March 14, 2023

The Three Ladies

This is the story of three remarkable women - a 79 year old champion weight lifter and body builder, an 88 year old holder of the Guinness Book of World Records for the oldest working female comedian and a 103 year old blue ribbon prize winnng baker.  Each woman has a different story to tell but each will serve as an inspiration and will share their secrets for a long, health and active life.   So sit back, relax, and get ready to be inspired by the wisdom and resilience of these incredible women.

We promise you will have some laughs and come away with a new prespective of what being older than 75 really means. Despite their ages, these women continue to challenge stereotypes about age, break multiple ageism tropes, and prove that it's never too late to pursue one's passions, achieve one's dreams and live life to the fullest.


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Disclaimer: Unedigted AI transcription

Announcer (00:00:06):

You are connected and you are listening to specifically for seniors, the podcast for those in the Remember When Generation. Today's podcast is available everywhere you listen to podcasts and with video at specifically for seniors YouTube channel. Now here's your host, Dr. Larry Barsh.

Larry (00:00:37):

Today on specifically for seniors, we're going to do something a bit differently. Over the next 50 minutes, I'm going to introduce you to three remarkable women ranging an age from 79 to 103. Each woman has a different story to tell, but each will serve as an inspiration and will share their secrets for a long, healthy, and active life. So, sit back, relax, and get ready to be inspired by the wisdom and resilience of these three incredible women. We promise you'll have some laughs come away with a new perspective on what being older than 75 really means. Our first guest is a 79 year old lady who has broken multiple world records in weightlifting. I'd like you all to meet Iris Davis, a remarkable 79 year old lady who has broken multiple world records in her age category for weightlifting. Yes, weightlifting. And that is a gem behind her. Iris proves that neither aged nor sex can stop someone from following their dream. Welcome to specifically for Seniors. Iris, it's great to have you on.

Iris Davis (00:02:08):

Thank you, Larry. It's great to be here. Thank

Larry (00:02:11):


Iris Davis (00:02:12):

You have appreciate it.

Larry (00:02:13):

I'm sorry.

Iris Davis (00:02:14):

I said I really appreciate it.

Larry (00:02:16):

Oh, it's, I appreciate you coming on. You have a distinction in the I F B B, which is the International Fitness and Body Building Federation. What's that distinction?

Iris Davis (00:02:31):

I it's the, it's the number top in the league. There are a lot of federations. You know, you've got level 1, 2, 3, 4, and five and the I F B B stroke npc, which stands for National Physi Committee, they're number five. So you have to qualify in a number five division to go on toge become a pro. So, so basically it's the best division, division de to be in because a lot of them are not as strict.

Larry (00:03:06):

So this is the top.

Iris Davis (00:03:08):

This is the top, yeah. And I entered the top for my very first contest without knowing what I was doing, but I still entered the top

Larry (00:03:17):

Weightlifting. How did you get into weightlifting of all things?

Iris Davis (00:03:23):

You know, Larry, I had absolutely no idea what I was getting into. I'll just go through a little bit of my background. I'm from Ireland. I have 14, 13 siblings not very well off. Grew up in Dublin and I got married very early. I got married at 17. I had my first child at 18. And very unfortunately for me he died at two months old. He died of crib death at two months old. Nobody knew about crib death in those days. It was the, you know, going back to the early sixties. So of course I straight away, I'd also already, I had already had a traumatic childhood and suffered with a lot of depression all my life. So that just compounded it. So I didn't know how to deal with it. You don't go to the doctor, you just deal with it.

Iris Davis (00:04:24):

Nobody talks about it. There's no people that you can, you know, go and get counseling from. It's all just very hush hush. You don't talk about it. So I had another child at 22 years of age, and when I was, when my son was two months old, my husband died. Oh. So again, I'm in trauma and again, nobody to turn to. Everybody doesn't even mention it. They just shut their mouth and that's the way we're brought, we're brought up, you know, it's like, keep it to yourself, don't talk about it. So I, I, I was crying all the time and one day I just decided I would walk and while I was walking I was doing my tears, but it was better than sitting at home on the couch or better than laying in bed all day. And that's how I coped. And that was the start without me even knowing there was such a thing as phys physical fitness for women.

Iris Davis (00:05:28):

Because there were no magazines, there were no newspapers, there was no gyms. There was, there was just me. And I had an instinct. So I walked and I walked for a couple of years cuz I was like about 17 actually, when I started the walking. And I didn't enter my first gym till much later. So when I tried to enter a, a gym, women were not allowed. Women were not allowed in gyms, period. And they weren't gyms like we know them with machines. It was just a straw on the floor, chalk on the floor, and great big weightlifters. And that was it. So eventually I, they let me in, like said, what are you doing here? But I learned from the men, but I learned everything wrong, <laugh>. Cause I was going straight away into heavy stuff without realizing you really must start at the beginning and you have to walk. So I had to, I had to unlearn everything. And I just teach myself. And I've, I've never had a lesson from anybody. Never had a lesson on exercises or nutrition or how to handle it or what works and what it was just all my own instinct. And I don't know where it came from, but I think I was not talking about religion. I think somebody was looking after me <laugh> and I had no idea I was gonna end up as a fitness expert. No idea whatsoever. <Laugh>,

Larry (00:07:05):

But weightlifting.

Iris Davis (00:07:07):

Yeah. What I found when I was weightlifting, I found if you don't concentrate on weightlifting, you, you, you don't belong in a gym. You shouldn't even be there because you're not doing yourself any good. But I found that I had to focus and really believe and get mind body connection because if I didn't, I would just be crying. And I found to my dismay and delight that when I was in the gym, I forgot all my problems, forgot them, you know, just concentrate. You know, that I did learn from the men. I'd see, you know, I'd see the before lift up something heavy, they really talk themselves into it and go, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, you can do it. And I learned to do the same thing. And that's where I learned all my tips. And I still do it to this day, to this very day. So I have fantastic con a concentration. I have fantastic form. I've turned many a young person into a champion myself. Just all from my own instincts. I read a lot. Of course as I got older then more women were entering and men were writing books like all the greats. And I read everything I could get my hands on.

Larry (00:08:30):

So you broke some ground. Yes. in getting women into gyms.

Iris Davis (00:08:35):

Well, I don't really know if I can claim that. All I know is when Jane Fond came along in the eighties, I'd already been doing it like nearly 20 years. So she came, I'd been weightlifting and she came along and was just started aerobics. You. We cannot take that away from her. She, you know, she did the classes and all that and which everybody joined. And then gyms for women started to blossom. So now all of a sudden you could actually find a gym with machines and other women that you could go in and work out. But again, you know, I was bas I was basically ahead of my time without knowing it whatsoever. Without knowing it.

