Viewers Still Like Couric: “Viewers aren’t pushing for Katie
Couric to leave the CBS anchor chair, but if she did, they would like
to see her back on her former turf — a morning news show such as NBC’s
Today, according to a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll,” reports USA Today.

CBS had hoped Couric, a newswoman with a strong
following in the morning hours, would bring new viewers, including more
women and younger people, to a shrinking evening-news audience. But
that has not happened, says Mark Jurkowitz of the Project for
Excellence in Journalism. […]

Couric’s groundbreaking status
as the first sole female anchor of a network evening newscast may have
worked against her, respondents say: 18% think public reluctance to
accept a woman as anchor is a major reason for her lower ratings, while
another 36% say it is a minor reason. However, 42% felt gender was not
a factor.

“I think the older segment of the population is a
little more comfortable with Charles Gibson and with Brian Williams,
because they do fit the more traditional mold of what an evening
newscast is expected to be,” says Fordham University journalism
professor Paul Levinson.

Plus: CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien tells students Couric is being treated “unfairly and badly” by the media.

An Overdue Honor for a Pioneer Sportswriter: New York Times sportswriter George Vecsey has written a tribute to Mary Garber,
who on Monday was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the National
Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, “as a pioneer among female
sportswriters, among all of us.”

Ever since I first heard of Mary
Garber, I have thought of her as a symbol of deprivation, humbly
standing outside locker rooms around Winston-Salem, N.C., waiting for
the boys to come out to deliver a few belated quotes to her. How

“Any time I would fly into town to visit my aunt,”
said Jonathan Brown, her nephew from California, “we would go out to a
mall or a restaurant, and some older man, black or white, would pull
out his wallet and show us an old clipping and say, ‘Miss Mary wrote
this about me.'”

In her nursing home, just turned 92, Garber
occasionally receives visitors from the Sportsmen’s Club, generations
of black athletes from around Winston-Salem, men who remember the tiny
white woman with the knitted cap pulled over her head on chilly
football sidelines, who wrote them up, fairly, lovingly.

This is
the paragon being honored Monday, not merely some victim of another
brand of segregation. She was an entitled person who just happened to
like cramming into a gym on Friday night to watch boys play basketball.

was a smart lady who worked,” said Roseann Rush, a retired advertising
executive who visits Miss Mary every afternoon from 3 to 6. “She did
what she wanted to do.”

Plus: Listen to interviews with Garber archived at the Washington Press Club Foundation as part of its oral history project on women in journalism.

Sue Johanson to Stop Talking About Sex – at Least at Midnight:
“Oxygen’s ‘Talk Sex
call-in show with colorful septugenarian educator Sue Johanson is
ending its run after six seasons, the network announced Tuesday,” reports the Associated Press.

“I’m going to miss it terribly,” Johanson (left) told the AP. “It’s
been part of my life and I just love it. I’m going to miss writing
scripts. I’m going to miss having to read books. I’m going to miss
playing with sex toys.”

The final show, which airs at midnight Sunday, May 11, will include
a countdown of the year’s top 10 sex toys. Johanson, 77, said she will
continue to give lectures. “I’m a ham,” she said. “I love a large

Plus: The CW network plans to target older women viewers with more original programming in daytime, according to MediaPost.

Mother’s Day and the Empty Nest: From Women’s eNews:
Mother’s Day marks a time for some women to reflect on years past and
what lies ahead once the kids are gone. After 30 years with children,
Peggy Drexler, an assistant professor of psychology at the Weill
Medical College of Cornell University, is preparing to contemplate a
loss that’s ahead of her and how to embrace her empty nest.

Being Heard About Life’s End: The New York Times reports on the philosophy of “slow medicine,” which is considered a growing alternative to aggressive and costly end-of-life care. Jane Gross writes:

Grounded in research at the Dartmouth Medical School, slow medicine encourages
physicians to put on the brakes when considering care that may have
high risks and limited rewards for the elderly, and it educates
patients and families how to push back against emergency room trips and
hospitalizations designed for those with treatable illnesses, not the
inevitable erosion of advanced age.

Slow medicine, which shares
with hospice care the goal of comfort rather than cure, is increasingly
available in nursing homes, but for those living at home or in assisted
living, a medical scare usually prompts a call to 911, with little
opportunity to choose otherwise.

The story also links to two poems by Carol Armstrong about growing older.

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