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Bethel the Kodiak bear one of the oldest

I’m not sure what human decade she is. I noticed in the video that she has teeth. Too bad she only gets salmon once a year, but the Kuskokwim River is rather far away (and at the opposite time of year).

Bethel the Kodiak brown bear, celebrating birthday in Australia

Bethel the Kodiak brown bear, celebrating birthday in Australia

Not grizzly at all… Bethel the kodiak bear lounges in her enclosure at Sydney’s Taronga Zoo. (ABC news)

Australia’s oldest bear has celebrated its 32nd birthday.

Bethel the kodiak [sic] bear also has the distinction of being one of the oldest of its species in the world.

It’s become a birthday ritual that never fails to delight the grand old dame of Taronga Zoo.

“She was bashing at the door as soon as she could smell that salmon coming in,” said zookeeper Deb Olsen.

“She knows that it’s a special day when she sees the big salmon there.”

I noticed while reading up on Bethel’s birthday bash that the Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC) has a tag or category for news feeds called aged-care. Click on the ink below to add it to your news reader.


  • http://www.abc.net.au/news/tag/aged-care/rss.xml
  • Maile Loloa, Tolstoy’s bicyclist teacher

    Gran defies barriers to win degree
    5:00AM Monday April 28, 2008, Maile Loloa can practice teaching with granddaughter Sepa. Photo / Glenn Jeffreyclick to view original By Martha McKenzie-Minifie
    Maile Loloa can practice teaching with granddaughter Sepa. Photo / Glenn Jeffrey

    In her class, Maile Loloa was almost 30 years older than her fellow students. But the grandmother of 11 didn’t let the age gap – or her lack of confidence in speaking publicly and writing in English – put her off.

    She will graduate next month at age 67 from Manukau Institute of Technology with a bachelor of education, specialising in early childhood….

    Mrs Loloa said the requirement for all teachers at most early childhood centres to have a degree or diploma by 2012 was one factor in her decision to go back to school. Manukau, where Mrs Loloa works, has low rates of participation in preschool and a shortage of trained teachers.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10506570&ref=rss


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    Liz Taylor takes comments

    One of the best reads ever on aging deliberately is Liz Taylor–
    Her series has been mentioned previously –

    I just discovered that the columns published at Kitsap Sun Stories: Liz Taylor: Aging Deliberately allow comments (registration required) and have an RSS feed . This is so much more convenient and useful than the Seattle Times venue. I’m not sure which is the primary home for Liz’s work, however, and Kitsap may not carry all her columns. At the Seattle Times I have to subscribe by E-mail to their health series (once a week e-mail, all health stories which are interesting) to get notice of her columns. Otherwise I have a Google News Alert for Liz Taylor+ aging, which sometimes brings in notice of National Velvet. [the colors behind some items below mean nothing except straightening out the code remains to be done.]

    Liz Taylor began her career as a federal consumer-fraud investigator and was appointed by Elizabeth Dole in 1976 to direct a nationwide investigation of the nursing-home industry. She’s worked in the aging field ever since.

    In the 1980s, Liz became one of the first geriatric care managers in the Pacific Northwest, working with thousands of families and older adults to find high-quality services. In 2000, she founded Aging Deliberately, a business that teaches people how to prepare for their aging so they’ll have more control over what happens to them. In 2005, she served as a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging. She’s won the American Geriatrics Society’s 2007 Aging Awareness Media Award and the Washington Association of Homes and Services for the Aging’s Excellence in Media Award. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/growingolder/

