Count down

by Yule Heibel on June 23, 2003

The BBC reports on a recent study predicting that men might soon outlive women. For illustration, BBC used a photo of Joanna Lumley as the AbFab character Patsy Stone. Patsy chainsmokes and drinks “Stoly” straight from the bottle; in this photo she is atop a Manhattan skyscraper, about to be rescued via helicopter by her friend Edina Monsoon. (Smoking and drinking look very glamourous here; why did BBC have to use this picture?) Stress at work, however, is the third factor in the triumvirate riding roughshod on female life expectancy. And could I just add that not having a wife will no doubt accelerate women’s earlier demise even more? Women are supposed to live longer, as Ashley Montagu in The Natural Superiority of Women already pointed out decades ago. They are biologically suited for it. But if they smoke, drink, and get stressed out like men, they’ll die like men, to paraphrase Martin Jarvis of Cancer Research UK, a critic of the new life-expectancy data.

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