Jerry’s Podcast Debut at Age 96
Over the years, I’ve written about Jerry Rosenblum who moved here in 1963 and is nothing short of inspiring for a variety of reasons. For starters, in what seems like an ageist culture, Jerry is extremely proud of being 96. (Actually, he recently noted he’s now technically 96 ½.)
Among Jerry’s most admirable traits is his thirst for learning. Emeritus College ought to have a statue of him like there is of Kobe Bryant at Staples Center. Only instead of a basketball, Jerry would be holding a book.
Every week, Jerry takes three classes at Emeritus: Current Events, Voice Instruction and a film class, Dramatic Interpretation Through Movies. He also frequently walks to the Main Library to hear authors discuss their latest books. Socially, Jerry takes cruises around the world, entering amateur talent competitions aboard ship and often wins. Back home, Jerry loves to sing karaoke and can still rock the house at 96.
Going back to his childhood, Jerry’s father passed when Jerry was only 12 and soon thereafter he needed to help support his mother and younger brother. Once he retired, Jerry pursued passions that all these decades took a backseat to making a living. One of those passions is singing. (Google: “Jerry Rosenblum sings.”)
Another of Jerry’s passions is storytelling about famous people he’s befriended during his career as a salesman of high-quality men’s clothing. He even wrote an amusing memoir, “Guess Who I Ran Into Today.”
Jerry’s greatest passion is living life every day to the fullest. Because of his remarkably positive attitude, he attracts wonderful friends of all ages. One of his dearests is Katie Miller a Senior Marketing Manager with Uber. While Jerry’s 96, Katie is 26. Last September I wrote about their unique relationship, “A Friendship of the Ages.”
Katie and Jerry first met four years ago when she began donating her time and computer expertise to the Silvercrest Senior apartment building where Jerry lives. Missing her parents and Grandparents in Connecticut and her grandfather in Florida, it was gratifying for Katie to help seniors. And even though Jerry didn’t have a computer, the two struck up an immediate friendship.
Last year, when Katie went to Europe on business, she and Jerry exchanged dozens of postcards. When she returned, Jerry threw a joyous Welcome Home party for her and her many friends most of whom have become Jerry’s friends. (I “smell” a movie or a TV show.)
While Jerry doesn’t have a computer, Katie is turning him into a soon-to-be star on the Internet. She’s the one who posted his singing on YouTube but the latest is on Instagram. Katie created an account for Jerry and every week posts Jerry’s insightful and often funny answers to questions she posed to him the week before. Jerry now has 12,000 followers and counting! (I’ve been on Twitter for eight years and have a grand total of 866 followers. Ouch.)
Last January, Jerry got so many Instagram inspired birthday cards and letters (via snail mail, no less) from all over the world that Katie had to get him a P.O. Box. He also got presents including birthday cookies, chocolates, t-shirts and even two gallons of ice cream from Pennsylvania packed in dry ice.
Six months later, Jerry’s still getting birthday greetings! Never having had children of his own, Jerry’s become an Internet grandfather. (I don’t get cookies or ice cream from readers but occasionally receive “Dear Idiot” emails, which often leave off the “dear.”)
And now, finally, let me explain about Jerry’s podcast debut. On Tuesday, Jerry and Katie will be featured on LA Talk Radio hosted by Catherine Grace O’Connell who’s intrigued by their unique friendship.
In addition to being a talk show host, the multi-talented O’Connell is a journalist, and an inspirational “lifestyle Influencer” empowering women at midlife. She’s especially interested in bridging the age gap and how Jerry and Katie have so seamlessly done so. O’Connell is so dynamic herself, if she lived in Santa Monica (or was 96 ½) I might write a column solely about her.
So Tuesday, pals Jerry and Katie are traveling to the valley and the LA TalkRadio studio. In addition to discussing the duo’s charming friendship, Catherine was also very enthusiastic about Jerry’s singing. (Jerry sings at the drop of a hat, only you don’t even need the hat.)
For the interview, Jerry’s bringing his cassette player to provide music for a song he plans to perform. Given everything I know about the life and spirit of my nonagenarian friend, the tile of the tune couldn’t be more fitting… “Young at Heart.” (All I can say is, If Jerry gets more followers and ice cream, I’m definitely re-evaluating my social media strategy!)
For Jerry and Katie’s interview live, Google: “LATalkRadioWebsite.” To see Jerry’s “posts” go to Instagram@Jerry_Rosenblum. Catherine’s blog is at https://catherinegraceo.com/ and her Instagram is @catherinegraceo.
Feeling the least interesting of the all the aforementioned, Jack can be reached at email@example.com.