Skip to comments.At the Bridge Table, Clues to a Lucid Old Age
Posted on 05/22/2009 8:06:24 PM PDT by JoeProBono
LAGUNA WOODS, Calif. The ladies in the card room are playing bridge, and at their age the game is no hobby. It is a way of life, a daily comfort and challenge, the last communal campfire before all goes dark. We play for blood, says Ruth Cummins, 92, before taking a sip of Red Bull at a recent game. Its what keeps us going, adds Georgia Scott, 99.
Its where our closest friends are. In recent years scientists have become intensely interested in what could be called a super memory club the fewer than one in 200 of us who, like Ms. Scott and Ms. Cummins, have lived past 90 without a trace of dementia. It is a group that, for the first time, is large enough to provide a glimpse into the lucid brain at the furthest reach of human life, and to help researchers tease apart what, exactly, is essential in preserving mental sharpness to the end. These are the most successful agers on earth, and theyre only just beginning to teach us whats important, in their genes, in their routines, in their lives, said Dr. Claudia Kawas, a neurologist at the University of California, Irvine.
We think, for example, that its very important to use your brain, to keep challenging your mind, but all mental activities may not be equal. Were seeing some evidence that a social component may be crucial.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
I look forward to a Lucido Old Age.
Journalism - a rare event at the New York Times.
In the next decade they won’t have to study people at retirement homes. We’ll at be at work in our 90’s. Same difference. Oh, well, couldn’t make the cut. Slipped & forgot. No paycheck.
See all works out. It’s all for our own good.
I saw a study put together about 6 years ago on this issue, and it was quite fascinating. They ranked it in order of mental labor: ie The best activities had to do with working with data or numbers; the 2nd best activities were things that required memorization (students, actors, speakers, etc.. The third best was getting out there and socializing, staying active mentally with friends. And the last, and most damaging was watching tv & building puzzles.
I would love to make it to 90, but only if I am coherent enough to enjoy it. I’m sure this decision won’t be my own, with the new deathcare coming into law. At this rate, we’ll be lucky to make it to 50.
You are not far from the truth. They have already raised the retirement age for full SS benefits to 67. What would prevent them from raising the age to 72, which has been talked about. Why not raise it to 100 and be done with the charade.
"We play for blood," says Ruth Cummins, 92, before taking a sip of Red Bull at a recent game. "It's what keeps us going," adds Georgia Scott, 99....as she orders another jack and a beer back.
My mom is 80. She is the youngster in her bridge club. They play every week. I believe one of the “gang” is 96.
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