Goodenough Gismo

  • Gismo39
    This is the classic children's book, Goodenough Gismo, by Richmond I. Kelsey, published in 1948. Nearly unavailable in libraries and the collector's market, it is posted here with love as an "orphan work" so that it may be seen and appreciated -- and perhaps even republished, as it deserves to be. After you read this book, it won't surprise you to learn that Richmond Irwin Kelsey (1905-1987) was an accomplished artist, or that as Dick Kelsey, he was one of the great Disney art directors, breaking your heart with "Pinocchio," "Dumbo," and "Bambi."

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Ronni Bennett

Reading this has produced in me one of those reverse realization moments: "Yes! I've always known this; why didn't I know it before."

Old people and children are segregated in similar ways from people of the vast middle years (say, 25-50 or 60) and from each other, which undoubtedly contributes to the widespread ageism we experience.

Because older people live longer, healthier lives than previous generations but are too frequently excluded by corporate America from salaried and meaningful work, we are on the cusp of re-inventing old age - baby boomers are unlikely to rot in retirement villages with so many years left after (sometimes forced) retirement.

That can mean, among other things, compelling employers to comply with age discrimination laws and hire older workers (which will undoubtedly happen in the next decade), but it can also mean, perhaps, finding ways for older people to use their additional years to help reinvent childhood, restoring usefulness to young people along with better connection to community, family and older generations.

Of course, that requires the culture at large, educators and decision makers to buy the idea that the segregated status quo could use some tweaking - a tough sell when childhood/adolescence (stretched in recent years to age 25 and even 30) has raised protection of young people from the realities of life to fetishist levels.

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