Redoing the 60 Blog

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Ashton Kutcher:  I think every day is Groundhog’s Day.  I get to learn from my mistakes and be better every day.

Another Sunday, another recap.  Here are links to this week’s posts, including information about my contest to help rename my blog.  Send me your suggestions for a new name by Monday, October 2.  Prizes will be given!

Monday:  Reliving the 60 Blog

Tuesday:  Honoring the 60 Blog

Wednesday:  Happy-fying the 60 Blog

Thursday:  Renaming the 60 Blog

Friday:  Catching the 60 Blog

See you next week!


Catching the 60 Blog

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If all my friends jumped off a bridge, I wouldn’t jump with them.  I’d be at the bottom waiting to catch those idiots.

Today is a catch-all kind of day.  I’ve been collecting notes and tidbits for a while and I thought I’d share some now.

Months ago, I wrote about my Twitter account.  I don’t post anything, but I do follow several news organizations, celebrities, and some “real” people too.  I’ve been known to check Twitter several times a day, telling myself that I just need to find out “what’s happening in the real world.”  I just really want to catch up on the latest celebrity mishap or watch a new cat video.

Every day, I receive about a dozen sponsored posts from advertisers or people who the Twitter algorithm believes I would be interested in.  I admit, I think in six months, one of those advertisements appealed to me and I started following them.  (I can’t, for the life of me, remember who it was, however.)  But now I’m writing down the ones that are so far from left field, and I wonder how Twitter and the advertiser might think we’d get along.  Here are a few examples:

Dick’s Sporting Goods (sales job opportunity in Henderson, Nevada)
Christus Health (job opportunity for an inpatient coder)
AGT Auditions (“come show us your talent at our auditions near you!”)
JD & The Straight Shot band (who?)
Aklave (“looking for Afrocentric events near you?  We’ve got you covered!”)
Undark magazine (I have no idea!)
Test Card (“a urine test startup”)

Looking at this list, I don’t see one over another that would fit my background any more.  What do you think I’d be interested in?  I’ll share more with you next week.

And finally, I spoke with a vendor this morning who asked for my email address.  I gave it to her, spelling my first initial and last name carefully.  She knew my name, of course, and then asked me this simple question:  “Are you spelling your name with a C?”  Yes, today I am spelling it with a C.  Ask me tomorrow, when I’ll spell my name with a Q.





Renaming the 60 Blog

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Katherine Hepburn:  As for me, prizes are nothing.  My prize is my work.

There are only 100 days until Christmas and I fear that the stores are already stocking Christmas trees and decorations.  Has CVS put their Halloween candy on sale yet?

Where does the time go?  It’s only 55 days until my birthday, and it’s become evident that I’ll need to change the name of this blog.  Any suggestions?  Dare I run a contest to see how many creative souls are reading this blog?  How many care what it’s called?  Who will notice if I stop writing it?

I started writing this blog, anticipating that dozens (and dozens) of readers would comment and we’d have an ongoing discussion of aging, working after 60, cooking (or, more to the point, not cooking), family and friends, and other topics.  I had lofty goals, to be sure, and I’m not disappointed.  This project just turned into something different.

My blogging mentor suggested we could add all kinds of Google Analytics tools to this blog, once we reached a certain number of page views per day, for an extended period of time.  I haven’t yet reached that number, but I am quite impressed that I have readers and followers from countries such as Malaysia, Pakistan, Italy, Philippines, India, United Kingdom, Australia, and Thailand.  I don’t personally know anyone in those countries, and I often wonder what those readers see in my writing.  What resonates with them?   What can they relate to?

Readers, the time has come for me to decide whether I will continue writing my pearls of wisdom.   I didn’t accomplish what I first set out to do, but who cares?  I enjoy it, and it appears that some from other countries do too, and I can count on a few steadfast readers and a sister (who has no choice).

Contest time!  We need to rename this blog.  Come up with a catchy name for this almost-daily blog since I can’t continue using XXXing the 60 Blog after my birthday.  I won’t be 60 any longer, and it’ll be like false advertising.   In the next two months, my blogging mentor will help me transition this blog to a new platform, and I’ll add some news bells and whistles.  What better time to start fresh with a new name?

Please comment below or leave a message on my Facebook page with your suggested new names.  An independent panel of judges will choose the winner from the expected stack of responses.  The deadline for your suggestions is Monday, October 2 and there will be prizes!

Be creative.  Don’t be shy.  I want to hear from everyone!



