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Will you still be blogging when you're 94?
Norrköping Tidningar

Sweden's Allan Lööf (94) displaces Canada's Donald Crowdis (92)
as the world's oldest blogger

By ERIC SHACKLE, in Sydney, Australia
 

Donald Crowdis Allan LööfNinety-four-year-old Allan Lööf, of Norrköping, Sweden, is the world's oldest blogger. Most of the media reported last month that 92-year-old Donald Crowdis, of Toronto, Canada, was the world's oldest blogger. But they were wrong. They'd never heard of Allan Lööf.

On Dec. 2, Allan's local daily, Norrköpings Tidningar proudly displayed his photo and a story about him by author/photographer Hakan Pettersson on its front page.

"If I'm half as productive at 74 as Allan is at 94, I'd be happy," Swedish media practitioner Hans Kullin commented in his media and PR blog Media Culpa.

"Two weeks ago, BoingBoing wrote about 92-year-old Donald Crowdis, and asked if he might be the world's oldest blogger. But we who follow the Swedish blogosphere know that Allan Lööf is Mr Crowdis' senior by two years.

"Allan Lööf, 94, has been blogging for a year and has had his own site for a couple of years. On his blog he writes that no-one has yet found an older blogger than him: 'Any blogger who is older than me hasn't made contact yet. In a comment it has been said that there might be a 92 year old Japanese who is currently blogging. Who knows?'"

Allan Lööf's website says he's "a senior", raised in Finspång, where he now lives. He became interested in music early on, taking violin lessons and getting involved in other kinds of musical activities as a child. It adds:

During the decades to follow Allan is frequently letting his voice be heard in different choirs.

In 1951 Allan and Lennart Johansson, another Finspång musician, founded a vocal group called Dur och Moll (Major and Minor) also featuring five singing ladies. This vocal group performed very frequently in different shows and cabarets, as well as in entertainment programs. In 1956 they were broadcasted in the legendary Frukostklubben (The Breakfast Club) with the famous Swedish actor Sigge Fürst as compère.

Allan started to write lyrics earlier, but the first melody (Aurora) was created in 1950. Allan tells that he in the beginning was "humming forth" his tunes, thus "hum music" as his publishing name. It wasn't until he got himself a wire recorder (magenefon) he was able to record and save his ideas for future editing and revisions.

When Allan moves from Finspång in 1957 the Dur och Moll septet becomes more difficult to keep together, and we could say that the first musical period in Allan's life ends in 1958. Almost 40 years later Allan learns that one of his old tunes have been performed live in Norrköping.

He then decides to see if he can't make some more melodies again. It worked and the three recording we see presented on these pages are composed recently. Indeed a very strong comeback!!

Allan is very careful to mention about the background and the reason why he wanted to compose these new melodies: "There was a lot written in the newspapers about how miserable the situation was for the old people living in the homes for the aged and similar institutions.

"Since I have had the privilege of being healthy, I want to spread some joy among those older being less privileged. The melodies tells much about romantic experiences we have had during life, and remembering these beautiful memories can give us some strength during our older days."

Who said bloggers are always young? Perhaps blogging keeps us young in heart. Long live Allan Lööf - and a happy birthday to Donald Crowdis of Toronto, almost certainly the world's second-oldest blogger, who will be 93 on Christmas Eve.

 

"I've been swept away by Don's blog"

Donald Crowdis has many fans who admire him for his blog and his wisdom. Here's a fine tribute written by Nils Geylen (aka Napfisk), of Antwerp, Belgium, who has kindly agreed to let us copy it from his blog, NDNL

It’s not everyday that you make a truly wonderful discovery among the millions of today’s blogs. Yet, yesterday I did.

I’d never heard of Donald Crowdis, I’ve never seen his CBC show The Nature of Things, and I sure never visited the Nova Scotia Museum – of which he was curator from 1940 to 1965.

1940? That’s right, Don was born in 1913 and he’s blogging at Don to Earth, making him one of the world’s oldest bloggers.

And he’s terrific at that.

I’ve already been swept away by Don’s blog, his humor, wisdom and occasional Grumpy Old Man irony. But don’t be fooled by his blogging byline; he ponders more than just Life, the Universe, and Aging. With great wit and erudition he tackles such subjects as packaged dinners, getting rich and the palolo worms of the South Pacific.

I’m really taken in with Don as he is quite the character – somewhat of a lovely mix between Kurt Vonnegut and Yoda.

He’s a survivor of the Halifax explosion (my apologies for that by the way, as I know Belgians were partly responsible for it), his paternal grandfather was knifed in the back as he was throwing a drunk out of a bar in Colorado during the gold rush (!) and he underwent an erroneous, and entirely superfluous, instance of lung surgery (because the doctors thought it was cancer, whereas it was in fact healed tuberculosis tissue).

Like I said, he’s funny, but also offers food for thought, not in the least for the younger bloggers who might not be able to imagine still getting it done at the age of ninety-two.

On Age and responsibility he writes:

Our responsibility, then, is to be as little a burden as we can manage, and to pass on the records and lessons we have accumulated and learned.

I have at least one thing in common with this man who wants to be there and be part of it all, all the time. He writes:

I do not know who said it – it might have been myself – but I hate to die; I want to see how it all turns out!

Oh, boy, Don, do I know what you mean!

"Allan Lööf is not only the world's oldest blogger; he must also be the world's only blogger with four dots in a row over his name," says US Wordsmith Anu Garg.

  • An interview with Donald Crowdis has been published by the South Korean citizen reporters' journal OhmyNewsInternational.

Links

See our later story, Tomato grower Ray White, 93, is America's oldest blogger

 

 
An interview with Allan Lööf has been published by OhmyNews International.

Copyright © 2006-2007

Eric Shackle

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