One for the ages

A message from the universe was delivered as I was writing my last post about my mentor, Joe Abrell.  While looking for pictures of Joe, I came across a trove of memorabilia from those early days of television.  It not only brought up wonderful memories—it also proves that I walk a fine line between being a historian and being a hoarder.

Among the treasures:  Inter-office memos.  Nasty letters from viewers. The fresh-out-of -the- typewriter script I wrote for my first story—on the Equal Rights Amendment –which still hasn’t passed decades later.

And there was this relic:


O.M. G.  It’s a newspaper ad promoting a series  I did about aging for the news.  Don’t even ask.

The brainchild of someone higher up in the news department, this series wasn’t one of my prouder moments.   Even back then it was cringe-worthy.  (Not to mention it wasn’t news—though it was an early indication of the direction TV news was heading.)

How ironic that this little gift from the universe arrived perfectly timed for my birthday.  I’m not turning 65 as I‘m supposed to be in the picture, but I can feel it looming out there.   And though normally I’m not preoccupied with aging, it’s pretty hard not to think about it when confronted by this evidence.

Not everyone has a sneak preview like this sitting around. And now I’ve got the real thing in the mirror.  So I was kind of curious to compare.

Back then I spent hours being made up to achieve the look of aging -–today it was effortless; just the 2 seconds for V to take this picture.

I haven’t had any “work” done–—so there are plenty of lines.

But here’s the bottom line:

When I look at the ad, I still feel like the girl on the left.  I don’t identify at all with the woman on the right—although if you ignore the god-awful wig, I have to say she looks better than I do.

I’m as vain as anyone else; still, how you look matters far less than how you feel—at any age—on a birthday or any day.

And on that note, one other birthday coincidence this week– I happened to be asked about birthdays in an interview for the American Cancer Society whose theme is “Creating a World with More Birthdays.”

Here’s one question:

What is your favorite way to celebrate More Birthdays?

As a cancer survivor,  the key to every birthday and my favorite way to celebrate– this year and every  year—is to think about how lucky I am to be here.

And that’s the truth.  Here’s to More Birthdays!

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  1. V says


    Good morning….and happy birthday ! You’re coffee and birthday card ( and See’s ‘nuts and chews’ ) await in the kitchen.

    I liked comparing your picture from your news days to your picture from yesterday. You still have the same kind and mischievous eyes. But now with added wisdom. It’s a great look.



  2. says

    Your blog is MY coffee and See’s nut chews. May this year be the year you feel the best as I’m looking forward to many more years of friendship. xoxox

  3. Deborah says

    You look so much better now than in the prophesied version.
    I remember visiting your house shortly after this piece aired and your dad wanted to
    show it to me –you had a fit. Do you remember? Yes, you were cringing at the time.
    Happy Birthday, my dear old (not in the age sense, but in the long term sense) friend.

  4. david says

    Happy BDay Buntball! Uncanny how they got the hair right in the age progression. And Darryle, you must reduce. Have fun and miss you, D

  5. marla says

    Happy Birthday Darryle. You look fabulous, and more importantly act fabulous(ly). I just went to a bookstore event with Jane Fonda, who at 73, looks amazing. It’s my new goal! And your birthday present from me was whupping me by a score of twice mine in Words With Friends. Now that’s a birthday present! Have a great day.

  6. says

    See’s chocolate for breakfast—what could be better on a birthday? The only sweeter and better comfort food are your words. Deborah’s right; I’m a lucky woman.

  7. says

    Haha, luckily I post a blog more often than I eat See’s for breakfast. Thank you for this–and I feel so lucky that fate brought your frendship right to my doorstep.

  8. says

    Such fun having you show up here! And since having a blog is all about transparency—now you’ve outed me–not just the name ( Buntball was David’s name for me among certain friends from college) but also my dad’s refrain “you must reduce.” Hilarious.
    Most amazing to me is that in all the years I’ve known you–yikes—44? you have NEVER failed to wish me a happy birthday. You’re the best. Miss you, too–especially since I got to see both of your sisters this week.

  9. says

    Oy. I’m too good at the game because I play too much. And it’s inspiring–but almost scary to see how amazing Jane Fonda looks at 73. Sets the bar pretty high for the rest of us. Thanks so much, Marla–I’m so glad this blog has brought you into my life—and of course, my words with friends list. :)

  10. says

    Happy birthday! And I think you look fabulous. You are a perfect example of a woman over 40 who still looks gorgeous with long amazing hair (which is the topic of my last blog post). I know what you mean by still feeling like the person in the picture on the left. Instead of cringing every time someone wanted to take a picture of me, I am now going in the opposite direction and am taking lots of photographs of me looking fabulous. It has actually helped me celebrate life and the way I look now. And dressing up nicely and making an effort feels a bit like having your birthday all the time.

  11. says

    Thanks so much for the comment–and the sweet words. I love your attitude–and it’s a great idea to take lots of pictures of yourself when you feel you look fabulous–at any age! As for the “rules” about having long hair, once I lost mine to chemo I tossed out all the “hair’ rules forever and grew mine down to my waist a couple years ago so I could donate it. And I think any rules about what women should wear at any age are always worth breaking–in fact I might just write a post about that, too. Enjoyed reading yours: and here’s the link for everyone else.

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