evolving

Not long ago I acted on a TV show opposite Linda Gray (Dallas). Shortly after, I was on a different set with Raquel Welch and Robert Wagner. Linda is 78, Raquel is 78, and Robert is 88. Each of them worked on set for over 10 hours. For them aging does not mean retiring. At 73 years old, I don’t believe in aging either, I believe in “evolving”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We all make different choices when it comes to so called “senior years”. Some retire from everything and spend their time traveling, golfing or whatever pursuit they have promised themselves in those later years.

Some will continue working, as the thought of permanently retiring is not in their future, as long as health permits. {l have seen and continue to see so many who have retired and chosen not to do anything, effectively waiting around for the inevitable). Others continue to evolve, exploring new areas of life and personal growth.

At age 60, having experienced a successful career in real estate. I considered this was an opportunity to evolve into the next phase of life.

evolving

What you will read is not written for accolades (at my age l’ve long passed the ego stage), rather it is to share some of what I did, in the event that those who think it is too late to pursue serious levels of interest, know that I did and you can too. lt’s okay if you don’t choose to, it’s your life and I wish you happiness whatever you decide.

Oftentimes society or others dictate what you should or shouldn’t do in those later years. I chose to follow my own path and not be told that for me it’s too late. The path I chose to take was as follows, I returned to college to study Biological Psychology. I knew that there was a correlation between thinking and health, but wanted to know why? Two semesters later I had found what I needed to know. “Everything psychological is simultaneously biological”. My question was answered. lf my attitude was strong and I had a realistic exercise program, then I could expect to evolve for a while yet.

Having spent many years in martial arts and attaining a Black Belt in Aikido, I thought why stop now? When I earned a second degree black belt I was satisfied and decided to explore more fun stuff.

evolving

l’d always wanted to be on a movie or TV set, hear the Director call “Action”, but have him be saying it to me. Without any experience I found an agent and after over 50 auditions, I finally got a booking for a TV commercial. (BTW, actors’ auditions most times do not result in a booking, but at my age I was used to rejection anyway). Landing acting roles over time I earned the right to be a member of the Actors Union, which opened up new doors for me.

Acting however was just one of my ‘fun” interests, the other being magic. For many years magic and magicians had always fascinated me. So, I committed to learning at first, card and close up magic, eventually moving up to a study of and performing mentalism (mind reading).

Over the years I became especially skilled at card magic and performed many card and “gambling style” shows for a market that I had not previously recognized existed. When people started to book me was when I realized I had developed a very high skill and marketable business, which continues to this day.

One day I got a call from my acting agent who asked me if I could coach and “hand double”  or a very big name actor who was in town shooting a W show. The actor turned out to be none other than Mark Hamill, also known as the great Luke Skywalker of Star Wars fame. I could never have predicted that my continuing to evolve would lead me to meet such amazing actors as I have.

However, I would mention that at 73, unless you are a major name, the acting roles are few. Nevertheless I am still called in by TV and Film productions as a technical advisor on card manipulation and as “hand double” for lead actors. Recently for one TV show and in order to “hand double” for one of the villains, I had to have my hands “tattooed”. The makeup dept. did a great job on my hands, although it did take a week for the tattoos to wear off.

What you have read is a condensed version of my personal evolution. Along the way and because of my interest in brain health, I wrote a program, based on experience and research, on how to maintain a healthy brain all your life. That took me to Victoria BC where I was invited as the featured speaker on the subject at a symposium on aging.

Much of my work nowadays is performing my “Deceptions” close up show for private parties, many of which are “boomer parties” (more at my website GerryHennessey.com). My other evolved passion is a great interest in creative photography. Everybody has a camera these days, but I choose to be a photographer of the unusual and quirky. A lot of my work can be found on lnstagram.

I could not have imagined that choosing to “evolve” rather than “age” could have opened so many interesting doors in my life. What doors are waiting for you to open?

I think of myself as an evolver , shooting for the best of my life, for the rest of my life.

How about you? When people ask you why you are pursuing new interests, just tell them “why not”.

Viva La Evolution !

Check out Gerry’s Evolve videos by clicking here

2 COMMENTS

    • Thank you so much, Angel! We will be publishing more articles like this from Gerry AND are going to be posting videos on our site from him as well. The first one is on our homepage so check it out and let us know what you think!

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