The average life expectancy in the U.S. is 78.7 years.
This is roughly 3.7 times my current age. As a 21-year-old I am currently at the top physical condition of my life â€“â€“ from here the next 57.7 years will be mostly downhill.
Iâ€™m not exactly looking forward to this 57.7-year decline. Unless I am excited for collecting stamps, complaining about the temperature and driving 15 miles per hour on the wrong side of the road with my blinker on.
However, I do look forward to embarrassing my grandchildren by saying inappropriate things in public and laughing when they defend me by saying, â€œSorry, heâ€™s an old man and not all there anymore.â€
Aging isnâ€™t the most glamorous fate.Â We canâ€™t all age like George Clooney. Like Marsellus Wallace said in â€œPulp Fiction,â€ â€œMother â€“â€“ who thought their ass would age like wine. If you mean it turns to vinegar, it does. If you mean it gets better with age, it donâ€™t.â€
Yet still, as a culture we value bathing in metaphorical formaldehyde. We hobble through life with one foot in the grave, barely coherent and hanging on to that last bit of life.
Is it pride or ignorance that stops us from throwing in the towel, from stepping back and saying, â€œWell I had a good run, now I will gracefully give up while Iâ€™m ahead?â€Â
We do it with everything: relationships, gambling, hairstyles, wars and even TV shows.
This Thursday NBC will air a 50-minute episode of â€œThe Officeâ€ as Steve Carell bids his farewell to the show.
Â But this doesnâ€™t mean an end of â€œThe Office.â€ The show will continue to limp on without Carell, who played the central role of Michael Scott, the office manager from hell.
For weeks fans have speculated who would be replacing Carell. Could it be Jim Carrey, Ricky Gervais, Will Arnett, Will Ferrell, James Spader, Ray Romano or Catherine Tate?Â
The answer is easy.Â It should be no one.
Â On July 9, 2001 the original version of â€œThe Officeâ€ aired in the U.K. In December of 2003, after 14 episodes, two Emmys and being hailed as one of the best sitcoms of the decade, it ended.
Today, the British version of â€œThe Officeâ€ is remembered as a short-lived and beloved piece of art that never lingered past its prime.
In stark contrast is the American version of â€œThe Office.â€ In seven seasons, 147 episodes it has faced declining viewership and declining quality.
Had the show ended when Jim and Pam finally got together, maybe it would be remembered more fondly.
â€œArrested Developmentâ€ one of my favorite television shows of all time ran for three seasons before it was canceled by FOX. Although the premature end of the show was disappointing, I am left with three amazing seasons that I can watch over and over again.Â
The British â€œOfficeâ€ and â€œArrested Developmentâ€ are like the Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Kurt Cobain of television.
Judd Apatow, the mind behind â€œThe 40-Year-Old Virgin,â€ â€œKnocked Up,â€ â€œSuperbad,â€ â€œForgetting Sarah Marshallâ€ and â€œPineapple Expressâ€ began with a short-lived career as a TV maker.Â He created two shows â€œFreaks and Geeksâ€ and â€œUndeclaredâ€ that each ran for one season and are now regarded as cult classics.
Television, like humans, should have an expiration date.
What if The Beatles never broke up in 1970? What if for the next 10 years until John Lennonâ€™s death in 1980 they made a slew of terrible albums? Would they still be the greatest band of pop music?
As you have probably heard from some of your professors about writing papers, â€œItâ€™s about quality, not quantity.â€
Itâ€™s time for TV producers like those of â€œThe Office,â€ to think more about disappointing fans and less about how long they can cash in on something that isnâ€™t good anymore.
I mean, no one wants to be that person still hanging out at a party at 5 a.m. when everyone in the house has already gone to bed.Â
With that being said itâ€™s about time I end this colu â€“â€“
Entertainment Editor Matt Miller is a junior journalism major. His column appears Wednesdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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