Bill Thomas: We Are All Elders in the Making

Bill Thomas, the award-winning geriatrician who founded the Green House model of care, recently delivered a speech at TED SF called “Elderhood Rising.”

I know, it sounds a little new agey, and this guy is anything but conventional.  But he’ll get you to think about how aging is changing.

A few years ago Bill Thomas and his family lived just a few miles from where I work. They hosted retreats on this very subject in a large, cozy, hearth-centered room (now the centerpiece of all Green Houses). All of us, hailing from different parts of NY and beyond, sat mesmerized when Bill Thomas talked about that very important stage of development after adulthood — elderhood. This guy in a raggedy sweatshirt and shorts made us laugh and cry. His schtick, and his looks, were not so different from the stand-up comedian Zach Galifianakis, star of the Hangover movies. But instead of sitting at a piano, sipping beer, and spouting ridiculous stories, Bill Thomas stood at a whiteboard, shouted, pointed, paused for emphasis, and then whispered the words “We are all elders in the making.” Take that, Hangover fans.

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Meika Loe

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