Tag Archive | Dr Bradley Willcox

100 days – Day 20

100 days – Day 20: A Short Entry



I’m used to jokes about my height – I’m only 5′ 5″ and shrinking as I get older.

I remember a minister who was visiting his parishioners in the Infirmary and who popped into the Chaplain’s Office first.  “Don’t get up!” he said, as he came through the doorway.  “Oh, you’re already standing up…. I couldn’t tell the difference!”  How we laughed.  Oscar Wilde, eat your heart out!

As a child, surprisingly, I was underweight and a faddy eater.  “What, not even SHORTbread?” one wit asked.

Nor did I like milk (still don’t) – cue: “But you must have liked CONDENSED milk!”  Ha! Ha! Ha!    Oh, what jolly japes over the years!


Once, when I was a Parish Minister in a particular church,  the lectern in the pulpit  wast too high for my short stature; I couldn’t see over it.  So, the problem was solved by my standing on a hassock (a kneeler).  Unfortunately, having been off for a couple of Sundays on leave, I returned to find, on climbing the pulpit, that my “booster” had been removed – the preacher who was filling in for me was quite tall.

It looked a bit like this:



Charles Spurgeon once asked a ministerial student to preach an impromptu sermon, the result of which deserved entry in the Guinness World Records for the shortest sermon ever preached. The student preacher proclaimed the entire sermon in three sentences. Appropriately, the topic was Zacchaeus:

“First, Zacchaeus was a man of small stature; so am I. Second, Zacchaeus was very much up a tree; so am I. Third, Zacchaeus made haste and came down; so will I.”

With that, the student sat down to shouts of “More, more!” from his fellows. “No,” said Spurgeon. “He could not improve upon that if he tried”

However, I read another kind of good news this morning in the Telegraph:  short men will have the last laugh after all

Scientists have found evidence that short men are likely to live longer, with those under five foot two having a greater chance of surviving to old age.

One researcher has claimed that “The taller you got, the shorter you lived.”

Dr Bradley Willcox, from the Department of Geriatric Medicine, at the University of Hawaii, found that shorter men were more likely to have a protective form of the longevity gene, FOXO3, leading to smaller body size during early development and a longer lifespan, and were also more likely to have lower blood insulin levels and less cancer.

Yep – kind of like that!


 Oh, and I forgot to mention that the visiting clergyman who came to my hospital office was six feet tall …….  and is now six feet under!


p.s – it’s sometimes difficult to get to the tenth floor of an office block – I’ve usually got to walk up the last three flights of stairs.  Why?  Because I can only reach the seventh floor button in the elevator!  BOOM! BOOM!



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