2018 0816 Just a Number

Welcome to the BiCurean Podcast.    I am Erik. And I'm  Aicila. And this week our topic is ageism. I'm very excited we have a guest this week. Our first guest that we have figured out technically how to bring into this conversation. Janine Vandeburg, and would you be so kind as to tell our listeners a little bit about yourself. Absolutely! %HESITATION So I'm Janine Vandeburg and right now after leaving a consulting firm that I started over three decades ago. I stepped away to run an initiative in Colorado that is funded by Next Fifty Initiative and Rose Community Foundation called %HESITATION Changing the Narrative in Colorado. The narrative  that we're trying to change is about aging and ageism in Colorado %HESITATION and across the United States. And basically what we're trying to do is counter a lot of the negative prejudicial stereotypes about people as they get older and to encourage people to think about the benefits of the fact that we have this great actually advance in our society. So all of us are living longer and healthier lives. And that should be a good thing. But right now if you listen to popular media, if you're doing something like reading the paper, typically what you hear are narratives that pit younger people against older people. That have headlines like "Boomers versus Millennials"- that have a lot of zero sum thinking we're either going to support programs for older people or we're going to fund education for young children. And given that all of us are aging and that we have increased longevity in our country- actually a good thing it shows all of these advances in medical science that people are living longer- the conver- the public conversation that we should be having is "how do we make the most of this?". %HESITATION How do we bring that spirit of innovation and thinking about how we do things in new ways? And unfortunately we're not there. And so the initiative that I'm running is basically designed to get people to talk about this to share  research based methods of shifting public perception about what it means to get older %HESITATION to increase awareness that ageism is a thing. So the research was done by this national communications firm called Frameworks Institute. And what they found in surveying and talking to thousands of Americans across the country is basically people don't even think ageism is a thing. So Right.  No it's really interesting isn't it? And yeah and and so what and I so what I loved when you did that podcast about Millennials is this recognition that ageism   goes in multiple directions. So ageism  directed against younger people often says things like "Well millennials are entitled  and their work ethic isn't that great." And having 2 Millennial daughters I would totally discount that. %HESITATION And then on the other end it's %HESITATION there are a lot of negative stereotypes about people as they get older which are equally not true but absolutely held in public perception. Yeah %HESITATION and to your point, it's really interesting, so we've done on guns as a subject. We've done %HESITATION Trans Rights Trans Rights  gay topics %HESITATION a lot of  obviously politically motivated things. And we posted up before that first podcast a little %HESITATION question to prompt some people to give us some ideas of you know what to cover. And it blew up on the Facebook into the most ugly arguments we've ever seen. Yeah ageism it's it's a-  and I was grateful to you for taking me before we did that podcast  in terms of recogn- you said age is something that affects everybody equally. And I think that's really true. And so people have a lot more personal investment and personal reaction to the topic. So it's a- one of the things- I was just shocked. I mean literally you know talking about any other subject it hadn't had not elictied  that much of a reaction from people. Okay Erik.  So I'm finding this hard to believe are you telling me that ageism elicited more controversy than guns? Yes. I'm shocked.   Not even a little bit. I had more civil conversations around guns and sex work than we did around ageism. We- we had people call  like swearing at each other in the comments of our Facebook. %HESITATOION I guess that tells me I have a lot of work to do. You have a lot of work to do. It also gives me a job security. There's a reason that this this subject %HESITATION prompted having one of our first guests because it's been one of the most controversial things we've talked about. And we're literally talking about the stuff we talk you know that that's on CNN headlines and that sort of thing. One of the things- Can I ask you- I mean -  I don't know if you can share this on a podcast what kind of things were people saying? %HESITATION A lot of words that we can't say on the podcast just out of respect to people. %HESITATION It seemed to be mostly- One thing that caught that struck me was why don't you date someone your own age? Yeah. That    was a big one. That seems odd. Yeah. The with this  one of the people was talking when other people in the list were talking about their compassion for ageism for younger people because their partner was young.er And the response was "Why don't you date someone your own age?". It was very it was weird honestly. I bet. It was really