102-Year-Old Woman Requests to be Arrested

December 4, 2016

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. bucket list / ˈbʌk ɪt lɪst / (n.) – a list of goals that a person wants to achieve
Example: Her summer bucket list includes going to a beach in Hawaii.

2. community service / kəˈmyu nɪ ti ˈsɜr vɪs / (n.) – voluntary work done to help a community
Example: She rendered community service by sweeping the streets.

3. embark / ɛmˈbɑrk / (v.) – to start a journey on a ship or another vehicle
Example: The family embarked on a one-week European trip.

4. cross-country / ˈkrɔsˌkʌn tri / (adj.) – describing a trip or move across one end of the country to another
Example: They took a cross-country trip from New York to California.

5. retirement / rɪˈtaɪər mənt / (n.) – the act of leaving a job permanently because of age
Example: Many teachers choose to take an early retirement.


Read the text below.
A 102-year-old woman asked the police to arrest her in order to check an item off her bucket list.

Edie Simms / ˈi di sɪmz /, a resident of St. Louis, Missouri / ˌseɪnt ˈlu ɪs mɪˈzʊər i /, made this unusual request to the St. Louis Police Department days after celebrating her 102nd birthday. To grant her wish, the police put her in handcuffs and drove her in a police car.

However, their destination was not the police station but the local Five Star Senior Center.  Despite her old age, Simms is very active in community service. For the past two years, she has been donating handmade items such as scarves, socks, and blankets to the elderly at the center. In an interview, the police said that they were glad to help her with her wish.

Meanwhile, another elderly woman from Michigan /ˈmɪʃ ɪ gən/ has embarked on a cross-country road trip to fulfill her own bucket list. Norma Jean Bauerschmidt /ˈbaʊ ər ʃmɪt /, 91 years old, was diagnosed with uterine cancer. However, instead of undergoing chemotherapy, she decided to travel all over America with her son and daughter-in-law. Since then, she has crossed off bucket list items such as horseback riding and flying on a hot air balloon.

Maren Turner, state director of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), encourages seniors to remain active after retirement to fight off cognitive decline. Turner also said that the elderly should spend time with people and get involved with their community, as being inactive and lonely may lead to depression.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         What is one activity or event that you would like to have on your bucket list? Why?
·         In old age, would you prefer going on adventures or staying at home? Why?

Discussion B

·         Why do you think people put adventurous or risky activities on their bucket lists?
·         Do you think having a bucket list is important? Why?

December 4, 2016