Elders + Tech = Laughs

Elders + Tech = Laughs
Your intrepid correspondent on the Elder Watch beat considers it a key duty to keep you up to date where technology is concerned. Not about the latest technological developments. Forget that, I battle to keep up with the ever-changing tech world like most of us whose lives have straddled the Digital Divide. Besides, youthful tech ...

Snowflake Generation: Insult of the Year

Snowflake Generation: Insult of the Year
I am not happy about the Insult of the Year. Not because it was hurled at me – I’m too old for it. This insult is targeted at the young. Their elders call them the “Snowflake Generation”. “Young adults of the 2010s, viewed as less resilient and more prone to taking offence than previous generations” ...

Youth tell Mandela era elders: Shut up! 1

Youth tell Mandela era elders: Shut up!
There’s a joke about the alumni of an elite South African boys school that poses this question: “How do you know if someone went to…?” The answer: “They tell you.” There’s a similar joke now doing the rounds: “How do you know if someone was in The Struggle?” Fighting apartheid used to be something to brag ...

Live longer – and better!

Live longer - and better!
When I saw this cartoon it depressed me. “These are them?” All this effort to stay young – and all it gets us is more years of being old? Wait a minute. Let’s refill that half-glass of water, abandoning such pessimistic measurement of its emptiness. Readers of this column will know how fond My New Old Self ...

Same Old Same Old for Women at Cannes

Same Old Same Old for Women at Cannes
There are more women directors with movies in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. But in terms of older women it looks like Same Old Same Old. The Cannes 2016 main jury is headed by George Miller, director of the Mad Max action movie franchise. At 71 he is NSP (No Spring Chicken) but I haven’t ...

Studies show (sometimes): what we know 1

Studies show (sometimes): what we know
“Studies show” – you’ve read that here before. My New Old Self often cites research findings from studies on ageing. Studies can offer revelations and insights. Sometimes, however, they seem to simply confirm the intuitively obvious. Like a recent study revealing that pop music lyrics show “negative representations” of older people. Duh, our youth-loving, age-denying ...

I’m like: I don’t like it

I'm like: I don't like it
I’ve got a problem with the word “like”. I don’t like that “like” has replaced the word “said” in spoken English. People don’t say “I said” or “He says” much any more. Instead they say “She was like” and “I’m like”. As for me, I’m like: I don’t like it. But whether I like it or ...

Waking at night (you know why) 2

Waking at night (you know why)
More people in Africa have cellphones than toilets. This statistic comes to mind when I wake up in the middle of the night. Which often happens when you get older. There’s no gender divide on this one. Both men and women tend to experience interrupted sleep as we age. You know the reason most of ...

Gaga can go gray but grannies can’t go Gaga 2

Gaga can go gray but grannies can’t go Gaga
It was my niece’s 13th birthday party and about a dozen 12- and 13 year-olds were playing a party game. (How heartening that children still do, when so often they’re all just staring at their phones.) The game called “Who Am I?” starts with a name stuck on your forehead (or back), then you have a limited ...

Older women at Cannes 2

Older women at Cannes
Nowhere is the media’s double standard in aging between male and female more glaringly obvious than at that annual glamathon on the French Riviera, the Cannes Film Festival. This year the main Cannes jury was headed by writer-director-producers the Coen Brothers, the first time two people have shared this role. The most lauded film of ...