Dead Pool 28th August 2016
No points to award this week, but we do have the joy of reading about Richard Branson falling on his face. If that’s not enough for you, then please take a moment to find a piece of your soul that cares, as the Storm Trooper who hit his head on a door frame has passed away. We’re not sure if he’s actually dead, he might come back as a ghost in subsequent sequels.
Look Who You Could Have Had:
- Sir Antony Jay, 86, English broadcaster, director and writer (Yes Minister).
- Michael Leader, 78, British actor (EastEnders, Star Wars – clumsy Star Wars stormtrooper).
- Steven Hill, 94, American actor (Mission: Impossible, Law & Order, The Firm).
- Walter Scheel, 97, German politician, President of West Germany (1974–1979).
- Marvin Kaplan, 89, American actor (It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, Alice, The Great Race).
In Other News
Sir Richard Branson says he thought he was “going to die” after crashing his bike on Caribbean island Virgin Gorda. The businessman said he was “extremely fortunate” only to have suffered a cracked cheek and torn ligaments. Sir Richard said he was cycling down a hill when he hit a speed bump, and “the next thing I knew, I was being hurled over the handlebars and my life was literally flashing before my eyes.” His bicycle “went flying off the cliff and disappeared”, he said. In a post on the Virgin website, the 66-year-old said: “I was heading down a hill towards Leverick Bay when it suddenly got really dark and I managed to hit a sleeping policeman hump in the road head on. “I really thought I was going to die. I went flying head-first towards the concrete road, but fortunately my shoulder and cheek took the brunt of the impact, and I was wearing a helmet that saved my life. “We’ve since recovered the crumpled bicycle, completely destroyed. My cheek has been badly damaged and my knee, chin, shoulder and body severely cut.” Sir Richard said his assistant, Helen Clarke, was first on the scene as he was “lying prostrate on the road” and then another member of his team, George, “sprinted from the bottom of the hill” to assist. The accident happened on the fifth anniversary of a fire which destroyed his luxury home on Necker Island.
Phil Collins has addressed his former alcohol addiction and said he came close to nearly dying due to heavy drinking. The 65-year-old grammy-award winning singer explained he started drinking more after his third marriage broke up and his family moved away to Miami. Collins said he was in turn left with an emotional vacuum and began drinking excessively. “There’s a chapter in it about the drinking, which escalated when my third marriage broke up, and I retired,” he told The New York Times while talking about his new memoir I’m Not Dead Yet. “I was left with this huge void. I didn’t want to work because I wanted to be with the kids, but the kids weren’t there anymore, because they moved to Miami, and I was still in Switzerland.” “You start drinking, and then you start drinking too much. Then it physically hurts you. I came very close to dying at that point. I’m being honest about that. The book is honest, it’s self-deprecating. I’m not shirking my responsibilities. I apologise when I need to.” Collins has spoken about his struggle with alcohol in the past, explaining that heavy drinking nearly cost him his life and he would open a bottle of wine at 11am in the morning at the height of his drinking. Once a drinker, always a drinker.
Singapore prime minister Lee Hsien Loong caused a scare when he fainted briefly while delivering a lengthy televised speech on Sunday, but he resumed speaking after resting. The 64-year-old cancer survivor, son of the city-state’s late founding leader Lee Kuan Yew, suddenly stopped speaking more than two hours into his speech and had to be helped off the stage. When he returned about an hour and 20 minutes later, the crowd in the packed auditorium gave him a standing ovation and thousands of well-wishers expressed relief on social media. Aides blamed fatigue and dehydration and ruled out a stroke. “Thank you for waiting for me. I gave everybody a scare,” said Lee, who has been in power since 2004. He said he fainted during the speech, part of celebrations linked to Singapore’s 51st anniversary as a republic on August 9th. “I think that’s what happened. I’ve never had so many doctors look at me all at once, they think I’m all right. But anyway I’m going to have a full check-up after this.” Lee had been on his feet for more than two hours when he stunned the audience as he slouched over the lectern before cameras cut away to his listeners during a live broadcast. Lee underwent surgery for prostate cancer last year and has received the all-clear from doctors. He survived a bout of lymphoma, a form of cancer, in 1992.
