Brendan Beary: The Actuary's Dilemma



 'The First World War veteran Henry Allingham – who last month
officially became the world's oldest man – has died at the age of 113.'
                                                                          -  Daily Telegraph

I oft read Wikipedia to click on Recent Deaths-
The notables around the world who've drawn their final breaths.
There's congressmen and cricketers, there's magnates and MPs;
They die from falls and drugs and guns and every known disease.
Each demographic group helps pad the morbid yearly roll,
Yet super-centenarians pay more than their fair toll.
Their numbers in the census aren't large, and yet the twist
Is how they disproportionately fill the gruesome list.
The Oldest Living Such-and Such, the Last Surviving Whom,
No sooner do they claim their crown, when poof! they're in the tomb.
And thus with Henry Allingham, who seemed a decent gent;
It isn't hard to figure how his final chapter went.
The former Oldest Chap, who held the title from Japan,
Passed on in June, and with his death, our Henry was The Man.
And yet, within a month of that, the Reaper cut him down;
He hardly had a decent chance to bask in his renown.
The irony is bitter; it can safely be assumed
Longevity is just another means of being doomed.
An existential nightmare, this -- there's no way you can win;
If ills and spills don't get you first, surviving does you in!