Author Archives: Djanka Gajdel

I’ve Become A Grinchette

It’s not that I despise Christmas, but I do the consumerism around it. The season’s essence is magical, but it’s somehow become a production. I was raised to celebrate Christmas as the feast of St. Nicholas—an authentic dude with a real history. Santa Claus wasn’t part of my narrative. There was a lot of church […]

The Golden Bachelor and the Platinum Bachelorettes

ABC / Ricky Middlesworth

Reality TV is not me, but I have been groovin’ on The Golden Bachelor. It’s not the leading man who has me enamoured; it’s the powerhouse of women and their clandestine connections that steal the spotlight. The manes of platinum and grey hair have sparkled throughout the program. Sure, I get it. It’s all scripted, […]

Kindness 101

Each morning, I wake up and engage in a daily practice of meditation and breathing exercises. I quiet and balance my energies, only to get into my car and immediately cross paths with a colossal asshole who shows up out of nowhere and blows all that morning effort to shit. I know it’s a test, […]

I Love You Barbie

Oh, Barbie, my childhood rebellion. I love you. Catholic schools were one of the original vestiges of learning about things like sex, drugs and rock-n-roll earlier than anywhere else. In the early sixties, the nuns had a Talibanisque view of women, believing they should be playing supportive roles in life instead of being the main attraction. […]

Spilling the Kool-Aid

Now that we’re post-mayoral election, many people have asked me why I haven’t pursued a political office given my 40 years of active municipal service as a volunteer in different community organization levels. The answer is easy. While others embrace the status quo, I choose to challenge it. I seek transparency and truth, unclouded by […]

Toddler Inspired Style

I’m a soon-to-be senior who now dresses like a toddler with a collection of rockin’ rompers and overalls. I gave up seamlessly blending into societal norms and staying on-trend with tailored suits and timeless accessories. My industry changed dramatically, and my attire reflected that shift. I no longer navigate the world of high heels, shapewear, […]


As we age, we value the importance of time. In the back nine of my life, I spend more time in queues with customer service reps than at any other time. The wait is never five minutes. Sometimes it’s five hours with cringingly disharmonious music blasting while one phone representative passes you to a series […]