More men than women have eliminated themselves by astonishingly stupid methods.

During this festive season, many people tend to be free from work with only one thing preoccupying their minds- having a good time. It is during such times that men tend to dare each other to all sorts of silly games. Unfortunately, it is through such games or competitions that people lose lives.  Interestingly, more men than women have eliminated themselves by astonishingly stupid methods, a 20-year study of the Darwin Awards, an annual review of the most foolish ways people have died reveals. Darwin Awards aside, more men than women die trying to prove a silly point or two.

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In his desperate attempt to prove he could drink more alcohol than anyone else at a bar in Limuru, a certain Tom Kiringo died a few minutes into the competition. How about Francis Mbugua who choked to death in an eating competition in Thika? This was not a competition in eating a delicacy per se, all Francis wanted was to prove that he could munch more bread and guzzle more sodas than any other contestant within the shortest time possible. And this madness to prove a silly point is not limited to Kenyans. A broad, there are many similar foolish men.

Tried to prove gravity law is a joke

Franz Reichelt, a tailor by trade, dreamed of inventing the first parachute, a fashion accessory. Photo: Courtesy.

Take for instance, Franz Reichelt. The crazy man tried to prove that he was both an awesome inventor and that the law of gravity simply did not apply to him. Differently put, he thought he was special and Issac Newton was such a joke. Look, Franz Reichelt, a tailor by trade, dreamed of inventing the first parachute, a fashion accessory that would allow a person to float safely to the ground after falling from a great height.

Ha! He proved Newton’s law of universal gravitation is no joke. More specifically, he proved that falling from a great height will result in death even if you happen to be wearing one of these convenient, comfy garments. Reichelt’s “coat parachute,” was supposed to function in the same way as a modern parachute. The ultimate test of his invention was when, in 1912, he jumped off the Eiffel Tower in front of an assembled group of worried onlookers. You can pretty much imagine how that went. He died.

Too special to be killed by poison

Bando Mitsugoro VIII tried to prove he was immune to fugu fish poison.

Bando Mitsugoro VIII tried to prove he was immune to poison. He tried to prove that he was invincible, at least where poison was involved. Bando Mitsugoro VIII was a Japanese Kabuki actor, good enough to be named a “living national treasure” by the Japanese government, a title that became particularly poignant in 1975 when he became rather the opposite of living. On the 16th of January of that year, Mitsugoro went to a restaurant with friends and ordered four “fugu livers.” These are better known in Western society as “a deathwish”, as the fish are extremely poisonous. Mitsugoro’s intention was to prove his immunity to the poison by ingesting four times the amount that could ordinarily kill someone. He died.

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Died in an attempt to entertain interns

Garry Hoy tried to prove that glass on high rise buildings is very strong and unbreakable. Photo: Courtesy.

Garry Hoy, a lawyer from Toronto, Canada, in his desperate attempt to entertain interns at his office, tried to prove that glass on high rise buildings, like the glass windows of his 24th storey office is very strong and unbreakable. Garry tested his little theory by slamming his body up against the glass. He burst through the window and plunged to his death, leaving a group of terrified interns.

What is shocking about this story is that the window gave way on his second attempt.

She tried to prove she could live without urinating

Man can live without food?

Christopher McCandless just took off to live in the wild of Alaska, with little to no food or equipment.

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Christopher McCandless tried to prove that he could live without eating. He felt he didn’t need the shallow comforts of modern life. McCandless had a strong contempt for the “empty materialism of American society,” didn’t need ‘frivolities’ like houses and electricity and just took off to live in the wild of Alaska, with little to no food or equipment. Just the way nature intended! Though the book on McCandless’s life and the movie it spawned were sympathetic to the whole situation, many Alaskans believe that he was foolish to embark on such a lifestyle without the appropriate skills or equipment, such as a map or compass.  Alaskan Park Ranger Peter Christian had no kind words for McCandless.

Hear him: “When you consider McCandless from my perspective, you quickly see that what he did wasn’t even particularly daring, just stupid, tragic, and inconsiderate. First off, he spent very little time learning how to live in the wild. He arrived at the Stampede Trail without even a map of the area. Chris McCandless committed suicide.”