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The Aging Placebo

Placebo comes from the Latin word meaning “I shall please.” It is a substance with no active therapeutic effect. A placebo is given to a person in order to deceive them into thinking that it is an active treatment. In drug testing, a placebo can be made to resemble an active medication so that it functions as a control; this is to prevent the recipient from knowing whether a treatment is active or inactive. This psychological phenomenon, in which the recipient perceives an improvement in condition due to personal expectations, rather than the treatment itself, is known as the placebo effect. The placebo effect points to the importance of perception and the brain's role in physical health.

Dedicated to Stan

Stanley and Pat are new friends. They winter in Arizona, and we’ve become acquainted in our neighborhood. Stan, at 93, and Pat are undeniably inspirational. Stan is an accomplished businessman who combined his interest in music to build and operate a well know Supper Club, La Chansonett, in New York City in the 60’s. His first wife, Rita Dimitri, who passed away in 1997, was a multilingual vocalist and ebullient spirit who gained popularity in Europe and joined Stanley in the US as his wife, and premier performer. Stanley became her accompanist in the intimate supper club. Today, Stanley and Pat are the epitomai of superagers who continue to live active, vibrant lives and inspire many

Walking Each Other Home

A favorite quote from Ram Dass says, “We’re all just walking each other home.” The quote brings tears to my eyes. Did you ever walk home with a friend from school? The mental picture of walking someone home is gripping. The very act brings to mind safety, concern, security, love, camaraderie, friendship. There were times my friend and I had so much fun on our walk home that, when we reached her house, she then decided to walk me home! The pleasure was in the journey, not the destination. Did you walk your children to and from class the first few days of the school year? Have you ever walked with a stranger who has lost their way? Giving directions is much less personal than taking them to

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