I read a news report this week that says while we are living longer in the U.S., people in other countries are living even longer. Bummer.
I asked Junior E. Lee, general manager of the Yarbrough Worldwide Media and Pest Control Company, in Greater Garfield, to analyze the report for me so I could give you the details.
Junior E. Lee, as you know, heads up our highly-respected round or square polls division - "Give us the dough and we will cook the numbers" - and is also a certified pest control professional.
There are not many polling companies that can claim a certified pest control professional on their staff. I believe that to be a competitive advantage.
Junior said it would be a few weeks before he could provide an in-depth analysis and asked me to apologize to you for the delay but he has a pest control emergency. It seems that Arveen Ridley has biting lice bothering his cows. Cows can't talk, of course, but they can show their unhappiness in more tangible ways. As a result, Arveen has to milk with one hand and hold his nose with the other. Junior says that is not a satisfactory solution for either Arveen or the cows.
I told Junior I thought you would understand and that I would try to handle it myself. Frankly, I am much better at this kind of thing than I am spraying for biting lice.
The information in the news report is attributed to a 2006 report from the National Academy of Sciences and a 2011 report from the National Institutes of Health. Admittedly, they don't have the cachet of round or square polls but I would deem them pretty good sources.
First off, you should know American women have gone from being the longest-lived in the world in the 1960s to 28th today. Whoa.
You know who is going to get the blame for that, don't you? We guys. We get blamed for everything else so we might as well take a hit on this one, as well. Look for some future study to show that a woman's longevity is adversely impacted by some of the things men do, like drinking milk out of the bottle and failing to put the toilet seat down - or up. I forget which.
Evidently, men don't do this kind of stuff in Japan because Japanese women are living longer than American women, according to the study. So are French and Italian women. That surprises me. I don't know much about Japanese men except they usually know more English than they will admit. As for Frenchmen and Italians, I have always felt like they could get away with a lot of things that would get us American men a skillet upside the head.
The study shows that women still outlive men in the U.S. on average by five years. We guys start dropping out at about 75; the women at 80. Maybe a man's lifespan is shortened by some of the things we see women do. I'm still trying to figure out why they will burn up $2 worth of gasoline in order to save 10 cents on a box of cereal. I am told it is because the faraway store had a coupon.
Experts say if we eat the right foods and shun the bad stuff we have the ability to live into our 90s and even to 100. Let me go ahead and state the obvious: If by "right foods" you are talking about broccoli, you can forget it. I'll try to beat the odds with banana pudding. If I do, the folks at the National Academy of Science might do a study on me and I will become famous. If not, I'll die satisfied. I love banana pudding.
Scientists also believe there is a correlation between being happy and living a long life. I've got a chance here. I am never happier than when I am tweaking the humor-impaired among us and reading their blustery emails. And I do get a few. One guy wrote me recently to say he would just as soon watch the "blond female airheads on Fox" as to have to read my opinions. He didn't seem happy. I'll bet he isn't going to live a long time.
As for me, I have only begun living. That assumes the banana pudding holds out and I can figure out the toilet seat thing.
You can reach Dick Yarbrough at email@example.com; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, GA 31139; online at dickyarbrough.com or at www.facebook.com/dickyarb.