a walk in the park as a friend reminded me recently. She is suffering from painful nerve damage from shingles and has been urging all her friends to get the vaccine!

The two-dose recombinant zoster vaccine Shingrix is more than 90% effective compared to the previous vaccine Zostavax which was 51% effective. Even if you’ve already received the Zostavax vaccine or if you had shingles in the past, it is recommended that you receive the Shingrix vaccine. But if you’ve had an allergic reaction to a vaccine or have a weakened immune system, you should talk to your doctor first.

BRAIN TEASE: You may find this one way too easy.

I am a word of six; my first three letters refer to an automobile; my last three letters refer to a household animal; my first four letters is a fish; my whole is found in your room. What am I?

The person who served as chairman and president of American Motors Corporation from 1954 to 1962 and served as governor of Michigan from 1963 to 1969 was George Romney. Once again, because it was another Monday holiday and I needed to send in this column early, next week I will share the names of those who sent in last week’s correct answer.

Back in the 50’s and 60’s, there were different ideas of what was safe and what wasn’t. I didn’t wear a bicycle helmet; I put raw eggs in my milkshakes; I used baby oil instead of sunscreen: and my sister and I would sleep on the mattress in the back of the Mercury station wagon while my mom and dad drove to Florida. But during the summer we were constantly reminded to wait an hour before doing what? Email your answer for this week’s “Remember When” question to www.mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or mail it with a copy of a Sandra Dee Coppertone ad.

Well, it’s been another week trying to decide should I or shouldn’t I. Until we meet again as Anton Chekhov once pointed out “Any idiot can face a crisis. It’s the day-to-day living that wears you out”.

“The best baby-sitters, of course, are the baby’s grandparents. You feel completely comfortable entrusting your baby to them for long periods, which is why most grandparents flee to Florida.” Dave Barry

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: ˙ʇǝdɹɐɔ ∀

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ May 22nd, 2024

For many, the idea of “playing” ends in childhood. When we were working and raising a family, we didn’t have much time to play. We had important things to do and playing was often seen as wasting time. Then when we reach that stage in life when we have more time, we don’t play enough.

But we should play more. Play has numerous mental and physical health benefits. It stimulates the mind, nurtures creativity, and boosts overall happiness while relieving daily stresses: health, family, or financial issues. And what may be most important is that engaging in play with others can create lasting friendships.

There are many types of play to consider.

Constructive play? Remember how much fun it was playing with Legos? You can now buy Lego Sets and even Erector Sets for adults. What better way to impress your grandchildren?

Games and Puzzles? There’s pinochle, poker, checkers and brain teasers, crossword puzzles, and jigsaw puzzles (which are addictive!).

Physical play? Pickleball, boogie boarding, golf, cycling. Or you can let it loose gyrating on the dance floor with your partner imagining you are on American Bandstand.

Outdoor play? There’s gardening or walking your favorite nature preserve, watching nature bloom. Although I always thought pulling weeds was a little too close to nature.

Creative play? Creating something new that no one has ever made – maybe something no one would ever want to make! But who cares if it brings you joy and a sense of accomplishment. It could be painting, writing, knitting, or creating that one-of-a-kind quilt.

Imaginative Play? When was the last time you dressed up and played make-believe? Maybe a lightsaber fight with your grandchildren?

Travel and Exploration? Exploring new places, trying new foods, and experiencing different cultures can be playful and adventurous.

Humor and Laughter? Whether through watching comedies, or sharing age-old jokes with friends, humor contributes to a lighthearted and playful attitude.

Play is not restricted by age. How we play may change: no longer doing somersaults or engaging in silly fun. But no matter our age or physical condition it is never too late to find a way to play. As the well-traveled quote by George Bernard Shaw reminds us, “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; We grow old because we stop playing.”

There is a Scam Prevention Event at Hood River Valley Adult Center on May 30, resource tables from 11:30 – 1:00, and from 1:00 – 2:00 Ellen Klem with the Department of Justice will give a presentation to help you stop the fraud before it starts and teach you how to alert others so they can avoid becoming victims.

BRAIN TEASE: See if you can answer this tease without paper and pencil.

Three playing cards in a row. Can you name them with these clues? There is a two to the right of a king. A diamond will be found to the left of a spade. An ace is to the left of a heart. A heart is to the left of a spade. Now, identify all three cards.