    It’s relatively easy to age successfully if you’re wealthy. Money can’t buy happiness, but it certainly allows you to buy the things that make life more comfortable at any age. 1/26/2008 11:00 PM
    In my last column, I wrote about a growing problem: what to do when an older person who has dementia hasn’t named anyone she trusts to make decisions for her. This week I’ll tackle a tougher issue: what to do when the person she names does a poor job. 11/17/2007 11:00 PM
    My e-mail has had a repeated theme recently: An older person with dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease, isn’t paying bills, preparing meals, bathing, and other important tasks — but refuses to allow anyone to help.
    11/3/2007 09:00 PM |
    There’s a certain uniformity to finding a physician under Medicare these days. Rich or poor, if you’re 65 or older, you’re likely to have similar slim pickings (more so if you’re poor and on Medicare and Medicaid). 10/20/2007 11:00 PM |
    Most of us want to live a long time, but nobody wants to grow old. The irony is, most of us will — live a long time and grow old. It’s easy to do — all it takes is letting the days roll by. As long as you’re healthy, getting old is a piece of cake.
    10/6/2007 11:00 PM |
    It’s easy as pie to age well when you’re healthy. The friction comes when you become frail. Sometimes it’s self-inflicted, the product of isolation, poor eating habits, lack of physical activity and falls — all common problems for people who age in their homes but don’t plan it correctly. 9/22/2007 11:00 PM |
    A woman in her late 70s, a good friend, is pondering her options. Her home is two stories (or three, including the basement), with many stairs to her bedroom, bathroom and the washing machine. 9/8/2007 11:00 PM
    Dad is 87, fun and funny, with moderate dementia. He lived “on the edge” in his own home for years while we kids worried sick. 7/28/2007 11:00 PM
    When I was growing up in the 1950s and ’60s, cars were sort of round and later sort of square. My dad wore a hat to work and took the bus.
    7/14/2007 11:00 PM
    I’m 75 and have lived in an assisted-living facility for a year.
    7/8/2007 02:00 AM
    Older people are not simply younger people with wrinkles our bodies change dramatically as we age, both inside and out; some parts wear out before others, sometimes several at once.
    6/17/2007 02:00 AM
    Whether you live at home, in a retirement community, or in a yurt on top of a mountain, as you age, you want to do it consciously.
    6/3/2007 02:00 AM

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    Love and respect never grow old

    Love never grows old condom card

    Safe sex for older people is a major concern of A Little Red Hen http://alittleredhen.typepad.com/a_little_red_hen/ who has been reminding people with her condom amulets.

    2007-11-30 [revised] Stop the ‘tubes! A Little Red Hen has a new blogzine announced here–
    Knit A Condom Amulet, the Blogzine

    and click image to see the new site–
    button for knitacondomamulet

    Fortunately, there has been recent news coverage about the need for HIV and STD testing, and practicing safe sex, by those over 50.

    Experts and older patients are teaching a belated lesson to battle a risky HIV generation gap that has left many unprotected and infected.
    By P.J. Huffstutter, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
    November 26, 2007

    …although the number of HIV and AIDS patients in the over-50 crowd nationwide had grown in recent years, some of the increase was attributed to people who are living longer with the virus or disease, thanks to improvements in therapy treatments.

    But without widespread testing, “we don’t really know what the true prevalence [of STD infection] is in this group,” Lieb said. “There’s reason to think, at least anecdotally, this is a combustible situation that is being overlooked.”

    That’s why some social service and public health officials have turned to HIV-positive patients like Fowler to speak out and try to get their peers’ attention…. Fowler recently met up with a graying group to commiserate about sexually transmitted diseases, and recounted her cautionary tale. How a divorce in her 50s led her back into the dating pool, and how she enjoyed a New Year’s Eve fling with a former co-worker. Fowler said she never considered using condoms, given that she had already gone through menopause.

    “I had lived what I considered a conventional, traditional life. I had been a virgin on my wedding night in 1959,” said Fowler, a founder of the National Assn. on HIV Over Fifty, who now coordinates the speakers bureau at a local AIDS organization. She has spoken before hundreds of groups over the years, including medical researchers and HIV/AIDS advocates to senior centers.

    “I remained monogamous for 23 years of marriage. . . . After the divorce, I didn’t consider myself promiscuous. I didn’t frequent the singles bars. I went out with men my age who, like me, had been married and were divorced.”

    Her own physician, she said, dismissed her questions about getting tested for HIV as unnecessary for someone her age. Her early symptoms were dismissed as routine ailments of aging.

    Read the rest at

    The National Association on HIV Over Fifty (NAHOF) was founded at the National Conference on AIDS and Aging in October of 1995 in New York City. Our mission is to promote the availability of a full range of educational, prevention, service and health care programs for persons over age fifty affected by HIV.

