Best of the Darwin Awards
If you haven’t heard of the Darwin awards, don’t go to sleep just yet. This is not a boring scientific seminar. A Darwin Award is given to a person after they die. The reason they are awarded one is because they were polite enough to remove themselves from the gene pool. In other words, people who die in really stupid ways.
There have been hundreds of these given out, and they are hotly contested (even though the contestants have no idea they will be in line to win!). Still, there are a few classics, so here is our pick of the Top Five Darwin Award Winners of all time.
1982: An Arizona man decided to take on a cactus with his handgun. After firing two shots at the 27-foot tall prickly giant, he began to shout “Timber.” After only making it through the first syllable, he was crushed to death by the falling cactus. The moral of the story: If you’re going to make a cactus mad, at least step aside.
1990: This one not only gets a Darwin Award, but also a second award for the stupidest crime. A man held up a store in Renton, Washington. Not too stupid at first glance, but this was no ordinary store. It was actually H&J Leather and Firearms, and full of customers, most of whom were licensed to carry concealed weapons. As well as trying to hold up a gun store, the unfortunate would-be robber had also burst in at a time when a police officer had dropped by on routine patrol. In fact, the robber was forced to step AROUND the police car to get into the store. After a fast exchange of gun-fire, the unsuccessful criminal was removed from the gene pool.
1992: Guns kill. In North Carolina, a man was startled out of sleep by a late-night phone call. In his fright, he accidentally grabbed the loaded Smith & Wesson he kept beside the bed, instead of the phone, and shot himself through the ear.
1996: Not-so-frivolous lawsuit. A lawyer defending the manufacturers of a plate-glass window plunged 24 storeys to his death after running into the window shoulder-first to demonstrate its strength.
1999: Practice doesn’t always make perfect. A German sword-swallower was practising his act with an umbrella, rather than an actual sword. Seemed like a good idea, until he pushed the button that opened it…
2002: Some things should be thrown away. A Croatian man died trying to retrieve gun powder fom a hand grenade to make fireworks with. Guess his method to open the grenade? He used a chainsaw.