Your Eighth Decade

More and more of my friends are in their 80’s now. The older I get, the more that will happen. I see them as precious gifts.

I have no idea what life must be like in one’s 8th decade. I hope to find out myself one day. But as it stands, I have a great deal of admiration for all of these people.

Making it to 80 is no small accomplishment. It means you are overflowing with life experience. You are a survivor. You have seen and done things that most of us can only dream of. You have lived and loved and laughed and cried and fought and struggled. And here you are. Did you imagine you’d reach this mountain top? What a triumph!

You have watched the world unfold, and have been an active part in its unfolding. You have been there and you have done that. You know what it’s like to live at a time that was less comfortable and convenient. But because of that, you know that it’s possible to live without a cell phone and a microwave and 257 TV channels. Does our dependency on such foibles make you inwardly laugh?

You have most likely not been appreciated nearly as much as you deserve to be. People think they’ve heard all your stories, but they’ve barely scratched the surface. They probably aren’t asking the right questions. Shame on them.

When I see these friends, I know I’m gazing into untapped depths, and I wonder what I’m missing. People in their 80’s are diamonds walking amongst us, and should be cherished as such. The rest of us can only hope to travel that many times around the sun, and do it with such style!


A book about gratitude is a gift that keeps on giving!


The Nasty Habits

I often attend a storytelling event here in town, and I’ve met a lot of fascinating people there. One such person is Ginger, who will sometimes tell stories about being transgender and how that has impacted her life. Her stories often move me to tears.

Ginger has a quiet, shy, dignified grace about her. But humans are complex beings, aren’t they? I recently discovered that as quiet as she may seem, Ginger is in a band called The Nasty Habits. And this band ROCKS!!! Most members are transgender and all are amazingly talented. They cover 80’s dance music, anything from Duran Duran to Prince to Pat Benatar, and they tour the Pacific Northwest.

I recently had the opportunity to see The Nasty Habits perform live at Seattle Pridefest Capitol Hill, and I have to say I was blown away. Their website will tell you that they are the girls your mother warned you about. Oh yeah, baby! They’re the ones who get you out on the dance floor, screaming at the top of your lungs! What a blast! What a rush. My ears will probably never be the same again.

This band leaves you feeling happy to be alive, but they also send a very important message. It’s okay to be who you are. In this day and age, we all need to hear that. At full volume. IT’S OKAY TO BE WHO YOU ARE!!!

After the show, as they were packing up their instruments, Ginger looked up at me and smiled and waved good-bye. She was back to being shy again, even though her band had just rocked Capitol Hill to the very brink of violating the quiet ordinance. Fascinating.

If you ever get a chance to hear them, I highly recommend The Nasty Habits!