Preview of Your Coming Attractions

When I retired after 40 years of writing columns for the San Jose Mercury News, I figured I'd said about all I could say. Wrong. I've realized that at age 76, I'm about 10 years older than the oldest baby boomers, who are now turning 66. My very average body has had a lot of experiences in those 10 years. I've learned a lot that could be helpful to people just starting on that same path -- what to do, what to avoid, what to keep an eye on.. Consider me your canary-in-the-coalmine for the boomer generation. Tune in regularly for the heads-up advice.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Getting Ahead

We’ve all read the medical advice that we need to stimulate and exercise our brains in order to keep them working right. Not doing so could lead to memory loss and a few other things I forget.
     So I’ve been consciously working on crossword puzzles and other word games to keep the old bean in tune. But now, it seems that’s not enough.
     Those medical experts are saying that we constantly need to give our brains new things to work on. Crossword puzzles are fine, but they’re not enough. Some of the tips I’ve read recently include:
     Take up violin if you already play piano.
     Learn to speak another language.
     If you’re a crossword puzzle pro, switch to Sudoku.
     Use your non-dominant hand to write or brush your teeth.
     Play board or computer games that activate strategic, spatial and memory skills.
     Dance. Intricate choreography is good for both body and brain.
    It seems I’m not through, that I need to upgrade my brain workouts. So here’s my plan:
     I don’t like Sudoku, so I’ve been brushing my teeth with my left hand. I’m going to be traveling for a couple of weeks, so I’ll brush up my rudimentary skills in French, Italian and German. And when I get back, I’ve got to start doing what I’ve long said I was going to do: learn to play the piano (or, for starters, at least learn to read music).
     My head’s tired already. How about you? 

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