The Phoenix

Monday, January 07, 2008

The 2007 Darwin Awards

Another year, another set of Darwin Award nominees. What are the Darwin Awards? I guess you could say that those who lose their lives due to their own stupidity are given some recognition for strengthening the gene pool.

Sounds pretty mean, doesn't it.

I guess in one sense, it is. These people lost their lives, afterall. But from an objective perspective, the more idiots that rid themselves from the genetic pool, the stronger our species will be. So it's not so glum. It's for the best, really.

If you're interested, you can see my posts covering the 2006 Darwins and the 2005 Awards.

Don't Lose Your Head
In Guadalajara, Mexico, Jessica was working out at a hotel's gym. The 24 year old suddenly remembered that she needed something from the floor directly below. No one can figure out why she decided to use the industrial elevator shaft to yell at the people one floor down. She stuck her head into the shaft, and somehow managed to not notice the elevator coming straight up towards her. The lift was transporting a heap of scrap metal to a floor above, and it very easily decapitated the young lady.

I'm not a genius, nor do I have Chuck Norris-like abilities...but I think I would notice an elevator coming towards me from below.

Addicted to Enemas
58 year-old Michael, from Texas, was addicted to two things - alcohol and enemas. And he loved to combine the two. Michael had some sort of painful throat condition, so he wasn't able to get drunk like normal alcoholics.

One night, Michael decided to pour 100 fluid ounces of sherry up his ass. He got drunk as a skunk, and was found dead the next morning. Toxicology reports put his blood alcohol level at 0.47%. To think he died by shoving THREE LITERS of wine up his arse is actually pretty impressive. Moronic, but impressive.

Not So Safe Sex
In South Carolina, a cab driver found the naked bodies of a 20-something couple on the road. Although they were just barely alive, they died without regaining consciousness at the hospital. Police were completely at a loss. There was no sign of foul play, no abandoned vehicles, or anything.

After further investigation, they found the couples' clothes on a pyramid-shaped roof overlooking the street. It was evident that the couple was in the middle of having sex, and something called gravity took over.

Here's the of the deceased's last name is TUMBLESTON.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Health Matters...True or False?

As we embark onward in 2008, this is the time of year when we tend to look at our health. Fitness club memberships peak (only to drop off by May), and various diet pills, home gyms, and weight loss schemes promise to make us healthier.

It's amazing how many of these products prey on our belief in health and medical myths.

Here are a few interesting ones:

Drink at least eight glasses of water a day. It's true many of us don't get enough water, but there's no need to go crazy. We get plenty of water from eating fruits and drinking juice and coffee. If you drink too much water, you could actually get very ill from hyperhydration. I did a post on this topic last year on a radio contest that killed a woman trying to win a wii.

We only use a small percentage of our brains. I've heard we only use 3% of our brains. And then it became 10%. This is so absurd. If you've ever looked at an MRI scan of a brain in use can easily see that we use a whole lot of our brains. OK, maybe Jamie Lynn Spears uses 10% of hers.

Shaving hair makes it grow back thicker. My sister had very thin hair when she was a toddler. My parents decided to go ahead and shave her completely bald, thinking her hair would grow back much fuller and thicker. I'm sorry, sis, but that was not necessary. When you shave a hair, the new stubble grows without the finer taper at the ends of normal hair, giving the stubble the impression that it's thicker. (I was going to make a Brittney Spears joke here about shaving heads, but I think the Spears family deserves a little mercy).

Reading in dim light hurts your eyes. This is an old wives tale for sure. It might be a little tough to read under a dim light, but it doesn't do any damage. Also, crossing your eyes won't make them permanently stay crossed. This was just mom's way to make kids stop doing it. Staring at the sun, by the way, is true. Don't do it. Ever. Listen to your mother on that one.

Turn of your cell phone in hospitals. Having recently worked in hospitals, they have signs all over the place reminding you to do so. For some time, actually, this was not so necessary. But in the age of bluetooth technology, you do need to turn off the phone. Many medical devices work wirelessly these days as well, and modern cell phones CAN interfere with them. You probably won't kill a patient with a cell phone, but it's better to be safe than sorry.

Learn while sleeping. Many of us are taking on new challenges this year, which means taking college courses or expanding our horizons. The myth involves playing a recording of a lecture or information while you sleep so that it will somehow embed that information into your brain. So not true. HOWEVER, recent research has found that if you do need to learn some information quickly, review it right before you sleep. Most memory consolidation happens during sleep, so anything you read or examine right before you snooze is more likely to be placed in your long-term memory.

Here's to a happy and healthy 2008!

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Established 2005...

Welcome to the blog that aims to examine the lighter side of science. From the paranormal to wacky inventions, to strange mysteries and goofy experiments, I cover it all. Thanks for stoping by science is always stranger than fiction


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