Talking to My Mum on the phone, she gives me the update on what is happening with all the neighbors and the houses that used to house the neighbors I knew growing up back in NYC, she comments, “There are no more men on the block, just us old ladies…”  Mum is eighty-seven now and sounds as lucid as ever most of the time when I talk with her long-distance.  The only thing I notice is the “short-term” memory isn’t as sharp as it was even last year.  Including my Dad, there were nine men on the block back when I came up between the late fifties through when I went off to the University in the early nineteen-seventies.

Her comment about the disappearance of the “men” or “husbands/fathers” on my old block gave me pause to analyse that fact.  I’ve known this for quite some time, yet why is it that the men of that era burn-out so quickly? Is that my fate as well?  Is the tax of being the bread-winner a shortened stay in the physical world?

I read where men make fewer average visits to doctors, and I can believe that.  Part of that is the whole child-bearing thing; we don’t have the same “plumbing” to maintain as women do.  I’ve always been glad I was born male for  just that reason! LOL However, why don’t the females perish at the same rate given that very ordeal of childbirth?   Another component is the “if it ain’t broke, don’t mess with it philosophy” which, admittedly I subscribe to because I work-out regularly.  Yet, longevity can be so random, who knows?

Most of the men on my block were Black Americans, and I wonder if the effects of segregation that their generation had to go through had something to do with their longevity and increased likelihood to develop issues like high blood pressure, and do the effects of being stressed-out as slaves get programmed into a people’s genes and then randomly passed-down through succeeding generations?   They didn’t have to be lynched or physically abused by “da Man” to suffer lingering consequences is how I see that now. 

lots of neat graphs and charts on this subject here: http://www.efmoody.com/estate/lifeexpectancy.html

Who knows, all of this economic stress that I am going through now is probably shortening my days on earth.  Sometimes I have wished myself dead when I do not have the money to pay my bills anymore, and my wish could be coming true – s-l-o-w-l-y…Oddly it is when you stop  wanting to die that the grim reaper tries to find you with more urgency, I believe, so as “they” say, be careful what you wish for because life has the personality of the practical Joker in that way.

Here is a link to another chart you can check out:  http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/STATS/table4c6.html

So yes, Mum, all the men on the block have left you ladies as the keepers of their castles, and aside from the obvious safety and security issue, do not despair nor take it personally, you ladies gave them all a priceless amount of joy inside the pain of helping us to have a better chance at succe$$ than you did in your times, that will live long past all of our flesh and bones.

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