Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Darwin Awards

One weird thing about me is that I like to read about death. One of my favourite books was 'What A Way To Go' which details some of the strangest deaths ever recorded. Believe me, there are thousands of ways someone can die. Ever since then, whenever I read crimes that involves death in gruesome or even weird ways, I'd get intrigued about it. There's also a show I just found out last year called '1000 Ways to Die' on YouTube. Some of the deaths featured never happened and some of them real. I found out about the Darwin Awards when I was watching an episode of the show. This led me to read the story of the real person who died in that way. Head on after the break to read more about what the Darwin Awards are for...

 


Taking the definition from their website: Named in honor of Charles Darwin, the father of evolution, the Darwin Awards commemorate those who improve our gene pool by removing themselves from it. It basically accounts deaths that were caused by the stupidity of human themselves, referencing Darwin's theory that we apparently evolved from apes. Every year, a list of nominees are placed for voting to win the coveted award. It's not really a physical award, just a title for the best story. Here are some of my picks of the interesting deaths that has occured.

Planking Spanking (2011)
Camera ready, a 20-year-old Australian stretched himself out face-down on the railing, arms by his sides, stiff as a plank, balanced. Don't do it, don't cross that line young male Homo sapiens sapiens! Oh no...the species is doomed. Down he fell. Descent of man.

Angry Wheelchair Man (2010)
An angry handicapped South Korean man, annoyed that an elevator departed without him, thinks it over before ramming his wheelchair into the doors (bam!) once, twice, three times in all. Success and failure combined as he gained access to the elevator, and plunged down the rabbit hole to his death. This was captured by a CCTV and uploaded to YouTube. You can watch it here.

Killer Fuel Economy (2008)
In the town of Batu Berendam, near Malacca, Mohd H. was killed by an explosion while filling his van's tank with compressed natural gas (CNG) at a petrol station. What made the normally routine process of fueling a vehicle go so badly wrong? The problem was that the man had converted his van to use CNG fuel by hooking up an LPG cooking gas tank, rather than having the vehicle properly converted.

High on Life (2006)
The feet of Jason and Sara, both 21, were found protruding from a huge, deflated helium advertising balloon. The pair pulled down the 8' balloon, and climbed inside for a breath of helium goodness. Their last words consisted of high-pitched, incoherent giggling as they slowly passed out, and passed into the hereafter.

Lawyer Aloft (1996) - This was the story that I watched on '1000 Ways to Die'
Police said a lawyer demonstrating the safety of windows in a downtown Toronto skyscraper crashed through a pane of glass with his shoulder and plunged twenty-four floors to his death. A police spokesman said Garry, thirty-nine, fell into the courtyard of the Toronto Dominion Bank Tower as he was explaining the strength of the building's windows to visiting law students.

You can read more stories at the Darwin Awards' official site.