Affiliating the 60 Blog

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I like to surround myself with people who share in my inappropriate comments, sarcasm, and random shenanigans.

It’s been almost a year since I started writing The 60 Blog.  It’s almost like keeping a diary or a journal.  I share some mundane factoid or story that you may enjoy reading and sharing.

When I started writing last year, I thought I might make just a few bucks.  I was told it’s easy to become an Amazon Affiliate.  Sign a few forms and you’re ready to go.  I could link Amazon products on my blog page and, if someone clicks in the product and ends up buying it, I could make an insane amount of money–like ten cents.  I signed up to become an affiliate of Thrive Market too (see Thriving the 60 Blog).  If any of my readers joined their program, I could make a few bucks too.

I knew I’d never strike it rich.  Ten cents here, a few bucks there, and at the end the year, I could have $50 (my most generous estimate).  So I persevered.  I linked things like books, vitamins, organic honey.

And you know what?  Amazon thought I wasn’t getting enough clicks and they cancelled my Affiliate account.  Yes!  I wasn’t giving Amazon any business, so they figured, why keep her on the books in the hopes that we’d pay her ten cents some day?

I still include links in some of my posts, but I never know who or what is clicked.  I have a plug-in built in to my blog program that tells me I have visitors from other countries reading my posts, but I don’t currently know anyone in Italy or Japan.  My goal was to get eyeballs on my blog (along with making some serious green, of course!) and I am doing that.  Little by little.

I need your help.  If you like my anecdotes, tell your friends.  If you disagree with something I have to say, let me know by commenting below.  If you sign up with Word Press and give them your email address (and you only will have to do it once), you’ll get an email each time I post something.  You won’t have to look for me; I’ll just be in your inbox.

As I said, eyeballs are important to me.  I use a program called MissingLettr that recycles my posts and adds them to my Twitter (@nycaryn), Facebook and Google Plus accounts.  A week or two ago, Twitter notified me that I have a new follower.  Someone famous who reads my posts (or, more likely, has someone read them for him).  Ladies and gentlemen, Jimmy Kimmel is a fan!  You’re in good company.

And now for something ironic?  Last week, I received notice that I now have another Twitter follower.  Amazon Affiliates.  Ironic.


Boxing the 60 Blog


Kindness is free.  Sprinkle that stuff everywhere.

I recently read an article about Zachary Gibson, who set out on a mission to place 100 miniature mailboxes in public places around Los Angeles, called the Tiny Mailbox Project.  He wanted to pass along a smile to every stranger who may need one.  An uplifting note is left in the mailbox, along with a few blank cards.  Gibson imagined that people would take a note and leave one for someone else.

When Gibson places a mailbox, he takes a picture of the box and the location.  He then posts the information to Instagram (@thetinymailboxproject) so that people can find their way to the box and share some love.

Gibson is nearing the distribution in Los Angeles, but wants the project to expand.  He states:  “If you want to do it in your city, I’ll send you the resources and all you have to do is buy the mailboxes.”  Click here to purchase the mailboxes for $4.49 each:  Oriental Trading Company.  You can contact Gibson for more information through Instagram by clicking this link:  The Tiny Mailbox Project.

Have you seen these mailboxes in the Los Angeles area?  If so, you’re encouraged to share your experience using the hashtag #thetinymailboxproject.

I love this idea and, frankly, I wish I had thought of it myself.  I know several people who are currently feeling blue and could use a little pick-me-up like this.  What would you do if you were at, say, The Griffith Observatory, and saw one of these little mailboxes sitting on a fire hydrant?  Would you feel compelled to open it and take out a note?  Imagine how great your day would be when you read a note from a stranger?  “You light up the room when you walk in.”  “People love having you around.”  “You make a difference.”

Kindness starts with one person and can spread quickly and lovingly.  Don’t you agree?


Lugging the 60 Blog

Head Case


Admit it.  Traveling is stressful.  And the last thing you want to do is lose your luggage.  Searching for and losing your bag at the luggage carousel can be one of the worst parts of your vacation experience.  Now there’s a product that can help you keep your luggage, and your fellow passengers will laugh while you’re doing so.

Did you see the new luggage that can never be mistaken for anyone else’s luggage?  There is now a product that lets you plaster your entire face on both sides of your luggage.  This guarantees that no one will accidentally or intentionally steal your bags.   All you have to do is upload a high-quality photo of your face to Firebox.  The retailer will create a custom-made, double polyester spandex cover to slide over your suitcase.  Available in small, medium and large, the cover can be fastened over your luggage and, like magic, there’s your face bumping around the luggage carousel and the airport.

