The Stratfordian

False or True, it's up to you

longevity, who needs it?

I have to confess I was a little alarmed to read that life expectancy has, in this year of the Lord, 2019, stalled. I’m not sure whether this means I had better hurry up and finish this or, 100 is looking pretty unrealistic.

As always it looks like the female of the species has it made, what with her life expectancy of 82.9 while us poor blokes will, with more than a bit of luck just about make it to 79.2. I can only assume that we get a shorter period of time on this mortal coil because we work harder and therefore get knackered, quicker. It’s either that or a reflection and consequence of the time tory Jeremy *unt spent as our bloody useless Health Minister.

Anyway, this shocking revelation girded my loins and made me do a bit of research. And I’ll tell you one thing, it’s a whole lot better than ‘living’ in the Middle Ages.

Apparently, if you were born to a wench between 1276 and 1300 you could expect a lifetime of tilling the fields and shovelling cow shit until you were 31!

Mind you and thinking about it, if you spent most of what little precious time you had doing that and repairing the holes in your mud house walls and replacing the straw on the roof (if you had one), then I bet going that early was in fact, quite a relief. Perhaps the downside was that if you were lucky enough to make it to the magical 31, then there was a decent chance you might make it to 50 ,which is in anybody’s book, a bummer. 

It’s also quite interesting to note that the diet then, was by todays standards quite healthy. Indeed, I’m surprised that they didn’t live a little longer especially with their outside life (fresh air) style. But then again, what with everyday consisting of bread, parsnips and turnips followed by er… bread, parsnips and turnips one can’t help wondering why there weren’t more suicides.

There was of course a lot of red meat, but as usual (nothing has changed) the good stuff like venison or swan was reserved for the rich. Indeed, the wealthy made it their business to stop the Commoners, (under pain of death) hunting for deer and the good cuisine, but in their wisdom (not wanting their work force to die) and milk (don’t mention the milk) of human kindness, very thoughtfully left the wild pig and old chickens for the exhausted peasants.

To be honest. I’m not sure if longevity is a blessing.

I look around me and see those that do live to a great age ‘living’ a life without quality.  A life without teeth and hair. Their bizzare and often scary pictures posted in ‘celebration’ on the front pages of local newspapers proving only, that death is actually a blessing. 

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