Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Looking for a website where you can play "brain games" for free?

Then check out EONS. It's a great website for Boomers who are looking for a mental challenge.
It's a versatile website offering not only games such as the LA Crossword Puzzle, Trivial Pursuit and Jeopardy, but also has several groups you can join based on your interests and hobbies.

UNDY 5000 - Pics

Here's our group who walked in the UNDY 5000.
TOP ROW: Ruth, me in the middle, Eddie
BOTTOM ROW: Terry, Mary (the Survivor) and Marie

Mary's wearing her "Survivor's Hat", having beat the BIG C.

Here we are at the FINISH LINE, having just completed the 3 mile walk!

So, don't forget, no buts about it---get your butt checked out now!

Madoff & Me

I know I'm one of the lucky ones because I had not invested any of my hard-earned money with Madoff and I do know where my money is.

Those investors are looking to the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) to reimburse them for their losses and may eventually receive up to $500,000.

Having lost over $100,000 of my own money in the 2000 market crash, I can certainly empathize with them. Yet, I never received a check from the Federal Government to cover my losses and at the rate of $3,000 per year I may not live long enough to recoup those losses. That financial set-back forced me to go into retirement with a large house payment, something I had hoped to avoid.

In my book, it's just not fair that those investors should be reimbursed for their losses from Uncle Sam.

You know none of them complained when they received huge yearly dividend checks from Madoff. Surely, some of them should have questioned "How can Madoff pay me a 10 to 12% return on my investment, when the rest of the market was paying only 3% or 4%? "

But none of them did, because they loved those consistently high yields. Since they received such large payments for so many years.....when all the accounting is done, I'm sure their NET LOSS will not be close to what they are claiming they loss.

So, fellow taxpayers.............what do you think? Should our tax dollars go to bailout those investors?

Monday, June 29, 2009

The BIG "C" and You

Friends, while this may be an unpleasant subject, I sincerely hope it will prompt you into action.
If you are a BOOMER and have not had a colonoscopy, then what are you waiting for?
One of my best friends, Mary, waited way too long after she turned 50 and finally went to the DR only after it became obvious that she had some serious health problems.

As fate would have it, she had the BIG "C"......colon cancer!! I'm so happy to tell you that after surgery and chemo treatments my good friend is still around and enjoying life.

On Saturday, I walked with her and about 800 others in the UNDY 5000 to support the survivors of colon cancer. It was a beautiful walk through City Park in Denver. During the Awards Ceremony, we were asked to encourage at least 1 person to get an exam.

So, if you're reading this......JUST DO IT! Also, please ask your loved ones over 50 to do the same. Here's the link to find out if there's an "UNDY 5000" in your area:

P.S......whatever you do, if your DR tells you to get a sigmoidoscopy and it doesn't hurt....that's total BS. From my own painful experience, make them put you out even for that procedure.

Friday, June 26, 2009

ICONIC Passings

When I first heard of Farrah Fawcett's death yesterday, I was saddened as I felt she was courageous in sharing her journey of the past few years in fighting the big "C". It seems to me that most of the time when a star shares their personal experiences, it's nothing more than a self-serving attempt to gain some press time.

But a few weeks ago I watched her TV special and felt that she genuinely exposed her illness to help others. Stars also have that affect on people -- by sharing a personal illness sometimes more people will become proactive about their health care, get yearly health check-ups and perhaps, catch a major health issue sooner than later.

The King of Pop!
On the other hand, later in the day when I heard about Michael Jackson, at first I thought it was just a spoof. It didn't seem real; if couldn't be real........especially in light of his upcoming UK Tour. Like the rest of the world, I was truly shocked!

While he was cleared of his crimes in court, like most people I felt there was more to his odd behavior with and affection for little children. One can't help but wonder if the abuse and fear he suffered at the hands of his domineering, money-hungry father weren't the primary contributing factors in the creation of his obviously warped adult-lifestyle that centered around a Peter Pan-like environment. BUT Michael Jackson was cleared of those criminal charges, so I hate to see major networks like CNN and MSNBC re-hashing those cases

The emotionally-stilted, financially broke artist is dead. Give him a break!

Why can't the press concentrate on his music. No one can deny the major musical contributions he made and his generosity in helping others. For example, donating all the proceeds of "We are the World" to those in need in Africa.

While people will continue to say negative things about Jackson's personal life, he will always shine as the consumate performer who left his fans begging for more!

Movie Week

With all the bad weather here in Denver last week .....the tornado sightings and torrential rains turning parts of I-25 into small streams..........I took in several of the latest movies.

