Mrs Doris Pemberton recently revealed the secret of her longevity on the occasion of her hundred and twenty-fourth birthday.
"Well now, you see, I've always thought that the best way of staying alive is 'not to die'. My feeling is that if you go and let yourself die, then you're just asking for trouble, frankly.
"Oh, I have my critics, of course: people have said to me that this is pretty thin, as far as fitness regimes go, and as a philosophy it's quite unhelpful. But then, I'm still here, aren't I? Living proof, you might say."
Mrs Pemberton, who was recently found to be 78% Valium, has been studied by doctors from all over the world, most of whom concur that she has not yet died. They are at a loss to explain her great age, but have proffered the opinion that 'it's probably a virus.'
Mrs Pemberton, meanwhile, has no time for the medical profession. She has been happily ignoring their advice, chomping through sixty cigarettes a day and smoking anything up to sixteen pints of beer.
Determination, willpower and shortbread
It's all about determination, willpower and shortbread," she said. "But you can't live in a bubble, can you? All my friends made that mistake. Too busy concentrating on staying alive, they didn't notice they were dead till it was too late."
Mrs Pemberton died early yesterday morning in the freezer section of her local supermarket.