You Will Survive

I read a very interesting article in the Sunday paper’s Parade section this past weekend (I love the Parade section).  I’m assuming many of you read it as well.

The gist of the story reported how to remain alive when either catastrophe or adversity rears its head.  Hundreds of survivors and experts were interviewed and reported how to increase your odds of living by surviving the worst.

I’m not sure if this information will change any of my behaviors but it did keep me reading.

Never Cross the Street
On January 1st, October 31 or December 23.  These are the deadliest days for pedestrians. 
Scary, but the dates make sense.

You Are More Likely To Survive A Heart Attack In Las Vegas
The best place to go into cardiac arrest is apparently a casino in Vegas.  Since survival of a heart attack is dependent upon how quickly medical attention is received, a Vegas casino  has you covered.  The casino is constantly scanning its floor looking for cheaters.  If you collapse, it is noticed immediately and casino security personnel are trained in defibrillation, getting you lifesaving shocks in two to three minutes. 

The heart-attack survival rate in Vegas is higher than anywhere else…53%, compared to Seattle 16% or only 2% if you live in Chicago.  Another reason to hit up Sin City.

Never Check Out of the Hospital on a Friday
In the weekend rush, many patients are often sent home with inadequate care instructions or before their condition has stabilized.  A study found an “increased independent risk of death” or hospital readmission in 30 days for patients discharged on a Friday. 
Ask for a weekend pass and stay until Monday?

Your Initials Make a Difference in Survival
Death records were analyzed to look for correlation between initials and longevity. Positive and negative groups were formed.  On the positive side ACE, WIN, VIP and WOW and on the negative side BUM, SAD, RAT and DUD.  Initials and lifespan were then searched for correlation.  The results were debated furiously as it was found initials, as those mentioned above, could add four years to your life or subtract three.  The conclusion being, the negative sounding initials add stress and irritation to a person’s overall life which in turn contribute to health issues and death.  M
y initials spell nothing.

Alphabet Prejudice
A study performed in a medical setting found medical teams meeting with people whose surnames were at the beginning of the alphabet spent four minutes longer with those patient’s than those whose names came at the end of the alphabet.  This resulted in better quality of overall care for those patient’s at the beginning of the alphabet. 
This is not good for me.

Don’t Stay on the Eighth Floor…or higher
Fire department ladders are able to reach 80 feet in the air.  If you want to be able to climb out of your window to be rescued during an emergency, stay below the eighth floor. 

If You Want To Leave The Hospital Alive
Don’t check into the hospital on the weekend.  Dying of serious illness on a weekend hospital admission is significantly higher than if you were admitted during the week.  The reasons blamed inexperienced staff and lower staffing as the number one cause.

Firm Belief in Faith
Spiritual struggles for those 55 and older who were admitted to the hospital were separated into groups of positive spiritual believers and those who felt abandoned or punished by God.  Those who felt strife with God had a 6-10% increase in death. 
Very interesting.

Survive A Survivable Plane Crash
The safest seats are within five rows of any exit.  This rule of thumb indicates it is the cutoff point between life and death in a survivable crash.  However, it was indicated that the safest seats are in an exit row or one row away. 
Well, that makes sense.

Birthday’s and Death
More women die the week after their birthdays as opposed to any other week of the year while men die right before their big day occurs.  Theory concludes, birthdays for men act as a literal deadline while women prolong life for the occasion.

Live Through a Car Accident
Sit in the middle of the backseat, it’s 16% safer than any other seat and 25% more safe than the rear window seats.  Also, white cars are less likely to be involved in an accident in comparison to any other color.  Statistics report in daylight hours, black vehicles are 12% more likely to be involved in an accident; gray 11%; silver 10%; blue and red 7%.  Dusk and dawn sees a 47% increase in black car accidents in comparison to white cars.  Gray 25%; silver 15%.  Who new.

How Successful Are You
Higher social status increases your longevity.  Yeah, access to better medical care.

Other Tid Bits
Academy Award winners have been shown to live 3.9 years longer than less recognized actors.  But this number has been disputed saying it’s really only one year.  Winning the Nobel Prize may add two years to your life.

