I don’t know if I speak quietly or if I mumble or what my particular speech issue is (maybe I just have a look that says ‘don’t pay attention to me’) but I feel like 20% of the time when I say something the person I’m talking to doesn’t hear it. Most people miss the whole thing, but some people will then say “What?” because they know I said something. Usually then I say “nothing, it was stupid” because it was stupid and I don’t want to say it again, but that really bothers some people. I used to think that it was because they were being self-centered and they were mad that someone wasn’t giving them what that wanted but I’ve learned differently.
What makes them get all bent out of shape is because while I know what I said was stupid they don’t. I’ve often said that possibility is usually better than reality and that’s what coming into play. For all they know I said something funny or profound or awesome and they don’t want to miss out. It’s like when you see a cool movie trailer – the movie probably sucks, but at that moment in your mind you’re exploring all the possibilities of its goodness. It’s like the problem of the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics – until I actually say the stupid thing the person who didn’t hear it the first time has no way to know if it’s good or bad.
Speaking of possibilities let’s get to the question. Certainly celebrities (you know the ones I mean) and corporate executives and other powerful people get the option to Benjamin Button themselves on the condition that they give up their old lives and disappear into a new mundane identity. Normally I would never be offered this service but because of what happened in Kisatchie state park (I swear the sign I saw said Kisatchee but I looked up the spelling) I have been given this one celebrity perk.
I’ve given a lot of thought to when I should trigger the Benjamin Button effect. The age I had in mind has changed a lot over the years. At first was 37 was the number but as I got closer to that age I started pushing it back. For a while I was thinking about 60 as a good age to start going backwards but lately I’ve started to pull that back. I’m starting to think about pulling the trigger now.
My main health concern in the past was the numbness and “strokiness” I would have in my left side sometimes. I don’t think anyone reads this blog who didn’t hear me rant about it in real life or read about it on my old blog (or both) but the first time that happened I spent 17 grand on doctor’s bills and they had zero diagnosis for me. That is probably the maddest I’ve ever been. Or maybe that’s second to the time I saw kids trying to wail on my cat.
But I’ve learned that if I start getting wonky numbness on the left side all I need to do is some yoga for a few days and it stops. So it must be a nerve or something? So I don’t worry about that anymore (well some). But at 43 it really seems like a lot of little things are starting to crop up. I mean I shouldn’t complain because several my closest friends have real health concerns but that’s not going to stop me. Such as, if I sit in my chair too long (like when I play D&D online after work) my knee starts to hurt like the dickens. Or if I sit on the “wrong” side of the couch when I’m hanging with my best gal my ass feels like someone hit it with a hammer. If I lay on the “wrong” side on the couch my shoulder goes all wonky.
I remember telling someone about how before I started doing yoga I couldn’t raise my left arm above my shoulder and they said “oh, what happened” and I said “nothing I’m just old” and they looked at me like I was insane. Like the idea of your shoulder being ruined without a specific injury was ludicrous. I think I’m right though. Mostly because my shoulder is fucked up and I’ve never had a shoulder injury.
Plus I’m starting to get stray back hairs in places I can’t reach to pluck them. It never ends with the damn hairs. It’s truly a cruel joke that I’m going bald on the head and growing all sorts of other bullshit hair everywhere else. Add to that half the foods I used to eat now upset my stomach and you’re got a lot of annoying things going on.
So I’m thinking about making the Button move now, but it’s probably not smart. If I do that now in 20 years I’ll be 63 and look like I’m 23. Sounds pretty good, but once you start getting much younger than that it’s pretty much over. So basically if I pulled the Button level now I’d be saying I only want to live another 25-30 years at best. On the other hand if I go with the number I had in mind before 60 – that means when I’m 90 I’ll look 30. And when I’m 100 I’ll look 20. That’s some sweet action.
The question is can I make it to 60? There’s always the chance I could die before I hit 60 anyway, although in theory that’s a small chance. I’m sort of healthy, I don’t drive much, and I’m not involved in the drug trade so there’s not a ton I have to worry about. Plus I’m in a relationship now, which is supposed to make you live longer. But the real issue is if I’m this annoyed by my minor ailments at 43 will I be able to hack it until 60? Because of course they’re going to get worse.
My parents seem to be handling it pretty well. But then again I don’t really know what their baseline of annoyance with their bodies is. Nor is there any guarantee that I have any of their good genes. Mother nature is a mad scientist, you never know what’s going to happen.
The other thing you have to worry about is great leaps forward in medical science. If you Benjamin Button yourself at 60 you’re guarantying that you’re only going to live 120 years, and the last decade or so is going to be garbage. What if they come up with some AI enabled replacement spine that makes the normal human lifespan change to 200? You’ve really screwed yourself then. I’ve been told (read actually) that clinical immortality is already possible, meaning that they could keep a human brain and spine “alive” outside of a body indefinitely. I wonder what people that believe in souls think of that.
Conclusion – maybe go with 67 and a half, that’s retirement age right? 135 years seems like a good amount of time to be alive.
PS – I have a friend who wants to live forever. Which is interesting because most very elderly people I know will say out loud to your face they want to die. I think when people want to live forever they should say they also want to be young forever. There’s a kind of vampire that has eternal life but not eternal youth – they’re pretty messed up.
PPS – A couple people that read this have had concussions, I’d be curious to hear what that was like.
PPPS – Update to my in-depth analysis of Marvel Strikeforce characters. Most of those characters I mentioned as the best are now worthless garbage. Power creep is an issue in most games, and MSF is a good example of how it ruins everything. The problems started with Nick Fury – at that point a SHIELD team became unbeatable. To “solve” that problem they introduce an even MORE overpowered character, Magneto which made Brotherhood teams unbeatable. To “solve” that problem they introduced an even MORE overpowered character Dark Phoenix who made any team she was on unbeatable. Process repeat with Mister Sinister, Ultron, Doc Ock and so on and so forth.