Monday, January 23, 2006

A Shocking Statistic

Sadly, another year has come and gone -- and I still haven't got my very own pony.

When I was a very young girl, I always said that I would just die if I couldn't have one of my very own; but luckily, my immune system was strong enough to withstand the potentially debilitating effects.

However, it is a shocking fact that, all too frequently, other young girls are not so fortunate.

While it is true that only a very small percentage of six to seven year old girls actually die because they can't have a pony, it has remained a troubling statistic over the years. Although during the last quarter century, the increase in the rate of these deaths has been slow (perhaps reflecting a gradual decrease in awareness), the fact remains that young girls just die because they can't have a pony in only slightly less numbers than they die from running with scissors, not looking both ways, taking candy from strangers, and playing with matches.

In 2005 --in Florida alone-- an estimated 1,078 girls aged 6 to 7 pouted, cried, sickened, wasted away, and then died, just as they had threatened to do after being refused the simple and modest request for a pony.

Even the ones who don't just die can be at a much greater risk of health problems including, for example: melancholia, consumption, morbid vexation, the vapors, and woe. Other various depressive disorders are also not unheard of, although rare. Also, general unhappiness and low self esteem may linger for years, a problem that could potentially affect a significant portion of the population one day.

In addition, very young girls who just die because they can't have a pony can also have economic consequences as well. The fact is that early death due to this condition could potentially mean a severe drop in profits for the industries that specialize in pink hair bows, purple glitter pens, Barbie dolls, chapstick, jelly bracelets, pink plastic tiaras, and various other sundries. So a solution to the problem is not strictly limited to implications for the health of young girls -- but to the health of the community as a whole.

It is true that older girls are at much less of a risk than those who are younger-- but the danger remains. Year after year, they sulk and then waste away while parents mourn and ask "what if?" and "why oh why didn't we buy her a pony?"

Of course there is no easy answer. But perhaps, someday, there will be a cure.

Until then, the only hope is to persuade parents to buy ponies before it's too late.





******

p.s. my birthday is coming up next week

17 Comments:

Blogger roselle said...

does it have to be a pony of the live persuasion???

happy early birthday la!!! make it your birthweek and start celebrations today!

9:58 AM  
Blogger Ron Southern said...

Aha! Maybe that's the cause of my mysterious disease! But, wait--I'm not a girl! Oh, hell. But then, I didn't ask for a pony, either! Think that's why I never got one? I have a cousin who had his picture taken on a birthday pony, but I never did. I sure wish I at least had a photo these days!

5:14 PM  
Anonymous Professor Twain said...

It's my birthday next week too (Feb. 1), yet another bit of evidence that Cosmic Forces are driving us toward a collision.

Ignore the email if you wish, it was a bit too Earnest.

I believe that, one day, you will have your pony and everything else that you dream of.

6:14 PM  
Blogger L said...

Atractiva: well, I'm afraid that a stuffed pony might be rather awkward....

Ron: Hey! Long time no see! Or maybe Long time never see, or something like that! Anyway, I hope you are recovering from your Mysterious Disease.

My Dear Professor: OOOOH! Happy Early Birthday!!! No email is ever too Earnest... but can you believe that I haven't checked email in Forever? I shall rectify the situation tomorrow after work :)

12:00 AM  
Anonymous Lisa said...

This is terrible!!! I was going to send you a care package for your birthday. Matches, scissors, and candy from a nice man who stopped me in the street the other day. Now my gift idea just sounds like crap.

But I like the graph you made. It's very scientific with pretty colors.

9:27 PM  
Anonymous Chickie said...

A pony has been shipped via UPS. Please sign for the package when it arrives. I don't have room for it here and since I bought him at Discount Ponies he is nonreturnable.

9:27 PM  
Anonymous -c said...

hehe! you've done it again... awesome post! I was already laughing goofily, but when I scrolled down and saw the graph, it was really all over!

9:27 PM  
Anonymous Mariana said...

Don't forget cerebral fever, I think it killed Catherine of Wuthering Heights, which as you know, is the heart breaking story of a girl who just wanted a pony.

9:28 PM  
Anonymous negative guy said...

I never got a pony and Im fine. But then, Im not a girl. Or at least I assume Im not, since I cant have multiple O's.

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Rhodent said...

I am so terrribly sorry for having ruined your life. Do you want me to make up for by getting you some BArbie dolls and pink hair bows?
XOXO
Mom

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Mark said...

I was such a good dad that I made sure all my seven year old girls got ponies for their birthdays. okay, they came in a can labelled "ALPO" but hey, fine steeds they were. They didn't eat much (actually, they didn't eat at all) they didn't have to be groomed, and Barbie could sit on them without falling off. Perhaps I should send you such a pony...

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Debbie said...

I, too, did not get a pony when I turned 6 or 7. I cried and cried, but, alas, I am still here. My problem is that as I grew older, I just wanted more ridiculous things like a car at age 16. I never got one from my parents. When I turned 23, I then wanted a house. Didn't get that either.

My sister asked for a pony and got a dog. When she turned 18, she asked for a car and got a used Camero. When she turned 19, she asked for a huge wedding, and got that, too. I feel gipped.

But wait, there is a happy ending to the story...I was able to buy a couple of my own cars that I really enjoyed, I bought my own house that is fantastic, and my parent did buy me a very cool, ginormous high def TV as a college grad present.

BTW - Happy Birtday, L, from a fellow January Birthday Girl.

Love,
Deb

9:28 PM  
Anonymous *Rachel said...

This is about as awesome as awesome gets.

Are you having a party somewhere in the 'Burg that I can crash?

9:29 PM  
Anonymous Kosh said...

Can I put my money down on "Playing with Matches?" It seems to have the best track record.

9:29 PM  
Blogger L said...

Lisa: we here at Random_Speak are always Terribly Scientific. It's part of our charm

Chickie: oh goody! I've always wanted my very own pony!

-c: I'm glad you enjoyed it.... it's so true, though, isn't it?

mariana: I'm so forgetful; I ALWAYS forget Cerebral Fever...

Negative Guy: I actually read somewhere that guys can get those too... but a bit of practice is required

Rhodent: No. Thank You

mark: you do sound terribly thoughtful...

Deb: Happy B-day to you too!! I certainly hope that you did not spend the day shopping! If you did not spend at least part of the day in a terribly raunchy romp-fest, I shall be Horribly Disappointed!

Rachel: not this week-- but I'll keep you posted

Kosh: I would recommend playing with matches myself, as it seems to be somewhat less risky than taking candy from strangers, running with scissors, and not looking both ways....

9:29 PM  
Anonymous Debbie said...

L - My man said not to worry about your concern of how I spend the day. He took care of things!

9:29 PM  
Blogger L said...

Deb: Good!

9:29 PM  

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