"I don't drink, but I have a little drop of whiskey every night …"
On her birthday, Grace Jones gave the local news a brilliant answer to the unending quandary of human longevity: "Whiskey," she said behind a weathered smile.
She, and others like her, are called supercentenarians — or people who live past the age of 110 years old. These are the seniors of the world that have seen more than any one of us can really comprehend, who have watched world wars, multiple tech booms, the advent of flight and probably wondered once or twice about what "fleek" really means or why Miley Cyrus can't wear shirts like a normal human being. Not to mention they've been witness to changes in medicines, street drugs, architecture, swimwear, language and countless other things we're probably taking for granted at this very moment.
So when the old-schoolers give us a bit of advice before they pass about how to live a long and happy life, it's best to pay attention. You never know when your time will come …
Grace Jones (110 years old)
"I don’t drink, but I have a little drop of whiskey every night.”
Jeralean Talley (d. 116 years old)
"Be nice, worship God and eat pigs’ feet."
Susannah Mushatt Jones (d. 116 years old)
"Miss Susie loves her gum, Miss Susie loves her barbeque chicken, Miss Susie loves her bacon and if you take any of the three away you will be told off," her niece said of her aunt.
Jessie Gallan (d. 109 years old)
"My secret to a long life has been staying away from men. They're just more trouble than they're worth."
Gertrude Weaver (d. 116 years old)
"Trusting in the Lord, hard work and loving everybody."
Misao Okawa (d. 117 years old)
"Eat and sleep and you will live a long time. You have to learn to relax."
… yet some supercentenarians just don't know what it is or why it is that they've lived for so long. Maybe there's no secret after all …
Israel Kristal (112 years old)
"I don't know the secret for long life. I believe that everything is determined from above, and we shall never know the reasons why. There have been smarter, stronger and better looking men then me who are no longer alive. All that is left for us to do is to keep on working as hard as we can and rebuild what is lost."