Larry (00:09:23):

And that progressed into competing,

Iris Davis (00:09:26):

Well, I didn't do my first show. I didn't even know women could get up on stage. I'd never seen a woman on stage. I'd never read about a woman getting on stage. I'd never even seen a pinup of a woman with muscles. Never. And I was 50, I remember by now I'm working out lots. I'm 50 years of age. I really looked about 20 <laugh>. And in the gym a guy said to me, you should get up on, you know, he said, you should get up on stage. You're looking really good. Never, not one clue in my head about what I needed to do or anything. And I thought, no, no, no. He said, really? He said, I'm, you know, he said, you're, you know, you look good. You need to get up. And I was 50 years of age, 50. It was in London and there were no category for me. So they told me if I wanted to get up, I have to get up with the men. So I did, didn't think twice about it. I got up there with six other men, <laugh> me, like I'm five foot in, you know, a hundred pounds. And they were all, you know, all different sizes. But I got up there and I came second

Larry (00:10:42):

<Laugh>. Wow. First time

Iris Davis (00:10:45):

Not know what I was doing. I didn't know how to pose, I didn't know anything. All I know was I had to get up on stage and kind of pose and dance. You get up and you perform basically for a minute and that's your minute. So you can do what you like. You can stand on your head, you can sit on your bottom and roll across. You can do what you like. But you just gotta get up on stage for a minute. And I danced. I didn't realize you should have music, what they call cut the music and you play one minute of it. I gave them the CD and they played the whole thing. It was about three minutes long <laugh>. And that was, but you know, you live and learn and you know, everybody enjoyed it. Cause I was up there with the guys and I came second. So I, and I was 50. These guys were 24 and 30.

Larry (00:11:33):


Iris Davis (00:11:34):

So, you know.

Larry (00:11:35):

And if I, and if I gave you a minute now with no music, what would you do?

Iris Davis (00:11:42):

I'd pose, I would do the mandatory poses. I'd also swing into them because I'd like to do fluid movements, you know, like a dancers move. And then I'll go into the, the pose. You know, I sort of, you know, boom, you know, and then hit the pose. So

Larry (00:12:02):

<Laugh>, I'm not gonna sing in the background. <Laugh>. what I'd like to know is what advice can you give people who wanna pursue their dreams and are just too afraid to try?

Iris Davis (00:12:24):

Yeah, I just wish I could talk to them all personally. And I'd give them a shake. If you don't try, you get nowhere. I'm still, this, this, to this day, I'm trying to break barriers, right? Right. This minute I've got emails going out. I'm trying to break barriers for women because the men get all the glory. You've got Mr. Olympia, you've just recently got Miss Olympia, but you don't have a senior Miss Olympia. You don't have, there were no classes. You know, the 45 when I started competing, when I came to the USA 45 was the cutoff. And I was 57 when I got back up on stage. But I had to, I had to enter with the younger women. Didn't matter. My first show, I came away with the two first places. I got my group and I got mixed pairs. I, cause I got up with a guy, you know, and we did a, we did Jewel posing and music was beautiful and we won. So my first show at 57, the oldest woman in the show, by a lot, I mean by a lot about at least 12 years. And I got two first places. And had I not tried, I would be sitting in the couch in Ireland, still crying and probably obese. Yeah, yeah. You, I never give up. If somebody tells me that I can't do it, oh, by golly, that's all I need to hear. <Laugh>. And may I tell you a little story,

Larry (00:14:05):

Trisha? Absolutely.

Iris Davis (00:14:07):

Between 57 and 66, ages 57 and 56 I entered I think I took, it's either 11 or 12 first place titles in the npc. All NPC

Larry (00:14:27):

NPC is what?

Iris Davis (00:14:29):

National Physique Committee? Yeah. And they're the ones with the I F B BBB Pro. You have to win a national physique show before you can come an I BBB pro. So I had won 10 and I mean, for example, I won the Florida State Champion three times. I won it in 2001, 2003 and 2010. And I'll finish, I'll finish the next one. I want it again in two, 2021 at the age of 77

Larry (00:15:08):

<Laugh>. Wow. Wow.

Iris Davis (00:15:10):

And I'm going to tell you a short story about why I got back up on stage. I'm 66, I'm still working, I still look great. But my mind was telling me, ah, which is very silly cuz I've never let it happen to me again. My mind was telling me, you're too old to get up on stage. Nobody wants to see a 66 year old lady in opposing suit. I mean, I was, you know, I was absolute perfection at 66. I didn't have any loose skin. I was beautiful, you know, and everywhere I'd go, people would go, oh wow, you blah, blah, blah. But I was thinking, ah, because remember the, there was still no category for someone my age. That was only the, now they had decreased the, the age to 50. So there were only categories for 50 year olds. So is me at 66. If I wanna compete, I have to go against the 50 year olds. And it's really not fair. But I did it. And the reason, so I, I retired at 66 and I just was, when I was training others, I was turning other people into champions. I would get them to enter the npc. And a lot of times, you know, a lot of my young men's all won themselves and went on to be, you know, champions. So I came out of retirement in 2020 and I went on to take another three first places, <laugh>.

Iris Davis (00:16:38):

And one of them I, I, I got the overall, you know, which, which means best in show. I got the overall at age 77. And at age 78 I got my pro card at 78, the first in the world <laugh>. So I'm now the oldest bodybuilder female body. But the operative word here is competing. There are a couple of women who are older than me, but they haven't competed in years and they don't compete. I'm still getting up on stage and I'm getting up on stage in August, in right in in Georgia. So the operative word is competing. So I'm still taking chances, <laugh> I'm still doing. I love it. Why would I stop? Why would I ever stop?

Larry (00:17:30):

And the advice for people your age. My age, yeah. I'm older than you are, but are you

Iris Davis (00:17:40):

Well, I'll be there one day too, please. God.

Larry (00:17:43):

Oh, I'm not, but

Iris Davis (00:17:44):

You're not older than me.

Larry (00:17:45):

I'm older than you.

Iris Davis (00:17:47):

Are you really? You don't look it

Larry (00:17:49):

Now I'm 86.

Iris Davis (00:17:51):


Larry (00:17:53):

And I started this podcast a year ago just from the summer

Iris Davis (00:17:57):

Event. Did you see, so you probably came outta retirement and started a whole new career.

Larry (00:18:03):

Well, it's not a career yet, but it's, it is so much fun talking to people like you. Oh yeah. With with inspiring stories. Yeah. It gets the people who listen to this podcast up off their backsides and doing something. Yeah.

