Sunday, February 17, 2013

FWIW, Its not a tumor.

No, I did not get a call from my doctor this week about test results, and I did not watch Kindergarten Cop.  I did get a call from my brother who has accepted a tenure track position at a large research University.  His specialty is microbiology and his research will focus on breast cancer.  This followed up a discussion I had this week with a colleague about possible triggers in our bodies to certain behaviors.  Whether food, alcohol, smoking, etc...  The present day belief that we all will get some kind of cancer if we live long enough.

This got me thinking to other similar plans the human body has in store for us.  I know that at age 40 my ears became the sole grower of hair as the head proceeded to end that process.  Now why would Neanderthal man need to grow hair out of his ears?  Was there some kind of insect that would try to harvest itself inside the human brain?  Was the atmosphere full of radioactivity that hair follicles protected our vital organs?  Or is it a combination of synapses that determined our heads are not as important as our ears as we age?

As our research finds more answers and we develop better treatments, the demographics of our population will not resemble the ones of our grandparents.  Both of my parents died before the age of 72, however it will not be a surprise if my grandchildren surpass that by at least 30 years.  A lot of the work I have been doing with retirees, has been planning for the long haul. 

With so much of today's world tied up in technology such as smart phones, digital TV, and social networks, how does that translate to our elders?  Are we bifurcating society into the Tweets and the Tweet-Nots? Will we see a day when the senior citizens rise up and refuse to text?

Thank you for letting me have a few seconds or your day.