Sports writer Martin Manley committed suicide yesterday on his 60th birthday. Unlike most suicides that leave people wondering fruitlessly what caused it, he decided to create an elaborate website that has a long explanation and is prepaid five years in advance.
So why did he kill himself? He goes through each of the commonly assumed reasons for suicide to show that none applied to him. He was healthy, happy, and had no financial worries. He gives four reasons for his action, one of which is that he just did not want to get old and wanted to go out ‘on top’.
The thought of being in a nursing home, physically or mentally disabled, was the single scariest thing I had ever thought about – at least on this earth. So, in order to make sure that it never happened, I determined that I would have to end things when I was still semi-intelligent and physically able. That’s what I mean by saying “Because I can.”
I didn’t want to die alone. I didn’t want to die of old age. I didn’t want to die after years of unproductivity. I didn’t want to die having my chin and my butt wiped by someone who might forget which cloth they used for which. I didn’t want to die of a stroke or cancer or heart attack or Alzheimer’s. I decided I was gettin’ out while the gettin’ was good and while I could still produce this website!
He seems to have put a lot of thought into it and acted quite rationally.