weird. It's why we did the Millennials first cause the rage- I think that what you're talking about terms of the- the prejudice against age in terms of older people is actually more widespread and more genuinely damaging in terms of like some of the research that we were talking about before the show started. That what you believe about aging can actually shorten your life. So if you are someone who believes that getting older means you are going to be a non functional and less able to contribute to society. Then they  they said that on average people who have those really negative perceptions of aging tend to live seven and a half years %HESITATION less than people who don't. So there's this older prejudice that is genuinely damaging to people in that way. There seems to be a lot more actual rage towards younger people. Yeah so and that's really interesting to me. So I think it in part %HESITATION probably depends on your audience. %HESITATION And what's  interesting to me and I was %HESITATION really when you just cited that  statistic. So one of the things that we know is ageism has so many negative  effects. And you certainly talked about some of the physical and mental health effects. There was a recent study that showed that people who have experienced ageism actually also it somehow interferes with their memory. kind of  as they age. We know that it certainly interferes with financial security. So there were a lot of negative things   that apply to the individual. I think one of the things that we don't talk about in a large public conversation, and again why I'm so grateful that you all are doing the series that you are, is the damage to community when we have these ageist attitude. Well I don't know if any of you saw %HESITATION Denver post headlines last Sunday? And it's about this incredible talent and workplace shortage that we have in metro Denver. And how it's hampering company's ability to grow. Nowhere in that conversation is there any mention of there are lots and lots of older adults in Metro Denver %HESITATION 50 up. Who left the work force, either voluntarily or involuntarily, for a period of time. Who are not able to get back in. We know that research shows if you lose a job after age fifty, it takes too much much longer to get a job again if you're even able to than a younger person. I didn't realize that. That that's actually kind of a shocking statistic. Well and it's interesting when you think about it Erik. So if we have this workplace shortage and I was at a meeting on Tuesday night it's called the Colorado Encore  Network it's one of the activities we do at Changing the Narrative. And it's basically a venue for people who are age 50+  to connect with each other or to network a bit. But also find out about you know %HESITATION how can we keep involved in community in the economy and that kind of thing. This particular program was about %HESITATION somebody was doing a program on LinkedIN.   And there were in the room at least thirty people %HESITATION mostly over age fifty plus not entirely and there were a few people in their thirties and I I didn't have a chance to talk to them. But I was like are you in the tech industry? Is this your first sort of looking for a kind of employment again. But it was interesting because everybody was telling stories of and and these are people with amazing qualifications but who feel like they are totally being rejected out of hand because of their age. %HESITATION And so I look at  that on one hand, here's this whole talent pool of people with marketing and teaching and engineering and technology backgrounds. And here's this Denver post story with all of these companies that are talking about, we can't fill our work force and it seems maybe if we can figure out a way to sort of bridge that gap uh good for companies and also obviously good for older workers. So yeah can you all do that? Maybe invite a group of employers next onto your podcast? We can certainly look at some options. %HESITATION I can tell you this- one of the other things that I know is is very common and and and I work in the tech industry. We were talking about this before we started on the show. And  ageism does kind of run rampant in there but another side of that is one thing I noticed in the tech industry the massive amount of job shifting that happens in that it's it's like especially with millennials I know that's a stat that that is actually you know people have proven in various industries. They're more likely to move on from a job after three years and to kind of  just "better deal" their situations. And the tech industries like just really bad about that in general. And I have to say that you know with Millennials as the as the younger generation right now, I'm wondering what's going to happen. Like are they gonna start to hit the ceiling for their age cut off, when they don't want to do that because it got hard the last time. Because they're in their thirties or forties or something. So I can't predict  that and it seems to me that if we accept as a society that ageism is okay that that becomes a natural consequence- %HESITATION a natural and unfortunate consequence of that, right? %HESITATION To me the thing that's really interesting and so part of what we're doing in Changing the Narrative is we are using tested messaging that has been tested across the United States with large sample across socio- economic status racial ethnic gender age political affiliation. What are messages that actually change people's thinking about what it means to get older and ageism.  