A Vietnamese woman has admitted to paying for her foot and part of her arm to be cut off in order to claim an insurance payout, police say. In May, the 30-year-old woman, named as “Ly Thi N”, pretended she had been hit by a train, the People’s Police Newspaper of Vietnam reports. But she has now reportedly admitted to having paid a friend $2,200 (£1,660) to sever her limbs. The aim was to claim more than $150,000 from her insurance company. A supposed bystander, “Doan Van D”, the same person who did the cutting, had called an ambulance after “finding” the injured woman on a Hanoi railroad. Pictures published by the official police newspaper showed the woman three months later, with her wounds healed. She is believed to run a struggling business, according to local media. Police have dropped the criminal investigation against both suspects, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reports, after all, she’s a bit armless and can’t run anywhere…
And finally, the world’s oldest man has been named as Indonesian Mbah Gotho, who is 145 years old, with documentation that says he was born in 1870. Mr Gotho said he began preparing for his death in 1992, even having a gravestone made, but 24 years later he is still alive. He has now outlived all 10 of his siblings, his four wives and his children. Though his age is impressive, Mr Gotho told a regional news network: “What I want is to die.” For the past three months he has needed to bathed and spoon-fed, and is becoming increasingly frail. Mr Gotho has official documentation which shows his age, and the Indonesian records office says it has confirmed his birth date as December 31 1870. If this is correct, this would earn him the title of the oldest person ever, a title currently held by French centenarian Jeanne Calment, who was 122 when she died – 23 years younger than Mr Gotho. If the documents cannot be independently verified, however, Mr Gotho will not go down in the record books. There are a number of people who claim to have broken Jeanne Calment’s record, such as Nigerian James Olofintuyi, who claims to be 171, and Dhaqabo Ebba from Ethiopia, who claims to be 163, but without verifiable documents they cannot be given her title. The centenarian, from Central Java, says he spends his time listening to the radio, as his eyesight is no longer good enough to watch television. When asked the secret to a long life, he said: “The recipe is just patience”.
On This Day
- 1833 – The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 receives Royal Assent, abolishing slavery through most of the British Empire.
- 1898 – Caleb Bradham invents the carbonated soft drink that will later be called “Pepsi-Cola“.
- 1957 – U.S. Senator Strom Thurmond begins a filibuster to prevent the Senate from voting on Civil Rights Act of 1957; he stopped speaking 24 hours and 18 minutes later, the longest filibuster ever conducted by a single Senator.
- 1963 – March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom: The Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. gives his I Have a Dream speech.
- 1963 – Emily Hoffert and Janice Wylie are murdered in their Manhattan apartment, prompting the events that would lead to the passing of the Miranda Rights.
- 1988 – Ramstein air show disaster: Three aircraft of the Frecce Tricolori demonstration team collide and the wreckage falls into the crowd. Seventy-five are killed and 346 seriously injured.
- 1978 – Robert Shaw, English actor, screenwriter, and author (b. 1927)
- 1987 – John Huston, American actor, director, and screenwriter (b. 1906)
Last Week’s Birthdays
Kenny Rogers (78), Carrie-Anne Moss (49), Alecia Witt (41), Hayden Panettiere (27), RJ Mitte (24), Usain Bolt (30), Tori Amos (53), Ty Burrell (49), Kirsten Wiig (43), Barbara Eden (85), Shelley Long (67), Steve Guttenberg (58), Dave Chappelle (43), Rupert Grint (28), Stephen Fry (59), Sean Connery (86), Tom Skerritt (83), Gene Simmons (67), Elvis Costello (62), Tim Burton (58), Billy Ray Cyrus (55), Claudia Schiffer (46), Rachel Bilson (35), Alexander Skarsgard (40), Melissa McCarthy (46) and Macauley Culkin (36).
The Last Word
“Oh, what’s the bloody point?”
- Kenneth Williams, British actor and raconteur. This was the final entry in his diary.
Next week peeps!