19 11, 2016

The Accidental Advocate

November 19th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

I never set out to be an activist. It was never offered as a life option on a social profile or a check-box in a divine master plan. Yet, there I was -- deboarding a flight at Dulles International from New York and hailing a cab to the Pentagon for a meeting with the Adjutant [...]

9 10, 2016

You Can’t Understand . . .

October 9th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

You can't understand the PROFUNDITY OF DYING until you've shared the experience of watching life slip away from you and/or a fellow human being. You can't imagine the UNIQUE LONELINESS that comes from losing a spouse until, at bedtime, you lay down without them for the first time in 45 years. You have no idea [...]

21 09, 2016

JC and Me

September 21st, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

It’s the kind of summer night that magnolias compete with the smell of ball park hotdogs and the high-pitched drone of cicadas is everywhere. After nine innings of softball, I decide to cut through the park on the walk home. The shortcut not only allows me to stop at the Tastee Freeze, but also knocks [...]

21 09, 2016

Soul Mate

September 21st, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

I first hear about "The Blessed One" as a graduate student. "A holy man from India," was how Felix -- fellow student and best friend at MIT -- first described the 60-something engineer."He's got crazy wisdom. You'll love him." I agree to meet the two of them for lunch at a Chinese restaurant in Harvard [...]

11 09, 2016

Taking a Good, Stiff, Memory Dump

September 11th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

"When I think back on all the crap I learned in high school, it's a wonder I can think at all." -- Paul Simon, Kodachrome.   Plague -- infectious fever caused by the bacillus Yersinia pestis, a bacterium transmitted from rodents to humans by the bite of infected fleas -- was the cause of some of the [...]

24 08, 2016

If You Can’t Take the Heat

August 24th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Six years ago, as a resident of an assisted living facility in Pennsylvania, I awoke at 2:00 one bitterly-cold morning to the unmistakable, eye-watering, nasal-stinging, throat constricting smell of burning rubber and electrical wiring. Fire! Someone had inadvertently placed greasy kitchen rags in the industrial dryer and the laundry room was now fully involved in [...]

23 06, 2016

Five Thousand, Two-Hundred, Fifty-Three [5,253]

June 23rd, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

This week, an epiphany of sorts. For the 100th + time, I heard someone refer to an Assisted Living Facility as 'God's waiting room'. It wasn't funny the first time I heard it and it's not . . . Hey, wait a minute. There's some truth to this quip. Just enough to drive home a [...]

24 02, 2016

Derek Rosseau, (Manor) Care Ambassador

February 24th, 2016|Uncategorized|1 Comment

Lucas Cranach the Elder - The Golden Age I was recently hospitalized in three Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) for a triad of 2-3 week short-term, rehab admissions. One of those communities was Manor Care, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. It was here that I met a CNA who reinvigorated my opinion of mankind-in-general, and caregivers, specifically. Derek [...]

7 01, 2016

World Mind Part II – Elder Warrior

January 7th, 2016|Op-Ed, Uncategorized|1 Comment

We  are told by a prominent and highly-respected geriatrician that the three plagues of growing old are loneliness, helplessness and boredom. I respectfully disagree. If you have not conquered loneliness, helplessness and boredom by the time you begin to "grow old," chances are, you never will. For example, when was the last time you heard of an [...]

3 01, 2016

World Mind

January 3rd, 2016|Op-Ed, Uncategorized|1 Comment

In Japan, some married couples -- when faced with advancing age and the "empty nest" syndrome -- choose to spend their final years in Buddhist monasteries. The monastic environment offers a number of advantages: In a like-minded community of both young and old trainees, ambient despair (the disability, dementia and depression that exist in an [...]