Posts Tagged ‘aging

20
Jan
19

1.20.19 … “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” -Mary Oliver

Mary Oliver, Poetry, RIP, NPR: I will miss her words.

Much-loved poet Mary Oliver died Thursday of lymphoma, at her home in Florida. She was 83. Oliver won many awards for her poems, which often explore the link between nature and the spiritual world; she also won a legion of loyal readers who found both solace and joy in her work.

Oliver got a lot of her ideas for poems during long walks — a habit she developed as a kid growing up in rural Ohio. It was not a happy childhood: She said she was sexually abused and suffered from parental neglect. But as she told NPR in 2012, she found refuge in two great passions that lasted her entire life.

She said, “The two things I loved from a very early age were the natural world and dead poets, [who] were my pals when I was a kid.”

Source: Mary Oliver, Who Believed Poetry ‘Mustn’t Be Fancy,’ Dies At 83 : NPR, https://www.npr.org/2019/01/17/577380646/beloved-poet-mary-oliver-who-believed-poetry-mustn-t-be-fancy-dies-at-83

I have loved reading friends’ favorite Mary Oliver poems that many have posted on Facebook since her death was announced 1.17.

Here is a favorite of mine:

“Morning Poem”:

Every morning

the world

is created.

Under the orange

sticks of the sun

the heaped

ashes of the night

turn into leaves again

and fasten themselves to the high branches—

and the ponds appear

like black cloth

on which are painted islands

of summer lilies.

If it is your nature

to be happy

you will swim away along the soft trails

for hours, your imagination

alighting everywhere.

And if your spirit

carries within it

the thorn

that is heavier than lead—

if it’s all you can do

to keep on trudging—

there is still

somewhere deep within you

a beast shouting that the earth

is exactly what it wanted—

each pond with its blazing lilies

is a prayer heard and answered

lavishly,

every morning,

whether or not

you have ever dared to be happy,

whether or not

you have ever dared to pray.

And a few from others …

“The Summer Day”:

Who made the world?

Who made the swan, and the black bear?

Who made the grasshopper?

This grasshopper, I mean-

the one who has flung herself out of the grass,

the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,

who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-

who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.

Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.

I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down

into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,

how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,

which is what I have been doing all day.

Tell me, what else should I have done?

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?

Dog Songs”:

You may not agree, you may not care, but

if you are holding this book you should know that of all the sights I love in this world — and there are plenty — very near the top of the list is this one: dogs without leashes.

“The Journey”:

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice–

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do–

determined to save

the only life you could save.

Painting by Leonid Afremov

via Holland UCC


Meaning of Joy, Katelyn Ohashi, Steph Curry, gymnastics:

Even the  WSJ was impressed!  (And a shout out to Steph to boot!)

An amazing college gymnastics performance by @katelyn_ohashi becomes a viral video because it radiates human joy, writes @jasongay.

This is go­ing to sound pre­ten­tious, but what­ever: I think Ohashi’s rou­tine is a ra­di­ant ex­pres­sion of what it means for a hu­man be­ing to be very, very good at some­thing—and to want to share that with every­one. She projects a con­fi­dence that only great per­form­ers project, whether Olympic cham­pi­ons or con­cert pi­anists, that every eye is upon them. In­stead of shirk­ing from that, in­stead of get­ting rat­tled, Ohashi rushes to­ward the mo­ment. The mo­ment be­comes her.

These in­stances are rare, but they’re re­ally the rea­son why we watch sports, aren’t they? Sure, we come up with all kinds of ra­tio­nal­iza-tions for our sports ob­ses­sions—tra­di­tion, re­gional loy­al­ties, very bad bets on the Min­nesota Vikings—but what truly keeps the au­di­ence com­ing back is the chance that every once in a while, you’ll see a ra­di­ant ex­pres­sion of hu­man great­ness and joy. An Odell Beck­ham Jr. one-handed grab. A Patrick Ma­homes sidearm touch­down pass. Mikaela Shiffrin crush­ing a turn in the gi­ant slalom (Shiffrin’s ab­so­lutely ba­nanas World Cup sea­son is the most un­der­ap­pre­ci­ated sports story of the mo­ment.) A Roger Fed­erer one-handed back­hand down the line. Pretty much every­thing Steph Curry does. Ditto Si­mone Biles.

