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Steve Mencher


Steve Mencher writes about culture, politics, the news and other subjects for AARP. He's also a jazz musician with the Willis Gidney Quintet. He has worked for Carnegie Hall, NPR and the Library of Congress as an audio, video and multimedia producer.

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Steve Mencher'sPosts

This Week in Boomer History: Test Tube Baby … Kitchen Debate … ADA

Posted on 07/20/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

Bulletin TodayNoteworthy events from our common experience President George H.W. Bush signs the Americans with Disabilities Act into law on July 26, 1990. Bob Dylan straps on his electric guitar and plugs in his amplifier at the Newport (R.I.) Folk Festival on July 25, 1965. The crowd boos (and cheers) him; purists are furious. >> Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter  Born July 25, 1978, Louise Joy Brown is the world’s first “test tube baby,” though she’d more accurately be …

George Takei Is Back in Boston: Driving Miss Daisy and Hanging with AGNES

Posted on 07/17/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

TechnologyYoung adults are increasingly living with older members of their families, according to a report just released by the Pew Research Center. To aid family harmony and help the younger generation understand their elders, AGNES — the Age Gain Now Empathy System — might be the perfect extra housemate. AGNES is one of many wonders that George Takei, tech explorer extraordinaire, found on a recent visit to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass., just across the Charles River …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

Posted on 07/16/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

11 ThingsNews, discoveries and … fun 1. Americans who are 65 or older feel better about their physical appearance than younger  — even much younger — people. (Learn more at Gallup) 2. Paul McCartney and Warren Buffett are buddies. (Learn more at AARP) 3. There’s no need to fast before a routine cholesterol test. (Learn more at AARP) 4. Google and Novartis are teaming up to make a contact lens that can monitor blood sugar levels. (Learn more at New York Times) >> Sign up …

‘Takei’s Take’ Takes Boston

Posted on 07/14/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

TechnologyOne if by land and two if by sea? Maybe Paul Revere was a digital pioneer, since he “got” binary communication centuries before the digital cataclysm started to shake today’s world. From the home of the first American revolution, tech adventurer George Takei begins a series of four episodes of his award-winning YouTube series Takei’s Take in the Boston metro area, with three questions: How did Boston drive the tech revolution in America? Why did the scene shift to Silicon …

This Week in Boomer History: Men on the Moon … Chappaquiddick … Malaise

Posted on 07/13/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

Bulletin TodayNotable events from our shared experience Edward M. Kennedy drives off a bridge after a party on Chappaquiddick Island, Mass., on July 18, 1969. Kennedy escapes the submerged car, but Mary Jo Kopechne, a former campaign aide to Robert Kennedy, dies. Two semiconductor pioneers and a pair of venture capitalists found chip maker NM Electronics on July 18, 1968. It soon changes its name to Intel. Gladys Knight, age 8, appears on the TV show Ted Mack’s Original Amateur Hour …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

Posted on 07/9/2014 by |News, Culture, Sights and Sounds | Comments

11 Things | Bulletin TodayNews, discoveries and … fun 1. The extinct pelagornis bird had a wingspan as wide as 24 feet.  (Learn more at International Business Times) 2. The Nazi’s “perfect Aryan” poster child was Jewish. (Learn more at The Telegraph) 3. A computer chip that delivers a contraceptive hormone can be turned off when a woman wants to get pregnant. (Learn more at CNET) 4. Scientists know where an on-off switch for consciousness is located in the brain. (Learn more at New …