How About If I'm
Just Bored To Serious Injury?
by Mad Dog
All this advice is enough to bore you to death, which it now
turns out can actually happen.
||If you believe the song
“Fame,” we all want to live forever. Unless, that is, you subscribe
to The Who’s point of view and want to die before you get old, though
it was obvious if you watched the Super Bowl that they long ago missed
that window of opportunity and must have switched their philosophy to
Irene Cara’s without telling us. Either way, the question is, Since
you’re going to go, what can you do to delay the inevitable?
Aside from not stepping in front of a
train, texting while under the influence of the driver’s seat in a
moving vehicle, or telling a Sarah Palin follower that the only hopey
changey thing that’s been working out for ya is that she’s not in
office, there’s the obvious. You know, like eat well, exercise daily,
and get plenty of sleep. Just kidding. I mean, let’s be serious, no
one has time to actually do all those things, and besides, if it
didn’t work for Euell Gibbons, Jim Fixx, and Sleeping Beauty, it’s
not going to work for you.
The problem is, there’s no sure
thing and no agreement about what will help extend your life and what
won’t. One day they say coffee is bad for you, the next it’s a way
to lower your risk of diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and colon cancer.
Don’t be surprised if Starbucks starts slapping labels on their double
caramel mocha Frappuccino with extra whipped cream and sugar that say:
“Proven good for you this week!* (*the last we heard).”
About the only things we can definitively
say aren’t good for us are cigarettes, heroin, and Ann Coulter.
Luckily only two of those are addictive. And fun.
Then when you’re drinking your tenth cup of coffee while
telling yourself it’s for therapeutic reasons and not just so you
won’t fall asleep at your desk, you read that having a glass of red
wine a day can reduce the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.
Sure you read it on someone’s Facebook status update, but hey, who has
time to check real news sources like David Letterman’s monologue,
“The Onion,” or The O’Reilly Show. Keep in mind that the
recommendation is one glass of wine a day. Dosage is important. More
than that and you might shorten your life by accidentally walking in
front of a train or saying the wrong thing to a Palinite.
Every day we’re confronted with new
advice or a revision of the old. This week alone there was a report that
beer, which it turns out is rich in dietary silicon, may prevent
osteoporosis, while eating chocolate may decrease the risk of having a
stroke. About the only things we can definitively say aren’t good for
us are cigarettes, heroin, and Ann Coulter. Luckily only two of those
are addictive. And fun.
All this advice is enough to bore you
to death, which it now turns out can actually happen. According to an
article in the International Journal of Epidemiology—motto:
“You’ll read it if you know what’s good for you”— the more
bored you are, the more likely you are to die early. While this isn’t
exactly good news for anyone who has nothing better to do than read the
magazine cover to cover, it could be good for the rest of us.
it’s true there aren’t any surefire ways to guarantee you’ll live
longer, there are things you can do to make your time here feel longer.
First, have children.
The researchers, who were from University College London, tracked
down a group of civil servants who had filled out questionnaires during
the mid-1980s. One of the questions was about how bored they were at
work. Hopefully “So bored I’m filling out your bloody
questionnaire” wasn’t one of the possible answers. It turns out that
those who said they were very bored were two and a half times more
likely to have died of a heart problem than those who said they
weren’t bored. Of course why the researchers believed any civil
servant who claimed not to be bored with their job is a mystery, one
that hopefully will be cleared up in the next issue.
While it’s true there aren’t any
surefire ways to guarantee you’ll live longer, there are things you
can do to make your time here feel longer. First, have children. Days
will feel like weeks, weeks will feel like years, and years will
convince you that The Who had a point.
Next, consider watching more TV.
While it’s true it’s a way to pass time, the more you watch the
slower time passes. Try this experiment, start watching shows like
“Jersey Shore,” reruns of “Hank,” and “The Biggest Loser,”
preferably without pondering whether the latter’s title is personally
appropriate. Time will not only stand still, it will go backwards.
Einstein considered this for his third theory of relativity but he never
got around to it because he couldn’t stop watching “The Milton Berle
Show,” “My Little Margie,” and “I Love Lucy” long enough to
If you really want to try to extend
your life, not just slow it down, the best thing you can do is drink
coffee, have a glass of wine with a piece of chocolate, and top it off
with a glass of beer. With luck you’ll be healthier, live longer, and
not be bored, which in turn will also help your longevity. And if it
doesn’t? Hey, at least you’ll enjoy your time while you’re here.
©2010 Mad Dog
Productions, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
These columns appear in better newspapers across the country.
Read them and live longer.