Student teacher relationships, emotional intelligence: I am forever grateful for teachers I had at E. Rivers Elementary School, Westminster, Davidson College and UGA Law. Those I had relationships stand out. Those I loved I will never forget.

“That unplanned moment illustrated for me the connection between emotional relationships and learning. We used to have this top-down notion that reason was on a teeter-totter with emotion. If you wanted to be rational and think well, you had to suppress those primitive gremlins, the emotions. Teaching consisted of dispassionately downloading knowledge into students’ brains.

Then work by cognitive scientists like Antonio Damasio showed us that emotion is not the opposite of reason; it’s essential to reason. Emotions assign value to things. If you don’t know what you want, you can’t make good decisions.”

Source: Opinion | Students Learn From People They Love – The New York Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/17/opinion/learning-emotion-education.html

TMBS, aging, ageism, happiness is a choice, kith/kin:

I gain something wonderful every week at TMBS. This week, it was the insight from this article…The Joy of Being a Woman in Her 70s … I want to be described like this in 15 years!

The only constant in our lives is change. But if we are growing in wisdom and empathy, we can take the long view. We’ve lived through seven decades of our country’s history, from Truman to Trump. I knew my great-grandmother, and if I live long enough, will meet my great-grandchildren. I will have known seven generations of family. I see where I belong in a long line of Scotch-Irish ancestors. I am alive today only because thousands of generations of resilient homo sapiens managed to procreate and raise their children. I come from, we all come from, resilient stock, or we wouldn’t be here.

By the time we are 70, we have all had more tragedy and more bliss in our lives than we could have foreseen. If we are wise, we realize that we are but one drop in the great river we call life and that it has been a miracle and a privilege to be alive.

Source: NYTimes: The Joy of Being a Woman in Her 70s, https://nyti.ms/2RIcnnk?smid=nytcore-ios-share

Silence, Be Still, Sanctuary for God’s Presence, Paul Bane, Patheos: Great ideas to ponder!

Silence is the sanctuary for God’s presence residing in the depths and recesses of our heart.  In the solitude and quiet, we seek and discover the love of Christ dwelling with us. In the silence, we become still to hear God speaking life to us. Be still and know I am God.

The silence lifts us beyond our internal and external thoughts, and we discover the inward voice of God telling us that we are loved.You and I are daughters, sons and joint heirs of His divine kingdom. Silence is the sanctuary for God’s presence where we discover His unconditional love and never-ending hope for our life.

Source: Silence is the Sanctuary for God’s Presence | Paul Bane, https://www.patheos.com/blogs/mindfulchristianitytoday/2018/08/silence-is-the-sanctuary-for-gods-presence/

1.17.19

The Smithsonian, portraits, Henrietta Lacks, medical miracles – CNN, HeLa cells: I have been fascinated with the story of Henrietta lacks since my oldest son recommended that I read the book outlining her story. I was thrilled to see that she now has a portrait at the Smithsonian. This is old news from May 2018. I need to plan a visit to DC.

This week, the Smithsonian unveiled a portrait of Henrietta Lacks, the black tobacco farmer who ended up changing the world. Her cells have allowed for advances in cancer treatment, AIDS research, cloning, stem-cell studies and so much more. They traveled to the moon to test the effects of zero gravity, and scientists have sold and purchased them by the billions.

Source: The Smithsonian unveils a portrait of Henrietta Lacks, the black farmer whose cells led to medical miracles – CNN,

https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/16/health/henrietta-lacks-portrait-smithsonian-tmd/index.html

1.17.19

“Who Will Write Our History“, Holocaust, Auerbach:

Nobility is a luxury for people imprisoned in a way station to annihilation, and the film does include expressions of futility, despair, and outrage at the conduct of fellow Jews. Auerbach worked in a soup kitchen that, some argued, just postponed rather than averted starvation. Another point of debate the archive documents is the proper attitude toward others’s suffering: Is callousness an expression of weakness or strength? 

The writings that were buried under the ghetto, soon to be burned to the ground by German troops, offer as many viewpoints as the people who contributed their words to the project. Together, though, they constitute what one historian calls “one great accusation.”

