Friday, June 02, 2006


I graduated from a Michigan high school almost 50 years ago. My graduating class numbered 117 persons, 64 males and 53 females. The male-female ratio (1.2:1) strikes me as unusually high for a non-technical, public high school. The national ratio for the relevant age-race cohort was then about 1.03:1 (Table 17, here).

In any event, if we 64 males had been typical white, male, Americans of our time, only 60 percent of us would be alive today (derived from Table 10, here). How many of us are still alive? Based on certain knowledge and a search of the Social Security Death Index, I estimate that 70 to 80 percent of us remain among the quick (adjective, definition 6a, here).

Have we survivors lived longer than the "average" white, male, American born around 1940 because (a) we grew up in a cold climate or (b) there were relatively few females in our environment.