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Sunday, June 14, 2020

Famous and 65

Look who's turning 65 this month

Find out which celebrities are turning 65 this month!

Image Source: Wikipedia

June 1 - Lorraine Moller, marathoner

What is it about New Zealand? Apart from being an ecological wonderland, it has produced some of the world’s top mountain climbers and, with Lorraine Moller, a top marathoner whose athletic star burned bright through four Olympics. This in spite of there being no sanctioned marathons for females on the international circuit until 1984, when Moller turned 29. 

The athlete began her running career in 1974 with a fifth-place finish in the 800 m, posting a time that still stands as the fastest by a New Zealand woman under 20. But her claim to fame is her performance in the marathon, winning Boston in  1984, triumphing at Osaka three times, and competing in the 1984, 1988, 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games (the last at the age of 41). In 1992 at Barcelona, she was awarded the bronze medal at the age of 37. 

Image Source: TV Guide

June 2 - Dana Carvey, comedian

Dana Carvey’s schoolteacher parents moved the family to California when he was three, and the fourth of five kids got his bachelor’s degree in broadcast communications at San Francisco State University. It was a natural fit; in 1977, he came in first in the San Francisco Stand-Up Comedy Competition. 

You may remember Carvey as the prim Church Lady on SNL, which he and his fellow cast members resurrected from mounting obscurity in 1986. He also was tapped to play George H.W. Bush during many political sketches leading up to the 1992 presidential campaign. When Carvey left SNL, he was asked to take over hosting for David Letterman in his Late Show, but turned it down in favor of having more time to spend with his two sons. 

A film career featured an unfortunate lead role in The Master of Disguise, which was widely panned and earned 1% approval on ratings site Rotten Tomatoes. Carvey’s portrayal of Garth Algar in Wayne’s World was much better received, and a sequel followed. Nowadays, Carvey prefers live performances when not at home in California with his wife of 37 years.

June 5 - Sally Silverstone, Co-Captain (Biosphere 2)

You remember that terrarium you had as a child? Biosphere 2 is basically the world’s largest terrarium (technically a vivarium since it is completely enclosed), a 3.14-acre system that is a research and teaching site, created between 1987 and 1991, now owned by the University of Arizona. Its original purpose was as a demo for a potential mini colony in outer space, to show that humans could survive on say, the moon, or Mars. The structure sports seven biome areas, in addition to a human habitat: a rainforest, an ocean, a coral reef, mangrove wetlands, savannah grasslands, fog desert, and an agricultural system. 

Sally Silverstone was part of the first two-year, closed-system experiment that took place from 1991 to 1993. Participants were to live off what the biosphere produced, including a low-calorie, high-protein diet that caused an initial average weight loss of 16 pounds each. Oxygen ran low, and pollinating insects died while cockroaches and an ant species that had been accidentally sealed into the biome thrived. Although participants thrived physically, tempers flared and the researchers divided into factions. 

Nevertheless, the crew was united in an intense focus on experiments and carrying out the original mission. In fact, their turmoil mimicked that which has occurred in Antarctic research stations, another closed environment. Although the crew reported depression, a psychological check found none, speculating that hunger and low oxygen may have been responsible for the reports. In fact, psychologists found that researchers were quite hardy and fit the mental profile common to astronauts. 

Currently, university undergraduates may attend a week-long “space camp” at the site, located at the foot of the Catalina mountains outside Tucson, and overnight camps are available to local school children. 

Image Source: Wikipedia

June 8 - Tim Berners-Lee, inventor off the World Wide Web

Who becomes the inventor of the Web? A child whose parents were computer scientists, who was fascinated by trains and had a model railway. A kid who got a physics degree from Oxford while making a computer out of an old television set he bought at a repair shop. 

Berners-Lee went on to work at CERN as an independent contractor in Geneva, where he was frustrated by the slow and cumbersome process of data sharing. He proposed a new system based on hypertext, and built a prototype, ENQUIRE, to demonstrate it. His manager called the system, “vague, but exciting.” The rest, as they say, is history.

Berners-Lee holds the founders chair in computer science at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, among many, many positions and projects. Many in recent years surround the issues of data privacy and ownership. Oh, and you may call him “sir” as he has long been knighted. He has married twice, has two sons, and currently collaborates with his second wife (an internet and banking entrepreneur) on investing in artificial intelligence companies.


Blog posting provided by Society of Certified Senior Advisors