Queen Victoria, History Extra, funerals: Interesting if you enjoy history …

When Queen Victoria died at the age of 81 on 22 January 1901, it took her family, court and subjects by surprise – very few had been able to contemplate the mortality of the monarch who had ruled over Britain and its empire for almost 64 years. Her death marked the end of the Victorian era. Here, Stewart Richards considers Queen Victoria’s final moments, the chaotic preparations for her state funeral on 2 February 1901, and the secret items placed inside her coffin…

Source: The bizarre funeral of Queen Victoria: how, when and where did she die? – History Extra, https://www.historyextra.com/period/victorian/queen-victoria-death-funeral-mask-cause/

Westminster Abbey’s Hidden Gallery, Westminster Abbey, London:

They say good things come to those who wait. But if you’ve been waiting to get a glimpse inside Westminster Abbey’s old triforium, you’ve missed a hefty chunk of human history in the process: 700 years, in fact! Luckily, your wait is over, as the hidden gallery opened for public viewing this summer – for the first time since it was built, way back in the 13th century. Patience is a virtue, you know…

Photo: @theattinghamtrust

For many years, the triforium was essentially Westminster’s attic, used as storage space or as a spillover viewing gallery for coronations (one ticket, found during the renovation and now part of the display, was from the 1702 coronation of Queen Anne). It even served as the BBC’s outpost during Queen Elizabeth’s coronation, as Richard Dimbleby narrated the affair to a captive TV audience.

Source: Westminster Abbey’s Hidden Gallery: Inside The 700-Year Old Triforium, https://secretldn.com/westminster-abbey-hidden-gallery/

1.14.19

Outer Banks wild horses, RIP, Roamer, tourism ads, Charlotte Observer:

A wild mustang known around the world for being featured prominently in Outer Banks tourism materials has died at the height of his stardom.

The Corolla Wild Horse Fund announced Monday that Roamer, a 15-year-old stallion, died Saturday, just 24 hours after being diagnosed with a tear in his GI tract that led to sepsis.

“People out there know who Roamer is, but may not realize it,” said Meg Puckett, the herd manager for the Corolla wild horses.

He was sort of a legend, on the cover of the tourism fliers and even on billboards. He was an ambassador for the horses.”

Roamer was among the oldest of the herd of nearly 100 horses, and also one of those who could not be easily tamed. He frequently refused to stay fenced into the area reserved for wild horses, and took off to wander among the tourists, Puckett says.

Herd managers eventually had to relocate him to a rehabilitation site operated by the Corolla Wild Horse Fund, out of fear he would be hit by an off-road vehicle.

“That’s how he got his name, Roamer,” Puckett said. “He eventually became part of our ‘Meet a Mustang’ program (at the rehab site), which lets people have a more intimate experience meeting the horses.”

Source: Outer Banks wild horse featured in tourism ads dies | Charlotte Observer, 
https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/article224515940.html

Rich’s, Department Stores, Atlanta GA, Southern Childhood, Southern Living: I loved both Rich’s and Davison’s in Atlanta. My grandmother was a Chin buyer for Davison’s, but I have more memories of Rich’s.

Rich’s

VIA THE GEORGIA TRUST

Atlanta, Georgia

Rich’s, opened in 1867 by Morris Rich, was Atlanta’s premiere department store for all things fashionable and classic. At Christmas, shoppers anticipated the extravagant holiday decorations and gigantic Christmas tree that was displayed on top of a multi-level glass bridge, which was the first of its kind in the city. Eventually, Rich’s fashion show in Atlanta got so big it had to be moved to the Fox Theatre, as its customers were so anxious for a glimpse of next season’s clothes. After 138 years, Rich’s (known then as Rich’s-Macy’s due to its earlier acquisition) ended its era in 2005 and was converted to just “Macy’s.”

Source: Department Stores You’ll Remember From Your Southern Childhood – Southern Living, https://www.southernliving.com/fashion-beauty/vintage-southern-department-stores

j. peterman catalog, John Peterman: what a description! “the gentleman-retailer famously satirized on “Seinfeld,” talks adventuresome fashion, ‘Downton Abbey,” and the value of learning how to ride” … and here is a link to the catalog: https://www.jpeterman.com/?gclid=CjwKCAiAsoviBRAoEiwATm8OYDKBL93geNPsO-SZCHPCFSjOdTKDBtrhQNs6IzQKbW8iLOGVkjXuWBoCsRAQAvD_BwE

