It is 2 am, so a quick post is in order.
It is true – my little old body is breaking down. At 77 years, I suppose that it is to be expected.
We are not talking about anything major. In fact, it is very minor.
I have noticed, over the last few years, that when my skin gets injured, say, by a tiny scratch, blood floods the surrounding tissue and creates a patch which goes brown and then gradually disappears over a couple of weeks. Also, actual cuts and pricks which bleed seem to take much, much longer to heal. It is inevitable, when you are busying about in the garden that you will get such scratches and pricks. So, on the back of my right hand, I have a patch of brown-ness about 1″ x 1/2″, and, on my left arm, I have two similar patches about 1/4″ round. Those things are nothing.
But I am seriously worried – I am not the least bit plump. My doctors asked me go for a check-up some months ago. In the process of that check-up, the nurse weighed me. I was only 9 stone (126 pounds for the yanks). But, then, I have also shrunk a bit in height. I used to be 5′ 7″, but I think that I am now 5′ 6″. And I have a dodgy back. It must be 15 years or more since ‘the incident’. I was on my knees doing some weeding, and I twisted to pull out a weed to my right. I felt something ‘go’ in my back which hurt a lot. So I stopped weeding. Over the next few hours, the pain eased and I went off to the pub, as usual, for a beer. Then I went to bed. The next morning, I was in agony – and I mean it. When I moved in bed, even the slightest bit, a massive pain hit my lower back. It really was a ‘crying out in agony’ situation. I suppose that experienced torturers know precisely how to apply such agony. No wonder that people confess to any crimes that their torturers care to throw into the mix. I would.
The doc was called and prescribed strong painkillers. He assured me that the pain would subside, and, indeed, it did. But I discovered something interesting, which was that I could move and create the horrible pain, but, for about 30 seconds immediately thereafter, I could move without additional pain. It was as though an electrical charge had been discharged, and had not recharged yet. But, after about five days, the pains stopped and I was able to get out of bed. That made me dizzy.
But I am really, really worried. Statistics show that plump people survive longer than skinny people. My neighbour is quite plump, and it is horrible to think that the fat bastard will live longer than me. OK, he is about 10 years younger than me, but so what? It is not a matter of age, it is a matter of ‘relative risks’. I’m annoyed that the fat bastard will live longer than me because he is fat. It’s not fair. For decades, I have wasted money on ‘cigareets and whisky and wild, wild women’, but that dissipation seems to count for nothing. It is that I am skinny which is causing the brown patches when I get scratched, and it is they which will kill me. I’ll bet that the fat bastard next door does not get brown patches when he gets scratched.
Strangely enough, I feel fine. I am constantly busy, busy in one way or another physically, but does that matter? Herself, who is 75, and has done no exercise whatsoever for the past 25 years because she suffers from Multiple Sclerosis, is surviving just as well as I am, and just as well as the fat bastard next door.
Is the above just a lot of blather? I think not. I think that, if an effort was made, epidemiology would be put back in its place. When Dr Snow discovered that cases of cholera were congregated around a specific water pump, the PROOF of cause and effect came from stopping the use of that water pump. But that PROOF was only substantiated when ‘germs’ were discovered.
The same applies to tobacco smoke and LC. There is a Dr Snow theory that LC is caused by smoking, just as there was a theory that malaria was caused by ‘bad air’. But the Dr Snow type theory regarding malaria was proven to be wrong when it was shown hat it was not the presence of swamps but the presence, and bites, of mosquitoes which caused malaria.
LC has significantly diminished as the cause of death in men over the last several decades, but it has increased in women. Smoking among men as greatly diminished, but it has also diminished among women. So why has LC as a cause of death increased among women?
Tobacco Control has not been lauding the diminishing of LC as a cause of death. I wonder why? Surely they should be shouting from rooftops (aka, via the MSM) that LC deaths have been much reduced by the reduction of smoking. Why has TC not done so?
Suppose that you combine the effects of industrial pollution of the air and smoking? Smoking, in itself, might be a low contributor, in the sense that we only inhale tobacco smoke from time to time. We inhale polluted air with every breath we take.
I must review the statistics since 1950 again. But it will be impossible to examine every single ’cause of death’ because there are thousands of variables. The best that you can do is pick a few ’causes’ and compare the ages of people who died from those causes. An interesting possibility is that early deaths have been delayed for no apparent reason. That is, that certain causes of death no longer occur as much in the 60 year olds as compared with the 70 year olds.
What a mess!