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Dead Pool 15th May 2022

Not to keep on about it, but the new rumour about Putin is blood cancer, couldn’t happen to a nicer person. And a quick shout out to Ukraine for winning the Eurovision, probably a forgone conclusion, but sadly was at our expense! Who would have thought, actual points and being on top of the table for a little while!  

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

BBC podcast host Deborah James has told her followers that she doesn’t know how long she has left after halting treatment for bowel cancer and moving to hospice at home care. The mother-of-two, who hosts the award-winning You, Me And The Big C, told her almost 300,000 Instagram followers that the last six months had been “heartbreaking”, but that she had been surrounded by “so much love” and had “no regrets”. James, 40, was diagnosed with the condition in 2016 and since then has regularly posted on social media with posts about her diagnosis and treatments. She wrote on Monday 9th May: “We have tried everything, but my body simply isn’t playing ball. My active care has stopped and I am now moved to hospice at home care, with my incredible family all around me and the focus is on making sure I’m not in pain and spending time with them. Nobody knows how long I’ve got left but I’m not able to walk, I’m sleeping most of the days, and most things I took for granted are pipe dreams. I know we have left no stone unturned. But even with all the innovative cancer drugs in the world or some magic new breakthrough, my body just can’t continue anymore.” Sharing links to charities including Cancer Research UK, Bowel Cancer UK and the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, James asked her supporters to make donations and “buy me a drink to see me out this world”. She added: “Right now for me it’s all about taking it a day at a time, step by step and being grateful for another sunrise. My whole family are around me and we will dance through this together, sunbathing and laughing (I’ll cry!!) at every possible moment! You are all incredible, thank you for playing your part in my journey. No regrets. Enjoy life x Deborah.” James, a former deputy headteacher, has been an avid cancer campaigner ever since her diagnosis, and has often shared the trials and tribulations of her disease in newspaper columns and on social media. She often wrote from her hospital bed. In September last year, she said she intended to “bang on” about her 40th birthday all week, because doctors previously told her she was unlikely to ever make it to that milestone.   

Britney Spears has revealed that she’s had a miscarriage weeks after announcing she was pregnant. Spears posted the news in April but, on Saturday, she told her followers she had miscarried, writing: “It is with our deepest sadness we have to announce that we have lost our miracle baby early in the pregnancy.” The singer added: “This is a devastating time for any parent. Perhaps we should have waited to announce until we were further along, however, we were overly excited to share the good news. Spears said that she and her rumoured husband Asghari would “continue trying to expand our beautiful family”. Underneath the post, Asghari, who is believed to have recently married the singer in secret, wrote: “We will have a miracle soon.” Spears previously revealed that she had taken a pregnancy test after gaining weight on a vacation to Hawaii. In the post, she referred to Asghari, 28, as her “husband”, but sources close to the couple claim they are yet to be married. The 40-year-old has two children – Sean, 16, and Jayden, 15 – with her ex-husband Kevin Federline. Federline was married to Spears for two years from 2004 to 2006. Spears eventually filed for divorce from the former dancer, citing irreconcilable differences. 

A former top manager of the Russian energy corporation Lukoil has died from suspected toad poisoning, the flying monkeys report. Following a session with a local shaman in Mytishchi, a city northeast of Russia’s capital Moscow, Alexander Subbotin, a Lukoil board member, allegedly died in a basement after an anti-hangover session with the healer. Subbotin visited the shaman, Magua, and his wife at their home to treat a hangover using toad venom. “They made an incision on the skin, dripped toad poison there – and after vomiting the patient allegedly got better.” The witness also claims that Subbotin knew the couple for a long time and had regularly used their services. They noted: “And so he came to them once again – to treat a hangover. Suddenly he felt unwell – his heart ached. The owner decided not to call an ambulance, gave Corvalol and put the businessman to sleep in the basement. There the man died. They were just friends.” The tale of Subbotin’s curious demise is one in a number of unusual deaths involving Russia’s energy sector following the country’s invasion of Ukraine. Recently, four current and former Gazprom officials – along with a further Russian energy official – died under mysterious circumstances over the course of several weeks, in the build-up to, and aftermath of, the Ukraine invasion. In two cases, the executives’ wives and children, in Moscow and a Spanish resort town, were also discovered gruesomely hacked to death.   

