By Tom Holt

Mild-mannered accountant Jane Doland needs to tune down Vanderdecker, a magically immortal Dutch sea captain who, with his group, has been circling the globe for 400 years.

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While most participants voiced that middle age was a time of relative occupational security, they also discussed how moving into old age limits occupational opportunities and signifies retirement. Several men spoke specifically about the existence of a chronological cut-off point, after which it would be difficult or impossible to change careers or jobs. Jack (age 61) talked about experiencing increased invisibility at work: ‘I really felt treated like I was an old man ... ’ They often mentioned retirement as a goal previously distant, which had grown close.

Anti-aging hGH Therapy, 2002) Other sites employ similar images of old age as disease and allusions to technical (scientific, mathematical) thought as they warn against the loss of youth: ‘[y]ou have to capture the energy and vitality that is slowly ... but surely fading away ... It’s simple math, the longer you wait to begin the less pleasant the second half of your life will be’ (Anti-aging Research, 2005). ’ One site defines ageing as the ‘disorganization, deterioration, dissolution, wear and tear that breaks our bodies down and causes us to look older’ (Anti-aging hGH Therapy, 2002).

I was watching him last night playing, you know, that’s a wonderful kind of engagement and something hopefully he retains ... ’. These participants largely felt that old age was a sort of acquiescence, a failure to try hard enough, often with scorn for those who did not fight against their ageing. Various participants brought up examples of individuals who were ‘living old’ or just not trying hard enough, letting themselves go. Most of the interviewees agreed that there were some parts of ageing life that one can and should control.

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