Iris Davis (00:18:22):

Well, Larry, now, nowadays the most, the average age of my clients are in their seventies because I've had them for 13, 15 years. You know, they came to me. I mean, I've got one particular lady, she came to me the day she retired at 65. I've got two of these ladies still with me. And they're now my age. <Laugh> still with me. And I also train people with a lot of impairments. I have some clients with Parkinson's, some clients who can hardly walk. Some clients who can't lift their head or, or their arms. I beg your pardon. But I get them to do wonders. I get them to do absolutely wonders. You know why? Cuz I make them believe that they can. Once you believe you can, you will. Even if it's only one. That's what I always say to my, oh, I can't. And I don't ever have them say to me, I can't do that. They'll go, I'll try it, I'll go try it. Come on. Just let's do one. They do one. And then before, you know, they're like, oh yeah, whatever, whatever it is. I have lots of clients like that. And they're my favorites cuz they're my, they're my miracles. They're absolutely miracles. I love them.

Larry (00:19:38):

And behind you is your own gym?

Iris Davis (00:19:41):

This is my own gym, yeah. I have I'll just turn my, turn the machine a little bit around here and I'll give you a quick, shall I give you a quick pull up? Do you want me to do a quick pull up?

Larry (00:19:54):

Oh yeah.

Iris Davis (00:19:55):

Okay. I, I'm, I'm quite willing. And now the thing is, with Pullups, you never know how many you're gonna do till you do 'em. You know, you might get up thinking you're gonna do five and you'll do 25 might get up thinking you're doing 25 and you'll do five. I'll even leave my heavy shoes

Speaker 4 (00:20:12):

On. Okay. I'm focusing now. Hold on,

Iris Davis (00:20:35):

I'll do something else. I wanna do something from the front. So you get the chest. Okay, I'm losing. Wow.

Speaker 4 (00:21:07):

It's really hard.

Larry (00:21:11):

Okay, now I'm gonna go off camera. Unfortunately you won't be able to see me on the bars.

Iris Davis (00:21:19):

Okay. <laugh>

Speaker 4 (00:21:22):


Iris Davis (00:21:22):

Two. Oh, what Lovely picture though.

Larry (00:21:26):


Iris Davis (00:21:26):

Picture behind you.

Larry (00:21:28):

Oh, thanks. Yeah, I just did three. I mean, I don't wanna show off <laugh>.

Iris Davis (00:21:36):


Larry (00:21:40):

Now I'm,

Iris Davis (00:21:48):

Dunno if you can see that. Yep. That's my

Speaker 4 (00:21:52):


Larry (00:21:58):

I'm keeping my sh

Iris Davis (00:21:59):

I'm still full of muscles. I'll be 80 in January.

Larry (00:22:03):

I'm keeping my sh full

Iris Davis (00:22:04):

Of muscles.

Larry (00:22:05):

I'm keeping my shirt on.

Iris Davis (00:22:08):

Okay. You're being modest. You don't wanna upset me.

Larry (00:22:13):

<Laugh>. Yeah. The muscles are just too big. <Laugh>. Last question. What do you think are the most important factors for living a long, fulfilling life and healthy life?

Iris Davis (00:22:27):

Be happy with yourself. Don't envy anyone else for what they have. You never know where they got it or what they had to do to get it. Maybe they got it easy. Maybe they've worked all their life like myself. Don't envy anyone. And if you want it, you can get it. You just have to want it enough. Too many people start and they don't see results in a month. Whatever it is. I give up. Don't give up. I still not giving up. I have a, I have an ambition to do by the end of this year and I need a couple of people's help to achieve it. And I'm trying, if I don't get it, it won't be be by a lack of not trying. So don't envy anybody. Just love yourself. I get, I, you know, I've got a lot of people who hate me. Don't matter. <Laugh>, I'm smiling. That's all that counts.

Larry (00:23:27):

Yeah. Words to live by Iris.

Iris Davis (00:23:30):

Yeah. Thank you. People. People, I tell this to my granddaughter, when I was younger, I had no female friends whatsoever. Not even one. And the reason being, I was, well, I was very pretty. I had long blonde hair down my back, and if we went anywhere together, I would always get the attention. So they didn't like it and they didn't like me because of that. So I, again, I did everything on my own. I thought, I don't care. You know, if the guys wanna drop up my feet, let them, you know, it's not my fault. So I learned to be a loner and I learned to be very happy with my own decisions and my own life. If I make a mistake and I've made a few <laugh>, you know, good grief, I've made a few. But these days, as you get older, you learn to listen to your instinct. And I can smell an enemy from a mile away. I can smell them before I even meet them. So I follow my own gut. But basically don't envy anyone. Just be happy with your own lot. And if, if it's not good enough for you, it's your fault. It's your fault. So go out and get it.

Larry (00:24:57):

Iris, this has been a pleasure. Thank you. So great having you on.

Iris Davis (00:25:03):

It's lovely talking to you, Larry. Maybe you should talk to me again sometime,

Larry (00:25:08):

Maybe when the movie comes out, let me know.

Iris Davis (00:25:11):

Okay, I

Larry (00:25:12):

Will. And maybe we can get together and talk about the movie a little bit.

Iris Davis (00:25:17):

Oh wow. That would be great. I'll keep your email.

Larry (00:25:21):

Yeah, it's a deal.

Iris Davis (00:25:22):

I definitely, and you keep mine.

Larry (00:25:25):

I shall.

Iris Davis (00:25:26):

Thank you.

Larry (00:25:28):

Our next guest is the holder of the Guinness Book of World Records. As the oldest working female comedian laugh with us as we share her story, allow me to introduce a woman who holds the Guinness Book of World Records. As the oldest working female comedian, Deanne Forrest has appeared with Jerry Seinfeld and has the distinction of being called the filthy ukulele player by Joe River. Will will learn more about that later. She still can be seen on stage in her new act, swinging on the sin. Welcome to specifically for seniors. Deanne, I know this isn't the usual question to ask a lady, but since you are a Guinness record holder Yes. How, how old are you?

D'Yan Forest (00:26:26):

I'm 88 and three fourths.

Larry (00:26:29):


D'Yan Forest (00:26:30):

<Laugh>, I'm getting to 89 if you could believe me. <Laugh>,

Larry (00:26:37):

You're still on stage.

D'Yan Forest (00:26:39):

Oh yes. I just finished the frigid Festival and I did six shows in three weeks doing my Swinging on the Sin Show. And I'm exhausted. But we did it. And now I'm going to be doing Joe's Pub and may swinging on the sin. Where's

Larry (00:26:59):

Joe's Pub?

