Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, November 9, 2013

MVNews this week:  Page A:11




Mountain Views-News Saturday, November 9, 2013 



Dear Savvy Senior:

What can you tell me about body donations? With 
little money to spare, I’m looking for a cheap way to 
die and have heard that donating my body to science 
is free, not to mention it benefits medical research. 

Old and Poor

Dear Old:

If you’re looking to eliminate your final farewell 
expense and help advance medical research, donating 
your body to science is a great option to 
consider. Here’s what you should know.

Body Donations

Each year, an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 Americans donate their whole body, after death, to medical 
facilities throughout the country to be used in medical research projects, anatomy lessons and surgical 

After using your body, these facilities will then provide free cremation – which typically costs $600 to 
$3,000 – and will either bury or scatter your ashes in a local cemetery or return them to your family, 
usually within a year or two. 

Here are a few other tidbits you need to know to help you decide on whether whole-body donation 
is right for you. 

• Organ donors excluded: Most programs require that you donate your whole body in its entirety. 
So if you want to be an organ donor, you won’t qualify to be a whole body donor too. You’ll have 
to choose. 

• Not all bodies are accepted: If, for example, your body has been badly damaged in a care accident 
or if you’re morbidly obese, you many not qualify. 

• Body transporting is covered: Most programs will pay to transport your body to their facility 
unless your body must be moved from out of state.

• No special requests: Most programs won’t allow you to donate your body for a specific purpose 
– you give them the body and they decide how to use it. 

• Funeral services are not covered: Most programs will allow your family to conduct any final 
services they wish before taking custody of your body, but they won’t pay for it.

• Your family won’t be paid: Federal law prohibits buying bodies.

What To Do

If you do decide you want to donate your body, it’s best to make arrangements in advance with a body 
donation program in your area. Most programs are offered by university-affiliated medical schools. 
To find one near you, the University of Florida maintains a list of U.S. programs and their contact 
information at 

In addition to the medical schools, there are also a number of private organizations like Anatomy 
Gifts Registry (, BioGift ( and Science Care ( that accept 
whole body donations too. 

If you don’t have internet access, you can get help over the phone by calling the National Family Services 
Desk which operates a free body donation referral service during business hours at 800-727-0700.

Once you locate a program in your area, call and ask them to mail you an information/registration 
packet that will explain exactly how their program works. 

To sign up, you’ll simply need to fill out a couple of forms. But, you can always change your mind by 
revoking your authorization in writing.

After you have made arrangements, you then need to tell your family members so they will know 
what to do and who to contact after your death. It’s also a good idea to tell your doctor and put your 
wishes in writing in your advance directives. These are legal documents that include a medical power 
of attorney and living will that spell out your wishes regarding your end-of-life medical treatment 
when you can no longer make decisions for yourself. 

If you don’t have an advance directive, go to or call 800-658-8898 where you can get 
free state-specific forms with instructions to help you make one. 

 By Pat Birdsall


 Saturday, one of the ladies in the Senior Club mentioned that she had gone to an attorney and 
prepared her will. This made me think just how much I had procrastinated in preparing mine. I 
think there’s a conspiracy brewing… Since her pronouncement, my son had called and asked me if I 
come closer to a decision about my will, since I started talking about it 5 or 6 years ago! Nervy kid…
Then, a piece about wills in letter form, appeared in the “Dear Amy” column in the L. A. Times, 
November 5th. This letter was to the point and very informative. In part; “While she was in good 
health, my mother sat down with me and my three siblings to share her final wishes, neatly organized 
in a three-ring binder which she updated annually. Her current will, Do Not Resuscitate document, 
bank/investment statements and insurance policies were included, as were her wishes for her funeral. 
Everything from dress she saved to be buried in to the readings and music were included. Her pre-
planning and the transparency of her final wishes made things easy on us, and we were able to draw 
strength, comfort and even chuckles from the notes she left for us, allowing us to truly celebrate her 
life while we mourned her death. As a result, we all created our own binders patterned after hers and 
peppered with fond memories and anecdotes to help survivors cope.” Signed: Grateful

Binders anyone?


HELPFUL HINT: Keep a bottle of vinegar within easy reach. When your stove, counter 
tops, walls or anything else becomes spattered with grease, spray and wipe clean with a clean dry rag. 
Vinegar cuts the grease and leaves a nice shine.


FOR YOUR FUNNY BONE - A married man was having an affair with his secretary. 
One day, their passions overcame them and they took off to her house where they made passionate 
love all afternoon. Exhausted from the wild sex, they fell asleep, awakening around 8:00 PM. As 
the man threw on his clothes, he told the woman to take his shoes outside and rub them through 
the grass and dirt. Mystified, she nonetheless complied. He slipped into his shoes and drove home. 
“Where have you been?” demanded his wife when he entered the house. “Darling, I can’t lie to you. 
I’ve been having an affair with my secretary and we’ve been having sex all afternoon. I fell asleep and 
didn’t wake up until eight o’clock.” The wife glanced down at his shoes and said, “You lying son-of-a- 
gun! You’ve been playing golf!”

