Richard Ord: Why my time for a mid-life crisis has passed
My plans for a mid-life crisis have been hit by, of all people, those penpushers at the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
They have revealed that life expectancy has stalled for the first time since 1982. We, and by ‘we’ I mean men, have a life expectancy of 79.2 years.
That’s a blow. I had optimistically booked in my mid-life crisis for my 62nd birthday.
My thought process was that life expectancy would rise significantly during the 2000s courtesy of numerous medical and scientific advancements which would result in men living to the ripe old age 124.
Looks like we’re regressing. I blame Brexit. A Project Fear outcome if ever there was one.
It appears that, at 52 years old, I should have had my mid-life crisis 12 years ago.
Rather than growing a ponytail, getting a tattoo and buying a motorcycle, I was hoping for something a bit more futureworldy.
A mid-life crisis in 2028 would, I envisioned, involve buying a hoverboard, booking a flight to the moon and growing an extra arm.
Typically, women still get to live longer.
Their life expectancy remains, according to the ONS, unnervingly high at 82.9 years.
Why that is so remains a mystery. Though I have my own theory. It’s the dancing.
Wives dancing on their husband’s graves boosts cardio and adds the extra years.
Again, the ONS doesn’t explain the figures in any depth, but, if like me, you intend to live forever, it gives some pointers to a longer life.
The key one being: don’t be a man. Or live in Scotland.
If you want to live longer, be a woman and live in Japan. Women in Japan have a life expectancy of 87.
The ONS figures are based on hard statistics.
If you’re a man and are serious about extending your years, move to Switzerland.
Swiss men live to 81 and a half years. If you do head to Switzerland don’t pass through Wales, it’ll shave a few days off.
And since all the figures are based on mortality statistics, don’t travel to Switzerland by car.
Mortality rates among car drivers are far higher than any other mode of transport. To keep the life expectancy odds in your favour, travel to Switzerland by Space Hopper (no recorded deaths in 2018).
My eldest son Bradley turns 18 in November.
For all he knows, this could be his mid-life crisis period.
This year the ONS says we’ve plateaued at 79.1. Who’s to say Brexit and other calamitous world events won’t see our life expectancy plummet, with your average teen today only living to 36!
And as if to confirm my fears, our Brad says he wants an electric guitar!
If he hints at a Harley Davidson and a sleeve tattoo, I’ll jump on the first Space Hopper out of Zurich and sort him out.