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Jon Hassler's Remarks Upon Turning Seventy

I have a confession to make.  I have been seventy for nearly two months.  The reason we're celebrating today is that I have become such a snowbird that I didn't want to come north from Florida in March.

And speaking of seventy, I recall a year or so ago I was standing with a group of men who were about to turn this age and we were discussing our disabilities.  One of the men -- I think it was Rick who has MS -- said "Old age certainly has nothing to recommend it."  Along with the others I nodded my agreement, even though I thought he must be wrong.  Surely, I thought, there must be an element of old age that's good.  I thought perhaps it was wisdom.  One hears about the wisdom of age, but that's not true in my case.  I'm no wiser today than I was a fifty, or thirty.  

It was while putting this party together that I discovered what it was.  A definite pleasure of old age is looking back at all the good people one has known and called friends.  And it's a special pleasure to have a hundred of them in the same room.  I want to thank each of you for being here.  And for being my friend.

-- Jon Hassler

May 2003

 

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Last modified: June 26, 2003