D'Yan Forest (00:27:01):

Joe's pub puppies are an astro place. It's where the public theater is. And then they have a very lovely nightclub right in, right in the villages, you know, west Village. So it's very lovely. I played there last year in July on my 88th birthday. Now I'm gonna be there again. So, and then I'm doing comedy all the time at the Gotham Comedy Club, and that's on 23rd and seventh Avenue. So I'm continually doing,

Larry (00:27:33):

We lived in the city for a couple of years, so Yeah, you did? Yeah.

D'Yan Forest (00:27:37):

Yeah. So I'm continually working <laugh>,

Larry (00:27:43):

That happens.

D'Yan Forest (00:27:45):

No, I <laugh> People don't think you work when you are in this business. They have no idea. No idea.

Larry (00:27:52):

Hey, I read somewhere you lived a whole bunch of different lives. Yeah. You want to talk to me about 'em?

D'Yan Forest (00:27:59):

Yes. Well, the first one was growing up in Newton in a very conservative environment, Jewish family. And then of course you had to get married. And I married a nice Jewish boy and living in Brighton and, and it didn't work out <laugh>. So I had been to Paris in 1955 with the experiment in international living, which was, you lived with a family and you traveled around. And I fell in love with parrots in 1955. And I wanted to go back. But being in the environment and the culture that I was in, parents said, no, no, no, no, no, no. Get married. This is the way it was in the fifties. That's the only thing to do. Well, the marriage didn't work out <laugh>. And after four years, I went to Paris and I lived in, and which is the student Dormatory. And so I, I started having all the fun that I'd never had in Newton, Massachusetts.

D'Yan Forest (00:29:14):

And I had a ball in Paris. It was the swing in sixties. Everybody had a good time. You, I mean, I just had a ball and I discovered all sorts of different lives. So that was the second life. And then the third life, I come back and, and Boston is now too small after, if you've been, so I moved to New York and my uncle owned the Berkeley School of Music, Larry Burke. And I was afraid to go to New York. And he says, you gotta go. And so I got in and what I did is I played piano and sang in cocktail lounges. And then I went to cabarets and golf clubs. And I pretended to be French. And I became a French chanter, a French singer. And everybody believed it. Even in the Catskills. I, I was French or I sang in nine languages.

D'Yan Forest (00:30:23):

So I could do Italian, be an Irish singer on St. Patrick's Day. So I had a very, very, very good career. And so that was the other life in doing commercials. And then nine 11 happened, and all of a sudden us musicians are out of work and the country clubs aren't drinking. And so I play golf with Caroline, who owns the Caroline's Comedy Club. So after a year of not working after nine 11, I says, how do you get into comedy? And that's how I started this new career. If it wasn't for nine 11, I wouldn't be here talking to you today, <laugh>. So those are the lives with different lives in a nutshell.

Larry (00:31:11):

So now let me ask the question that you just answered. How did you get into comedy?

D'Yan Forest (00:31:17):

That, and the thing is, I had to go to a coach and within three weeks it's, it's the day before Easter, what do you call that? Good Friday, right? I'm in a small club. I got, I got six friends to come and et cetera. There were maybe 20 people there. And I had never done comedy before. And by the third line, all of a sudden people were laughing at me and I have it on a videotape. And that hooked me. Oh, <laugh>, I can be laughed at it. And that started it 20 years ago. Unbelievable. Now they really laugh. <Laugh>,

Larry (00:31:56):

What was the third line?

D'Yan Forest (00:31:58):

The th <laugh> The third line was first line is hi, I'm Dion. And I had a ukulele. And I said, well, I got a ukulele because I asked my parents to get me a guitar. This was, I guess in the fifties or whenever it was. And they came up with this ukulele. And I, so this is the, this is the lines. I started crying. I says, no, I want a ukulele, not a good time. They said, oh, no, no, guitars are for boys, ukulele are for girls. Even then they knew I was ac, d c c

Larry (00:32:39):


D'Yan Forest (00:32:43):

Some people get it, but get

Larry (00:32:45):

It <laugh>.

D'Yan Forest (00:32:48):

So, and that can you believe it? People laughed. <Laugh>. So, so

Larry (00:32:53):

Then you became a filthy ukulele player. What

D'Yan Forest (00:32:57):

What happened was I went through different things, trying to be different kinds of comedy. And what seemed to work. I tried golf, I tried, I've been a school teacher, everything. And what seemed to work when they they, the, the writer, you know, I had to go to writer, what is it? I never was a comedian. And put in sort of risque material, a little sexy material. And I said, I won't do it. I said, I'm, I have a master's degree in education. I was brought up. I don't wanna Oh, do it coming outta your mouth. It doesn't matter. Cause you're older. I was in the seventies. So I started doing this sort of, oh, it wasn't off color, it wasn't vulgar, but whatever it was. And I, I would do it and people would laugh. So, you know, I did it. I was making money. So I go to meet, I was in the same club as Joan Rivers, and they introduced to meet her downstairs. And they were, you know, I was so glad I was gonna meet her. So she says, oh, you heard about you a filthy UK player, <laugh>. And I said, no, Joan, I'm just

Larry (00:34:10):


D'Yan Forest (00:34:12):

I didn't, I didn't know. I already had a sort of reputation around town.

Larry (00:34:19):

Oh, that's

D'Yan Forest (00:34:20):

No idea. <Laugh>. Because I'm still the pure basian, honest to goodness. Oh yeah.

Larry (00:34:27):

<Laugh>. Well, I should tell, I can tell. How do you, how do you stay motivated now? How do you continue to perform?

D'Yan Forest (00:34:36):

Oh, well, you see, the thing is, I, I play golf with the people in their seventies or eighties. And I have friends you know, in their sixties, seventies, and everybody has children. And now the children have grandchildren. And this is all you hear about my grandchildren, that, and then I, I realize that this is my emotional hook in the world is that I have the comedy. I don't have grandchildren or children. I no hardly any family left. And so it's the emotional thing that keeps me going. People call me an inspiration after I do the comedy, the young people, this is my contact of having a continuation of an emotional life through the comedy, which is very interesting. I, I just, I just love it. <Laugh>. How, how do we

Larry (00:35:32):

Get, how do we get people our age to laugh more

D'Yan Forest (00:35:37):

<Laugh>? Well, what you do, they, they take a look at me and they can't believe what I'm seeing. Like my go saying my girlfriends. So people get, oh, you know, you shock 'em a little and then they gotta laugh. They gotta laugh. <Laugh>. Right.

