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A Naked Man in the Laundry Room

Let us age with:

Grace, Humor, Courage, and Confidence

Pass this on to other seasoned women

who will enjoy it.


“You were naked,” Mary Rose McGill said with a sly smile.

“Naked as a Jaybird,” Hadley Joy Morris Whitfield said.

“Butt naked,” Robinson Leary added.

Marge Aaron watched her friends. She was wearing a large grin. Mary Rose, Hadley, and Robbie were wearing large grins and looking straight at Wiley Vondra, who was shaking his head and hiding a grin of his own.

“You have poor memories,” Wiley said.

Alphonso Greatwood grinned at Raven Five Horns and winked.

Raven grinned back.

Wiley was on the hot seat.

It had started simply enough. They were crowded around one of the big patio tables at Meadow Lakes Retirement Community. It was a fine spring day in Omaha, but promising to reach a new high temperature in the afternoon. A large glass pitcher of iced tea was sitting in the middle of the table, sweating in the warm weather. Their glasses were full and a plate of chocolate chip cookies was almost empty and sitting directly in front of Wiley.

Marge had asked a simple question: How did Mary Rose and Wiley meet? Hadley had jumped in. “It was Maggie Patten’s doing,” she began, tucking her legs under herself in the large patio chair. “Maggie was the sandhills rancher we told you about who was here with us fifteen years ago. She heard there was a naked man in the laundry room at midnight every 15th of the month.”

“So we sneaked down on the next 15th, Maggie threw open the laundry room door, and there...” she paused and looked at Mary Rose.

“Was WILEY!!” Mary Rose squealed. She was almost bouncing up and down in her chair.

“Totally naked,” Robbie said.

“Behind a card table playing Solitaire,” Mary Rose said.

“Wearing only a cowboy hat and boots!” Hadley said, throwing her hands into the air and laughing.

“So handsome,” Mary Rose said, patting Wiley’s arm.

“So cute,” Hadley said.

“So naked,” Robbie said.

Wiley shook his head, looked at Alphonso and Raven, and shook it more. They grinned back at him.

“And Willy Nelson was wailing away on your boom box,” Hadley said, pointing to Wiley, “and do you remember what you said to us?”

Wiley stopped shaking his head and laughed. “Well, Hello Ladies! Would you like a game of poker?” He grinned at the three friends while Marge watched intently, still grinning herself. “And do you dear ladies remember what YOU said?”

Hadley looked at Robbie. Robbie looked at Mary Rose.

“I said, ‘I don’t know if I remember how to play,’” Hadley said,

“I said, ‘I don’t think I ever knew how to play,’’ Robbie said.

“And I said, ‘I don’t think I’m allowed to play,’” Mary Rose said.

They all looked at Hadley, who suddenly got just a little teary.

“And our Maggie said, ‘I’ll get the chairs.”

They were quiet for a minute.

Then Robbie said, “I miss her, too.” And Mary Rose and Hadley nodded.

Wiley changed the subject and looked at Alphonso and Raven. “There you have it gentlemen. I’m the only one all these good ladies saw naked and I’m the only one here who is married.”

Raven and Alphonso looked at him. “Oh Gawd,” Alphonso said.


(Good memories from book I: THE BOOB GIRLS; The Burned Out Old Broads at Table 12.)

Joy’s note: Remember: we are all the BOOB GIRLS. We all have Maggie Patton’s toughness, Robinson Leary’s intelligence, Hadley’s grace and poise, Mary Rose’s innocence, and Marge Aaron’s street smarts.

“I want to be with those women!”

Everything Changes: Everything Ages (Buddhist Wisdom)

It is what it is; it becomes what you make of it.

A is for Aging

A Burned-Out Old Broad’s, Perspective on Growing Old

My father died when he was 63

I was 22

He was ancient

Now my son is 63

He’s just a kid

Anticipation: A Joy Story

Marilyn is a friend of mine. She has had a second surgery for a very aggressive cancer and already, just weeks later, she has found more suspicious little lumps that are overly proud to act as warning signs.

She made a decision that surprised her friends and even shocked one or two. Marilyn got rid of everything – gave things away – and moved from her apartment to an extended-stay Marriott not far from where Ted and I live.

Our retirement community, Arboretum Village, is very close to a delightfully trendy area of shops and restaurants and a theater and a park and an auditorium called Aksarben Village. (For those of you out of state, that’s Nebraska spelled backwards.)

It’s a fun place and Marilyn told me, “I have breakfast there, my room is cleaned, I can walk all over the village, and I have nothing to hold me down.

I thought it was a great idea.

One of our friends almost organized a group to talk her out of it saying how lonely a hotel is.

I imagine, knowing Marilyn, that she will soon know the managers, the cleaning staff, the front desk, the kitchen staff, and have a community there. The managers even escorted her around and let her pick out her suite.

My point in this story is: When we approach our final time here. It’s time to do what we want to do. It’s time to think of yourself. Time to finish your business and go out of this beautiful and frightful life in a way that serves YOU and your needs.

“You are participating in your own dying,” I said to Marilyn.

She had a simple answer, “Yes.”

Grace Humor Courage and Confidence

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