He has vis­ited at least 80 coun­tries, and when John Pe­ter­man says “vis­ited,” he means it. “That’s not just stop­ping at the air­port to change planes,” said the founder of J. Pe­ter­man Co., the cloth­ing com­pany that’s ac­quired cult sta­tus due to its hand-il­lus­trated cat­a­log and fan­ci­fully nar­ra­tive prod­uct de­scrip­tions that of­ten ref­er­ence far-flung places. At 77, Mr. Pe­ter­man still reg­u­larly sets off from his Lex­ing­ton, Ky., home to des­ti­na­tions like Paris and Buenos Aires. “I’m go­ing out and look­ing for in­spi­ra­tion,” he ex­plained. He in­sists that if you want to find the proper cut of a kilt, you must tramp around Scot­land to find it your­self. Each J. Pe­ter­man item be­gins with a jour­ney.

Source: Remember the J.Peterman Catalog? It’s Still Going Strong and So Is Mr. Peterman, https://www.wsj.com/articles/remember-the-j-peterman-catalog-its-still-going-strong-and-so-is-mr-peterman-11547569560?emailToken=cb5b9d341bc1b8bfb327c13eefd6e907J8TZSiLglM76h3xPZMtnb4IkNrSSHwU05gCkgRCZTCwwoQD12x7zIQ9+byovazWueSq778WhBhr7dfnodqaNC7CpbIZS7hi/1GvtpAxsjm07yWgpm8M93L8ghFn/W/OrG54XYfL0B9VGv6LMrMZRAQ%3D%3D&reflink=article_email_share

Louisville International Airport (Standiford Field (SDF)), Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport, Muhammad Ali, Louisville KY:

Ali’s widow Lonnie Ali called the champion a “global citizen,” according to the release, but added “he never forgot the city that gave him his start. It is a fitting testament to his legacy.”

While the airport’s name will change, its current three-letter International Air Transport Association (IATA) code — SDF — won’t change.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/louisville-international-airport-renamed-muhammad-ali-vote-today-2019-01-16/

And I loved this anecdote on Facebook by Dave Kindred …

News that my old town, Louisville, is renaming its airport for Muhammad Ali reminds me of an old story. Flight attendant tells the champ he must buckle his seat belt, to which he says, “Superman don’t need a seat belt.” Flight attendant says, “Superman don’t need a plane” Champ buckles up.

1.15.19

Quotes: Besides the poetry quotes, I pondered these this week …

“Curiosity is one of the permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous intellect. Every advance into knowledge opens new prospects, and produces new incitements to further progress.”

— Samuel Johnson, Rambler

“It was on a bright day of midwinter, in New York. The little girl who eventually became me, but as yet was neither me nor anybody else in particular, but merely a soft anonymous morsel of humanity—this little girl, who bore my name, was going for a walk with her father. The episode is literally the first thing I can remember about her, and therefore I date the birth of her identity from that day.”

– Edith Wharton, A Backward Glance

“Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.”

― Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire

“Eternity is in love with the productions of time.”

— William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

“Heaven have mercy on us all – Presbyterians and Pagans alike – for we are all somehow dreadfully cracked about the head, and sadly need mending.”

-Herman Melville – from “Moby Dick”

God writes the Gospel not in the Bible alone, but also on trees, and in the flowers and clouds and stars.

– Martin Luther

Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/martin_luther_140721

In the vast abyss before time, self

is not, and soul commingles

with mist, and rock, and light. In time,

soul brings the misty self to be.

Then slow time hardens self to stone

while ever lightening the soul,

till soul can loose its hold of self

and both are free and can return

to vastness and dissolve in light,

the long light after time.

-Ursula K. Le Guin, HOW IT SEEMS TO ME

LOL, Brexit: brexit shouldn’t be funny … but I laughed.


LOL, POTUS, Clemson visits the White House, Govern Shutdown, “The Fast Supper”, #Cofveve #hamberders #Funny #NotFunnyToo:

1.17.19

LOL, POTUS, political cartoons:

I often don’t agree with “God,” but I frequently laugh.

1.18.19

LOL, dog employee of the month:

This is the story about a distribution sales manager who works from home. Michael Reeg from Georgia has a dog Meeka which he considers as a real asset. He considers the dog as a best friend because it doesn’t allow him to feel lonely during work hours. The dog has in a way eased the transition of Michael Reeg to the telecommuting. Meeka is quite punctual. She turns up to the work regardless the presence of Michael. She goes there like every model employee would do for his employer. Meeka is quite enthusiastic for the work, when she finds the door of the office shut, she doesn’t leave for taking a rest. Instead she prefers to sit outside the door. Michael Reeg was interviewed by The Dodo. He said that transitioning to home based work was not an easy thing. He said that it was quiet and devoid of excitement. Thus, according to him, the dog helped him cover that journey.

