On ignorance

I am marveled as to how people are ignorant about very basic things, and how much they don’t mind flaunting their stupidity for all the world to see. Facebook is a good place for it, btw.

I know that the Internet is full of misinformation. I would say there is more misinformation than good information in it, by a wide margin.  Some of the misinformation is placed there by well meaning, but ignorant people, and some of it is placed by people that know better, but have some type of agenda. Thus, if you look deep, you can find enough “evidence” to back up just about any argument you have, however faulty it might be.

I took to reading a book – yes, a paper book, they still exist, in spite of the efforts of fine folks and Barnes & Nobles, who after driving all competition to the ground are now closing shops all over. Anyway, the book is about the Black Death, the plague that decimated Europe’s population.

I had not read much about this matter, but something told me that a lot of the changes that shook the planet in the next couple of centuries were somehow connected to the Plague. My intuition served me right.

This is not the reason for this post. Well this post has no reason, really, it is seinfeldish.

At the Louvre museum in Paris, there is a painting called “A 40 year old woman”. No cougar this 40-year old woman. SHE LOOKED 75!!!

It turns out that people about 500 years ago did not live long. Sure, here and there a Michelangelo popped up, but people lived mostly Mozart’s lifespans. Women fared worst, for they normally married at 15 (again, some people insist the 18 year old legal age is a very ancient concept…) and by the time they were 30, had been pregnant so many times, and lost so many babies, that some just gave up the ghost in their  13th pregnancy! It was rather common for women to die in their 30s, leaving their husbands to marry another 15 year old, for anybody older than that was damaged goods. It was also common for women to go on menopause around that age.

Men did a little better, but not much. 45, 50 years of age was the rule. And I mean in Europe.

So, no wonder that people had to make their mark in the world real fast, and grow up faster. None of this “I AM SOOOOOOOOOO BORED” that i-phone, i-pad equipped 18-year olds utter today, as if they were seven. Men also started on their path to manhood early. And the brighter ones became very important adults by the time they were 20!

Now we live longer, and are pampered, sometimes even to our 20s. And most that make their mark, do so when they are 40-ish.

I actually looked very good compared to that 40-year old woman, and my wife looked swell. We are both in our fifties.

What irritates me is that besides all historical evidence, people insist that folks lived longer way back when, because “food was healthier”. Food supplies in Europe were limited for a very long time. The potato had not arrived, the tomato had not arrived, there was no pasta in Italy. A lot of people ate pork, and hearts exploded with cholesterol after a few decades. As a matter of fact, no soy oil, folks cooked on lard, thus the scant cardiac health!

People did not die so much of cancer because they did not live long enough to develop it.

And around that time, you could still pick up malaria in the Southern parts of Europe, just like you get in the Amazon and Papua New Guinea.

I will stop here. I  AM SOOOOOOOOOO BORED

 

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