The Darwin Awards – 6 eBooks
The Darwin Awards is the legendary web site which commemorates the remains of people who have improved our gene pool by killing themselves in really stupid ways!
Practically everyone who is on the net has received a Darwin story in their e-mail at one time or another. It is one of those legendary web sites which has become part of the fabric of being on-line. Started in 1993 by biologist Wendy Northcutt she set out to collect together and authenticate stories of individuals around the world who, through their stupidity, have removed themselves from the gene pool. These are the people for whom warnings such as “coffee is hot” and “this superman cape does not enable the wearer to fly” were made.
The Darwin Awards are not for the tenderhearted. The vastly popular Web site, now a book, recognizes “individuals who ensure the long-term survival of our species by removing themselves from the gene pool in a sublimely idiotic fashion.”
Who wins a Darwin Award? Terrorists who set their bombs on daylight saving time and delivered them on standard time, blowing themselves up. Folks who put garlands around a Bengal tiger’s neck. Guys in Cambodia who took turns stomping on a land mine they’d brought into a bar. The six Egyptians who drowned trying to rescue a chicken that fell into a well. (The chicken alone survived.) The Buenos Aires husband who threw his wife out an eighth-floor window during a spat, noticed she’d gotten caught in power lines, and jumped after her, “angrily trying to finish the job, or remorsefully hoping to rescue her.” He went splat; she escaped unscathed.
There are some urban legends, like the sergeant said to have attached a Jet-Assisted Take-Off unit to his Chevy and hit a cliff 125 feet up (not true, says author Wendy Northcutt), and all-too-true honorable mentions, like the man who put weather balloons on his lawn chair, soared to 16,000 feet, crashed into power lines, blacked out Long Beach, California, and told police, “A man can’t just sit around.” My favorite winner: the man who was bitten nine times by the same king brown snake because he put it in a bag on his car seat and kept sticking his hand back into the bag. Why did he pick up the snake with his left hand? “Because I was holding a beer in my right one.” And where did this take place? In Darwin, Australia. If you think somebody up there doesn’t have a wicked sense of humor, The Darwin Awards may change your mind.
1. The Darwin Awards: Evolution in Action by Wendy Northcutt