And one of the messages- or there are two messages I think are sort of relevant to this conversation that really shift things. And one is this idea that we build momentum as we age. So if I were going to ask each of you do you know something today and understand something today that you you didn't know a year ago? What would you tell me? Yes. Erik? Yes. So now think of that just kind of built over time right? We're learning things every year. We have a certain sort of wisdom and strength that we built up over time. %HESITATION And when we %HESITATION and when companies or anyone exhibits or exhibits ageist behavior I guess. What we're doing is we're saying we're going to just move that wisdom and those strengths over to the sideline. We're not going to pay attention to it. And so think of that valuable kind of social and intellectual capital that's just kind of lost, right? Erik you know something you don't know a year ago but you know if all of a sudden somebody decides that you're too old because you're in the tech industry.   You know they're losing out on that. They're losing out on that insight that you have cause you've seen this sort of pattern before. You know what's gonna happen. You could you might be able to mentor younger people in your workforce. But if that's pushed aside we lose that. So when that is explained to people about kind of how we all build momentum and that can be used to contribute to community and the economy that actually %HESITATION in a positive a way shifts public opinion about %HESITATION getting older and about the contributions that we can all make uh to society  business and the economy as we get older. %HESITATION And the other thing that shifts public opinion is to think about %HESITATION innovation and the creativity of American people. So I guess I'm gonna ask you both of you another question. If if you think about what are some of the major changes are innovations that have occurred in the last decade, what would you say? Well you know and I think you know it was in our first podcast we're talking about it like the various different aspects and we were we were going into it before we did the research and we were thinking oh yeah, Millennials are at this like turning point of like the most massive shift we've had in society with the technology taking over. And what we found is absolutely not true. Like it is a massive shift but the experience we're having with that previous generation is not different. Right, than they had in the nineteen thirties- than they had in the eighteen hundreds. Right. And so you know I think to your point yeah there have been massive amounts of innovation especially in the last twenty years and it hasn't been you know that that the it has not affected in any way positively or negatively like what we're seeing in this generational gap right now is the same as it  has always been. Right. And so and my thinking always is- so I don't know if either of you seen this pyramid and that I wished I don't know how to talk about this on a podcast so you can coach me. So there's this really interesting graphic that was released by the census bureau this spring which really talks about and really what we're talking about is there is a fundamental shift a fundamental demographic shift that is occurring it's not just in Colorado. It's not just in the United States. It's across the world. And it's a combination of two factors and one factor is you know advances in health care and medical science, so people are living longer. And the other part of the demographic shift is that %HESITATION there's declining birthrate both in developed and developing countries. So over all across the world we have %HESITATION  this really shift. And so I'm going to describe this- Well and and just so you know we'll post a link to this %HESIATATION with the show so people will be able to see the graphic. I will actually send you this graphic cause it's so powerful and when I show it to people like I had no idea. So one of the  things that of  when Frameworks Institute was doing its research they were asking people you know what do you think are the trends in America? And one of the things they've learned is that people actually think that America is getting younger. And exactly the opposite is true. America like every other country acorss world is getting older.  And it's really illustrated in the census bureau graphic. So I want you to just picture right now and if you have a piece of paper in front of you draw it out.  