April 15, 2019
“The longer I live, the more beautiful life becomes.”
Frank Lloyd Wright
A friend e-mailed me the other day saying that she appreciated my thoughts on graceful aging. I thought about what she said and realized that I am finding my life to be pretty good these days.
I don’t see as well as I once did so I miss seeing some of the wrinkles and some of the debris but I still see smiling faces, flowers in bloom and pretty days. My hearing is failing but my hearing aids let me hear what I want to hear. I walk a little slower but that provides me more time to appreciate my wife and friends as we stroll together.
Our home has been replaced by our senior living apartment that is spacious and homey. We have friendly neighbors who share in our activities, and we don’t have to drive somewhere to see them. The folks who provide us a pleasant dining experience serve us tasty meals that we enjoy with friends each day.
You want to know something? I never thought that old age could be as good as mine is. Here is a story that reminds me of many of my new friends.
Good News—Positive Emotions Are Contagious
by Holly Lebowitz Rossi
“There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor,” said Charles Dickens. Modern research suggests that the idea of contagious emotions is more than a literary flourish; it has a basis in science.
The smallest emotional moments of connection between two people reveal that your attitude impacts your neighbor’s attitudes, and their attitude impacts their coworkers’ attitude and so on and so on through the complex social networks we all travel.
Sociologist Nicholas Christakis of Yale University, who led a 32-year-long study of face-to-face interactions among 5,000 people in one town, told NPR.org, “If someone smiles at you, you smile back at them. That’s a very fleeting contagion of emotion from one person to another.”
Simply put, if you are positive, kind and grateful, the people you encounter are more likely to feel the same.
You may be thinking, if positive emotions like joy and gratitude are contagious, what about “negative” emotions like sadness or anger? They also spread from person to person, whether through a nonverbal cue like averted eyes at the office water cooler or online in a heated rant.
If you are struggling with negativity, it can feel like a lot to take responsibility for other people’s feelings. But it might be helpful and even inspiring to consider that taking a moment to observe your behavior might reveal easy ways to use your emotional contagiousness for the good of your community.
We can’t avoid age. However, we can avoid some aging. Continue to do things. Be active. Life is fantastic in the way it adjusts to demands; if you use your muscles and mind, they stay there much longer.
Charles H. Townes
Overheard at the day care center, or was it the senior center.
Q: How is dew formed?
A: The sun shines down on the leaves and makes them perspire.
Q: How can you delay milk turning sour?
A: Keep it in the cow.
Q: What causes the tides in the oceans?
A: The tides are a fight between the Earth and the Moon. All water tends to flow towards the moon, because there is no water on the moon, and nature hates a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins in this fight.
Q: What happens to your body as you age?
A: When you get old, so do your bowels and you get intercontinental.
Q: Name a major disease associated with cigarettes.
A: Premature death.
Q: What is the fibula?
A: A small lie.
Q: What does “varicose” mean?
Laughing at our mistakes can lengthen our own life. Laughing at someone else’s can shorten it.
Esther had only recently got married and was having a chat with her best friend Becky.
Esther asks, “Tell me, Becky, I’ve forgotten the procedure. When one first gets married, how long should one wait before starting to point out to one’s husband what disgusting habits his friends have?”
Scandinavian Airlines dinner: Smoked salmon on hard doughnut-shaped rolls.
El Al dinner: Lox on bagels.
“I’d like the number for Rachel Cohen in Brooklyn, New York.” the young man said to the information operator.
“There are multiple listings for Rachel Cohen’s, in Brooklyn” the operator said. “Do you have a street name?”
The young man hesitated a moment, “Well, uh, most people call me “Max.”
The pastor shocked the congregation when he announced that he was resigning from the church and moving to a drier climate.
After the service a very distraught lady came to the pastor with tears in her eyes, “Oh, Pastor Bob, we are going to miss you so much. We don’t want you to leave!”
The kindhearted pastor patted her hand and said “Now, now, Carolyn, don’t carry on. The pastor who takes my place might be even better than me”.
“Yeah right”, she said, “That’s what they said the LAST time too!!!”
“The model for the Gerber baby on the jars turns 77 years old today. He’s back to eating Gerber baby food.”
She said: At the data-entry company where I work, the other operators and I share a coffeepot. One morning I took it into the ladies room to fill it with water. Then I began preening in the mirror, brushing my hair and reapplying some makeup.
I didn’t realize how long I’d been until someone slid a note under the door.
“You win,” it read. Any ransom demand will be met. Just release the coffeepot.”
“Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.”
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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