Jimmy Cayne Shouldn't Be Damaging His Brain Cells

Of all of Jimmy Cayne’s indulgences, it was probably his love of the game of bridge which had the biggest negative impact on Bear Stearns during its final month. It basically turned him into an absentee CEO and chairman, as he was even playing a tournament in Detroit during Bear’s final dying days.

No doubt, Cayne would like to be a competitive bridge player throughout the rest of his retirement.

But warning to Cayne, your opponents will be quite sharp in mind. Don’t do anything that could dull your brain! (You know what we’re saying, here, right? We’re talking smoking pot.)

NYT has a profile of old bridge players and their amazing mental skills:

The ladies in the card room are playing bridge, and at their age the game is no hobby. It is a way of life, a daily comfort and challenge, the last communal campfire before all goes dark.

We play for blood,” says Ruth Cummins, 92, before taking a sip of Red Bull at a recent game.

“It’s what keeps us going,” adds Georgia Scott, 99. “It’s where our closest friends are.”

In recent years scientists have become intensely interested in what could be called a super memory club — the fewer than one in 200 of us who, like Ms. Scott and Ms. Cummins, have lived past 90 without a trace of dementia. It is a group that, for the first time, is large enough to provide a glimpse into the lucid brain at the furthest reach of human life, and to help researchers tease apart what, exactly, is essential in preserving mental sharpness to the end.

Read the whole fascinating profile >

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