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Reader's DigestReader's Digest

Reader's Digest

November 2019

In this era of information overload, Reader’s Digest offers something unique: the very best advice, information and inspiration from multiple sources, condensed into an easy-to-read digest. In each issue you’ll get trusted, time-saving insights about Health, Personal Finance, Work, Family, and National issues, PLUS exclusive book excerpts, news-making interviews, and humor.

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10 Issues


access_time2 min.
a few thanks

HERE ARE SOME things I am thankful for as we present the winners of our third Nicest Places in America search: Harding Park, New York. For years, I’ve driven south to JFK airport from my home and looked down from the Whitestone Bridge between Queens and the Bronx to wonder about the tangled little neighborhood sticking out into the East River, with views of Manhattan. Out of nowhere, a resident named Lydia Clark-Sumpter solved the mystery—and gave me a smile—by going to rd.com/nicest to nominate that collection of 236 homes. Turns out Harding Park began a century ago as vacation tents leased to blue-collar families and evolved, through remarkable twists and turns, into an exemplar of diversity and neighborliness—not to mention our winning place in New York State. Thank you, Lydia! Nextdoor.com.…

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Laugh Yourself Smarter Your article says that laughing won’t help with weight loss, because “you would have to laugh solidly for up to three hours to burn off a bag of potato chips.” Is that a large, medium, or small bag of chips? I can laugh for quite a while, so I just need to know how big a bag of chips I need to lose weight. —SHARON M. SHAVER Allentown, Pennsylvania Your article devoted 12 pages to laughter and how good it is for you. Amazingly enough, the Bible manages to say pretty much the same thing in just eight words: Proverbs 17:22—“A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.” —KAREN LOGSDON Lodi, Ohio I was in the hospital after a stroke due to stress. When I came home, my wife handed me the…

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the roll of a lifetime

SINCE THE AGE of three, Chelsie Hill had dreamed of becoming a dancer. “The only thing that I loved was dance,” she told CBS News. That ambition nearly ended one night in 2010. Hill, then a 17-year-old high school senior in Pacific Grove, California, was in a car accident that put her in the hospital for 51 days and left her paralyzed from the waist down. For most people, that would have dashed any hope of a dancing career. For Hill, it was the beginning. Far from being an obstacle, her wheelchair emboldened her. “I wanted to prove to my community—and to myself—that I was still ‘normal,’” she told Teen Vogue. “Whatever normal meant.” Normal for her meant dancing, so Hill did it in her wheelchair right alongside her nondisabled high…

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cutting to the chase

KYLE CASSIDY AND three other members of the Annenberg (Lunchtime) Running Group were stretching on the grounds of the University of Pennsylvania, waiting for a few stragglers. The Penn colleagues and other community members meet three days a week for a roughly 30-minute jog and an occasional lecture. That’s right—during some runs, one of them delivers a talk; topics range from the brain to Bitcoin. Not your normal exercise chatter. But on this day last January, it would not be their normal run. The first clue that something was off was the man who sprinted past them. “Probably running a 7:15 pace,” Cassidy told Runner’s World admiringly. Cassidy discovered why the sprinter was so fleet of foot when another man ran by, yelling, “Help! He took my phone and laptop!” At that, the…

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sleep depraved

I sleep with a knife under my pillow. You never know when someone is going to break in and give you a cake. —@shariv67 I used to be able to pull all-nighters but now I can barely pull all-dayers. —@wolfyneyda People in sleeping bags are the soft tacos of the bear world. —@longwall26 Any job is a dream job if you fall asleep in meetings. —@somaddysmith There are many theories on why humans even need to sleep, but I’m pretty sure it’s to charge our phones. —@alispagnola Accidentally fell asleep smoking an e-cigarette and when I woke up my whole house was on the Internet. —@JermHimselfish…

access_time4 min.
betting on humanity

OUR FAMILIES LIVED more than 450 miles away, so a few weeks before Thanksgiving one year, my then husband and I decided to invite a guest over for the holiday. I called a senior center in the Dallas area and they suggested Ilse, a woman I imagined would be quiet, soft-spoken, serene. I was wrong. Ilse was a stubborn 78-year-old force of nature. She enjoyed complimentary gambling junkets to Las Vegas and kept a local bookie on speed dial. She favored sequined T-shirts; her tiny wirehaired mutt, named Speckles; and spending time at the senior center. Describing this opinionated, four-foot-four woman as a firecracker would be like referring to the Olympic torch as a disposable lighter. On Thanksgiving, within minutes of arriving, Ilse plopped her oversize purse on the kitchen counter and,…