Honoring Seniors in Yoga…

One of my neighbors in my Condo development is also an amazing yoga teacher.  Melissa Pini writes about it in Boomer Times & Senior Life and gave me a copy of one of her latest articles on “Yoga for Seniors.”

She writes that teaching yoga to seniors is “one of the most exciting aspects of my teaching practice.”  While I seldom think of myself as a senior – I credit my youthful attitude to my conversion to a healthy lifestyle in my late 20s when I joined the Flatbush Food Coop in Brooklyn —  I still felt honored that she showed so much respect for her older students.  I joined with my friend Bob – and she was always singling us out as special.

In her article, Melissa  further explained  that seniors “are eager to learn, encouraging and share in what I teach without judgement or ego.” Then she adds that there is more for a yoga teacher to know when it comes to teaching a senior student,” including the physical and anatomical ways in which the body ages.”  She concludes that it is important for seniors to find a well-trained teacher who is aware of counterindications of certain yoga postures for seniors and conditions that occur due to aging.

Melissa is no longer teaching yoga regularly in a studio and is focusing on graduate studies.  During the coronavirus crisis, I miss our workouts.

You can find Melissa’s posts at http://www.mapkeysyoga.com

California Dreaming – Tech-wise

There was a time when I worked as communications director for a small Asian American media firm in  California and I actually worked next to the techs and felt pretty  comfortable figuring out what they were doing.  That was long ago and I’ve been happy to leave my computer problems to specialists since.

But recently my HP computer started malfunctioning and the techs I called on insisted my problems had been solved.  Yet when I got it home, I was puzzled about resetting it up.  I was ready to go back when I tried one more time to set it up, and finally persisted through the problems, finding that a few maneuvers solved what had seemed insurmountable.

Amazingly it restored that feeling long ago in California when I took it for granted that I could solve most tech problems.  It may not last long before I am frustrated again by another tech challenge, but it sure felt good!

Kobe Byrant – Gone too Soon

I was an avid Los Angeles Lakers basketball fan in the 90s when I lived in California – so I was stunned by the tragic deaths in a helicopter crash of retired Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant (who was only 41 and building a new career as a storyteller) and his teenage daughter Gianna, eager to follow in her father’s footsteps and active in a youth basketball league. Other passengers also died in the foggy crash yesterday in southern California. Bryant leaves behind his wife and three other daughters. It was unbelievably tragic!

The shock of this unexpected ending inspired me to read a lot of coverage on Bryant and I was particularly moved by Mitch Albom’s front page column in the Detroit Free Press.  He emphasizes how much more Kobe had to share on his new path and that we are left with tragedy instead of the triumph Albom is sure would have marked Kobe’s new endeavors. For more, read Mitch’s column at https://www.freep.com/story/sports/nba/2020/01/26/kobe-bryant-death-mitch-albom/4585619002/

Hoppin’ John for the New Year!

Hoppin’ John is a southern tradition of serving black-eyed peas and collard greens to ensure good luck

for the  New Year.  Because of the weather, I decided to postpone it this year and will celebrate with

friends late.

 

I learned about  Hoppin’ John when I married a Southerner.   My late husband Tim Rpbinson was from

Dora, Alabama and I fell in love with Southern cooking after we met and married in New York.  I had a

mixed heritage of Slovak cooking on my mother’s side and English-Scotch on my Dad’s – so I was open

to adding more traditions.

 

According to Allyson Jones in The History of Hoppin’ John, the first written “receipt” for

Hoppin’ John appeared in “The Carolina Housewife” (1847), written by Charlestonian Sarah Rutledge.

The simple recipe called for one pound of bacon, one pint of peas and one pint of rice cooked in

a single pot.

 

Jones notes that the African roots of the dish can be traced to the antebellum rice culture of the

South Carolina Low country, where peas and rice have been cooked together for centuries.

Tradition dictates that a side of collard greens representing paper money be served with Hoppin’

John to ensure prosperity in the coming year. Several sources also suggest a penny or dime

should be placed under the plate or in the dish itself for additional wealth.

 

I still love to honor this southern tradition now that I am back with family and friends in

Michigan. In fact, my friend Bob, a small town Michigan country boy, is even helping with cooking. The

year 2020 promises a lot of controversy, but Hoppin’ John reminds me that cultures don’t have

to clash.  Happy New Year!

Read more and get the recipe at https://www.history.com/news/hoppin-john-a-new-years-tradition

Let it snow, let it snow…or not!

I have always loved the Christmas season and was delighted to celebrate it through the years, whether in  Michigan, New York or northern California.  As a child, I delighted in sliding down hillsides on my sled  or skating on Lake Erie with my brothers and cousins.

This year Michigan is expecting a warm Christmas – the warmest perhaps in many years.   No snow.

So when I watched part of the classic film White Christmas, one of my holiday favorite films as a youngster,  I realized that unlike Bing Crosby,  Rosemary Clooney, and their buddies in New England, I was actually happy this year for the heat wave (up to 50 plus some days).

I no longer go skating or sledding — and driving through ice and snow is rarely fun anymore.   So I am wishing my family and friends all the joys of the season – and don’t worry snow lovers, I hear that there are predictions of more flurries before New Year’s.  Happy holidays to all!

Investing in Detroit – Jamie Dimon of Chase on 60 Minutes

The failure of Detroit’s neighborhoods was a personal tragedy for me.  I grew up in a vibrant working class neighborhood on the Northeast side of the city.  My family home was sold in the 70s after my parents retired from their UAW jobs in the auto industry  and moved to Florida. The area gradually deteriorated and was bulldozed.

So it was heartening to watch a segment of 60 Minutes last weekend hosted by Leslie Stahl on how JP Morgan Chase is using data to invest more efficiently, helping entrepreneurs open businesses in parts of Detroit that most need their services.  She interviewed Jamie Dimon, the CEO of Chase, who told her that the idea grew out of his interest in changing the way the bank was engaging in philanthropy.  He wanted to try and tackle a major national issue, and focused on Detroit first.

Dimon explained that the Chase program (launched in 2014) is currently helping young Detroit entrepreneurs by building a database just for Detroit that identifies neighborhoods in the city ripe for redevelopment.  JP Morgan’s program also steers funds to minority businesses that wouldn’t otherwise qualify for them.  And now Chase is getting ready to commit half a billion dollars to take what it has learned in Detroit and export it to other cities like Chicago and Washington D.C.

Stahl pointed out that the financial crisis of 2008 decimated fragile economies like Detroit’s and Dimon acknowledged that “we owe back to society.”  For a summary of the 60 Minutes interview, visit this link at https://www.cbsnews.com/news/jamie-dimon-jp-morgan-chase-ceo-makes-data-focused-investment-in-detroit-60-minutes-2019-11-10/