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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

A Celebration of Life, Love and Longevity

October 18, 2003

"Teaching Lessons of a Lifetime" (Oct. 14) brought to light a teacher who has wisdom and kindness for the young, still, at age 90. Gray hairs do not equal desuetude. I am 90, also. I drive a car that will do 140 mph; not with me in it. This well-loved teacher says that laughter contributes heavily to longevity. I have concluded that pessimism is important. Murphy's Law applies to life as well as mechanics.

If misfortune can befall, it will befall, and plans must be made for resistance. Being cheerful is healthy -- if you can swing it. Your dog consumes sticks, garbage, poop and, when he pukes, it will be nowhere but on your new white carpet.

Carleton H. Ralston

Los Angeles

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It is one thing to stand on one's feet for hours and hold the attention of yet another generation of know-it-all high-schoolers, but Eleanor Bralver's crowning achievement may have been at her birthday cake. Imagine blowing out 90 candles before class and not being breathless!

Ted Lepon

Los Angeles

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