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November 25, 1988

Food for Thought

Author Affiliations

Boca Raton, Fla

Boca Raton, Fla

JAMA. 1988;260(20):3000. doi:10.1001/jama.1988.03410200044010

Knowing that I had been invited to a drug company—sponsored lecture cum gourmet dinner, a couple of my colleagues asked me if I would drive them to the affair, since they were both hesitant about driving at night. They were in their mid80s while I, at that time, was a mere youngster of 74. Compared with them, I still had some of the bravado of my youth.

So, I was the chauffeur while my two old friends sat in the back seat discussing, mostly, the state of their health. Both of them admitted to being in good health and requiring no special medicines or treatments. Both were almost smug in their self-satisfaction in having been able to maintain an active medical practice for more than 50 years. What worried them most, however, was their mode of dying. Each confessed to having prayed fervently and frequently for a quick and easy