On the left hand side write nineteen sixty on the top and then draw basically a pyramid. So wide bottom tapering up to a kind of a triangle. At the bottom are children zero to four, at the top or people eighty five plus. You've got this very stark and narrow pyramid that is %HESITATION the graphic. On the other side right hand side write at the top two thousand sixty. It is absolutely a column. So basically from zero to four to eighty five plus and you go all the way, there are few little indentations. But basically you have a column, so there are a lot of people who have used the term like "silver tsunami" and baby boomers. And once all the baby boomers die off, we're going to be fine and they're gonna be no aging people. And the reality is that that is not true because %HESITATION the- the things that are all leading to increased longevity apply to my generation as a baby boomer. They apply to your generation is Gen- X'ers. They apply to Millennials and Gen C and whatever that new generation is that is just being born. %HESITATION But basically the projections are we have a fundamental demographic shift. And we're aging. And so I think the challenge for all of us  is like okay so how do we recognize what's the potential opportunity there? How do we continue to think about %HESITATION how can older people contribute? How do we not force them out of the work force and therefore make them dependent? %HESITATION. Well yeah and - and there's- We to do a lot of rearranging and it's really it's it's a social issue. It's a social justice issue. And we kind   haven't figured it out cause we're not having public conversations about it. So kudos to the two of you for raising this even though you're probably gonna acquire more Facebook hate as a result. Well  hopefully not.  And  no no such thing as bad press right? There you go. Well one of the things that I find to be really interesting you know in terms of looking into this is that ageism was actually only coined as a term in nineteen sixty nine by Doctor Robert Butler. And I love that you found that right away because I was like on this job, I'm not an expert in age. I like was on the job three months before I found Robert Butler. I'm like oh my god, they found it right away. So yeah kudos to you. Well thank you. %HESITATION And- and so and then looking into some of that and realizing one other thing the other thing that I found really interesting is that they they did as they called it a psycho info search on Google and different forms of discrimination. And they compared sexism, racism, ageism. Right. And in two thousand twelve, they did a search on ageism and they found seven hundred fifty results- in two thousand seventeen they did a search they found thirteen hundred and eighty two results. Which cares to  eleven thousand plus for racism and thirty seven hundred plus for sexism and so that kind of gives you an understanding of where just the research is, where the energy is. And it's not that racism and sexism aren't clearly social issues. It is that ageism   as an issue is just barely beginning to be seen for what it is. Which is an issue in terms of how we treat people not a condition   that is inevitable. Right well so I love the way you frame that and I'm just going interject a couple of things. So one of the things that FrameWorks Institute, when they did all of their research to find out what the general public in America thought about aging and ageism. And so part of the research was do people even know the  ageism is a thing? What was really interesting was basically what they found was people do not recognize that ageism exists?  It is it's not even keep in people's thoughts or conversations then at some point in their research when they were testing messaging there have been some organizations that have said well ageism is the next civil rights issue. And what they found was and, for exactly the reasons you just mentioned, people who've experienced racism or sexism think well it can't possibly be as bad. And %HESITATION and because it is absolutely absent from the minds of most Americans  sort of the recommended strategy for talking about it is you know- ageism so we should I I guess we should not compare ageism to racism or sexism. And you've already kind of articulated why we shouldn't do that but we do need to talk about it as it is an injustice and we need to confront this injustice should if we want to live up to our aspirations not necessarily our reality. But if we want to live up to our aspirations of being a just society. So and that  was actually to the point I was gonna  make. %HESITATION I don't foresee any %HESITATION state senators or major figure heads at large corporations uh being forced to resigned in shame for making you know that in this case they made racial slurs and you know and and things like that. I don't see that happening to anybody for %HESITATION saying that people over fifty are dumb. Erik you're you're defying  my dream. I mean realistically like I there's not the social punitive nature to ageism  right now. Although I will say here's the punitive uh nature that I think so %HESITATION I think it's seasons fifty two %HESITATION there was a huge settlement earlier this year with data uh Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against incredibly incredibly ageist things. %HESITATION And their %HESITATION and so they settled for two point eight million and so my punitive thing was %HESITATION I am no longer going there and getting my gluten free lobster flat press. There you go. I know. Well and one of the things that- You said it was okay to tell personal stories right. No it definitely and that actually one of the things that EriK and I were talking about is you know our moms are about the same age, in their early seventies. We'll be non specific- yes- to be respectful. And and that you know my mom is in full time supervised care. She has dementia. She needs to be have her medication managed. And and his mom is- My mom is still working full time %HESITATION recently started dating somebody. Is constantly filling her weekends with fishing trips and going out and doing stuff. Yeah it's a totally different experience. And you know if you put them next to each other I think people would be able to understand that yes somebody in their seventies can be one way and then they can be another. It's not inevitable. And and that's not to say that you know I definitely- I mean I hope I'm like my mom when I'm in my seventies right? Don't we all?    