Beware of Birthdays

Consider yourself warned. Birthdays are dangerous. Not just because of the creepy clown, but also, because the birthday can be your last day on earth. Yeah, you are more likely to die on your birthday than any other day of the year. I know, it’s a shocker, but hey, science tends to be right often. This morbidly depressing statistic comes from a study done by researchers from the University of Zürich which shows that the chances of stroke, accidents and other forms of making appointment with the maker increase drastically on birthdays.

By studying over 2 million people over the age of 40, researches found the undeniably poetic, even a little ironic, fact, that people tend to die more often on their birthdays. And it wasn’t like someone menacing came around during folks’ birthday and bludgeoned their head with a baseball bat. They died mostly of natural causes. Chances of stroke rose by 21.5 percent and rate of heart attacks rose by 18.6 percent on birthdays. Now don’t think that people’s birthday cakes were infused with flavored cholesterol, because there were other reasons for their deaths too. There was a 34.9 percent rise in suicides, 28.5 percent rise in accidental deaths not related to cars, and a 44 percent rise in deaths from falls – all on birthdays. Turns out, the day of your birth is just an awful day all around.

For what it is worth William Shakespeare was born on April 23 and died on the same date many years later. Of course, he wrote sonnets, essays and stories that have withstood years of cultural shift and bring joy and excitement people across generations. Most 40 year olds of today don’t have much to show for, except, may be, a full paid house or, in some cases, an expensive car.

A small consolation is that this phenomenon is observed mostly in people over 40. This probably means that for us, the young people, any day is an equally likely day for dying. Throughout the year, death is just around the corner, which I think is better than just dying on a birthday. I mean, on your birthday, you may not have opened all of your presents yet, or you may not have had a chance to eat all the cake you wanted. Or may be you did not get a chance to have that special ‘birthday hug’ from that special person, if you catch my drift, before you clutch your chest and collapse to the floor. No matter how you look at it, the birthday is a terrible day to die. If you really have to die, you know what the best day to die is? the day after the birthday. This way, you can eat, drink, party and do all sorts of things that your age and health can possibly support and then get a great deal of sleep that night and then leave peacefully the next morning. Very much like the last day of a well planned vacation.

By any chance , if you are reading this on your birthday, I am truly sorry about your imminent demise. Also, Happy Birthday.


[Post: 295 of 365] [Days Missed: 106]
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