 ~ ~ ~

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! … November Birthdays

Flo Mankin, Alberta Curran, Carmela Frontino, Kathy Wood, Lena Zate, Joe Pergola, 
Janice Kacer, Valerie Howard, “Mike” Ruggles, Joan Ruggles, Lois Stueck, Jean Wood, 
Shirley Yergeau, Kathi Jefferson, Pat Krok, Irene Nakagawa, Anna Ross, Mary Steinberg 
and Sue Quinn.

* To add your name to this distinguished list, please call the paper at 626.355.2737. YEAR of birth 
not required


Quote of the Week: Don’t knock the weather; Nine-tenths of the people couldn’t 
start a conversation if it didn’t change once in a while.” Kin Hubbard


ACTIVITIES: Unless listed differently, all activities are at the Hart Park House (Senior 
Center) 222 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre


 YMCA San Gabriel Valley Intervale Senior Café: Monday-Friday at 12:00 Noon 

(Participants are urged to arrive no later than 11:45 A.M.) 

All seniors 60 and up can take part in the lunch program. There is a suggested donation of $2.00 for 
those 60 and over and $3.75 for non-senior guests. Daily

 reservations are necessary as space is limited. 

 Please call 24 hours in advance...626.355.0256

Free Balance Class: Every 3rd Monday for 11:00 am to 11:45 am with Shannon Vandevelde. A 
variety of balance exercises are practiced; all ability levels are encouraged and welcomed. 

Get fit, Have Fun with Zumba Gold

Zumba Gold is a low impact fitness class based on Latin and World Music. The upbeat music creates 
a fun atmosphere with easy to follow dance moves that will have you toning your body and improving 
your stamina and balance from your very first class. No dance experience is necessary and all fitness 
levels are welcome. Class is held Mondays from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm.Next session begins in September. 
$30.00 class fee. For more information or to sign up call the Community Services Department 
at (626) 355-5278.

Free Blood Pressure Testing: Held Second Tuesday of the month from 11:00 am-12:00 pm: No 
appointment necessary.


Bingo: Every Tuesday afternoon from 1:00 pm- 3:00 pm Cards are only .25c each! 

Free Chair Yoga: New Hours: 11:00 to 11:45 Every Wednesday morning. Join Paul Hagen for this 
free class that focuses on senior yoga techniques. No reservation is necessary!

Free Legal Consultation: Pasadena attorney Lem Makupson volunteers on the 2nd Wednesday of 
the month. He focuses on estate planning, trusts, wills, probate, conservatorships and business law. 
*Appointments are a must! Please call: 626.355.7394 to make yours* Conflicting court schedules 
can occasionally cause cancellations.


Wednesday, November 13th- 12:00- 1:00 pm Hart Park House Senior Center

 Are there too many choices with retirement living? What are the costs? Does one move, downsize, 
or stay in place? Come hear a very informative talk about the variety of choices available and what’s 
best for you, your budget and lifestyle. Paula O’Sullivan from Home Care Providers will be speaking 
to this topic.

 If you would like to have lunch during the talk, please make a lunch reservation with the Senior 
Lunch Café at 626.355.0256 or bring your own.

Birthday Celebrations: The 2nd Thursday of the month the Senior Center celebrates the birthdays of 
our patrons at 12:30 pm. Please join us for free cake and ice cream and “celebration.” (The cakes are 
provided due to a generous donation from the Sierra Madre Civic Club.)

Game Day: Every Thursday at 1:00pm. Poker is usually the game of choice, or should I say chance? 
Board games and other card games are also available. Outside, on the patio, a beautiful, one-of-a-
kind chess table is anxious for players.

Free Strength Training Class: Every Friday from 1:00 pm -1:45 pm Conducted by long-time 
volunteer, Lisa Brandley. The class utilizes light weights for low-impact resistance 
training. Weights are provided by the Sierra Madre Senior Center. It’s a great way to 
stay in shape and to

 socialize with your peers. 

Senior Citizens Club: Every Saturday at the Hart Park House (Senior Center). Brown 
bag lunch at 11:30am; Club meeting at Noon; Bingo 12:30- 3:30 pm. Only .25c per card.


JEOPARDY TAPING AT SONY STUDIOS - Sony Studios, Culver City, Ca.

Date: Wednesday, November 13, 2013 Time: 9:30 am to 3:30 pm

Meeting Location: Hart Park House Sr. Center Cost: $15.00 (does not include lunch)

Join us as we head to the Sony Studios in Culver City for the taping of Jeopardy!, America’s favorite 
quiz show. The show is a winner of a 2012 Peabody award and 30 Emmy awards, including the 2012 
Emmy for Outstanding Game/Audience Participation. Participants will have the opportunity to see 
the tapping of three shows which takes approximately 2 hours. Following the tapings, at approximately 
1:15 pm, participants will lunch together at the Overland Café just down the street from the studio. It 
is recommended to bring $10-15 for lunch. Tickets are selling quickly so come in today and purchase 
yours. Last day to register is November 5th.

