Broccoli and drumsticks in a cozy magazine

Published 6:00 am Wednesday, February 14, 2024

By Bonnie Brown

In case you had any doubt about how many trips around the sun I’ve had, I’m about to tip my hand when I tell you that I have some thoughts about the latest issue of AARP—The Magazine.  

The cover shows Ringo Starr flashing a peace sign.  He is 83 but still “cool.”  He still has a full head of hair and it’s not gray.  Go figure.  He’s a good advertisement for the older generation.  Thus, his magazine cover picture.  

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As I flipped through the magazine, I found lots of interesting articles:  The Anti-Bucket List, What’s in Your Grocery Cart, National Parks Without Crowds, along with several others.  

I’ll start with the featured Ringo Starr who’s getting ready to go on tour.  Really?  At age 83 and a great-grandfather?  Makes you want to pick up drumsticks, right?  And he’s now a big advocate of broccoli and says he’s 99 percent broccoli.  The phrase “peace and love” is his mantra and now the audience have posters proclaiming “Peace, Love, Broccoli.”  

The article about the anti-bucket list is just that.  This gentleman was edged out of a job he’d held for 34 years when new investors took over.  But before he could plan next steps of his forced retirement, he was diagnosed with cancer.  He recovered but had a difficult year.  So, he was pretty content not to take risks and had no desire to be strapped to a pro skydiver or to swim with the sharks.  He found that he had no bucket items to cross off.  He was content to watch TV, loves his family, music, and walks in his neighborhood.  He has a great appreciation for his stress-free life. Happy man.

The article about What’s in Your Grocery Cart featured notables and what they ate, or as in the case of Dean Ornish, lifestyle medicine specialist and author, who put President Bill Clinton on a diet. There was Al Roker who has vegetables, plenty of fresh herbs and fresh-caught fish.  There was Carla Hall, chef and TV host, who thought during the pandemic that she might want to become a bodybuilder.  Really?  But she came to her senses when she realized that the women had to wear those crazy suits and high heels.  

The article about National Parks Without Crowds was all about planning in order to avoid peak times.  During the pandemic, families were seeking safer areas for recreation and exercise.  This trend overwhelmed the parks.  The crowds were massive.  And many of the national park destinations were unprepared for the huge numbers of visitors and how to accommodate them while protecting the natural resources of these destinations.   

I do appreciate this very practical magazine and its efforts to help us “silver” citizens.  Such as imparting to us how to use your smartphone to find your car.  And the warnings about the various scams targeting older Americans.  There’s really good travel advice such as bringing a portable carbon detector on trips.   And what to do when the “grandpets” come to visit.  Other information instructs you how to identify a song that’s been rattling around in your head, or tips about setting up a Wi-fi password for guests.  

So, the next time the AARP magazine lands in your mail, give it a good look.  You might be surprised at how much of its content is really helpful and interesting.  And who knows.  Maybe one of the “silver” hotties might abandon Sports Illustrated and be featured on the AARP cover.