Wednesday, July 04, 2007

From My Mailbag

Here are a few of the inspiring e-mails I've received this month:

The first one is from Marc Singer, the Associate Director of the College Level Examination Program (CLEP):

I should tell you about my grandmother Adele Samuelson. After my grandfather died in 1998, Grandma decided to do something she always wanted to do: she became a stand-up comic. One day out of the blue, I got a call from a reporter at the LA Times wanting to know if the lady she had just seen on-stage could really be as old as she claimed to be. (Trying to be discreet, I confirmed that I was, at the time, 40 and that the reporter could do the math from there if she were still skeptical.) Grandma performed at various nightclubs in Los Angeles...until she became ill about two years ago. She Charlotte, NC now, but she's always planning her comeback. (Right now the plan is a radio call-in show about sex and senior citizens.)

A day later Marc adds:

Thinking about [Grandma], I realize that she has done more along the lines of the women you wrote about than I had first thought. For instance,at age 54, with no previous post-high school education, she went back to school to become a travel agent. She was first in her certificate class and worked as a freelance travel agent for 23 years until 9/11, at which point the travel industry changed quite a bit. Along the way, she met some interesting Hollywood people through her work and ended up producing a cable TV talk show (I don't think it was a paying job), which lasted a couple of years in the mid-'90s. Then my grandfather passed away, which is when she turned to stand-up... She's a piece of work--a great, great person.

This next note is from a wonderful woman named Diane Neegvesky. I met her over a year ago at a talk I gave at a Barnes & Noble:

I was trying to figure out my next act for some time and I got it! I am now an exercise instructor/personal trainer with an expertise in Active Older Adults/Pilates. I taught my first exercise class at the age of 54, 30 years after I was trained to work in a ladies gym and then laid off! The dream never died.

FYI: An interview I did with a while back with Jane Carroll on her Loving Life Radio Show will be aired again on Tuesday, July 17 at 8 p.m. and Wednesday, July 28th at 2 p.m. Click here for a details.

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