Level of walking: Minimal

Friday, December 13, 2013. “Because it’s Christmas” 

Show at Candlelight Pavilion (Claremont, Ca.) $67.00 (Lunch included) 10:00 am- 4:00 pm

*Registering for Excursions can be done in person at the Hart Park House Senior Center and the 
Community Recreation Center or online at Cash, checks, and credit 
cards are accepted. Make checks payable “City of Sierra Madre”. Payment must be made at the time of 
reservation. CALL (626) 355-7394


Senior Movie Program: 

FREE movies are chosen by the seniors themselves and shown on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of the 
month (EXCEPT OCTOBER - see below) in Sierra Madre’s City Council Chambers, 232 W. Sierra 
Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre. ~ Start time is 1:00pm ~ 

November 6th: Avalon (1990)

A Polish-Jewish family comes to the USA at the beginning of the 20th Century and tries to make 

KATIE Tse.....................This and That


 I’ve never been a fan of reality shows. However, last weekend my husband and I 
were listening to 89.3 FM (KPCC, I think) when we heard a great “Ted Talk.” In it, 
Mike Rowe, of “Dirty Jobs,” chronicled memorable experiences, and explained his 
motivation to create that reality series.

 Rowe started by commenting on the trite proverb we’re all told as young adults 
--”Follow your passion!” It’s a nice quote for graduation speeches and motivational posters. While that 
sentiment is all well and good, it’s also created many “starving artists” and impoverished entrepreneurs. 
So, what are we to do if following our passion doesn’t put food on the table?

 Rowe said something so profound, yet so simple, I nearly kissed the car 
stereo! “Take your passion with you.” We can’t all be actresses, painters, 
musicians, or writers (at least not paid), but we can all bring our passion to 
whatever job we have. Rowe’s “Ted Talk” was part of the program’s theme, 
“What we define as ‘success.’” Our society has become so “success-driven” 
that many of us suffer from “success-anxiety.” This nagging worry is an 
offshoot of the keeping-up-with-the-Joneses mentality. There are only a 
handful of “respectable” jobs one can aspire to (e.g., doctor, lawyer, CEO, 
etc.). If you’re not part of this elite club, then you must be a “loser.” Another 
interviewee on the program pointed out that “failure” and “loser” labels are 
uniquely American. In the U.S. everyone is equal, and therefore, anyone can 
do anything if they just “work hard enough.” 

 I’m not knocking equality! Every person deserves respect and dignity 
because they are a human being. However, once you say that everyone has 
the same opportunity and potential for limitless material success, it implies 
that those who haven’t achieved that goal have only themselves to blame. 
That person huddled in a blanket on the streets of L.A. is there because he 
didn’t take advantage of all the opportunities afforded to him. While part of 
that may be true, it’s still cruel and judgmental. The interviewee pointed out 
that in England during the 1800’s, “poor” people were called “unfortunates.” 
This term is much more compassionate, implying that these people were the 
fate of misfortune; they were just dealt a bad hand in life.

 The main thrust of these discussions was that it’s OKAY to not be a lawyer, doctor, or CEO! Dare I 
say it, it’s even okay not to go to college! My friends and relatives in education have to bite their tongues 
and go along with the “No Child Left Behind” and “Everyone Should Go to College” mantras, but it’s 
often the people in education (at least primary grade teachers) who hold the strongest belief that NOT 
everyone should go to college!

 The biggest educational lie our society touts is that a college degree guarantees a decent job. (Okay, 
maybe the Art History and English majors should’ve known better.) But these days, even the credentialed 
teachers, psychologists, and (gasp!) lawyers are scrounging for jobs! One of my Mom’s friend’s sons is a 
lawyer, and it took him over a year to find a position. Another friend’s son has a full teaching credential, 
but decided to join the Navy since the teaching market is bone dry. 

 So, not only are our schools setting the college-bound kids up for likely failure, but the kids who don’t 
go to college have to deal with 12 years of being told they’re not good enough because they don’t excel 
in math or English. The time these students spent trying to fit into the academic mold could’ve been 
spent learning a valuable trade. Society needs a healthy balance of scholars and skilled workers. Let’s 
face it, when the pipes under my sink start shooting out water at 3 a.m., it’s the plumber I’m calling, not 
the business major. Besides - plumbers, electricians, arborists, carpenters, and other trade professionals 
make good money!

 At the end of the day, we should all aspire to do our best at whatever job in which we find ourselves. 
Not envying those who have more, nor looking down on those who appear to have less. Our peace and 
wellbeing should not be wrapped up in our ability to impress others. Two verses come to mind; one 
is Hebrews 13:5, “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have.” 
Good words, but it gets even better, “For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

 *Happy Well-Deserved Retirement to Carolyn Pearson! I will miss working you!

We’d like to hear from you! 

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