*If life seems jolly rotten
There’s something you’ve forgotten
And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing
When you’re feeling in the dumps
Don’t be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle, that’s the thing
And….Always look on the bright side of life….

  • Sung by a chorus of crucifixion victims, along with songwriter Eric Idle:
    “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life,” from Monty Python’s Life of Brian (1979)

I get it: people need a way to take their minds off the current gloom. Certainly many of my friends and family don’t want to read the…


“You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honor trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn.

The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails.”

T.H. White, The Once and Future King (1938)

The Need to Know

Ever since I was a little girl…


Tell everyone else in the house to pretend they don’t speak English and talk slowly and loudly to them.


“Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.”

Benjamin Franklin


I’m a big fan of writer Bob Brody’s idea (on boomercafé.com) of obituaries “for people who never accomplished all that much in life. They would highlight certain modest successes, like flossing regularly.”

I’m not a snob: I have always been a fan of obituaries in general, from those about ordinary folks to those about the famous and infamous, and everyone in between. I remember reading an obit in the New York Times for Sidney Franklin back in 1976. Born in Brooklyn, Franklin was a gay Jewish matador in Spain (aka “El Torero de la Torah”) and much admired by Ernest…


People all have their own sources of nostalgia, whether memories of family times together, first love, or friends from the distant past. Travel has always been my prime source of nostalgia. For me, the sounds of crows and peacocks transport me immediately back to India. I rarely eat pasta without remembering (and salivating over) tortellini in Rome. But my journeys to both India and Rome were years ago, when nostalgia meant distance.

Now it seems that only months ago I was wandering the streets of Lisbon with my daughter, with misty water-colored memories of sitting in an outdoor café opposite…


Dear New York, this is a love letter
To you and how you brought us together
We can’t say enough about all you do

Cause in the city we’re ourselves and electric, too

Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, and Staten
From the Battery to the top of Manhattan
Asian, Middle-Eastern, and Latin
Black, White, New York you make it happen

Beastie Boys, 2004 (“An Open Letter to NYC”)

I am not a New Yorker anymore. When people ask me where I live, I don’t lie. I live across the Hudson from New York City, I say, in Jersey City. But then I…


What is a traveler to do with an unabated desire to see as much of the world as possible if borders are closed and all travel is cancelled? Until now our travels have been about experiencing the world. I am suggesting that perhaps travel can morph — at least temporarily — into not being about experience but about memory.

Our brains are wired to experience something called episodic memory. …


For those of you who itch to travel — -I am truly sorry. You’re probably not going anywhere for a while. And so, in order to feed your wandering soul in the meantime, you have two choices: either dredge up memories of past trips to relive your joy of discovery or imagine new places that you have yet to visit so that you can dream of a future with crowded planes and crying babies, people actually hugging, and markets filled with fresh cheese, fish and meat….and an overabundance of toilet paper.

I would like to provide you with some dream…


For those of you who itch to travel — I am truly sorry. You’re probably not going anywhere for a while. And so, in order to feed your wandering soul in the meantime, you have two choices: either dredge up memories of past trips to relive your joy of discovery or imagine new places that you have yet to visit so that you can dream of a future with crowded planes and crying babies, people actually hugging, and markets filled with fresh cheese, fish and meat….and an overabundance of toilet paper.

I would like to provide you with some dream…

Barbara Winard

Blogger, storyteller, content creator, baby boomer, dreamer: thebabybloomer.blog

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