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Richard Abrons

The Childhood Games That Make Us Feel All Nostalgia

Richard Abrons | Posted 02.15.2015 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Growing up in New Rochelle in the the 1930s, we played games that now are off the map. I wonder if any of my small but hearty band of readers are familiar with them. You'd have to be old and lived in the suburbs. These games took up much of our free time and I remember them with great fondness.

Take Responsibility

Richard Abrons | Posted 01.20.2015 | Healthy Living
Richard Abrons

When I was in my 40s, I asked my 84-year-old uncle what was the most important piece of wisdom he had learned from his long experience. He thought for a while, and then he said, "take responsibility."


Richard Abrons | Posted 02.23.2015 | Healthy Living
Richard Abrons

And now I walk with a cane. At first reluctant to display such an obvious accoutrement of old age, I have come to enjoy my persona. With each thump I feel the gravitas of Peter Stuyvesant, an old familiar figure thumping through the streets of the Big Apple. Still observing, still discerning, not to be trifled with. I wave my cane. Out of my way, whipper-snappers. Yes, doctors take up more and more of my time. Bring 'em on!

Janet's Class

Richard Abrons | Posted 01.26.2015 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

If you are of a certain age, retired, without an office and somewhat bored. I have an idea for you. Join an acting group, class, whatever you want to call it. What you need is an experienced leader to guide you and a dozen or so pleasant people who will commit to the venture.

Give Ups

Richard Abrons | Posted 12.23.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Children and grandchildren, friends, people to see, places to go, things to do. I have NOT given up.

The Days of Awe

Richard Abrons | Posted 11.24.2014 | Religion
Richard Abrons

At home I never went to religious school and was not bar mitzvahed. We went as a family to services on the high holy days. My father always said, 'we go to be counted.' We went as part of the team.

This Messy World

Richard Abrons | Posted 10.28.2014 | World
Richard Abrons

A messy world? Oh, yes. But do some good and enjoy. Nothing wrong with that.

Letting You In

Richard Abrons | Posted 09.28.2014 | Healthy Living
Richard Abrons

About 10 years ago my internist told me that my blood test showed kidney numbers beyond normal. He said it in passing and I let it pass. I have no interest into possible lurking calamities.

How I Know I've Finally Reached Old Age

Richard Abrons | Posted 09.08.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

When I was 80, I wrote a personal memoir. This is what I said about old age: 'I am an old man. Eighty has got to be old. But, if in good health with all the joints and the brain working, what is the big deal?' Now, at 87, I wouldn't say that today.

The 4 Maxims That Have Helped Me Live A Better Life

Richard Abrons | Posted 08.18.2014 | GPS for the Soul
Richard Abrons

A few maxims have become embedded in my psyche and have helped me live a better life. They are few and they are not old favorites like 'a rolling stone gathers no moss' or 'a penny saved is a penny earned.'

Sense and Sensibility

Richard Abrons | Posted 07.01.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

My lovely and adored wife, Iris, would have been a survivor in prehistoric times. What our neanderthal ancestors needed to evade the sabre tooth tiger and the massive mastodon she has in spades.

Only Connect

Richard Abrons | Posted 06.17.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Nothing is more satisfying than connecting, truly connecting, with another soul or group of souls. Mostly, however, we skim the surface, maintain our poise, do not penetrate or reveal.


Richard Abrons | Posted 05.20.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Thought I wouldn't get around to that, did you? Did you really think I would ignore a third of our time? Perhaps you thought I would have nothing to contribute. Wrong. Eighty-seven years, hundreds of conversations, a thousand articles.

Why I'm Bringing My Tennis Racquet With Me To Heaven

Richard Abrons | Posted 04.09.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Tennis has been very important in my life. And I'm not even particularly good at it. When I was eight, away at camp, a racquet was put into my hands. It felt so right. I won the tennis medal there every year until my last.

Reducing Inequality Through Philanthropy?

Richard Abrons | Posted 03.10.2014 | Impact
Richard Abrons

When David Koch lavishes funds on the opera, ballet and Lincoln Center, he is increasing inequality, as he is by lowering his taxes, some of which goes to government programs for the poor.

Revisiting Every Day a Visitor

Richard Abrons | Posted 01.23.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

In my sixties, I got an MFA degree at NYU in creative writing. My day job was investing in the stock market for clients. That paid the rent but, after 40 years, it began to wear thin. Writing was -- is -- where it's at. How else to make sense of this world?

Why We Knew So Much More Than Our Grandchildren

Richard Abrons | Posted 09.05.2013 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

It seems to me that my contemporaries and I knew so much more when we were growing up than do my grandchildren and their friends. I mean general knowledge -- history, politics, the complicaations of life.

Some Choice Nonprofits

Richard Abrons | Posted 08.12.2013 | New York
Richard Abrons

We New Yorkers are a generous bunch. Mostly we know where we want to help. Some of us, however, are unsure of where to aim their dollars. These organizations are worthy of your investigation.

Technology and Me

Richard Abrons | Posted 05.27.2013 | Technology
Richard Abrons

I am a user of technology at the lowest level. We have voice-mail but can't access messages from afar. We have GPS in our car but neither my wife Iris nor I know how to use it.

Why I'm Not Yet Ready For God To Take Me

Richard Abrons | Posted 05.07.2013 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Peter, my baby, my teenager, my tennis partner for 30 years, who now vigorously covers 90 percent of the court when we are doubles parfners. Peter -- old? I mean really old? Like me? Yes, as I see the child in the man, I can see the elderly in the man, now strong in his middle years.

The Day I Nearly Died

Richard Abrons | Posted 04.05.2013 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

Every Wednesday from 8 to 10 a.m. i have a tennis game with my two sons and a fourth. Spring to fall, we play on the public courts in Central Park around 95th Street. In the winter, we play indoors at Midtown Tennis Club, 8th Avenue and 27th Street.

Why I Like The Obituary Page

Richard Abrons | Posted 02.07.2013 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

If you could read only two pages of The New York Times, which would you choose? I would choose the front page and the obituary page. When I come home from a trip, I dash through the papers and scan those two pages. I have to know who, among my friends and acquaintances, kicked the bucket.

My Lunch Group

Richard Abrons | Posted 01.23.2014 | Fifty
Richard Abrons

I am part of a NYC lunch group that has met for lunch once a month for the past fifteen years and is still going strong. There are six of us, all in our mid-eighties. Some of us have been friends for 72 years; others, a mere 50 years.

Voter ID for All

Richard Abrons | Posted 11.10.2012 | Politics
Richard Abrons

Voter ID laws could be noxious for the people of our country. That is their purpose. But they could also be a gift. Make that happen.

A Winning Hand, If He'll Play It

Richard Abrons | Posted 09.30.2012 | Politics
Richard Abrons

For two smart guys, surrounded by supposed smart advisers, this is the dumbest presidential campaign I have ever witnessed. And I go back to FDR.