    People over age fifty are affected by HIV in numerous ways. People in their mid or later years may be infected with HIV, the virus associated with AIDS. Ten percent of all AIDS cases are persons age fifty and up, a quarter of these are over age 60. Older women appear to have higher incidence rates than older men, and persons of color are especially at risk.

    AIDS and HIV affect families, both traditional and families of choice. Increasingly older adults care for relatives and friends infected with HIV. Many adults with HIV turn to older parents for help and care. Increasingly grandparents are substitute parents for their grandchildren whose own parents are unable to care for their children due to HIV-related needs. Many of these are “AIDS orphans” and grandparents have stepped in to be full or part time caregivers for the children; middle-age and older adults with adult children may need emotional support….

    Older people with HIV/AIDS face a double stigma: ageism and infection with a sexually-or-IV-drug transmitted disease.
    http://www.hivoverfifty.org/tip.html

    Safe sex is needed especially in what seems to be a new tourism–

    By Jeremy Clarke, Sun Nov 25, 2007
    Older white women join Kenya’s sex tourists

    MOMBASA, Kenya (Reuters) – Bethan, 56, lives in southern England on the same street as best friend Allie, 64….

    Hard figures are difficult to come by, but local people on the coast estimate that as many as one in five single women visiting from rich countries are in search of sex.

    Allie and Bethan — who both declined to give their full names — said they planned to spend a whole month touring Kenya’s palm-fringed beaches. They would do well to avoid the country’s tourism officials.

    “It’s not evil,” said Jake Grieves-Cook, chairman of the Kenya Tourist Board, when asked about the practice of older rich women traveling for sex with young Kenyan men.

    “But it’s certainly something we frown upon.”

    Also, the health risks are stark in a country with an AIDS prevalence of 6.9 percent. Although condom use can only be guessed at, Julia Davidson, an academic at Nottingham
    University who writes on sex tourism, said that in the course of her research she had met women who shunned condoms — finding them too “businesslike” for their exotic fantasies.
    […]


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    More on the Aleutians war (WWII)

    In the comments to the Special Projects page about the Aleutians War and the building the Al-Can highway, I’ve been tracking the newest documentary about the little known battles of Attu Island and others of the Aleutians, including Dutch Harbor / Unalaska.

    However, because comments and pages have separate notifications on the Internet, I thought I would also post a separate notice, especially for those who read this web log with an RSS feed reader.

    The latest published film was televised last week on the US Public Broadcasting System, Independent Lens. The film focuses on intimate interviews with Bill and Andy, the film explores what it means to be a soldier then and now. And for Bill, that means continuing the battle—even at the cost of his own peace of mind. and not on the battle details, per se. However, there is fascinating blended footage from the present day terrain morphing into the WWII terrain (actual footage or photos of the battle).

    It is also a good presentation of the mixed emotions (and some rather unmixed) of veterans of the Pacific war. I had an uncle in Attu (Claude I. Green) who never spoke much of the Aleutian horror– part of the horror was the transfer from the tropical Marshall Islands to Attu without a change in uniforms (he was in the Navy). The monument is dedicated to all in the campaign (the necessity of which is also controversial still, as is the forced removal and internment of Alaskans by the USA.)

    Aleutian Island documentary RED WHITE BLACK and BLUE is going to have a special one-hour broadcast on PBS November 6, and it’s going to be released on home video on November 7. We’re also finishing up some community screenings around the country, mostly in Florida, Michigan, and Indiana.

    You can click the link below to read more about the film, get a list of upcoming local screenings, and broadcast information for your area, as well as information about how to purchase the film.

    Thanks so much, and if you do get a chance to see the film we’d love to hear your thoughts.

    Take care,
    Tom Putnam

    Here’s their website, http://www.alaskainvasion.com/

    The Independent Lens website has a summary, several references to additional information, and a viewer feedback. Read more about the making of RED WHITE BLACK & BLUE »

    See also previous
    John Huston movie from the Aleutians
    Al-Can Highway and the Aleutians War, Alaska in WWII


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