Larry (00:35:56):

All right. Our age group just seems to be so serious. We've lost the playfulness.

D'Yan Forest (00:36:01):

Oh yeah. Well, they're all with the politics and all that. The politics and the problems. And that's why the comedy againsts them a little out of it. Just think of something else beside what's going on in the world. Just have fun with ourselves.

Larry (00:36:18):

I mean that we sit down and we talk about what pills we're taking and what, oh God, doctor's visits. We're going to,

D'Yan Forest (00:36:28):

That's it. And I, I won't do it. I won't talk about it. I might talk about, oh, I've met the fantastic doctor and I'm alive. But otherwise I like to go into other sh subjects, you know? Where did you, where's the last con concert? What's the last movie you saw? And that's more important than talking about <laugh>.

Larry (00:36:53):

Tell me, tell me about I did it my ways. Your

D'Yan Forest (00:36:56):

Book. All right. Yeah. Well <laugh>, I it was, I have all these stories. I've been, I was in Paris and working in Paris for, since the sixties and having a different life cuz there are no parents there, there's no Boston there. I can be who I want. So I did everything I wanted to do. I then, I traveled all over the world and had a ball in Syria or River Ethiopia. You know, I, I would, did things my ways. Cuz all of a sudden the Puritan Boston had disappeared. So I have all these stories that I do in my comedy shows, six minutes here, eight minutes there. And but I thought I wanted to become not just a comedian, but a little more serious. So I had a writer in Paris who's written several books, and I kept asking him, I said, I have all these vignettes, but I don't know how to put it in a book, you know, because when I was here or when I was there and what happened with this guy or whatever.

D'Yan Forest (00:38:12):

And so he kept refusing. And then there was a subway strike in Paris <laugh> just before the pandemic. And all of a sudden he says to me, all right, I'll do your book because we can't get anywhere with the subway in Paris now. So of course the pandemic started that march. I finally have the time. I went to Southampton, played golf for two hours, and then came home and put all the vignettes together. And and so he came back with me, sort of a book. This took two or three months. And he came back and put it, I said, there's only 75 pages there. This is in a book. It's a pamphlet. You know, he was trying to get off easy <laugh>. So I got advice from a expert editor. And so she told me, tell this fellow Stephen Clark to put in more. You gotta put in more emotion, you gotta put in conversation. So he went and made the book, 165 patients <laugh>. And it's like wonderful, easy reading, connecting all the vignettes. And what was interesting, my parents who have long been gone, he actually carried the way they caught conversation. So it's an interesting book. That was a good idea. Putting conversation. So that's how I wrote the book. It's, it took, it took the epidemic to get me to down to it.

Larry (00:39:51):

And where can people get your book?

D'Yan Forest (00:39:53):

Okay, can I show it? I forgot to bring, got it right here. Wait a minute. Everybody wait a

Larry (00:39:58):

Minute. <Laugh>. We'll all, we'll all have some coffee. And I think I will too, while we're waiting.

D'Yan Forest (00:40:08):

Sorry, <laugh>. I'm really, really prepared.

Larry (00:40:13):

<Laugh>. Well, it was nice to see your apartment,

D'Yan Forest (00:40:16):

<Laugh>. Oh, thank you, <laugh>. Thank you. It's in here is the book. I did it my ways. And and it even has pictures of me in the middle. For instance, I was zero years old and you can get it on Amazon or even I did an audiobook too, and you can get it on, you know, Kindle or whatever you want. The audiobook. I did it my ways and it's not expensive. I don't know, $12 or whatever. And it's by Dionne Forest. And it, it, it gives like a trip around the world through my eyes, <laugh> through my eyes.

Larry (00:41:02):

Hey Deanne, what advice can you give people who wanna pursue their dreams regardless of their age?

D'Yan Forest (00:41:11):

Well, what, what you do is, number one, you keep healthy. That's of course the most important thing. You go to the best doctors. You don't like one doctor, you're not sure, go to another one. There's always somebody with an answer. Believe me, in Boston, New York, wherever you are. And then I go to physical therapy now twice a week and do for the heart and for the lungs. And that's keeping me active. Another thing is you do it, you do a sport. I play golf and I walk the golf course and the golf course is hilly, but I walk the golf course soon as golf starts. So it keeps you healthy. And the other thing is be friendly and with a lot of younger people, and that's in Paris or here, wherever I am, I'm in the comedy and I meet the young people. And that keeps your brain young. You go out to dinner or what with them, you hear what's going on. And that keeps you young. A lot of old people, they just wanna go, go get to the supermarkets at home, watch television, talk with her husband. I don't have a husband, so I go out and I keep active in other ways. So even if you do have a husband, keep active, do everything. That's my answer.

Larry (00:42:46):

Do you carry your own golf bag or do you have

D'Yan Forest (00:42:49):

Oh, no, no.

Larry (00:42:50):

You have a nice young, young man carrying it for

D'Yan Forest (00:42:53):

You. <Laugh> No, what I do is <laugh> and I started at the club about 20 years ago. I have what they call a remote control golf, little golf thing that holds my golf clubs. And I have, I can make it go anywhere and it carries my club up the hill, down a hill, sometimes in the lake it landed. But <laugh>, that's how I walk. You can have catty soon, <laugh>. So that's you, you gotta do it. Lot of women my age, you're taking the cart. And I just say, no, no, no, no. Let's walk, let's walk.

Larry (00:43:34):

Good for you.

D'Yan Forest (00:43:36):

You, you gotta keep active. You've got to, you've got to.

Larry (00:43:41):

So keeping active is your advice for living long and fulfilling life.

D'Yan Forest (00:43:46):

Right? Right. And taking right meds, of course, <laugh>, you, you gotta find the right doctor, the right mets, believe it or not, you know? And then that keeps you even, that keeps you even, my God, <laugh>

Larry (00:44:05):

<Laugh>. Oh, this has been so much fun. Deanne.

D'Yan Forest (00:44:08):

All right, <laugh>. Okay.

Larry (00:44:10):

Where, where can people see you coming up next?

D'Yan Forest (00:44:14):

Well, when the next will be may, I think it's May 1st at Joe's Pub in New York. That's Union Square. I've, I'm going to be on television W N B C with Laura Scala. And I already was with Barry Moore and show, so they can see me. And plus on YouTube, YouTube Dion Forest. I have a lot of my shows there. If you wanna have a laugh go to YouTube beyond first.

