Sunday, January 25, 2015

It Just Doesn't Make Sense. . .


13 comments:

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    1. There are certain benefits to 'civilization', eh?

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  2. yes i know it's a joke but i feel compelled to lay some math on ya....high child mortality skewed the average life expectancy low. if you made it out of childhood you had pretty close to the same chance of living to a ripe old age as you do now. there were just not nearly so many kids who made it that far.

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    1. At first, I thought that the joke to which you were referring was that you were going to be laying math on me. . . 'Cuz I know how you love the math. . . ;)

      What you say is true; once you hit age five or so, you were as likely as not to see 70 (Altho I suspect that that is more true of 'recent centuries' - since 1600 or so, maybe? - than truly 'ancient' ones.)

      But, just to fill out the picture, there were other life-shortening factors. About a third of women died in childbirth. And, in the days before antibiotics (only since the 1930s or so) and modern antiseptic practices (~1830) lots of illnesses that we don't think twice about nowadays were often fatal. And, if you did live into or beyond your 60s, you were as likely to die of starvation as anything else, since you probably didn't have any teeth left.

      But yes, your point is well-taken. The biggest difference in life expectancy from 2-3 centuries ago to now happened before age 5. . .

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    2. But of course, there's that bit from Psalm 90 about 'the years of a man are three score and ten, or by reason of strength, four score'. . . Which would go considerably farther back than 1600. . .

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    3. And then again (along the lines of 'illnesses that we don't think of as fatal anymore'), you have a long list of famous people who died at very young ages (without even the benefit of motorcycles to crash):

      composer Franz Schubert, 31
      composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 35
      philosopher/mathematician Blaise Pascal, 39
      composer Robert Schumann, 46
      St Francis of Assisi, 44
      St Thomas Aquinas, 49

      to name a few. . .

      So, yes, our ancestors (many of them) knew what it was like to be 70 or even 80, but still, a lot more of 'em died before they saw 50, or even 40, too. . .

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  3. Well, I was going to say something funny, but this has deteriorated into total seriousness. Thanks a lot, Lime!!!!!!

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    1. Awwww, c'mon back, Sully, and say something funny. It was what I was after in the first place; I mean, I posted a cartoon, fer pete's sake. . . Pleeeeeaaaase?

      ;)

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    2. Oh, OK.

      Man: I bought this caveman outfit to spice up our sex life!

      Woman: Ooh, that's kinky! But I'm getting a headache.

      Man: Yup.

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    3. Headache. . . I get it. . . ;)

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  4. Well, I'd love to shove some reality in his face but .... where's he buried again? ;-)

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    1. Once again, my friend, you have thoroughly baffled me. . .

      ;)

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