The irreverent World War II novel by Joseph Heller published in 1961 that follows the life of Captain John Yossarian, a U.S. Army Air Forces B-25 bombardier is Catch-22. I received correct answers from Donna Mollet, Kathy Bullack, Dave Lutgens, Jim Tindall, Craig Terry, Mike Nagle, Tina Castanares, Judy Kiser, Bruce Johnson, Pat Evenson-Brady, Dan Ericksen, Lana Tepfer, Doug Nelson, Rebecca Abrams, and Julya Hoffman this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.

This person served as chairman and president of American Motors Corporation when they introduced America’s first successful compact car, the Rambler American; and later served as governor of Michigan. For this week’s “Remember When” question what was the name of this American businessman and politician? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or return it with a picture of his son who was governor of Massachusetts.

Well, it’s been another week trying to stay on track without getting railroaded. Until we meet again, find a little time to just be silly.

“When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap.” Cynthia Heimel

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: ˙sǝpɐdS ɟo oʍ┴ ‘sʇɹɐǝH ɟo ƃuᴉʞ ‘spuoɯɐᴉp ɟo ǝɔ∀

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ May 15th, 2024

As I get older there’s always new aches or pains: knee, stomach, neck, you name it. It’s no big deal. It is what it is and I carry on.

But occasionally I read about a common symptom that’s a sign of a serious illness – and I scare myself. Is that gas I’m having caused by too much Broccoli or Celiac Disease? Is that painful, burning sensation in my chest heartburn or a more serious heart problem? Is that stomach discomfort indigestion or early signs of stomach cancer?

I worry. And if the symptoms persist, I will finally see a doctor to diagnose the problem.

Last year I wrote about how to get the most out of a doctor’s visit: be honest; decide on three or four questions to ask; stick to the point; and share how you felt about the visit.

But recently I’ve learned that even though a doctor can find valuable information from a physical exam and medical tests, a clear understanding of your symptoms can point the doctor in the right direction.

So how should I describe my symptoms? Consider these suggestions from the National Institute on Aging. (www.nia.nih.gov/health.)

Be clear and concise; and as specific, detailed, and descriptive as possible when describing your symptoms.

Explain to or show your doctor the exact location where you are experiencing your symptoms instead of some general area.

Rate the severity of your symptoms on a scale of one to ten: one being almost no effect on you and ten being the worst possible case you can imagine. Be honest, and don’t minimize or exaggerate.”

Mention how long you’ve had your symptoms. When did they begin and how often do they occur? Have you experienced the symptoms before?

Explain what relieves or worsens your symptoms. Are they getting better or worse? Are they connected to specific activities, injuries, times of day, food, or beverages?

When you visit your doctor make sure you first describe only your symptoms and not what condition you think you have. With online medical websites such as MedlinePlus or WebMD, there are plenty of opportunities to research your symptoms and self-diagnose – which I avoid because I don’t want to know how bad it could be. I want to sleep at night!

Finally, keep a record of your symptoms. Remember, be as specific, detailed, and descriptive as possible, and don’t forget to take it to your medical appointment.

Worrying about your symptoms is not a sign of weakness. And being honest about what you are experiencing doesn’t mean you are complaining – well, maybe sometimes I am! So when you visit your doctor, be prepared to accurately describe your symptoms so you can receive the best diagnosis possible.

BRAIN TEASE: How do you make the number 7 even without addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division?

The name of the sportswear company that in 1957 modified the sign on the roof of its downtown Portland building to include a male deer leaping over an outline of the state of Oregon was White Stag. I received correct answers from Sam Bilyeu, Bruce Johnson, Donna Mollet, Rhonda Spies, Dave Lutgens, Lana Tepfer, Charlotte Arnold, Judy Kiser, Deborah Medina, Doug Nelson, Cindy Winfield, Keith Clymer, Kathy Bullack, and Charlotte Arnold this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.

And last week because I was too busy eating my fish sticks, I missed Donna Mollet and Keith Clymer.

The irreverent World War II novel by Joseph Heller first published in 1961 follows the life of Captain John Yossarian, a U.S. Army Air Forces B-25 bombardier.  For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the title of this book that became a cult classic, especially among the Vietnam War generation, and the title has become a part of our modern vocabulary describing a “no-win” situation. Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, leave a message at 541-296-4788, or return your answer on the back of a poster for the film adaptation released in 1970.

