Barbara HaberBarbara Haber

Hometown: Little Neck

Member of EHSLI since May 1998

I was born and bred in the Bronx and went to CCNY, majoring in English. After Mel and I married, we moved to Boston where we were both pursuing doctorates in English at Boston University. When we moved to Harrisburg, PA, I switched to social work (having achieved an ABD–all but dissertation–in American literature), got my MSW, and have been a practicing psychotherapist ever since. In the last ten or so years, my life has come to revolve most centrally around relationships–with Mel (my husband since 1967), with my patients and supervisees, with my friends, and with whatever I’m striving to learn at the moment.

What’s your favorite movie and why?  My favorite is Ikiru, a Japanese film by Akira Kurosawa, because it so deeply and movingly embodies the love of life and of life’s preciousness.

If you were having your last meal on earth what would it be? 

I would have the best champagne, a dozen oysters, a salad of arugula and dandelion leaves with goat cheese in a raspberry vinaigrette, steak au poivre (medium rare) with pommes frittes, and a big piece of dense and moist chocolate cake with espresso coffee.  I would eat very slowly.

What do you do in your spare time? (e.g., hobbies or other volunteer work)

I listen to all kinds of music, watch movies, read, take walks, enjoy NY.

What is your favorite thing to do on a weekend? 

Be with friends and eat-drink-talk-laugh.

What is your idea of an ideal vacation? 

Be in any of the world’s most wonderful cities, walking around and enjoying the best of the city. I also would love to rent a villa in Tuscany or Provence for all of August and invite family and friends to visit.

What is your favorite quote?  From T. S. Eliot’s Four Quartets:

We shall not cease from exploration

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.

Also, I love Wayne Gretzky’s observation:  “You miss 100% of the shots you never take.”

Who is your role model, hero, or inspiration – and why? 

I have so many. Anyone who strives to be loving and has courage, decency, and integrity, I will take as a role model.

If you could do one thing over in life, what would it be (or had done that you never did) 

I would not have stopped writing poetry, and I would have paid much, much more attention in history classes.

What is one thing you absolutely want to do before you die? 

I would love to return to writing poetry, and also learn to play the fiddle well enough to play bluegrass, Cajun and zydeco music with other musicians.

Why are you a member of EHSLI?  I’m a member of EHSLI for the community and friendships with like-minded people and to keep my eye on the (endless) task of learning to do the caring and loving thing in all my relationships.