Standard policy or discrimination? A New York man says he was fired from his job as a lifeguard in 2007 because he refused to wear the required bikini-style swimsuit for an annual qualifying swim test. Roy Lester, now 61, filed a lawsuit claiming age discrimination. Lester, who has 40 years of water safety experience, says older lifeguards were slowly being phased out of Jones Beach and the swimsuit mandate was a way to do it. An appeals court recently reinstated a second suit which was dropped in 2009 after the first claim was dismissed.
Warren Buffett's op-ed piece in the New York Times sparked a fury on the Internet yesterday. If you missed it, here's the takeaway in his own words: "My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It's time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice." What do you think? From earlier this year: Warren Buffett on "value investing."
Tuesday I mentioned Marie Kolstad, left, an 83-year-old grandmother who had a breast lift with implants last month. "Physically, I'm in good health, and I just feel like, why not take advantage of it?" she told The New York Times. Yesterday Kolstad elaborated: "It was more about looking in the mirror and liking who I am." She's not the only one who feels that way. Kolstad is just one of thousands of older people who are choosing cosmetic surgery to enhance their looks and their lives: "According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, in 2010 there were 84,685 surgical procedures among patients age 65 and older. They included 26,635 face-lifts; 24,783 cosmetic eyelid operations; 6,469 liposuctions; 5,874 breast reductions; 3,875 forehead lifts; 3,339 breast lifts and 2,414 breast augmentations."
Is America ready for more "old" men? That's the discussion that's taking place in Room for Debate over on NYTimes.com. As the number of men over 65 has increased by 21 percent in the last decade "what are the implications - the benefits and the costs - of having more men around longer?" Women generally outlive men, so how would our lives change with more older men in the country? Will you have to support both parents instead of one? Or would they take care of each other - living longer, healthier, happier lives? Will having more men around keep the seniors dating pool fresh? In other words, will older people "step up their game?" Looks like it.
All about the genes. So yesterday, we celebrated aging well with Helen Mirren's big win for sexiest body and Jim Presseler's secrets to looking and feeling young at 62. And then the mother of all Debbie Downer news was released. Watching what you eat and exercising to live to be 100? You might be wasting your time, according to two new studies. One report published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that older people who pursued a healthy lifestyle and lost weight didn't live any longer than sedentary people." Another study - comparing the habits of a group of present-day seniors to those from 40 years ago - found that many centenarians didn't make it there by being good: "Many extremely old people appear to have been as bad as everyone else at indulging in poor health habits during their younger years."
When it comes to "home away from home," men are left behind. In her search for the perfect rehab for her father, Pam Gerhardt found that many assisted living facilities often forget about the other half. It's hard enough getting your "still-young-at-heart" dad to agree to go to a home. So when he gets there, he should feel comfortable, right? Not to be too stereotypical, but the window treatment designed to make the environment more relaxing won't cut it. And we can almost guarantee the knitting club sign up sheet will remain empty. Providers take note: As more 50+ men move into your facilities, some questions you may want to consider: Why isn't there a TV devoted to ESPN 24 hours a day? When's poker night? Why can't I get a scotch during the ice cream social? Related: Does moving into a nursing home cause depression?
What does your face say about you? Does it say you're happy? Stressed? When people see you, do they think you're powerful? Warm? Do you appear healthy? As President Obama turns 50, a new report examines how much he's aged in the last three years and asks an interesting question: "What's in a face at 50?"
Want to keep your kids safe in the car? Make sure Nana's behind the wheel. When children are present, grandparents are better drivers than Mom and Dad, a new study says. People older than 65 are generally involved in more car accidents, and the number climbs as people get older. The debate over the right of seniors to remain behind the wheel was revived last month after a 90-year-old woman drove through a nursing home's recreation room. But a new study published in Pediatrics suggests that seniors are more careful when transporting precious cargo: The study found that children were 50 percent less likely to be injured in a car accident when a grandparent was driving. Do your mom and dad still drive? Here are some signs that can help you determine whether you need to have "the talk."
Part D is keeping you out of the hospital: Five years after the drug plan's debut, seniors covered by Medicare Part D are healthier and taking better care of themselves. From today's Journal of the American Medical Association: " Medicare saved an average of about $1,200 a year for each senior who had inadequate drug coverage before Medicare Part D. Most of the savings came from hospital and nursing home costs." That saves the federal program $12 billion a year. The government spends $55 billion a year to operate the program.
Don't mean to start the morning on a low note, but the numbers don't lie. The recession rages and long-term unemployment rates are still high. As the country focuses on the very important issue of the debt ceiling ( here's an update), many segments of the population are asking," Hey, remember us?" While Democrats and Republicans take turns accusing each other of using the federal deficit to gain political clout, they may be wasting their time. According to a new Washington Post-ABC News Poll, Americans are fed up with both sides.
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