Archived Story

Darwin awards explored again

Published 9:14am Wednesday, February 27, 2013 Updated 11:18am Wednesday, February 27, 2013

It’s been a while since we visited the Darwin Awards, which are awarded posthumously (or is that “post-humorously?”) to those adults who, because of the stupid things they do, remove themselves from our gene pool, thus improving human-kind’s chances of improving itself.

One award goes to a 24-year-old woman from Mexico, who, since she was on the second floor and needed something from the first floor, didn’t want to waste the energy on the stairs.

Interestingly enough, this was a gym, and she was there to exercise. She should have. Instead of taking the stairs, she opened the safety gate on the industrial elevator, stuck her head in, and shouted down the elevator shaft. This was something she had done before, everyone there said. Unfortunately, the elevator was coming down. One could even say it was “headed” down, which it was.

The next one comes out of Germany, where an engineer, exasperated with the moles that were digging up his yard and leaving those funny humped tunnels all over it, decided to drive metal rods here and there in the yard and hook some electricity up to them.

Which he did. Unfortunately, he must have misunderstood which side of the power transformer was which ( probably not an electrical engineer), and tied something on the order of 8000 volts to the wires which he had already hooked up to the metal rods. So far, so good. Authorities guessed that all the moles in the yard had been killed.

Unfortunately, he ventured out into the yard himself to view the results, thus becoming a result himself. Authorities had to turn off the whole neighborhood’s electricity to recover his body.

In New York State, Joe, 20 years old and inebriated, drove his car off the road and into a power line pole, knocking the pole — and its power line — down, and getting his car stuck.

Seeing a farm nearby, he staggered over there and managed, since no one was home, to start and steal a large farm tractor.

This is another so far, so good story. He steered the tractor over to his wreck, parked it on top of one of the downed power lines, which, since the tractor is on rubber, was the “so far so good” part of this. Unfortunately, he got off the tractor, and was electrocuted. Joe, welcome to the Darwin Awards.

This one from Russia. Sergei, sitting in his college biology class, was observed licking potassium cyanide from his palm.

Upon questioning, he stated that this magic elixir would strengthen his body and protect him from death. He swallowed poisons daily, including small quantities of toxic mushrooms, arsenic, cyanide salts, among others. “I shall never die,” he stated.

One day he swallowed too much cyanide and, felling ill, asked his classmates to fetch him some water. Instead of drinking the water straight, he dissolved the rest of the cyanide in it, which he drank.

He died.

He was described as a straight-A student, and had won awards for his scholarship.

His father praised him as a great chemist who had died for science. At the very least, he died to qualify for the Darwin Awards.

Last, Ben, coming home late at night, and driving, authorities speculated, way too fast, failed to make the curve by the city’s wastewater treatment plant.

He was going fast enough to blow through a chain link fence, across a road, through another fence, and into a 400,000-gallon tank of raw sewage. Divers found his truck upright at the bottom of the 18-foot-deep tank the next day.

I give Ben the highest Darwin Award of all these entrants, because he not only demonstrates that the gene pool is now safe from his DNA, but also that taking “too much crap” is detrimental to your overall health.

I hope the divers got hazardous duty pay.

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