And I my body doesn't bounce back the way that it once did if I injure myself. I need to be a little more thoughtful. Like there are some biological realities. However the inevitability of not being functional I don't think that's actually real. Right. And yet it is it is what you're talking about it's the narrative that we live.  We live in this narrative of age does this to you. And they  they were saying in one of the studies that if you are a younger person who has that belief, you have already shortened your life. So-  Which ought to be reason enough for a us to reject ageist attitudes, right? Right, and I think if people know that it might help. Well okay but you're you're really helping here with changing the narrative. So %HESITATION a couple of things I want to share with you that are kind of related to this. So %HESITATION there is  amazing author Ashton Applewhite and she's actually going to be in Colorado in mid August. %HESITATION Who wrote I I think it's called This Chair Rocks  an aging or a manifesto against ageism. And so one of the stats that she has in her book and you know- So I think we all fear about aging, that you know we're gonna end up- we're gonna be in a nursing home we're gonna be institutionalized. And she points out the statistics that actually for older people only four percent end up in that condition. Okay so that's one and- and I think there's a public perception of that's the inevitable thing when you age. Right? So- Right well that my my mom and  what I found also to interject is that I was looking up dementia and dementia statistics   and while we talk about that as being an increasing concern. The percentage of people who are coming down with dementia is actually decreased.  Right. We just happen to have a larger population of people who are at risk for it at this time. So once again you have enough people and and they're learning more about what what you can do to prevent it. What you can do to take care of your brain so that you and a lot of that is a little bit what you're talking about the more act- physically and mentally active you stay for as long as possible the more physically- physically and mentally capable you will be. So as long as we can really embrace that option for people, they are gonna have fuller better lives.  Right and I want to add something to that so one of the things that %HESITATION FrameWorks found in its research and I think this is like really important, it was sort of this idea that if you were on if you're experiencing  %HESITATION aging and negative outcomes in aging, it was somehow your fault. That you didn't walk enough. That you didn't get the right food. You didn't save enough money. And one of the things we've kind of ignored is how context makes a difference. And so in a and I was talking with a friend of mine who was like well my- you know my mom she's eighty five and she walks everyday and she does all this great stuff. And I'm like okay well that's great. And and the implication was that of it was well if everybody just walked enough they would be fine. %HESITATION And then we were talking  further and we kind of found out well by the way you know his mom lived by a walking trail that had been built by the community that she lived in so that people of all ages would have kind of more exercise so and and be able to you know kind of improve their  quality of life. So it's sort of a- we need to think about the social context of all of this and the community context. And not somehow you know if someone is experiencing negative outcomes in older age say somehow you know it was their fault. And one of the things that I hate about most of the traditional media are all these stories that you know this poor woman is now on the side walk with her belongings and she didn't save enough money. And I'm like can we just talk about what affordable housing is like in metro Denver? And you know so those kind of conversations we need to have as opposed to well you know it's kind of up to the individual so. I think that it's really important to recognize our community responsibility it's one of the things that Erik actually brought up on a show we did about suicide. And how a lot of times, especially liberals, will get really excited about what's happening with you know the bat in some other country. Not that the bats aren't important however what's going on in your community. What's your neighbor up to? Okay I would have a whole other conversation about it with you about this. I'll probably do it off line because I have a rant about this but thank you. But I I think I think ageism is %HESITATION is is the