In rank order from my favorite to the worst:

I love 'chick flicks'! Sandra Bullock was her usual charming self and Ryan Reynolds held his own playing her love interest. If you're a Bullock fan, parts of the movie near the end will definitely remind you of her role as Lucy in "While You Were Sleeping". It's a funny, enjoyable movie and deserving of more stars than some critics gave it.

Movie Review: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/zorianna-kit/movie-review-the-proposal_b_219057.html

Intense, fast-paced flick with Travolta and Washington delivering exceptional performances. Travolta plays the hardened, remorseless criminal to a T and Denzel delivers an emotionally charged performance as the disgraced Metro worker. I liked it!

Movie Review: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/11/AR2009061104198.html

I have to admit I only went to see "Imagine That" as it was shot in Denver in late '07 and I had a background role as an extra so I was dying to see if I made the movie or ended up on the cutting room floor. Turned out that both scenes I appeared in were in the movie, but they went by so fast that I couldn't really find myself.

But that experience taught me why movies are so expensive to make! We shot for 14 hours that day and got about 1.5 minutes of usable footage. And for all that work......a mere $85, no star sighting as Eddie Murphy wasn't shooting that day, but still it was a fun experience!
Movie Review: http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20284277,00.html

Computer Woes!

Most of us BOOMERs are comfortable with computers, but aren't knowledgeable about their inner workings.

If you're like me, then you just expect your computer to boot up the minute you turn it on...........and when it doesn't you panic!!

Again, I have some major computer problems which started late Wednesday evening, so I was up til 2:30 am Thursday trying to figure it out. I worked on it again all day Thursday and was pretty proud of myself as it seemed like I had restored most of my files.

But OH NO..........when I turned on my system this morning, it did not recognize me as the system's OWNER or Administrator. Instead, I'm just considered a 'temp user' which is pretty insulting on your own computer. Even worse, my entire hard drive was set up by Circuit City which is now out of business!

So, here's a few tips to help you avoid what I'm going thru:

1. Know who was set up as the primary system's USER and who has administrator control.

2. Learn how to manually restore your log on control as Administrator.

3. Learn how to re-store your system back to a date when everything worked. New computers do not come with a handbook but tell you that instructions and help are available online. I still haven't figured out how I'm supposed to look up help online, when I can't even log on. Drop me a line if you have!

4. If you have in-store personnel set up your new system, then have them give you in writing just what has been done to your computer; what programs are on it; and who's been given access.

I'm so frustrated as today I'm still working with limited access. I hope to have it fully operational by Saturday as one of my 'computer-type' friends is going to take a look at it.

If you need help, then call the Geek Squad who are available 24 hours a day. http://www.geeksquad.com/

P.S...........This is the 3rd time I've lost a hard drive.....so, thank God, at least this time, I have most of my files backed up on an external hard drive.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Last night I went to see the"Yanni Voices" concert.

The fast-paced show began with my favorite Yanni song, "Reflections of Passion", which is a sensuous tune. It was the perfect song to start the show.

I first saw Yanni about 14 years ago, when he looked so mystical with the long hair and halo-like lighting behind him. That was a magical concert with just his music. I was thrilled to meet and talk with him at a private party after that concert!

While the "Voices" concert last night was a visual feast with the high-tech lighting, costumes and 4 attractive singers, I didn't enjoy it as much as the previous one. The singers were excellent, but most of the songs were in Spanish or Italian.

If you're a die-hard Yanni fan like me, then be prepared for a total departure from what you've seen before! You have to do a double-take because he looks nothing like he did when he toured in the '90s. Then, during a few of the numbers the costumes were too revealing and the dance movements with a female singer writhing on top of his piano were just too sexual for a Yanni concert.
Still, I'd recommend seeing it!

is offering some $10 tickets for the remainder of the tour. To find out if he'll be in your area and see the new singers, go to: http://www.yanni.com/index.aspx

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Not Sleeping?

Do you snore loudly?

Do you wake up suddenly at night?

Are you still tired when you wake up?

Then you might be suffering from sleep apnea!

I recently found out that I might have sleep apnea so last week I went to a sleep clinic. I know there have been a lot of jokes about sleep clinics on sit coms like Seinfeld, but sleep disorders can cause many health problems.

The term ‘sleep study’ is really an oxymoron because I didn’t much sleep. I was hooked up to 26 electrodes, cameras recorded my every move and every hour or so the technician would yell over the intercom an order to “sleep on my back” or “roll over”.

