I hope that since we're over 50 we can talk about this without offending anyone, but the data geek in me can't resist.
So - this year is my high school class's 35th reunion (class of '74). The organizer sends out an email of class names and addresses, along with a note listing deceased classmates (11 in all; unfortunately including some very close childhood friends of mine) and a brief message expressing regretful surprise that "so many" of our class are dead.
While pausing a bit to read the names, I couldn't resist thinking: is 11 really "so many" out of class of 206? How many people would be expected to die over a 35 year period?
So I google some information on mortality rates, and plug in the expected mortality rate for folks my age since the age of 18 (I found annual mortality rates per 100,000 people in the U.S. for age bands, like 20 to 24, 25 to 29, and so on). According to the data, if you add up the cumulative probability of death for someone who turned 18 in 1974, there would be a 6.4% chance of dying between your 18th birthday and your 54th.
With 11 dead, in fact, my class was actually two people *under* the expectation - the expected rate would be 13.1 deaths. That was 3 weeks ago. Then, last week, one of my classmates tragically died in a house fire. Now we're at 12.
The odds say one more to go this year...spooky.
Every day is a blessing: go ride your bike.