Source: Man who works from home keeps naming his dog employee of the month, https://www.talkofweb.com/man-who-works-from-home-keeps-naming-his-dog-employee-of-the-month/

12
Sep
13

9.12.13 … maybe I should start now …

video game, aging, cognition, NYTimes.com:

There may be a new market for video games: octogenarians.

Brain scientists have discovered that swerving around cars while simultaneously picking out road signs in a video game can improve the short-term memory and long-term focus of older adults. Some people as old as 80, the researchers say, begin to show neurological patterns of people in their 20s.

The research “shows you can take older people who aren’t functioning well and make them cognitively younger through this training,” said Earl K. Miller, a neuroscientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who was not affiliated with the research. “It’s a very big deal.”

The study highlights an emerging field in which researchers are trying to better define and even expand the limits of attention, which is seen as crucial to performance, memory and intelligence. Previous studies, done at the University of Rochester and focused more on young people, show that heavy use of certain off-the-shelf, intense shooting games can lead to improvements in a user’s ability to ignore distractions, and even learn.

via A Multitasking Video Game Makes Old Brains Act Younger – NYTimes.com.

30
Mar
11

3.30.2011 … Definitely a year in reverse … March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb … joke … Can’t wait to see what April brings …

old sayings, quotes:

The old saying goes “March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb,” due to the fact that the month generally starts unsettled and chilly, while the end of the month typically turns milder as spring begins.

This saying looks to be opposite for March 2011 since just over four weeks ago, the month came in like a lamb with quiet weather across the eastern half of the country. High pressure was in control of the weather, bringing near- to slightly above-normal temperatures to residents living along the I-95 corridor.

To round out the month, AccuWeather.com meteorologists are monitoring the potential for a winter storm to track up the East Coast, effectively sending March out like a lion this year.

A disturbance currently moving inland over the Pacific Northwest will track into the Plains states by Wednesday before diving into the Gulf of Mexico Thursday.

via March may roar out like a lion | NJ.com.

Chicago, Cubs:  I was in Chicago last weekend at a wedding and of course the bride was a Cubs fan and the groom was a White Sox fan … had to be mentioned!  But saw this today and loved it … always hope!  I am a Cubs fan, btw.

Join the Heckler and Rick Telander for their celebration of the Cubs inevitable march to World Series glory (…) and get down on $2 Old Styles, a free buffet, and giveaways of Cubs tickets and rooftop passes, so you’ll have absolutely no hassle getting up to the best place to throw yourself off.

via Next Year Day | Thrillist.

random, apps, guys vs. girls:  I am not sure I care … but guys are into cars … funny.

In many ways cars are better than girlfriends — you can get in whenever you want, they don’t complain when you take their tops off, and spare tires are actually a plus. To follow up on old flames that could be covered in them, hit up Check My Ride.

A recently launched social network affiliated with a major auto data company, Check My Ride lets you build and share a comprehensive personal vehicle history and check up on old whips using their “Where in the World is My Car?” tool, not to be confused with the Dude Where’s My Car? tool, as no one cares where Stifler is (spoiler alert: it’s rehab). Start by building a detailed history of your vehicles (age when purchased, year/make/model/color, year sold, etc.), including awesome road trips you took, how many miles you put on, and “why [it] was memorable”; once complete, it’ll calculate the total mileage you’ve accrued since you started driving and generate a bar graph timeline of your life in terms of car ownership, which will be low if you’re wont to take “bar graph” literally. Next, enter a VIN into the car-finder widget (powered by AutoCheck) to see deets on an old whip’s current whereabouts, including a GMap with connected pins showing the places it’s been registered since you ditched it, unless you literally ditched it, in which case, um…it’s in a ditch.

via Check My Ride | Thrillist.

aging, parents, happiness, culture:  85 is the happiness peak … Well, my mom should be in a good mood come October!

Traditional wisdom states that our younger years are the best of our lives, with the milestone of 40 meaning we are “over the hill” and already on the wane.

But in fact satisfaction and optimism steadily increase after middle age, easily eclipsing the earlier years and peaking as late as the eighties, according to research.

