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Blog Introduction

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I’ve really resisted starting a blog. There are so many out there already. Who has time to read them all? I’m not an avid blog reader myself. We all spend so much time at the computer already, and I find myself eager to get done with my screen business so I can get back to reading my book. Truth to tell, I read only one blog regularly. Every morning when I fire up my computer, there is Diane...

Upbeat Elders

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            Last week I had my say on the rewards of intergenerational friendships. Today, I want to focus on the upper end of the age spectrum where Rosellen and I are definitely encamped. For a long time, I agreed with a gerontological social worker friend’s contention that aging is no less a social construction than race. I still believe...

Intergenerational Friendships

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Rosellen’s parents moved from Manhattan to West Palm Beach, Florida when the New York air became difficult for my mother-in-law to breathe. Their new home, Century Village, was a community of perhaps ten thousand retirees, all living in similar one- or two-bedroom apartments. It is telling that in preparing their wills, they asked each of their three children if they would like to inherit the...

Evolving Aspirations

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I’ve read a lot of proposals in my time for new schools, new programs, new institutions. They contain many statements about the nature of the new entity that have to be seen as aspirational. In the fortunate instances when these proposals actually come to life, we can sometimes trace the way these aspirations mutate because the circumstances into which they are born are in constant flux. I want...

Bloodlands

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              If the name Timothy Snyder is familiar to you, it’s likely because of the pamphlet-size book by this Yale historian called On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century. When it was published in 2017, shortly after Donald Trump took office, it sounded a loud alarm for those of us who feared that his time as...

The Next Level

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Yosef asked us to close our eyes, think about our desires, let them wash over us, fix on one and ride it like a surfer to wherever it takes you. The ultimate goal of the exercise was to arrive at a prayer directed toward the fulfillment of that desire.  I was at a weekend retreat with members of my chavurah, my circle of Jewish friends who are the core of my Chicago community. Even...

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