Saturday, September 04, 2004

Along the way, the people of the interior seem to have adopted the attitude that whatever the foreigners can screw up they usually will, so you might as well focus on the few acres of rock and lichen you can control.

It's similar to the conclusion that came out of a big US study earlier this year discounting the role of positive emotions on cancer survival. A relentlessly upbeat attitude has probably been overrated in society.

If you really want arteries that will let you live to 100, you'd do better to follow the example of a Sardinian peasant and respond to everything, good and bad, with the same sort of droll fatalism. As Demurtas put it to me: "A girl once asked me, 'How can I live to be your age?' I told her, 'Don't die too early.'"

--- John Hodgman, Men Who Defy Death

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