Thursday, October 25, 2012

46...

...is a fairly nondescript number. It’s not the halfway point between 40 and 50; it’s not the answer to life, the universe and everything; it’s not even a prime number.

However, there’s one way of looking at 46 that makes it rather special – it means I’ve survived yet another year.

Not that being 45 was particularly tough – as 12-month periods go, it’s actually been a lot less hassle that most.

The point I’m making is, statistically, once we get past the age of about 10 or so, with each passing year, the chances of us dying increases.

It appears I’ve outlived Freddie Mercury, Vlad the Impaler and Henry IV of England, all of whom kicked the bucket aged 45.

I’ve also passed the average life expectancy for a man in Mozambique (38.3), Swaziland (39.8), Sierra Leone (41), Zambia (42.1), Lesotho (42.9), Central African Republic (43.3), Zimbabwe (43.8), Afghanistan (43.9), Rwanda (44.6), Liberia (44.8), Guinea-Bissau (44.9), and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (45.2).

Where mortality is concerned, within the UK there are regional variations. The average man born in England will live to 78.6, while the average man born in Scotland will only live to 75.9. I haven’t managed to find out what effect living in Scotland will have on a man originally born in England – other than personal experience leads me to believe that entering certain pubs in Scotland with an English accent might lead to a significant shortening of life expectancy.

One thing’s for certain, though – being this age makes me slightly more obsessed with mortality statistics...

18 comments:

Anna van Schurman said...

Jesus, dude, I turned 46 eleven days ago. Way to make me feel old and DYING. I did not feel this way until I read this post. Thanks-a-freakin' lot. Buck up old man.

And happy birthday again.

mapstew said...

Youngfella! :¬)

Kim Ayres said...

Anna VS - ah, but women only get sexier as they get older, which offsets the risk factors a little bit :)

Mapstew - where you go, I follow :)

hope said...

I still believe age is mind over matter: if you don't mind, it doesn't matter. :)

Happy Birthday!

allencapoferri said...

Happy Birthday Kim!
While reading about your thoughts of life expectancy it reminded about something an anthropology professor said about the relation between life expectancy and dimorphism and competition.

Hindsfeet said...

Happy Birthday all the same, m'dear....I turned the big 4-0 12 days ago....instead of feeling older and wiser, I feel very small, I see a lot of dumb stuff in my wake, more like a little kid trying to seem very grown-up....and not kidding anyone...mostly feeling like the gig is up and looking for passage to the island of the misfit toys...

...is there a therapist in the house?....ha.

oh well...if nothing else, I've made you feel better about your 4-6....leave some bread crumbs on the path as you go....I'll take all the help I can get....

happy bday K,
L

Kathy said...

I just turned 55. You are still very young! Happy Birthday!

TalesNTypos said...

:-) Happy birthday! Eat cake.

marke said...

Ah, you youngsters! But that is a pretty famous number:

As soon as I saw this I thought you were blogging about Valentino Rossi (46 is his racing number, not his age) .... (pretty important news is; he's leaving Ducati and riding for Yamaha again next MotoGP season..)

...but, that was not what you were writing about and so I was disappointed. ;-)

Sandy's witterings said...

Don't worry Kim, I'm still here at 47. Strangely enough, 46 was the first year I consistantly got my age wrong - I spent most of the year thinking I was 47 - you've no idea how disappointing it was in January not to age a year as I usually do.
Late happy birthday

Pat said...

At 46 I thought it would be all down hill from there. How wrong I was.
Every age has its challenges but it also has its compensations and never imagine that one's heart can't thud with excitement - even in one's eighties.

Theanne said...

my son will make it to 47 next month...I made it to 70 this past July. the odds are I will live as long as I'm meant to...and that's that. however, if only I had Don here to share this growing old crap with me, I'd be a lot happier :D

BTW Happy Birthday! LOL

Kim Ayres said...

Hope - thank you :)

Allen - can you remember in more detail what he said about it?

Liz - instead of walking about with regrets, try this thought (one paragraph therapy)...

Imagine you had inherited your body and just moved into it - just like moving into a new house. It's the age it is, and the walls are where they are and there's not a lot you can do about them. What you can do, though is personalise it and make it yours. The history is unimportant - what IS important is what you now do with it.

May your next 40 years be even more fun than your last :)

Kathy - I hope you had a great day :)

Adila - thank you - and I did! :)

Marke - Where motorsports are concerned, I used to be an avid Formula 1 follower, but eventually I just kept falling asleep - see Losing interest in my favourite sport

Sandy - from 45 to 47 in one step - so you're now leaping up the age ladder 2 at a time?

Pat - I still have a sense that the best is yet to come, and there's no doubt you will always be an inspiration :)

Theanne - thank you :)

Hindsfeet said...

...just came back to this tonight....so grateful that I did.....

*thank* you, Kim, for this gem....I'm tucking in now, and will drift off thinking about this....internalizing it......

...I will always be so glad that I 'stumbled' onto you.....

tonight more than ever.

warmest,
Liz

Kim Ayres said...

Hope you sleep well :)

Hindsfeet said...

: )

Guyana-Gyal said...

May you have a long, healthy, happy life, Kim.

Awww, those chaps in certain pubs are just jealous of your great radio-voice. Boooooo them.

Kim Ayres said...

GG - thank you :)