Larry (00:44:50):

I, I, I watched one of them and that's why I was afraid to ask you about the ukulele <laugh>,

D'Yan Forest (00:44:59):

The ukulele that my parents got from me and I didn't want is what's makes me different from all the other comedians. It's, I mean, you never know what's going happen in

Larry (00:45:10):

This world. Oh, for sure. Is

D'Yan Forest (00:45:12):

It, and I have the, yeah, I have the original ukulele right here that they bought for me in 19 50, 19 51.

Larry (00:45:23):

This is, this is been, they know,

D'Yan Forest (00:45:25):

They knew.

Larry (00:45:26):

Did they know what you were gonna do with the ukulele <laugh>?

D'Yan Forest (00:45:29):

No. I always wondered when I, when I'm doing it, oh my God, if they saw me now, but I don't think they would've understood a word. Not <laugh>. So, so it would've been fine. There's my daughter, but they wouldn't have, they wouldn't understand what I'm talking about. <Laugh>.

Larry (00:45:47):

Hey Diane, are you wagging your finger at me?

D'Yan Forest (00:45:52):

Am I wagging it at them? <Laugh>, I really, hello Dolly. Dolly. I just have to say that was worth my mother's. It was Dorothy and they all called her Dolly. And mother gave me piano lessons since I was five. Made me take piano, trumpet, anything. And then the musical, hello Dolly came and everybody's saying, hello Dolly. Hello Dolly. So now in my one woman show, one of the highlights of the show is I go to the piano and I do Hello Dolly, in favor of my mother. And then Lavia Rose. And so she's always there. Always there. Got me started.

Larry (00:46:37):

Deanne, thanks. Thanks for coming on specifically with seniors.

D'Yan Forest (00:46:41):

Well, thank you Larry. Thank you. This

Larry (00:46:42):

Is been lots of fun.

D'Yan Forest (00:46:45):

Okay, Missy Roku, thank you. Thank you. Give my regards to Newton, Brookline, et cetera. <Laugh>.

Larry (00:46:51):

I, I, I will if I ever get back.

D'Yan Forest (00:46:55):

Okay. <Laugh>, take care. All right. Thank you for having me. Thanks a lot. Thank you. Okay. Overall, bye-bye. <Laugh>.

Larry (00:47:04):

Our last guest is a woman who frankly intimidated me because of her numerous appearances on television and her multiple gigs as a correspondent. And did I mention she's won more than 1000 blue ribbons for her baking? Hi Marjorie.

Marjorie Johnson (00:47:24):


Larry (00:47:25):

It's nice to meet you. Oh,

Marjorie Johnson (00:47:27):

Thank you.

Marjorie Johnson (00:47:29):

See we have something in common. I heard you were a dentist before you started this podcast. Yes, ma'am. I was married to a dentist. Yes.

Larry (00:47:40):

You were married to a dentist. I'm sorry to hear.

Marjorie Johnson (00:47:44):

Yeah. And go with me to all my PB appearances. We had a wonderful, wonderful time. Yeah.

Larry (00:47:55):

Oh good. Can I give you a great introduction?

Marjorie Johnson (00:48:00):


Larry (00:48:01):

In her 103 years, Marjorie Johnson has won more than a thousand blue ribbons for her baking. She's written a cookbook, the Road to Blue Ribbon, cooking with Marjorie, and she's appeared with Rosie O'Donnell, Wayne Brady and Jay Leno. She's been on the Talk. She's interviewed bikers at the Las Vegas Bike Fest and been a correspondent for the M L B All-Star Game, the N B A finals, the X Games, and the Emmys. She's a Minnesota State fair tradition, appearing on the Joe Suri show every opening day every year. Welcome to specifically for seniors Marjorie.

Marjorie Johnson (00:48:55):

Thank you. Thank you. You know, now I'm only five short months until I'm 104.

Larry (00:49:06):

Oh, wow. And I'll tell you, I'm a little intimidated with all those credits on television. How am I gonna keep up with you?

Marjorie Johnson (00:49:18):


Larry (00:49:20):

You scare me.

Marjorie Johnson (00:49:22):

<Laugh>, oh, I've loved every minute of

Larry (00:49:27):

What is your secret to such a long life?

Marjorie Johnson (00:49:32):

Ah, well I have about at least three things versus you have to eat those fruits and vegetables you have to eat, don't eat a lot of that stuff that's got all those stuff in it. Yeah. I hope you like to cook and bake because then you can be sure you're getting real good food. Yeah. And I love to cook and bake, but I think I, as much as I love to bake, I think I like to talk more

Larry (00:50:08):

<Laugh>. Oh, then you are in the right place. So let's talk about what inspired you to become a baker.

Marjorie Johnson (00:50:16):

Well the reason I love baking so much is because my when I was eight years old I baked a chocolate cake with my mother. And when after we'd had a taste of it, there was a knock on the back door. And my mother went to it and said, oh, Doris, you must come in and taste this cake that mar made. You'll never believe how great it is. Or little eight year old me hearing that. Wow. I was so proud and I thought, well, I'm going to continue doing this forever. And I, I enjoyed living so much. I wanted to live forever, but of course I know that's impossible. So I chose 110. And when I get to 110, if I feel as wonderful as I do now, then I'll increase it to 115

Larry (00:51:23):

<Laugh>. Good for you. I hope I'm around to see that.

Marjorie Johnson (00:51:29):

I hope you are too. I hope you're eating your fruits and vegetables

Larry (00:51:35):

Every morning. My fruits and every evening my vegetables

Marjorie Johnson (00:51:39):

Real good. Real, real good. Yeah.

Larry (00:51:42):

How do you stay so motivated?

Marjorie Johnson (00:51:45):

I, I, because I love life. Oh, I love it. I find this fascinating, enjoyable, interesting. And there's so much out there to learn. So I love reading. I love to read, read, read, read. I love to read. And I read non-fiction books cause I wanna learn something new.

Larry (00:52:14):

What was your last book that you read?

Marjorie Johnson (00:52:17):

In? It was called In and out and about. It was really interesting. Yeah.

Larry (00:52:26):

Can you tell us about some of the blue ribbons you've won?

Marjorie Johnson (00:52:30):

Well, let's see. I, I entered the Minnesota State Beer and that's where I've won all my blue ribbons. And then in 2007 I wrote the cookbook because my son Steven said, put your recipes down in a book. And so I did new ribbon bacon with Marjorie, has my recipes, but it also has my autobiography. So you would know all about me if you read that. Yeah. 

Larry (00:53:10):

Do you have any recipes that you can share with our visitors?