Ranging from $26 to $39, the Head Case covers are affordable and it seems like a small price to pay for some sanity while traveling.

What do you think?  What would you say the first time you see someone wheeling this luggage around the airport?  Would you instead consider adding a picture of your dog or cat?  Or your Paris vacation home?

I think they’re a bit scary looking.  But if you want to check it out, click here Firebox Head Case.






Hating the 60 Blog

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Martin Luther King, Jr.:  I have decided to stick with love.  Hate is too great a burden to bear.

Did you know that there is a list of items that people hate, broken down by state?  The dating app, Hater, known for matching people based on mutual dislikes, recently released a map highlighting which of its topics users hate most in each state.  Here’s a sample:

California        fidget spinners
Hawaii             taking videos at concerts
Idaho               asking for directions
Iowa                 long hair on men
Illinois             biting into string cheese
Missouri          people who believe in aliens
New Mexico   polo shirts
New York        Times Square
Pennsylvania  people who use money clips
Texas                sleeping with the window open
Virginia            dabbing pizza grease with a napkin
Washington     Keurig K-cups

I just got my first fidget spinner (in fact, two in one week) and I leave one in my car.  It might not be the best place to use a mindless toy, but I figure I can spin it while waiting at the Starbucks drive-through (which is always crowded!).

I’m not into men with long hair and dabbing pizza grease is a necessity in New York.  :-0  And really, Missourians like aliens, and just not the people who like them?  That’s almost an oxymoron.

What’s on your list?



Lazing the 60 Blog

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I’m not lazy.  I’m just on energy-saving mode.

Being lazy minus working around the house equals getting nothing done.

Or does it?

We have the services of Marissa (the greatest-girl-on-earth) this weekend and she has been so helpful getting us organized.  It’s like she just knows every six weeks, “time to visit the Aunts!”

So we’re going to put her to work.  I’m hosting book club tomorrow and serving brunch-type food.  I’d like to serve egg salad and, since Leslie and I don’t eat it (and can’t even stand to look at it), we’ve tasked Marissa with the egg-boiling, egg-smashing and salad-making duties for Sunday.  Plus, we’ll have her put together a table and a patio bench because, well, she can!

And as a partial payback, we’re going to take her to bingo Saturday night.  When she wins big money, we’ll expect a “gift” in return.

What will you do this weekend?  Something rewarding?  Something physically challenging?  Good for you!



Scoring the 60 Blog

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We played bunco the other night and I didn’t win anything.  But that’s okay.  It’s all about having fun, right?  YMMV.

Leslie and I have played all kinds of board and card games since we were kids. Remember Careers or Life?  We also played Mille Bornes, Perquackey, Trouble, poker, gin rummy, 500 rummy, War, May I, Crazy 8s.  You get the picture.

I always seem to be the one to keep score.  It’s just my lot in life, I suppose.  Nowadays, I get accused of cheating (and I think my friends are joking), but even as a kid, I always carried around the scorepad and pencil.

Typically, the scorepad has two columns:  one for your team and one for the other team.  I think it was my mother who taught me to name the columns We and They if you were playing with teams and, of course, players’ names if you were playing individually.  I’ve always done it this way.  No big deal.

I’ve also been playing bunco for many years.  If you know anything about the game (for which there is no strategy whatsoever, just shear luck), you move from table to table and roll dice at each table.  Someone at each table keeps score and, thankfully, it’s not always me!  But the other night, something just hit me the wrong way.

I started a page to keep score.  I drew a line down the center of the page and wrote in We and They.  And the game started.  The players moved around the room to other tables.  When I came back to the table where I started, someone had written Us and Them at the top of the two columns, right above where I had written We/They.  Did that scorekeeper find my headings confusing?  It’s obvious what the words mean.  But the next scorekeeper just had to change it to Us/Them?

I’m aware that people keep score differently and I’ve gotten to a table where Us/Them was already written on the score sheet.  But the other night just threw me off balance.  (That must be why I didn’t win any money this month.)

You’ll see from the two pictures in this post that both Us/Them and We/They are acceptable scorekeeping means.  I wasn’t aware that We/They is typically used in bridge and pinochle games (two games we didn’t play as kids) and it looks like Us/Them is the acceptable bunco lingo.

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Oh, I know.  Why stress about something so insignificant?  Want to know why I focused on this and ripped that page out of the scorepad so quickly?  So I’d have something to write about today!