Posts have been few because I’ve been finishing my book, and the manuscript went out to an agent last Friday—w00t! Off for vacation. And what should greet me on the magazine rack at the airport but this week’s cover story of Time magazine: “Manopause?! Aging, Insecurity and the $2 Billion Testosterone Industry.”
Out there, way out there
Lifetime Arts is a nonprofit that "promotes creative aging through professionally conducted arts education for older adults." The organization understands that raising awareness of ageism is central to their mission, and I've given my talk at several of their training institutes. Last week I took the train up to Chappaqua to speak to librarians from seven states, who are participating in a national Creative Aging in America's Libraries project, and co-founders Maura O’Malley and Ed Friedman had nice things to say.
I’ve been part of the Council on Contemporary Families since it was founded 20 years ago to provide solid social science about American families to the press and the public. My post about the latest Census Report on older Americans is up now on their Families As They Really Are blog on the Society Pages site:
I’m just back from a conference hosted by this 30-year-old Palo Alto think tank, the theme of which was “Living Longer/Aging Well.” Most of the attendees were from healthcare and pharmaceutical companies, and I wasn’t sure how hospitable they’d be to my message about the medicalization of old age. In cultures with meaningful social and economic roles for older people, physical health is just one aspect of aging, but in ours, sickness takes center stage. And as the population ages the medical-industrial complex will depend more than ever on the old for its profits.
A week from today I’ll be joining Bill Thomas & team onstage in Columbus for the Midwest swing of his Second Wind Tour as its anti-ageism Agitator in Chief. So far the tour—a five-hour “nonfiction theater” combination of words, film and music—has centered around personal growth and reimagining aging, but from this point out they’re taking advantage of having me on the bus to focus on ageism.
I'm delighted to be joining Margaret Morganroth Gullette, among other writers, on the website of the Silver Century Foundation, which has an excellent mandate. The foundation "challenges entrenched and harmful stereotypes, encourages dialogue between generations, advocates planning for the second half of life, and raises awareness to educate and inspire everyone to live long, healthy, empowered lives."
Ageism in Silicon Valley has been all over the news lately. The New York Times Magazine ran a cover story titled “Silicon Valley's Youth Problem.” Male engineers in their twenties are getting botox and hair transplants before key interviews. “The Brutal Ageism of Tech,” a feature story in the New Republic, described a swelling cohort of “highly trained, objectively talented, surpassingly ambitious workers” sidelined “for reasons no one can rationally explain.”