All kinds of information like this is being compiled in a book called, The Survivor’s Club by Ben Sherwood.  Of course I will be buying it.

I know you will all sleep better or worry more after reading all of this.  It fascinated the heck out of me.

If you want to read Parade’s entire article, here’s the link again. 

Post a Comment


  1. I am wondering if I can have the steering wheel of my car adjusted so I can drive from the center of the back seat. I am thinking I could also check into a hotel adjoining the local casino for the week after my birthday…good food, games, hey, sounds like a plan I could LIVE with.

  2. misty 2

    well, since I can’t sleep at all tonight- this may help? :) VERY interesting stuff… rest assured, my initials spell nothing either. pre-marriage I was MMM, which could spell something- I guess… after marriage they are MMW. Hmm.

  3. marcy 3

    I read that article too, and loved it. Found it very interesting, especially the dates to be careful while walking, they ALL make sense. My initials don’t spell anything either, /whew!

  4. Barbie with a T 4

    Very fascinating. Some make sense and other are just plain off the wall! But you know, there are some people who will believe so strongly about this, they might even venture out enough to change their names! From Zwink to Abbey.

  5. Things like that list always freak me out. Isn’t that silly? I know it shouldn’t, but it always sets my mind wandering and I begin to think I’ll never leave the house ever again. :P

  6. Kari 6

    All very interesting! My husband is a firefighter and he always makes sure we stay below the seventh floor in hotels. And, the first thing he does when we get to our room, is check out the exit route map and go over it with all of us. Better safe than sorry I suppose.

  7. My car is black and silver with white, green, and red tiger stripes. And my birthday is next week. I don’t know what to think now.

  8. Very interesting! And just a little scary too!

  9. Mary 9

    The plane emergency exit and hotel room location caught my eye. Do you think travel agents are now overwhelmed by folks requesting changes to their reservations?

  10. Brava to your details – I know now I want to become a nobel peace prize, oscar-winner sitting 5 rows within an airplane exit in the middle seat while increasing my faith in God among a few other things….lol
    Love this! ~Leah

  11. Cathy 11

    Well, I’m hoping that the fact that my last name begins with A will offset that I might cross the street on my birthday, Dec. 23, and be struck. That would stink.
    My plan of attack is to win an Academy Award and the Nobel Peace Prize. Last night I dreamed I won a million dollars, so I guess heading to Vegas might not be a bad idea, either!

  12. Kristen 12

    Proof…. YES! My husband wanted to buy a really nice silver car once and I didn’t want him to because I felt like it would blend in with the asphalt too much. He was annoyed with my reasoning, but didn’t end up buying it.

  13. Louise 13

    So, whooping it up in Vegas right after my birthday each year will extend my life! Oh yeah!

  14. Color me fascinated! Now I’m going to have to buy the book!

  15. Cath, I have always heard that white cars get in the MOST accidents, because they are the least visible.
    Also, my bday is 12/23, I better stay indoors and not cross any streets!

  16. Never stay above the 8th floor? Something to think about.

  17. Laurie 17

    I almost always read Parade, but missed it this week. This is FASCINATING! My initials don’t spell anything, but I drive a dark green Jeep.

    Thanks for sharing!

  18. dawn 18

    Did not know about the sitting in the middle of the car. Interesting.
    Another little tidbit for you parents out there: when my step-mothers’ parents had to fly on an airplane, they would fly separately so that if one plane ever crashed there would always be another parent alive. I thought that was pretty smart.

  19. ELRA 19

    Such an interesting article. If I buy the book, I might get to stress thinking about all of those survival guide and then I’ll be anxious not to follow, LOL. I like the idea that white car is safer…hmmm, how about don’t go to hospital on the week-end? make sense though. What I don’t get is to avoid crossing the street on Oct.31st and Dec.23rd. What is happening in those date?

  20. tipper 20

    Interesting-could make you overly paranoid if you let it!

  21. Marjie 21

    They forgot to mention genetics. Given my family, I’m going to drop dead by 60 or live to be 100. Not much middle ground there (I count the folks who made it to 90+ close enough to 100, given advances in medicine). So, if I have a stroke next year, you’ll know why.

