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Just Let Me Die, Already

I saw this story today, courtesy of Reuters, about a man who gave up sex over 75 years ago.

HONG KONG (Reuters) - A 107-year-old Hong Kong villager, who still enjoys an occasional smoke, has attributed his longevity in part to decades of sexual abstinence, a newspaper said on Sunday.

"I don't know why I have lived this long," Chan Chi -- one of Hong Kong's oldest people -- was quoted as saying in the South China Morning Post during an annual feast for the city's elders. "Maybe it has to do with the fact that I have lived a sex-less life for many years -- since I was 30," said Chan, a widower whose youthful bride perished during the Japanese invasion in World War Two.

Chan, from Hong Kong's less built-up New Territories hinterland, was pictured looking sprightly and eating heartily at the banquet. A former chef, he said a low-fat diet and regular dawn exercises had helped him fight off the ravages of old age.

But the centenarian, who's had no difficulty living a monastic existence for nearly 80 years, admits the pleasures of tobacco have been harder to resist.

"Now I want to quit," he was quoted as saying of his decades-long cigarette addiction. "Maybe the government should ban cigarette sales so I can give it up," he added.

Well, I have to seriously wonder if this guy's life is worth living? I know, I know, every life has value. Let's not start the flames yet. I'm a little bit serious.

So apparently, the guy was about 30 years old when his wife died. I'm all in favor of monogamy, as a concept. But I don't think anyone would have blamed the guy for having a couple of dates. Even his wife, whom I'm sure he loved, would have probably said "check her out" and encouraged him to get a little sumptin' sumptin'.

I just feel like this guy is probably pretty depressed. Okay, a year or two out of respect for the dead wife. Maybe another year or two to get back into the swing of dating, if he's ugly. But after three or four years, that's just depression.

My favorite part about the article, however, has nothing to do with sex. It has to do with the fact that a guy who can abstain or for 75 years, can't give up the cigarettes, even though he wishes he could. Sure, big tobacco will probably put this guy in a poster with the caption "see, they don't really kill you", but even he wants to quit.

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