The most difficult part of the test was when I was awaken at 4 a.m. and had to be hooked up to a Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAC) mask because my breathing had stopped for several seconds. I don’t have the final results yet, but I’m hoping that there will be an alternate solution as the mask was so confining I almost had an anxiety attack! It was like trying to sleep with a scuba mask on my face.

BOOMERS who are overweight, still have their tonsils or have spent years smoking are prime candidates for sleep apnea. Check it out at: http://www.sleepapnea.org/ If there’s any chance you have it, please consult your doctor immediately.

Free Gift Scam

I thought I was too smart to fall for a free gift scam, but I did and got billed for supposedly "free" gifts.

The offer I received came from PEOPLE Magazine. I was offered an assortment of free gifts since I had been a 'valuable subscriber' for over 10 years.

I read and re-read the offer and while skeptical, it seemed legit because I did not have to give a credit card number or send money. There wasn't anything that I really wanted, but if it was free, why not?

Well, this morning I was shocked that I had been billed over $140.00 on my credit card for these "free" gifts when I had not signed anything nor authorized a payment. After 5 phone calls, I got the charges removed, but what a hassle.
SO BEWARE! I learned that if the magazine company has your credit card number from a previous subscription order, then they can charge you even without your signature.

For additional info on scams:

Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Chorus Line

I love the theater and my all time favorite play is "A Chorus Line" by Michael Bennett. It's a high energy show with unforgettable songs and fast-paced dance numbers so when I heard about the new documentary "Every Little Step", I just had to see it.

"Every Little Step" is a film about the process of selecting the dancers for the Broadway revival of "A Chorus Line". What makes it so interesting is that the film makers incorporated early footage from the '70s of Michael Bennett and the original dancers along with the stories of those recently trying out. It's the true-life story of the blood, sweat and tears that the dancers had to go through to get that Broadway gig. What surprised me the most is that the selection process for the revival took more than 18 months!

If you liked the original play, you'll enjoy the documentary. Check your local artsy theaters as it's not in wide distribution.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Saving Money

Everyone loves to save money.....especially we retired Boomers!

So here's another tip for negotiating your medical bills -- ask for either a senior citizen discount or a discount for paying cash!

I just did that. While the hospital did not offer a senior citizen discount, I got 10% off my entire bill just for asking!

While that won't make me rich.....it will pay for a nice dinner out! .....and remember, if you can't pay your bill ask for assistance from the patient advocate.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Trip Insurance

Planning a cruise or vacation abroad this summer?

Then consider travel insurance.

While it's a bit pricey upfront, if you get sick or injured and have to be helicoptered out or hospitalized in a foreign country, you'll certainly be glad that you bought it. I purchased it for the first time when I went to Egypt last year and it cost approximately 5% of the total tour package. But, the peace of mind was well worth it!

Rates vary, depending upon how much coverage you want. Before buying a policy, ask your travel agent what company she works with as sometimes you'll get a discount. Then, check out what your regular medical insurance will pay in a foreign country and pick the level of coverage you need based on what they won't cover.

Be sure and read the fine print as I discovered that most policies are good only until midnight on the day your trip ends. So, if you get sick when you return, then nothing is covered.

There are many choices available, but I purchased a policy through Travel Guard: http://www.travelguard.com/travelinsurance/index.asp

Monday, June 1, 2009

Relocation Tips

With home prices still at an all time low, it’s the perfect time to make your retirement move. Many of the Active Adult Communities have “quick, move-in” specials with prices discounted by 20 to 30%. You can also negotiate for them to pay all closing costs and get a low interest loan.

If you haven’t picked out the perfect location, then suggest you visit your top 3 places for at least a month before taking the plunge. An Active Adult Community is a great place to live……easy to make new friends, lots of activities and the homes are user-friendly for Boomers…one level, wide doorways, higher counter tops. While moving closer to your grandchildren sounds like a great idea, don’t depend on your kids to build your social life when you get there! For every one's sake, you'll want to make new friends and build a life outside of the family.

A cross-country move can get quite expensive, so prior to moving either pitch or donate everything you don’t need or want. Remember to get that receipt for tax purposes. Moving in retirement is a great opportunity to re-think how you want to live. It's a chance for you to downsize and create more discretionary income for travel or other fun hobbies.
College towns have also become a hot spot for Boomers who are relocating. With lower living expenses and many leisure and entertainment activities, Boomers are flocking to them!
For more info on Active Adult Communities: http://www.activeadultliving.com/
Del Webb Communities: http://www.delwebb.com/