Friday, April 23, 2010

Silly Songs of the Sixties

One time I saw a CD called “Silly Songs” and was a tiny bit annoyed when I realized every song was from the sixties. I’m telling you, we didn’t think those songs were so silly when they came out. In fact, some of those “Silly Songs” bring back a lot of emotions. I won’t say they are all happy, but at least some of them are.

One of the silly songs on the CD was “Yellow Submarine.” Now how could anyone consider the Beatles to be silly? We are talking about THE Beatles, after all. Obviously, this song was selected by someone who didn’t remember the screaming, yelling, fainting, obsessing, and idolization from your average run-of-the-mill Beatlemaniac. Nope, anyone with those memories wouldn’t dare call anything performed by the Beatles a silly song.

I can’t remember what other songs were on that CD, but I can think of a few that might actually qualify as a bit “crazy” as one Web site calls it. Crazy is more appropriate for songs like “Little Red Riding Hood” or “Wild Thing.” I actually thought the real name of “Wild Thing” should be “Wild Thang” since that is exactly how the Troggs sang it. Maybe the prize should go to “Tip Toe Thru the Tulips.” It’s a mystery how or why that was ever a hit. And yes, it was pretty darn goofy. You kinda had to be there to appreciate “Who Put the Bomp in the Bomp, Bomp, Bomp.” I bet I'm not the only boomer who wants to dance everytime that song comes on the radio.

Okay, I’ll concede crazy, but silly? Not as long as we boomers can sing all the lyrics to “Tie Me Kangaroo Down.”

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hop on The Soul Train

Our health insurance encourages us to participate in wellness programs and our latest work health improvement plan is “Hop on The Soul Train.” This nutrition and walking program comes at just the perfect time for me. I just had my physical Wednesday and, once again, my doctor tells me that if I lose ten to fifteen pounds my numbers should be perfect.

Like a lot of other baby boomers, I’m taking medication for high cholesterol and elevated blood pressure. Still, my last blood work showed creeping-upward numbers in way too many categories. Even before my doctor visit, I was working up to the mindset that I needed to get serious about reducing those numbers. We have a great prescription program with our insurance, but this year I took the leap to a high deductible plan—and first thing being applied to that deductible are prescription drugs.

The Soul Train plan is simple: walk five miles and you get to add a “car” to your train. The trains are colorful pieces of laminated paper posted along the hallway. The person with the most cars wins a gift certificate to a sporting goods place. The rest of us can win incentives along the way for turning in our weekly miles, servings of fruits and vegetables, and glasses of water. Since I didn’t see cups of coffee listed, I may not do so well on the fluid intake.

The idea is for each of us to take control of our health habits by stepping up the veggies and increasing our exercise. Hopefully, those of us with 10-15 pounds to spare can drop a little weight and improve those tattletale numbers. If nothing else, we can feel righteous about improving our overall health as we hop on the soul train.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Creaking Bones

Although I feel youthful on the inside, my body doesn’t always cooperate, and I’ve developed some creaking bones over the years. When I was in my late thirties, I began to have trouble with my knees. After consulting with several physicians, I think the doctor that rattled off a long name for my condition and followed it up with “You have sick knees,” was about the least helpful one of the bunch.

I lived with my “sick” knees for another fifteen years until my limp became noticeable. I finally told my family doctor I had to do something. He said it would probably take surgery to fix them, but he wanted me to join a gym and use the machines to strengthen the surrounding muscles before we scheduled surgery.

I joined Brian’s Gym and under the guidance of a personal trainer, I began an exercise program to build the muscles without doing more damage. At the same time, at our workplace health fair, a representative from GNC recommended Co Q-10.

A strange thing happened—after years of suffering with my knees, they got a whole lot better. Five years later, I occasionally have flare-ups with my knees, but not often, and I can easily live with it.

When I pay my gym membership or buy another bottle of Co Q-10, I can’t help but think it’s a whole lot better than surgery. My money is much better spent on prevention.

Copyright (c) April 2010 L. S. Fisher

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

How Sweet It Is!

Does “How sweet it is!” make you think of Jackie Gleason or the sweet tea you just ordered at McDonald’s drive-thru? I’ve never been one to drink sugary drinks—at least not on purpose.

I saw a demonstration at our health fair recently that really drove home just how blissfully aware most of us are of just how much sugar we consume. A certified health educator, Dee Ann Brodersen, held up a 20-oz bottle of orange soda. She had me read the label on the back.

“How many grams of sugar?” she asked.

“It says 35 per serving,” I answered. I can read with the best of them.

“Okay,” she said, “how many teaspoons of sugar do you think that is?”

“Oh, I don’t know,” I said. “Maybe four?” That sounded like a lot of sugar to me, and much more than I would ever stir into a drink.

“Well, let’s see,” she said. “First you need to convert the grams to teaspoons—4 grams of sugar equals 1 teaspoon of sugar. So, divide 35 by 4 and you get 8.75 teaspoons of sugar.”

“That’s ridiculous,” I said. “Who would stir almost nine teaspoons of sugar into a drink?”

“Exactly,” she agreed. “But how many people will stop drinking after the first serving and not drink the other serving and a-half in this bottle?” She reaches behind the table and pulls out packets of sugar taped together—all 22 packets.

Back to that McDonald’s sweet tea—a large sweet tea has 59 grams of sugar, a medium has 38 grams of sugar, and a child’s size has 23 grams of sugar. Before you indulge in that next sweet tea, or order it for your grandchild, exercise your mind and visualize those packets taped together. How many will it be? Let’s see 59 divided by 4—you do the math!

copyright (c) April 2010 L. S. Fisher

Friday, April 2, 2010

Boomers and Class Reunions—How Many Years Ago?

What runs through your head when you get the invitation for a 40 year class reunion? Reconnecting with former classmates might not be too shocking if you have attended a few reunions along the way; otherwise, you might want to pop a nitro before you walk through the door.

I’m not sure which is worse, your school’s “golden” couple—basketball star weds homecoming queen—who remind you of your grandparents, or the svelte class nerd who looks twenty years younger than everyone else. Both remind you it's time to renew your gym membership.

Strange things happen with friendships too. You may have been best friends in high school, but now you can’t remember why. Or that cute guy you flirted with in study hall has turned into someone who totally creeps you out. (Did you hear rumors that his ex disappeared and was never heard from again?)

Oh, heck, you’re a Boomer, and you can handle it. Wearing your darkest shades will have a twofold purpose: You hide your crow’s feet, and your vision is muted so that everyone else looks better too.

copyright (c) April 2010 L. S. Fisher

Bending: An Aerobic Workout

Have you ever wondered why people wear shoes with Velcro fasteners? After all, you learn to tie shoes in kindergarten. Well, I can tell you with the voice of authority—bending is hard on chubby girls.

When I try to get past the extra roll engulfing my middle to tie my shoes, I find myself out of breath. I’ve decided that bending is my new aerobic workout. I just need to get the breathing technique down before I fall on my head and can’t get up.

Silly people with their Velcro straps—they aren’t getting their exercise.

copyright (c) April 2010 L. S. Fisher