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View Full Version : If you could know, would you want to?...


Rausch
08-22-2005, 12:46 PM
Just finished watching the last 6 Feet Under and and wondered that. If you could know how and when you will die would you want to?...

el borracho
08-22-2005, 12:53 PM
No, definitely not.

Count Alex's Wins
08-22-2005, 12:59 PM
Yes. That way I can change it. I believe the future is constantly in motion.

luv
08-22-2005, 01:07 PM
No way. I think you should consentrate on living. If you knew how and when, sure there are things you would make sure to do, but they are things you should be doing everyday anyway while focusing on living. I think if you knew, that's all you'd be able to think about. What fun is living if you're always thinking about dying?

Goapics1
08-22-2005, 01:09 PM
Nope, don't wanna know.

UKMike
08-22-2005, 01:12 PM
I wouldn't want to know, but i wouldn't be able to stop myself asking anyway.

ck_IN
08-22-2005, 01:28 PM
luv2rite has it right IMO. When I'm alive I want to concentrate on living. When I'm dead I'll concentrate on whatever that realm brings. If I knew of my death it probably would colour my actions while living.

The only exception would be like Tim McGraw's song 'Live like you were dying'. If I was terminal and had X months I would want to know so I could tie up loose ends.

Rain Man
08-22-2005, 01:34 PM
Gochiefs is right. The only way that an answer would be possible would be if it was a dynamic answer that was updated on a real-time basis. Then, as you saw that you were due to check out with lung cancer, you'd stop smoking and the sign would flip over to heart attack. Then you'd start exercising and it would flip over to car wreck.

Would I want to know it? Yeah, because then I could change my behavior to maximize my life span.

KChiefsQT
08-22-2005, 01:38 PM
Gochiefs is right. The only way that an answer would be possible would be if it was a dynamic answer that was updated on a real-time basis. Then, as you saw that you were due to check out with lung cancer, you'd stop smoking and the sign would flip over to heart attack. Then you'd start exercising and it would flip over to car wreck.

Would I want to know it? Yeah, because then I could change my behavior to maximize my life span.

ditto.

ck_IN
08-22-2005, 01:38 PM
But what if that maximizing entailed living in a bubble eating boiled broth for the rest of your days?

I'm not saying a person should smoke like a chimney but if living another x years means living your life in a way you don't find enjoyable is it worth it? I want to love and live the way that I think is best. If it costs me a few years then it may be worth it.

Rain Man
08-22-2005, 01:42 PM
Yeah, but wouldn't you rather know your choices?

If the little sign was saying 'lung cancer at age 50', you would have the choice of saying, "Hmm, that sounds fine" or you could stop smoking and see "Heart attack at 55". At some point, you could change your behavior to find the best tradeoff between lifestyle and longevity and means of death, as opposed to just taking what life gives you.

The only challenge would be if the little sign said something like "Smoke inhalation in burning building." I think you could only knock that one off the list ten minutes before it happened by stepping in and out of every building you go into.

I wrote a short story about this a few years back. I'll post it if I can find it and if it's not lame.

KCTitus
08-22-2005, 01:44 PM
I caught the end of that show and found it to be an unusally morbid finale for the show. I think I watched maybe 2 or 3 of the first seasons episodes before tiring of the 'in your face' gratuitous homosexual acts in every show so I didnt know the characters names well enough to figure out which was which. That that said, the same thought crossed my mind and honestly the thing that wigged me out the most was realizing how little time I have left given a normal life span.

Maybe it was a catalyst for a mid life crisis, dunno, I hope not.

Blah, whatever, I just wish they didnt cut into Entrourage's time slot.

ck_IN
08-22-2005, 01:49 PM
I guess it's a matter of perspective. I don't smoke and work out 3 or 4 times a week so lung cancer and heart attack may not be high on my death list. I'm more likely to die in a car wreck or your burning building.

Under that case I wouldn't want to know because I might be tempted to not drive my wife and I to our fav Mex place. Or see that movie for fear of smoke.

I would want to live my life to my definnition of fullest without that nagging voice in my head saying 'this could be it'. If I die then I hope my wife hold an Irish wake and everyone gets stone drunk talking about me. In the meantime I want to do whatever I do and whatever I enjoy without strings.

BIG_DADDY
08-22-2005, 01:58 PM
Would I want to know it? Yeah, because then I could change my behavior to maximize my life span.

Even if I couldn't change it I would still want to know so I would have things in order the best that I could before leaving this world.

luv
08-22-2005, 02:01 PM
I can see good points to each side. I just choose to not live my life in order not to die. Enjoy each new day and the opportunities that it holds. I can see why you would want to know. But to me, it's like having a car. One day it's gonna die. You may not know when or how, so you do the preventative maintenance. Change your oil every 3000 miles, get a tune up every 10000 miles, check your tires, have the breaks looked at once a year (or when they start squeaking), have it inspected every few years, etc. That may not prevent the blowout you're going to have due to running over the nail in the road, but they help. The same can be said for life. You may not know when or how you're gonna die, but you can do the preventative maintenance. You may still have the blowout, but at least you enjoyed life. Or you could even prepare for the blowout. In owning a car, you get insurance, or save money to put down on another car if that one dies. In life, you also get insurance, and get a few things paid for so your loved ones have less to deal with. My parents already have their plots, etc. Just my opinion. I wouldn't blame anyone for looking at the situation from other viewpoints.