An easing of the responsibilities of middle age combined with maturity and the ability to focus on the things we enjoy combine to make old age far more enjoyable than one might expect.

This is greatly increased by having good health, a stable income and good relationships with family and friends, according to scientists.

Lewis Wolpert, emeritus professor of biology at University College London, who explained the findings in a new book called You’re Looking Very Well, said most people were “averagely happy” in their teens and twenties, declining until early middle age as they try to support a family and a career.

He added: “But then, from the mid-forties, people tend to become ever more cheerful and optimistic, perhaps reaching a maximum in their late seventies or eighties.”

A study published by the American National Academy of Sciences, based on a survey of 341,000 people, found that enjoyment of life dwindled throughout early adulthood but began an upward trend in the late forties, and continued to increase until reaching a peak at 85.

via Happiness peaks in our eighties – Telegraph.

Apps, lists: I really like a few of these and look forward to trying others … Top 10 Apps That Will Change Your Life – WSJ.com.

9/11, Muslim Community Center, update:  Why is this a regional story?  We were just talking about this in Chicago … seems it should be national?

Two co-founders of the plan to build a Muslim community center and mosque in downtown Manhattan have begun exploring a new, and possibly competing, project: an interfaith cultural center that they said might be located at the currently proposed site, two blocks from ground zero, or elsewhere in the neighborhood.Daisy Khan, the executive director of the American Society for Muslim Advancement, said on Tuesday that she and her husband, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, two co-founders whose involvement in the controversial community center plan was curtailed this year after a falling out with their real estate partner, might develop a new project that was “larger in concept” than what is now proposed at 51 Park Place.The new project would be interfaith in character, rather than predominantly Islamic, she said, and it would include a center for inter-religious conflict resolution.

On Tuesday, Ms. Khan said that since last summer, she and her husband had been meeting privately with family members of 9/11 victims and first responders in an effort to understand the source of some of the opposition to the original idea. She said that as a result of those meetings, the story of the 9/11 families “will be housed in our center.”

via Planned Downtown Mosque Could Become an Interfaith Center – NYTimes.com.

museums, trends, change, globalization:  Everything trends toward sameness … even museums.

But the relocation of the Barnes is about more than the dismantling of a single museum. It also marks the end of an era in American cultural history. Over the past 15 or so years, some of the most original and idiosyncratic art institutions in the country — the Barnes, the Getty Villa in Pacific Palisades, Calif., and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston — have embarked on major expansions to modernize (and in some cases, to generate more revenue), significantly transforming their identities.

All three museums, each built by a wealthy eccentric, once represented intensely personal visions. All were conceived as alternatives to the offerings of the elite cultural establishment. And by the time the Barnes completes its move, all will have been remade into slick, corporate artistic institutions of a sort that their founders no doubt would have deplored.

Yet even more striking is what these transformations suggest about what we’ve become as a culture. The three museums’ iconoclastic collectors, and the institutions they built, embodied an America that still embraced an ideal of stubborn individualism. That spirit is now mostly gone, a victim of institutional conventions and corporate boards, and by a desire for mainstream acceptance that has displaced a willingness to break rules.

via Eccentricity Gives Way to Uniformity in Museums – NYTimes.com.

Davidson College, D2s (Children of Davidson friends@Davidson): Look at the D2s – Boyce and Betsy – being role models!

Davidson College seniors shared their experiences with Davidson Day School students recently. They are (from left): Bryan Droll, Rayna McKenzie, Boyce Whitesides and Betsy Lyles.

Four Davidson College seniors fielded questions about dorm rooms, study habits and what to expect from the food from high school students at Davidson Day during the private school’s second “College Life 101″ presentation last week.The 45-minute forum focused on transitioning from high school to college. Davidson College students included Betsy Lyles, who grew up in Davidson and is an English major at the local college. She was joined: Bryan Droll, a psychology major from Duluth, Ga.; Rayna McKenzie, a philosophy major from New York City; and Boyce Whitesides, a religion major from Wilmington, N.C.“The purpose of College Life 101 is to help our students become more prepared to adjust to college,” said Stacy Allen, Davidson Day’s college counselor. “They hear a lot from us but it’s different when what they’re hearing comes from a college student who is actually living the college experience.”

via Davidson seniors give a college preview at Davidson Day | DavidsonNews.net.




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