Marjorie Johnson (00:53:14):

Well, I have my honeycutt sweet Rose that I won a blue ribbon this year and I thought, boy, that's really good for a 103 year old to win a blue ribbon. So I Do

Larry (00:53:30):

You wanna share? You wanna share a little bit?

Marjorie Johnson (00:53:33):

I made it up. And it was, I had a cup of chopped dried Africas, a third of a cup of honey and a third cup of water, and I put that in a sauce pan and cooked it until it was C Yeah. And then I took half of a e sweet dough and, and rolled it out to a 10 by 12 inch rehan. Then I spread it with butter, like it butter a piece of bread. And then I put this cooked apricot filling that was cut into one fourth inch pieces. And, and then I rolled them up. I took half a half of my yeas. So I used, you can use any yeast Easter. I used ATO that makes 24 rolls cuz I wanted 24 of 'em. So yeah. So I did that and and I won a blue ribbon. I couldn't believe it. I won a blue ribbon when I was 103 and a 303 years old. Yeah. And now time has gone on. So now I'm only five short months until I'll be 104.

Larry (00:55:01):

Well, what are you gonna do for your birthday?

Marjorie Johnson (00:55:03):

So my family and I who have a kind of a private celebration. Yeah. That's what I like to do.

Larry (00:55:15):

Tell me, you have appeared on so many TV shows. What's it like being a celebrity?

Marjorie Johnson (00:55:22):

Oh, I find it fun. I like it. Cause I like to talk about baking and I love to talk as you'll find out I can. I love talk, talk, talk, talk. I can always love to talk. Yeah. I think I was born talking. I betcha <laugh>

Larry (00:55:41):

<Laugh>. What did you say to Jay Leno?

Marjorie Johnson (00:55:46):

Oh gee. Oh, I never told Jay my, my age. So he used to always kidding me about that because back then if you were over 40, you were a husband, sort of. And I was when I was on Rosie, I already was I think I was around 70 already then. And so yeah, I love, love, love life. I find it so fascinating, so interesting, and so, so happy. I've always been happy. I love being happy and I love being non-fiction books. Yeah. I don't like write write fiction books now. I don't wanna be entertained when I get done reading something. I wanna be smarter or more informed or happier or something. Yeah.

Larry (00:56:53):

What was it like when you interviewed bikers at the bikers festival?

Marjorie Johnson (00:56:59):

Yeah. Right. That was really something. Yeah. They had it. Yeah. And then when it, it shows you see that I'm <laugh>. That was a funny episode. Yeah, right.

Larry (00:57:16):

I I I watched that one and those guys are so big.

Marjorie Johnson (00:57:20):

I know. I know. Yeah. And, and because Jay was a baker as I remember, and so they showed that a lot. Yeah.

Larry (00:57:34):

Okay. One more question. What advice can you give to people who wanna pursue their dreams like you did regardless of their age?

Marjorie Johnson (00:57:44):

You have to do three things. You have to set your goal and then you have to make it. You can't give up. You, you decide I'm going to do this, and then you do it. And always be happy. Oh, I, I am the happiest person you can find. I love being happy. And and I love baking and I love talking <laugh> as you can see. I can talk, talk, talk. Yeah.

Larry (00:58:17):

Can I be the first to wish you a happy 104th birthday?

Marjorie Johnson (00:58:23):

Yes. Love that. Yeah. Right, right. Yeah,

Larry (00:58:27):

Because I don't think we'll have a chance to get back together on a podcast.

Marjorie Johnson (00:58:33):

Yeah. Yeah. Maybe you can help celebrate it with me.

Larry (00:58:38):

What, what can I do to celebrate it?

Marjorie Johnson (00:58:40):

Well, my family and I are going to have a, a silver private celebration and they'll be there and we'll have a nice time remembering our lives. 

Larry (00:59:00):

Ah, that's terrific. Marjorie, thank you. Thank you. Thank you so much for coming on the podcast. Yeah.

Marjorie Johnson (00:59:07):

I'm glad to be honest, Jan. So remember anybody who wants to get a goal in your mind, you say, I'm going to make it, and then, then make it. Don't give up. If at first you don't succeed, boy, try, try again. That sure is true.

Larry (00:59:30):

What can you say to people who are afraid to even try something new?

Marjorie Johnson (00:59:36):

Oh, if you do your best, you can be satisfied. Whatever ribbon you get or whatever comes out because you know you have done your best. So always do your very, very best. And then life will be nice. Life will be good. You'll enjoy life. Really, really enjoy life.

Larry (01:00:02):

Marjorie, thank you again for coming on the podcast.

Marjorie Johnson (01:00:06):

Well, I'm sure glad to have talked to you young and <inaudible>. And yeah. Maybe if you are around, you can come and help me celebrate when I get 104, which is five short months from now. Can you imagine? Wow. Time goes full fast.

Larry (01:00:28):

Oh, yes.

Marjorie Johnson (01:00:30):

And I, I feel simply wonderful. Just absolutely wonderful. And so when I get to 110, I made a goal. I wanted to live forever, but I know that's impossible. So I chose 110. And so when I get to 110, if I feel as wonderful as I do today, then I'll increase it to 115 and keep on increasing it five years at a time until I reach. Maybe I'll be the oldest person living in the United States. That would be fun. Yeah, I'd like that. Yeah.

Larry (01:01:12):

You've got a good start on it. Thanks again, Marjorie.

Marjorie Johnson (01:01:16):


Larry (01:01:17):

Despite their ages, these women continue to challenge stereotypes about age, break multiple ageism tropes, and prove that it is never too late to pursue one's passions, achieve one's dreams, and live life to the fullest.

Announcer (01:01:43):

If you found this podcast interesting, fun or helpful, tell your friends and family and click on the follow or subscribe button. We'll let you know when new episodes are available. You've been listening to specifically for seniors. We'll talk more next time. Stay connected.

Iris DavisProfile Photo

Iris Davis

Currently, the oldest IFBB Pro (International Fitness and Bodybuilding Federation) in the United States, and more than likely in the world.

I started bodybuilding at age 22 to combat severe depression. I suffered the loss of my first child. When I was 18 years of age he died at two months old of pneumonia. When I was 22 years of age I had another son and unfortunately when he was two months old my husband died, so that’s when began my lifelong battle with depression, which I suffer from to this very day. Over the years, I have been hospitalized three times with nervous breakdowns

I was born in Ireland left at age 17 went to England I was one of 14 children. I started walking as a way of relieving my depression, and that started me going into a gym at that time in 1962 gyms were not like what we call gyms these days. First of all women were not allowed in. It was just a big fat, sweaty man with chalk all over the floor. There were no machines like we know there are today so that’s where I started and that’s where I developed my love.

