I am jogging around the city, slow and loose like an athletic teenage boy who fully occupies his young and unscathed body. I am alert and aware. I have to be–it is daytime (the angle of the sunlight suggests a late summer afternoon). There are humans of all ages (and many dogs) doing what creatures do on a beautiful day. So I have an audience. There’s a satchel slung diagonally across by back. Inside the satchel are cans of spray paint: red, black, and silver. I am tagging buildings, spans of pavement, even park benches and the sides of buses. I am leaving my mark with panache and impunity, defacing whatever surface calls out to me.
Life is short! Act now!
Gero-punks of the world unite!
It is never too late to be inspired by one’s mommy.
You are an age, all ages, and no age at once. Embrace this mystery.
Yeah, sometimes growing older sucks but it is also really cool. Deal with it.
You don’t want to be old? STFU!
Will you hold my hand as I cross the street?
I am a gero-punk graffiti artist. Only I know that my spray paint is impermanent and will wash away when it rains.
About Jenny Sasser, Ph.D.
I am a freelance educational gerontologist, writer, community activist and facilitator.
I am former Chair of the Department of Human Sciences and Director of Gerontology at Marylhurst University. I joined the faculty as an adjunct member of the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies program in 1997 and since that time, I've been involved in designing many on-campus and web-based courses and programs for adult learners, including in Gerontology. As an undergraduate I attended Willamette University, graduating Cum Laude in Psychology and Music; my interdisciplinary graduate studies at University of Oregon and Oregon State University focused on the Human Sciences, with specialization areas in adult development and aging, women’s studies, and critical social theory and alternative research methodologies. My dissertation became part of a book published in 1996 and co-authored with Dr. Janet Lee--Blood Stories: Menarche and the Politics of the Female Body in Contemporary US Society. Over the past twenty (or more!) years I have been involved in inquiry in the areas of creativity in later life; older women's embodiment; sexuality and aging; critical Gerontological theory; transformational adult learning practices; and inter-generational friendships and cross-generational collaborative inquiry.
I am co-author, with Dr. Harry R. Moody of Aging: Concepts and Controversies (now in its 10th edition!) and first author, also with Moody, of the recently published Gerontology: The Basics, as well as author/co-author of several book chapters, articles and essays.
I am on the Portland Community College Gerontology Program faculty.
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