Well, it’s been another week, doing what I can with what I got. Until we meet again, every day is a gift – although sometimes it’s hidden in the closet, wrapped in a crumpled month-old newspaper.

“Don’t hold a grudge. While you’re carrying a grudge the other guy’s out dancing.” Buddy Hackett

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: ˙,,uǝʌǝ,, sǝɯoɔǝq ,,uǝʌǝs,, puɐ ,,S,, ǝɥʇ doɹp

Aging Well in the Gorge ~ May 8th, 2024

There is a point when you learn to accept that you will not live forever no matter how well you eat, exercise, and do all the right things. We will all experience an end-of-life journey riding off into the sunset like the hero in a cowboy Western. The question is what kind of journey do you want that to be?

Facing this end-of-life journey is scary. We try to avoid it, and too often a person doesn’t receive the support so they can live as fulfilling a life as possible for the rest of their life. But hospice can provide that support.

Because hospice is often misunderstood, it is requested too late, missing out on months of supportive care they could have received including an interdisciplinary care team that comes to the person’s home and addresses the burdens they and their family face – all at little or no cost.

Anyone can request hospice services not just a physician: a family member, a friend, or the person. Hospice will contact the provider and determine if the person qualifies for hospice services. Generally, to be eligible a physician must predict a life expectancy of six months or less, but there is no limit to the length of time as long as the person continues to qualify for hospice.

Most of us are afraid of dying; it’s not something we generally discuss around the kitchen table. But Hospice is not just about dying, it’s as much about living: living a life of discovery, love, and even joy to the end of this wonderful journey.

Two hospices serve the Columbia Gorge; Bristol Hospice (541-386-1942) and Providence Hospice (541-387-6449). Gorge End of Life Services also offers services that are an extra layer of support to medical and hospice services and are not replacing hospice. You can learn more about their services by going to their website https://gorgeendoflifeservices.com/.

On May 18th Bristol Hospice invites the community to the Bristol Hospice Memorial and Kite Festival from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. near the Waterfront Events Site in Hood River. You will be treated to the awe-inspiring sight of colossal kites soaring high in the sky flown by professional kite flyers. It will be a day of joy for individuals looking to honor the memory of loved ones and a day of fun for families. Everyone is encouraged to bring their kites and picnic baskets to make the most of this memorable occasion.

For more information about the Bristol Hospice Memorial and Kite Festival, contact Bristol Hospice at 541-386-1942 or thomas.keolker@bristolhospice.com.

BRAIN TEASE: You get off easy this week. See how you do.

You live in a one story house made entirely of redwood. What color would the stairs be?

Besides myself, Judy Kiser, Dave Lutgens, Doug Nelson, Sam Bilyeu, Kathy Bullack, Lana Tepfer, and Rebecca Abrams remember every Friday being served some form of fish usually fish sticks; Mike McFarlane remembers Tuna Noodle Casserole; and Linda Frizzell remembers Hot Dogs. But the winner of a quilt raffle ticket is Kathy Bullack who also shared her most memorable lunch called a “flying saucer”: a slab of bologna with mashed potatoes on top, spinach or peas on the side, milk in a glass – and you could have a big chocolate chip cookie if you ate all your lunch! Ah, what the kids miss these days.

This lighted sign in downtown Portland was redesigned in 2010 to become the “Portland Oregon” sign. But for this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the sportswear company that in 1957 modified the sign on the roof of its downtown Portland building to include a male deer leaping over an outline of the state of Oregon? Email your answer to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, call 541-296-4788, or send it with a vintage white jacket – a must-wear if you wanted to be cool in high school in Portland during the 50s. At least that’s what I was told!

Well, it’s been another week, hoping for at least one good idea. Until we meet again, keep the sails up – you never know when the wind will blow.

“To get through the hardest journey we need take only one step at a time, but we must keep stepping.” Chinese Proverb

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Wednesdays with music on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays; Mt. Hood Townhall (541-308-5997) – Tuesdays; Hood River Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center (541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333).

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services: Goldendale office (509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068), and in Skamania County call Senior Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: . ǝsnoɥ ʎɹoʇs-ǝuo ɐ uᴉ ǝʌᴉl no⅄ ¿sɹᴉɐʇs ʇɐɥM