Do You Want To Live Forever?

I had an e-mail the other day from sales and marketing guru and all round good guy Bob Poole.

I always enjoy reading Bob’s e-mails because he invariably makes me laugh out loud and he seems to be a one man disaster zone when it comes to weather mishaps.

I don’t care how many feet of snow or inches of rain you’ve had, Bob has had more.

He’s also had stronger winds, larger hailstones and twice as many Tornadoes, and that’s just this week.

I think he has his own micro-climate going on in PA and I was wondering what the latest calamity to befall him was when I saw the incoming e-mail.

Bob was indeed e-mailing me to let me know about another catastrophe, the only difference being this time it wasn’t a natural one and it was mine.

The eagle-eyed amongst you that have read How To Be Rich and Happy may have noticed a typo in the hard copy. This isn’t just your everyday typo either we managed to get an entire chapter heading wrong.

The chapter near the end is now called ‘Stress If For Suckers’ rather than ‘Stress Is For Suckers’

Not a big deal in the great scheme of things, but annoying as both myself and John can remember correcting this on the first proof.

I’m pretty sure I know what happened.

We made the change, then some how in the shuffle of manuscripts going backward and forward the wrong version got saved and we were back to square one.

This can happen in the editing process and we’ll have missed it because we were expecting to see ‘Stress Is For Suckers’ and as such that is what our brains told us was there.

The human brain is absolutely brilliant at seeing what it thinks is already there, even when it isn’t.

To be honest I was just relieved that the errant ‘f’ ended up where it was and not on the beginning of the last word. Stress If For Suckers I can live with, whereas ‘Stress Is For Fuckers’ would probably have created a few issues with the charities that are taking the books.

On the other hand, when we get this onto the New York Times best seller list imagine how much a first edition copy would be worth with a typo like that contained in it!

As Bob started to tell me there was a typo I fully expected him to mention the chapter in question, but he didn’t. Bob had spotted a much more subtle and amusing typo in the section on values.

We offer a list of example values and anti-values to help people with the process.

I used to ask clients what was important to them without showing them examples and it could take what seemed like hours to tease out the 8 I wanted for the exercise.

So a couple of years ago I decided to give clients a list of values to make the process flow a bit more

One of the anti-values on the list in the book was ‘immorality’, er, except it wasn’t.  As Bob so accurately pointed out we’d developed a whole new anti-value, that of immortality.

At first I was a bit embarrassed and pissed off, but the more I thought about it, the more I actually quite liked it.

Who Wants To Live Forever?

After all, who wants to live for ever? The thought sends shivers down my spine quite honestly.

Imagine the consequences of immortality.

Apart from the obvious upsides of not having to put up with going through the dying process and seeing the St Louis Rams win more than 3 games in a season, the downsides are tremendous.

Knowing you will out live everybody you love and will ever love is pretty tortuous if you ask me and I’m not sure getting to see the launch of a bug free Windows 3,281 can make up for that

Immortality doesn’t guarantee you’ll be pain free either.

Imagine as a sprightly 75 year old being told you have rheumatoid arthritis and then having to wait another 300 years in absolutely agony whilst they come up with a cure.

Also, just because you’re not going to die doesn’t necessarily mean your body won’t continue to age.

Not dying is one thing, but I’m not sure how much fun it would be if you spent the rest of eternity clinging on to a colostomy bag, eating dinner at 4.30pm and looking like Monty Burns.

I’d love your take on this even though the link to self development is tenuous at best.

Would you want to live for ever, if not why not, and is there an optimum age at which you’d like to shuffle off this mortal coil?

Let me know in the comments whilst I go and tend to a sick wife and a dog that is taking lightening and thunder personally.