same kind of thing and I think I  my personal opinion and of course this is your line of work so dispute me if you if- you feel I'm wrong but I think it's more of a community awareness thing. %HESITATION You know I- racism can get insidious and it's a community awareness thing. And you know it  sometimes there needs to be laws like hate crime laws and things like that. And and that's a sad reality of that world but I'm I'm hopeful that you know changing the narrative, literally, and in reference to the organization. You know can actually get people to think and act in a little bit different of a way. Not in that old you know respect your elders sort of way but in a you know look we're all gonna experience this may be a little bit of empathy would go a long way. Well and speaking  to the legal thing. So when looking through this, other countries actually have instituted laws so China has a law  that elderly parents can sue grown children for emotional and financial support. And companies are required to give workers time off to see their parents. Scotland has pledged to hear the elderly and the cultural thinking and money has shifted away from hospitals toward preventative care. And- I love that underscore that underscore that we need to shout out that story. -preventive care and then the French passed a law that requires adult children to keep in touch with their elderly parents. The law was passed in response to a study that showed a high rate of elderly suicides in France. Yeah. And so other countries have actually taken to passing laws in order to create an obligation for someone to pay attention to the elderly, presumably someone who would care. So and I want to kind of add to that a bit because I've been %HESITATION since I kind of you know jumped into all of this is my encore  career but trying to study as you can have what other countries have been doing. And what occurs to me is that people- so we always pride ourselves in the U. S. on we've got American innovation and stuff and I feel like other countries really doing a lot more innovative stuff. So for example there was regardless of what you feel about cars and whatever Mercedes Benz. So in Germany, the Mercedes Benz factory did something really interesting in their  because they were  they're dealing with the aging of their work force. And they basically  got all the workers together and said so how do we keep the older workers on to mentor younger workers. And everybody can work together? And got suggestions that are you know fairly   I mean they seem so simple to almost be not worth mentioning but maybe we could sit on high stools instead of having to stand all day? Maybe you know things could be in larger print? Maybe we could- there was a whole series of things that was done  which allowed them to retain their older workers. And also who then become mentor to this kind of new generation who have  who don't have that history of doing it. There's also some really good research that shows that multi generational work forces are actually more productive and more profitable. So it's somehow we need to get that message out as well %HESITATION to encourage work places in this country to kind of think about. Yeah I completely I think that's right brilliant. Like how do we may this work, right? Well and I was listening to a Hidden Brain podcast and I can't recall which one I'll have to track it down and the one of the gentlemen on there is talking about older people, like grandparents, for a long time they were sort of your big data, right. Like now we have the internet and such. And the reason or one of the motivations for the elders having that place of respect is that they had the most experiences. And I just loved when he created that to big data. It was like right. It is interesting isn't it, right? It was the original form of that and and that cause they and not everyone obviously but their experiences allowed them to approach their grandchild wanting to do something that was considered to be because you you see it in lots of even Disney stories the grandparents are often the more understanding. It's cause they're big data, they've got the longer view. And so I just eh- but we lost that connection somehow in our we we somehow in our culture. And so the really interesting thing to me and this is something else that the FrameWorks Institute found. And I love this so you're exactly right, we have lost that. And yet there's this kind of emerging trend there's an organization called Generation to Generation. There is something else called Generations United. It is basically the idea how do we and uh I don't want to call it replace that grandparent experience but how do we replicate it in some way? And one of the most effective things and there's a lot of research about it is intergenerational programs, multi generational programs, where maybe it isn't grandparent to grand child because now grandparents and grandchildren may be in different cities in different communities but it is with older people and children in a particular community %HESITATION. You know maybe older people are tutoring children after school maybe %HESITATION there's a program that is actually now kind of launching in Denver where %HESITATION older entrepreneurs who are run successful companies are mentoring kind