Men and Superwomen

Recently, someone pointed out to me that a number of my postings have been about very old people (the 102 year old bridge jumper, the nonogenarian who got divorced after a 67 year marriage).  That got me thinking about an article I  read about a year ago about a woman who was celebrating her 108th birthday.  It was mentioned that she was just a few years away from being eligible to join the “super centenarian club.”  This club is  reserved for people who are 110 and older.  Worldwide,  there are 75 members ranging in age fro 110 to 114 years old.

This seemed, at first, to be just a pleasant human interest piece.  But as I read further, I came across an interesting fact.  Of the 75 members in this group, 69 are women, 6 are men.  I went over that  sentence a few times thinking maybe I had mis-read it.  I hadn’t.   I was somewhat stunned by that statistic and equally stunned that there was no mention  made in the article that more than 90 percent of the people in this club are women.  More than  9 out of 10 very, very old people in the world are women!  I couldn’t help thinking that if one were to substitute the name of any group, e.g. Jews, Asians, Blacks for “women”, there would be a great hue and cry to find out why this statistical anomaly exists.  Demands would be made for further scientific investigation; a congressional sub-committee might be formed.  Not here.  Apparently, I  (and now, hopefully, you) may be the only one(s) disturbed by this huge imbalance.

I started doing some thinking about this.   What could account for this wild discrepancy?  What is it about being a woman that might lead to living to such a ripe age?  Are having ovaries the ticket to a long life?  Soft skin? The ability to have multiple orgasms?   I was at a loss.

I went back to the article to see if there were any clues in this woman’s story.  I learned that she  had outlived two husbands.  No surprise there.  Not much else.  So I decided to do some independent research.  I googled “super centenarians”, read most of the articles in Wikipedia and looked in scientific journals.  I even rented Super Centenarians Gone Wild!. Nothing.  No mention of the skewed statistic.

So, since I clearly have some time, I’ve decided to take this matter head on.  I have started an organization to investigate the reasons behind this unevenness in longevity.  I am the founding (and so far, lone) member of MAWWOM.  That’s the acronym for Men Against Women Wildly Outliving Men.  We’re looking for new members. All genders and ages welcome.

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4 Responses to “Men and Superwomen”

  1. Steve Says:

    Sign me up for a life-time membership.

  2. Claire Says:

    Maybe women live longer because we are better grammarians….shouldn’t it be: “IS having ovaries the ticket to a long life?”
    Please everyone weigh in; Neil won’t listen to me.
    Would you say: “ARE having testicles the ticket to a long life?” or
    “IS having testicles the ticket to a long life?”
    Men are stubborn.

    • ironicman Says:

      of course i wouldn’t say, ‘ARE having testicles the ticket to a long life’. nor would i say ‘IS testicles…..’. clearly, (or as i like to say, clairely) they’re not. why would i want to posit a thesis for a statistic that doesn’t exist?
      not that stubborn….i’ll stop and ask for directions when i’m lost.

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