Rain Man
08-22-2005, 02:17 PM
Here's my short story. I didn't win any contests or anything with it, so whatever. I liked the concept, though.

morphius
08-22-2005, 02:27 PM
I think if it was close, I would like to know. If it is down the road, then I don't care.

Count Alex's Wins
08-22-2005, 02:29 PM
Here's my short story. I didn't win any contests or anything with it, so whatever. I liked the concept, though.

That's way too friggin' long to read.

Rain Man
08-22-2005, 02:30 PM
That's way too friggin' long to read.

I hope to produce a comic-strip version in the future.

BIG_DADDY
08-22-2005, 02:39 PM
I just got a call from a very good friend here locally and by freak accident in a medical exam they found tumour on his pituitary gland which is just 1mm from hitting his optical nerves which would make him blind. If it explodes it will kill him. He is going into surgery in 3 weeks to have it removed. He has a son in Iraq and two younger boys. Does anyone know anything regarding the mortality rate of things like this? He is only 40 years old.

el borracho
08-22-2005, 05:03 PM
Gochiefs is right. The only way that an answer would be possible would be if it was a dynamic answer that was updated on a real-time basis. Then, as you saw that you were due to check out with lung cancer, you'd stop smoking and the sign would flip over to heart attack. Then you'd start exercising and it would flip over to car wreck.

Would I want to know it? Yeah, because then I could change my behavior to maximize my life span.
You already know that diet and excercise are important and that nicotine is a carcinogen. Everybody already knows how to maximize their life span, the problem is that nobody wants to live that way.

Rain Man
08-22-2005, 05:10 PM
You already know that diet and excercise are important and that nicotine is a carcinogen. Everybody already knows how to maximize their life span, the problem is that nobody wants to live that way.

Yep. However, I wonder if they would make different decisions if they knew in no uncertain terms the impact on their lives. If I had a flashing light next to my Twinkie that said, "2 minutes off of your life", I probably would lose my appetite. It's stupid that I don't make the connection anyway, but I don't.

keg in kc
08-22-2005, 05:13 PM
I think I would like to know. A real sense of mortality might be enough to motivate me to do something with my life. I may be 31, but I still feel like I'll live forever. Knowing details about my mortality might finally spur me to develop a sense of urgency.

As far as I can go now is this naive hope that I have as much time left to do whatever it is I'll do as I've already wasted. But I can't change the past, only live the future.

One of these days I'll start.

The strangest thing is, life could end at any moment. I know that. But it's still not enough.

el borracho
08-22-2005, 05:23 PM
Yep. However, I wonder if they would make different decisions if they knew in no uncertain terms the impact on their lives. If I had a flashing light next to my Twinkie that said, "2 minutes off of your life", I probably would lose my appetite. It's stupid that I don't make the connection anyway, but I don't.
People might still smoke, overeat and loaf about but I bet AIDS and other STDs would be drastically reduced with your flashing light scenario.

BIG_DADDY
08-22-2005, 05:25 PM
People might still smoke, overeat and loaf about but I bet AIDS and other STDs would be drastically reduced with your flashing light scenario.


I doubt it. We got those barebackers in SF that give the gift (aids) to their butt buddies just as an amusement at parties.

el borracho
08-22-2005, 05:32 PM
I doubt it. We got those barebackers in SF that give the gift (aids) to their butt buddies just as an amusement at parties.
That just has to be a miniscule percentage of the population. I can't believe that many people would willingly stick their pecker in a rotten hole or allow a rotten prick in their hole.

Pants
08-22-2005, 05:36 PM
I guess it's a matter of perspective. I don't smoke and work out 3 or 4 times a week so lung cancer and heart attack may not be high on my death list. I'm more likely to die in a car wreck or your burning building.

Under that case I wouldn't want to know because I might be tempted to not drive my wife and I to our fav Mex place. Or see that movie for fear of smoke.

I would want to live my life to my definnition of fullest without that nagging voice in my head saying 'this could be it'. If I die then I hope my wife hold an Irish wake and everyone gets stone drunk talking about me. In the meantime I want to do whatever I do and whatever I enjoy without strings.
No, it would say at exactly what time and under what circumstances it would occur, so you would know not to go to that Mex place on 5/30/2016 at 8:12:31.94 PM. You could still go but make it at 8:30 or something. See what the sign says and change it.

KCChiefsMan
08-22-2005, 06:08 PM
if it was going to be in the near future, like die in some fatal accident than hell ya I'd want to know so I could try to change it. I don't think that everybody has a definate set time when they are going to die in their lives. I don't believe in that, the whole world is constantly evolving/changing