of young people who want to do start ups. I mean there are a lot of examples of that. And we need to not only encourage that but we also know when people are involved in those kind of things and it's very much related to the research that you had all done that decreases ageism. Cause if you're working with someone and they're helping you out  you're kinda like okay being older isn't that bad. I want to just for a moment I feel like there's so many things- like we could do a whole day. We really could. So those are the really positive things, right? And it's kind of in a way replicating or substituting for that grandparent experience. On the other side some of the horrific things. So there's this thing that I discovered called %HESITATION "a hundred days of school". Have you heard about this? No. No. Okay so a hundred days of school and I learned this was a thing by somebody who was in one of my workshops. So a Hundred Days of School is encouraging very young children, basically kindergartners, to dress up as old people. Now one of the things we know about racism, sexism, and ageism and I think you have this in your -  This sounds like it's gonna come out in like black face or something. Yeah okay no I'm going  read you a few things from the website. It's sort of so you- so in the research you share with you talked about how people form these negative stereotypes in these early ages like ages four to six. So here is the  %HESITATION so I found this blog because I was like I don't believe this is a thing. Ideas for kids to dress up like old people. During elementary school kids are often to encourage dress up as one hundred year olds for the hundredth day of school. Other times they may just want to be senior citizens for Halloween. So here are some of the tips. Long skirts and blouses are great for women but a matching sweat suit would work for women as well as well as men. Make sure you do something to make them bulkier.  %HESITATION Accessories can really make a costume- grab a walker or cane. If the child is older of bigger, consider using a wheelchair. When your child is all dressed up she needs to practice her elderly persona. She might want to talk trying try talking at a slower speed. Try a few phrases she may have heard such as calling other people "sonny". Final sentence in the blog. Encourage your child to go a little overboard as a stereotypical old person to make it more fun. Wow. Right? This is a thing, evidently across the United States. I had no idea. I had never heard of this. I never did that in my school days that I can remember. I am so glad. I will send you a link to this blog so if your ****  like you've got to be kidding me. But you know and again %HESITATION black face and I you know it we've we when we talked about on a show. And we recently went and saw %HESITATION a Shakespearean a play %HESITATION with the the Colorado Shakespeare festival. And long story short they had women actors there. That wasn't always normal right? Like when those came out those roles all had to be played by men. There was a time when black face was not taboo. So you know in some ways it's the same sort of thing. Like it takes time it takes people saying I feel weird about that. We need to have a discussion about why. No when I actually shared this blog with a group of people in  one of my workshops. And they were like they were horrified. They had no idea. And they were even like okay we need form campaigns to go down to school board meetings and tell school districts they can't do this. I'm like  great you go,  you know. How bizarre  right? Anyway yeah so there's so much and I I want to share this stat with you. So there's something called ah the implicit bias test. You can get it on the Harvard University website. I will also send you a link to this. But I was about you know to lead this initiative. So I was like I need to figure out if I'm biased against old people cause that would kind of be ah like a bad thing. %HESITATION So I took this implicit bias test. You can take it online, it's really quick. %HESITATION And you know I don't like anybody. I'm  equally biased against older people and younger people. So I suppose that's a good thing. What was shocking to me was after %HESITATION I took the test they sent kind of my results which was like I have zero percent preference actually for- It's not I hate everybody but I have zero percent preference for older people versus younger people. Great. I was like whew! But they sent me this sort of there are close to a million people have taken this implicit association test. Seventy seven percent of them have a bias ah for younger people that is against older. So there's like some really good science and I know you showed that in some of the stats in the research that you did as well. Ageism is real and so that's why we've got to like you know elevate this to a conversation like the two of you are doing tonight. And encourage other people to talk about it. And say %HESITATION and I loved how in the Millenials podcast Aicila   that you mentioned you know my favorite saying. What each one of us on this planet has in common is today is the oldest that we have ever been  and  the youngest we will ever be, right? Yeah. We are all headed in that direction. So- Yeah it's it's it's also unique because