Filed under life expectancy

The Big Countdown

My Leonard Cohen in London ife expectancy number has declined a lot this year. from 87 to 82. I can’t imagine that 2020 helped a whole lot with that.

My writing life has improved with good progress on the novel and a few placements of stories and poems in the last year. I think the biggest thing I need to do these days is get more active and improve my diet and weight. I recently watched Leonard Cohen: Live in London and man, LC looked better at 73 than I do at 53. I have a new life goal of being more like Leonard Cohen.

As of tomorrow, I will have outlived (in no particular order):

  • Christopher Reeve (Superman)
  • John Wayne Gacy (first serial killer I ever heard about)
  • Princess Grace Kelly (actress who married a prince)
  • Luke Perry (my favorite of his roles was in the movie Buffy the Vampire Slayer)
  • King Henry VII (Henrys IV, V, VI and VIII got Shakespeare plays. Poor VII? Bupkis.)
  • Roy Orbison (I always thought of him as really old when he died)
  • Frank Zappa (likewise)
  • Harry Houdini (who didn’t really look like Tony Curtis)
  • Tsar Peter the Great (founder of St Petersburg, I mean Petrograd, I mean Leningrad, I mean St Petersburg—but not the one in Florida)
  • Abbie Hoffman (when I was a teenager, I somehow came into possession of a stolen copy of Steal this Book)
  • Harry Nilsson (he put the lime in the coconut and drank it all up)
  • Barack Obama’s Mom
  • Lou Costello (who’s on first?)
  • Valerie Solanas (she shot Andy Warhol)
  • Giordano Bruno (monk, scientist, and a bit of a nutball all in one)
  • Ezekiel (he of the Bible)
  • Samuel (he also, of the Bible)
  • Hezekiah (yet another Bible dude)
  • Macbeth (the real one, not the Shakespeare one, but maybe him too)
  • Olaudah Equiano (former slave whose autobiography and activism led to the end of slavery in England)
  • William Makepeace Thackeray (author)
  • Richard Wright (author)
  • Johan Pachelbel (whose canon is not actually a canon and is probably the piece musicians hate most to have to play at weddings)
  • Wendell Willkie (failed presidential candidate who I first heard of from Green Acres—who says TV isn’t educational?)
  • Omar Torrijos (president of Panama and friend of Graham Greene)

The Big Countdown

My life expectancy number has declined slightly this year from 88 to 87. I imagine the last year hasn’t helped with this, between the pandemic shutting out interpersonal interaction and trump generating daily stresses and then yet another first-degree relative getting cancer, it’s not been my favorite year.

My writing life has been fair. I had a long slow difficult summer with my writing but things have finally picked up and as an added bonus, I’ve found a new writing group so maybe things will be better in the next year, especially once I have the first draft of the novel completed.

The Big Countdown

This year’s life expectancy number is 88 which continues an upward trend for me, but is still less than the highest number the calculator has given me. This means I have 37 years left to do everything I want to do, including seeing the kids grow up and, God willing, meet my grand kids, should I have some.

The past year has seen a decline in acceptances and even tiered rejections. So much for hitting my “stride as a writer” as I wrote last year. I am focusing on my novel increasingly which means that the short-term publishing is unlikely to move significantly.

The Big Countdown

This year’s life expectancy number is 85 which is down from last year but up from two years ago. 

As I think about the last year, I note that I’ve had a lot of fiction acceptances and a poetry acceptance. I’m beginning to feel like I’ve hit my stride as a writer, although there is, of course, still room for growth. It doesn’t help that right now bedtime with my kids consumes pretty much from 6p until 8 or 8.30 which doesn’t leave me a lot of writing time.

The Big Countdown

My number went back up to 87 from 83, which is still less than my pre-drop life expectancy, but close enough that I can consider last year’s drop to be the anomaly, although I can still do more to improve my health and perhaps get a little bit more time with my family.

In the last year I’ve had a few publications (including my first poems) and started working on a new novel which is coming slowly but I think is some good stuff. I’ve also officially let my first novel fall into the status of being trunked (although I still have stacks of marked up manuscript lurking near my desk which should get collected and put into a box in the basement for my children to deal with in 38 years).

The Big Countdown

My life expectancy this year has dropped five years to 83 from 88. I’m not entirely sure what led to my precipitous drop in my expected life span, but it appears the grave looms closer than I thought.

The Big Countdown

Continuing my tradition of checking my life expectancy every year on the day before my birthday, today I’ve been told I can expect to live to the age of 88. This is up from last year, but down from two years ago. Either way, I’m in the final half of my life, a somewhat sobering thought and a reminder not to waste the time I have left.

The Big Countdown

In this year’s edition of my countdown to death, I drop from 90 years to 84 years. My biggest source of additional life expectancy would be diet and exercise. Losing six years of life is a bit sobering. I knew this last year, but it’s even more important now, especially that I have progeny to raise that I’d like to see further my genetic line which means I might want more than 38 years before I die. Not to mention all the reading and writing I would like to do. On the flip side, retirement saving has become a bit more manageable. 

Halfway done

I did my annual life expectancy calculation today. I’m expected to live to 90. I seem to be doing a little better every year (perhaps by not dying in the preceding year). I seem to remember that the first time I did this—three years ago, I was halfway to death that time as well.

The big countdown

Tomorrow is my birthday so today I did the life expectancy calculator at This year, I was told I will live to 87, a year less than last year’s calculation, I think largely in consequence of my lack of good exercise. Apparently, I could add 4.5 years to my life by exercising more.