  22. Cheryl 22

    These things ALWAYS fascinate me! (Of course then I start pondering if they could level the playing field and/or create an accurate control group to validate such declarations)

    Either way, I’m going to Vegas frequently in my golden years… ;)

  23. Steph 23

    I tend to stay away from things like this, because they just make me more paranoid than usual…this was interesting, but it really hasn’t changed my outlook on anything. Definitely something to think about though…

  24. imom 24

    I read that article on Sunday too. In fact just yesterday when I picked up my son and his g/f from school she sat on the hump and I told her that was the safest place to sit if your in an accident. Then I told them how unsafe we were being in a black car. :)

  25. Pam 25

    I read this article too. It was a very interesting read.

  26. Bob 26

    Huh… well, I’m screwed. ;)

  27. grace 27

    it’s a miracle i’m still alive.

  28. KAYOLA 28

    I’m feeling kinda like Bob…I really try not to let these things sway me….but they kinda make you go hhmmmm…

  29. Jesse 29

    What a morbid list! And yet I can’t stop reading it… it all makes too much sense. I’m going to print this out and put it up in my kitchen for everyone to see… ;) Happy 2009!

  30. I loved the heading of – If You Want To Leave The Hospital Alive….ummm. yes please! Dreary yet totally practical in some instances. Very fun post!

  31. Tanya 31

    Well that sure was interesting!

    I wonder though…should I not check into the hospital on a Saturday if I’m gravely ill and just wait until Monday? Seems like I’d be screwed either way.

  32. heather 32

    how weird…..we don’t get a paper so i hadn’t read that article. i love the initials – especially since you can’t do anything about yours. and what about maiden name initials versus my married ones? which would have more power over my survival? lol….neither of them spell anything anyhow. some of those were common sense, and others were a bit random. but interesting :)

  33. Liz C. 33

    I always read the Parade sction and love it. They always have something worth reading…

    Considering my age, I suppose I’d better run right out & buy that book.

  34. My maiden name initials were RSK. Could go anyway I guess. I was kinda risky when I was young, well more sassy than risky. I always hated when patients chose to have their surgeries on Fridays- what were they thinking? Or even during Christmas and New Year-Duh!

  35. Flea 35

    I thought the ones about hospital care were fascinating. Of Course, now that I work in a hospital, I can totally see the truth of the statements. And the birthday/death tidbits make sense. Way cool!

  36. Biz 36

    I never thought about the 8th floor in a hotel before – yikes!

    Actually, I never thought of a lot of those things!

  37. I’m going to wrap myself in a bubble.

  38. Fascinating! So if car insurance companies given women and “professionals” a discount, why can’t they give a discount for people who own white cars?

  39. Egghead 39

    I actually read this. Some things I believe and I am sure about others. Interesting though.

  40. Interesting bits and pierces. None of them will help me but then I have survived.

  41. melissa 41

    I will buy this book.
    When I was preggers for my third child the second was still in a carseat and I cried (I’m serious) for days because I didn’t know who to put in the middle after the baby was born. If I put the baby in the middle did I love my other daughter less. I drove everyone crazy! I even cried to my OB about it! I finally decided to never leave the house…

  42. Marlene 42

    Statistics totally fascinate me as well, but these were really fun to read and I loved the side bar comments you added.

    Thanks for sharing this.


  43. Bunny 43

    Well that’s interesting, I don’t like the hospital stats though!

  44. Kate 44

    Good stuff to know. Thanks for all the tips.

  45. I feel a Gloria Gaynor song comin’ on!
    Love Parade magazine!

  46. This post pairs nicely with your graveyard tour from a while back.

  47. wow, I have really been living on the edge!! Thank you, I can make a few changes now, like win an oscar, the Nobel, and I will never cross the street on any day ending in Y.

    Thanks for the tips, I don’t get helpful news over here ;-)

  48. Rebel 48

    Very interesting!

  49. Paula 49

    I feel like I’m living dangerously now! Ha! That’s actually quite thrilling coming from little ol’ me. Maybe I just added another year or two to my lifespan! :-)

  50. Wacky stuff but I figure when my time has come I’ll be gone…


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