Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Way Back

Couple old guys sitting on the back porch, chatting, and one mentions he’s happy to report the doctor has his Alzheimer’s almost all cleared up.

The other guy says, “That’s terrific! Who’s your doctor?”

The first guy scratches his head, thinks, scratches his head some more and finally says, “Oh, what is it? Help me out, here: what was that war way back there?”

Second guy asks, “World War II?”

First guy says, “No, waaay back, a long time ago.”

Guy says, “The Civil War?”

The first guy says, “No, the ancient war, with the horse and the ships -- the one they fought over the lady.”

The second guy says, “You mean the Trojan War?”

The fist guy says, “Yes! That’s it. Now that lady they fought over, what was her name?”

The other guy says, “Helen,” and the first guy slaps his forehead, turns in his chair, and bellows into the house, “Helen! What’s my doctor’s name?!”

Saturday, August 27, 2011

So Sad I'll Miss It

They say such nice things about people at their funerals that it makes me sad I'm going to miss mine by just a few days. 

~Garrison Keillor

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Everyone Has a Purpose in Life

Everyone has a purpose in life. Perhaps yours is watching television.

~ David Letterman

So Far, So Good

I expect to live forever. So far, so good.

~ Steven Wright

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Odds

  • 20% of Americans die of cancer, peaking at age 65
  • 25% die of organ failure, usually heart or lung, peaking at age 75
  • 40% die after extended frailty and/or dementia, generally around age 85
(from geriatrician Dr Joanne Lynn, in the New York Times, July 8, 2008)

    Causes of the 2,423,712 American deaths in 2004:
    heart 25%
    cancer 23%
    cerebrovascular 6%
    respiratory 5%
    accidents 5%
    alzheimers 3%
    diabetes 3%
    flu & pneumonia 2%
    kidneys 2%
    septicemia 1%
    suicide 1%
    liver 1%
    hypertension 1%
    parkinsons 1%
    murder 1%
    all other 19%

    (from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control)

    Friday, April 8, 2011

    Two good documentaries

    Recently watched two worthwhile Frontline programs:

    Facing Death portrays several people facing death, and how their families and physicians deal with the technological and ethical decisions. Chilling in its exploration if the fact that medical technology can now keep organ systems "alive" beyond any meaningful quality of life.

    Living Old describes how most of us will face serious physical or mental debilitation in our last years, and follows several people and their families who are dealing with nursing homes and other difficult situations.

    Both of these programs can be watch online at the Frontline website, linked above.