From the Publisher
“An insightful meditation.” - The New York Times Book Review
“Along the way, Klein touches on the ideas of Bertrand Russell, Erik Erikson, Aristotle, and William James. Klein's narrative is a delightful and spirited conversation, offering up the ingredients inherent to the art of living well in old age.” – Publisher’s Weekly
“Charming and accessible, this philosophical survey simply and accessibly makes academic philosophy relevant to ordinary human emotion.” – Kirkus Review
“Witty and wry” – Huffington Post
“A lovely little book with both heart and punch.” – Booklist
“A charming meditation on aging. Daniel Klein takes us on a thought-provoking journey.” – The Weekly Standard Book Review
“Reading this book after a period of overwork and high stress, I was bowled over by its easy charm and hard-won wisdom. I shall be buying it in bulk as presents for my equally overburdened peers, and I suspect a few older people will enjoy it, too.” – Markus Berkmann, The Daily Mail
“If you think philosophy is hard stuff that makes your head spin and possibly hurt, Klein is the perfect guide to deep thinking. Being fully aware and wondering how best to spend our time are useful practices at any age, and this warm, thought-provoking book is a terrific introduction to thinking about life philosophically.” – Concord Monitor — Multiple
Read an Excerpt
Epicureanism as a Living Philosophy Today
Unsurprisingly, Epicurus’s laid-back legacy survives more thoroughly in Greece’s rural areas than in its cities. Aegean islanders like to tell a joke about a prosperous Greek American who visits one of the islands on vacation. Out on a walk, the affluent Greek American comes upon an old Greek man sitting on a rock, sipping a glass of ouzo, and lazily staring at the sun setting into the sea. The American notices there are olive trees growing on the hills behind the old Greek but that they are untended, with olives just dropping here and there onto the ground. He asks the old man who the trees belong to.
'They’re mine,' the Greek replies.
'Don’t you gather the olives?' the American asks.
'I just pick one when I want one,' the old man says.
'But don’t you realise that if you pruned the trees and picked the olives at their peak, you could sell them? In America everybody is crazy about virgin olive oil, and they pay a damned good price for it.'
'What would I do with the money?' the old Greek asks.
'Why, you could build yourself a big house and hire servants to do everything for you.'
'And then what would I do?'
'You could do anything you want!'
'You mean, like sit outside and sip ouzo at sunset?'