Fast forward to age 50 while living in London. I entered my first competition because I was encouraged by the members of my gym. They said I looked good and I should get up on stage. However, the show I entered didn’t have any categories for females whatsoever, so I either have to get up on stage with the men or forget about it completely. Well, being young and shy, I guess I wasn’t that shy, but I got up on stage at age 50 with men between the ages of 20 and 30. There were five in my class I believe and I came second .

Seven years later and living in the United States. I met a gentleman in the gym in Florida, and he said he was looking for a female partner to enter a competition with him. I was 57 years of age. It would’ve been my second time on stage, so I agreed. I came home with first place in the women’s and I came home with first place in the mixed pairs, so that was a huge achievement and a big thrill and that’s when I really took bodybuilding seriously. That same year 2021, I entered seven more competitions that year and came first and every single one of them either would enter one a year till age 66 and I won about six or seven or eight more titles

I retired in at age 66 in 2010, time and decided to come out of retirement in 2020 at the age of 76 where I took three more first place titles several inspirational awards plus in 2020, I was awarded by the worlds women leadership Congress in Mumbai, a pioneer award for my contribution to Fitness. I had to go to Mumbai, make a speech and accept my watch, which was a huge honor.

In 2021 on and in 2022 I was very active in competing again. I won the national in Pittsburgh at the age of 77 and taking a pro card. I do guest appearances as this day I am in great demand for speaking engagements and podcasts, etc. and my year is not over yet. I have two very exciting events coming up before the end of the year when I will turn 80 and I hope to retire then.

I opened my own gym at age 75. I have clients with me for the last 13 years I have encouraged three young men to get up on stage and they all won and went on to become bodybuilders themselves. I know and encourage and mentor quite a few hundred ladies, so I’m very proud of all my achievements are considering I started with nothing very very poor upbringing in Dublin, Ireland and where I am right now I thank God every day for my blessings. I still suffer with depression daily so my daily medicine is exercise. I believe I have found the fountain of youth and I believe I’ve saved my own life many times over .

D'yan ForestProfile Photo

D'yan Forest

Comedian and Author

D’yan Forest was raised a provincial girl in the conservative suburbs of Boston. After a “scandalous” divorce for the time and two years of oral French lessons, Forest got on a five-day boat ride to study abroad in Paris. After falling in love with the city, Forest would then embrace the French culture fully, which would determine the trajectory of the rest of her career.

Back in the US, Forest performed as an international singer at golf clubs, country clubs, bars, and restaurants. Her life as a singer was cut short when the entertainment business in New York. City was brought to a halt after the 9/11 attacks. With no idea that she had the capability to be funny, Forest became what the world needed the most at that time: a comedian. With her ukulele in hand, Forest put together a hysterical and risqué one-woman show which caught on quickly.

Her act, accurately called “I Married a Nun,” landed her on the same stages as Jerry Seinfeld, Jim Gaffigan, and Joan Rivers. In fact, upon meeting Rivers, she referred to Forest as “the filthy ukulele player.”

COVID-19 got Forest to wondering what else she could do with al of her wonderfully hilarious stories from life. I Did it My Ways is the culmination of her sitcom-worthy life events, now available for all to read. But this book is no indication that the 88-year-old is done taking to the stage. Her new act, “Swinging on the Seine,” can still be seen in New York and Paris at some of the most famed comedy clubs like Joe’s Pub, Caroline’s Gotham Comedy Club, and New York Comedy Club.

Marjorie JohnsonProfile Photo

Marjorie Johnson

Blue Ribbon Baker/Motivation Speaker/Positive Person

“I always liked to bake. I remember so well the first thing I baked. I was eight years old and I had baked a chocolate cake. After it was baked my mother and I had some cake. There was a knock on the back door and my mother went to the door and I heard her say. “Oh Doris, you must come in and have some of this cake Marjorie made. You'll never believe how great it is!” With that, Marjorie began a lifetime of baking.

Marjorie is winner of more than 1000 Blue Ribbons for her baking and has included 104 of these fabulous recipes in her cookbook “The Road to Blue Ribbon Baking with Marjorie”. She has also entered numerous recipe contests for years, and has won many prizes, including some big prizes in contests sponsored by General Mills, Paul Newman, and the Nestle Chocolate Company. She has been a Pillsbury Bake-Off finalist on three occasions. In November 2009, Marjorie won Martha Stewart’s first pie contest and showed Martha how to bake her prize winning pie on The Martha Stewart Show.

Her first appearance on national TV was on the Rosie O'Donnell talk show in November 1996. She was a featured guest twelve times until Rosie ended her show in 2002. Remembering their first meeting, Rosie O’Donnell quips, “The first time I met her, I couldn’t believe this adorable petite woman could have such a dynamic personality. She’s tough, hysterical, talks a mile a minute, has the biggest heart of anyone I know, and I just wanted to take her home with me.”

Marjorie was a regular on the syndicated “Wayne Brady Show” with twenty-three appearances during the two seasons that the show was on the air. Marjorie teamed up with Rosie again in 2006 when Rosie invited her back to New York City for a baking segment on The View. From 2007-2013, Marjorie was on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno with twenty-one appearances in baking segments, and also as a correspondent for such improbable events as the MLB All-Star game, the NBA Finals, the X-Games, the Emmys and the Las Vegas BikeFest. She also has been on The Talk, Dr. Oz and a frequent guest on The Hallmark Home and Family Show. In 2019, Marjorie celebrated her 100th birthday on The Kelly Clarkson Show, reunited with guest Jay Leno.

As much as she loves being on national TV, she considers it a treat to be on the local Twin Cities stations, with many appearances on KARE-11 with Belinda Jensen and Twin Cities Live on KSTP-TV. A Minnesota State Fair tradition, she is featured on the Joe Soucheray Radio show live from the Fair on opening day each year.
Marjorie graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Home Economics, majoring in Foods in Business, and with a minor in Journalism. Marjorie was married to Dr. LeRoy Johnson, a retired dentist, for sixty-seven years, and she has three children and four grandchildren. She is a long-time residents of Robbinsdale, Minnesota. Marjorie was honored in April 2007 when the Mayor of Robbinsdale declared that April 30 was “Marjorie Johnson Day”. Marjorie is a frequent speaker and people are inspired by her fun and informative talks. She is also a judge at recipe contests.

“There are two things I love to do”, Marjorie pipes up when asked about her baking, “the first is bake and the second is talk. I especially like to talk about baking. So I am very happy baking and talking.” Happy Baking to all of you!