I think there's you know I will never have the experience of being black. That's a fact. Right. But age is the one thing that is in common with everyone. In some ways I think that's why I think- If you're you'll have the experience of being older person right? Right? I am yeah if you're lucky. If if everything works out I hope I make it to eighty ninety whatever. But you know %HESITATION it's kind of an interesting social thing because that way it's it's it's the one condition you know man may never know what it's like to be a woman. Women may never know what it's like to be a man. Black- Asian you know you name it all of the isms right. But this is the one we all do have in common. We're all headed there right? Thank you so much Janine. I really appreciate you giving us your time tonight. Yeah it was a fantastic conversation. You all make this painless I'm like okay, I would do this again. Yay! Well yeah %HESIATION given that this topic is so broad perhaps we will bring you back in the future here and %HESITATION continue the conversation. And maybe find some new things and %HESITATION other initiatives to talk about. Thank you so much for the two of you for really %HESITATION kind of shining a light on social issues. It's very cool. Thank you for the work you're doing as well. Okay. Alright take care. So time this week for a short BiCurean   moment. Very short. We had great fun with our guest this week and definitely a format we're gonna be going forward with. It actually got me thinking about %HESITATION my BiCurean  moment was %HESITATION fully realizing the power that we have with the ability to record and release. And and I did cover it in the Hope podcast in talking about how we live in a world where the internet does open the door for that sort of thing. But this is even different because this is how that door's being used. %HESITATION Being able to have that kind of conversation with people and us being able to talk and then interact with the people that listen to this podcast. It's really powerful. And it's so nice to have ways to have conversations that don't just have to happen either in the you know  message boards or Facebook comments. But can actually get out in different ways. And people can experience them because people can react to what we say. And then we can even have guests that are experts in the field we're talking about. Yeah, I really have enjoyed that. Mine is- it's a light hearted one. I went and saw Ant and the Wasp    last week. And I was just really struck by once again some of these sci- fi action movies in the ways that they are changing the narrative. And my my favorite character in Ant Man and then Ant Man and the Wasp is Luis- the Chicano ex con. He's pretty great. And just the ways in which you know he is really excited about his wine tastings and it just really flips the assumptions and stereotypes on end. My favorite thing about both of those movies is that is a core of comedic actors and comedians that have been %HESITATION kind of working together for awhile in various different places. %HESITATION Even the extras and there are all comedians. %HESITATION Some of those characters you might see them on various different shows or doing stand up even on specials and stuff. I really like that dynamic- get a group of people that's familiar and kind of let them do what they do best. Yeah well and there just seems to be it-  like there's so many things the fact that the the Wasp is played by a female bodied person is the one who does the aggressive driving and chase scene and doesn't she doesn't  give the wheel over to some guy to do it. Which I know sounds good little shallow or whatever. It just it was so cool the bad guy was really a bad guy. Do you know what I liked most about that? What? I didn't notice that .And that's how it should be. Right. Having a strong female character - that was great. Yeah.  I didn't notice because they didn't force it or- No it was all really seem less. And the- and the blended family aspect they started in the Ant Man where the the main character is divorced and they actually have a functional relationship with their ex and their ex's new spouse. And they all are committed to giving their child the best possible life they can. Yeah. And working through their issues and disagreements. Like all these little things that you know who are often presented in not particularly positive ways or diminished. There just as you said they're seamlessly woven into the story. I think that's the key to normalizing things like that is to just tell that story. Have people see it and not necessarily have it you know- It's not the point. Exactly it's not the story, it's just how they do things. And they didn't go there and go for the easy then go for the easy laugh or the predictable trope. They went for something that actually portrays a different way of being that I'm kind interested in. And then also Luis's is hilarious.  So there you go. It was fantastic if if our listeners haven't seen it, check it out. Thanks for listening! If you have ideas, feedback, thoughts, please minus on social media. BiCurean  on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Or give us a call at seven two zero five zero seven seven three zero nine or email podcast  @ BiCurean dot com. Thanks for listening.