Actor and singer-songwriter Abi Phillips, the 28-year-old star of Hollyoaks, has been diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Phillips, known for playing Liberty Savage on the popular soap, shared the news with followers on Instagram on Monday 9th May. According to the post, Phillips had been diagnosed last month after initially being turned away by medical staff. She had been told that her age meant there was nothing to be concerned about after noticing two lumps on her neck However, she sought a second opinion after seeing Love Island star Demi Jones share her own experience with tumours. Sharing photographs of herself at a hospital, Phillips wrote: “So, I took these pictures before my scans and after my biopsy having a good old laugh about how ridiculously dressed up I looked in the hospital before a gig, not expecting for one moment to get the news that I did two weeks later… I’d previously been sent away from the doctors after having found two lumps in my neck, they’d passed it off and said I was ‘young’ and it wouldn’t be anything and I was ‘probably getting over a cold’ or my body was ‘fighting something off’. As much as that’s what I wanted to hear I wanted to get everything checked for my own peace of mind.” After booking in with a specialist, Phillips was referred for an urgent biopsy and scans. Two weeks later, she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, and told she would need to undergo surgery and radiotherapy. “I never thought I would be told that I have cancer at the age of 28, you never think it’s going to happen to you,” she said. “I wouldn’t have taken things further with seeing a specialist if I hadn’t seen @demijones1 post as her lumps were in the exact same place as mine. If ever you find a lump or something unusual on your body, never just think it’s nothing, don’t be told that you’re fine by the GP and you’re ‘young’, always get things checked out by a specialist if you can and insist on tests even if it turns out to be nothing, as catching things early is crucial for a good prognosis.”   

Former England player and coach Graham Thorpe is “seriously ill” in hospital, the Professional Cricketers’ Association has said. Thorpe, 52, had accepted the job of Afghanistan head coach following his departure from the England set-up after this winter’s Ashes. The PCA released a statement at the request of Thorpe’s family, which read: “Graham Thorpe has recently fallen seriously ill and is currently in hospital receiving treatment. His prognosis is unclear at this stage and we ask for privacy for him and his family at this time. Our thoughts are with Graham and his family.” Former Surrey left-hander Thorpe was renowned as one of the finest English players of his generation, played exactly 100 Tests and scoring 16 centuries before retiring in 2005. He went on to begin a coaching career in Australia, where he worked with the likes of Steve Smith and David Warner at New South Wales, before joining the England and Wales Cricket Board as a batting coach. He worked as assistant with the senior side under Trevor Bayliss and Chris Silverwood, stepping up to lead the team in this winter’s Sydney Test against Australia due to Silverwood’s coronavirus diagnosis. England drew the match to avoid a series whitewash. Thorpe left his role at the end of the Ashes but signalled his intention to remain in the international arena by taking the Afghanistan job in March. Surrey sent their thoughts to a “favourite son” of the club, writing on Twitter: “The thoughts of everyone at the club are with Graham, his wife Amanda, and family at this time. He is an icon of the English game, known by millions of cricket fans and forever a favourite son of Surrey CCC.”   

Gene Hackman has made a rare public appearance, and delighted movie fans in the process. The actor, who is 92, attended a show in Santa Fe’s Lensic Center for Performing Arts titled Broadway Confidential. It was billed as “an evening” with former Saturday Night Live star Ana Gasteyer and Sirius XM Radio host Seth Rudetsky. Rudetsky excitedly shared a photo of himself alongside Gasteyer and Hackman on Twitter, writing: “Look who came to our show in Santa Fe! GENE HACKMAN!!!!! Ah!!!! The Posiedon Adventure!!! My fave!” Since retiring from acting in 2004, Hackman, who lives in Santa Fe, has removed himself from the public eye, with many of his fans expressing concern about him. However, this photo has encouraged Hackman’s fans that the actor is OK, with many stating that he looks healthy. “What an honour!” one fan tweeted, adding: “He’s been retired from acting for a long time, but I’ve heard so many stories about him enjoying his life in Santa Fe. How great that he came to see your show. He looks fabulous.” Another added: “Oh wow, one of the greatest actors of the last 50 years (and arguably ever). Great to know that he’s still going strong even if we’re not lucky enough to have him on one screens anymore.” “He looks like he’s enjoying life to the fullest,” yet another Hackman fan replied, stating: “So nice to see a photo of him after so long!” Hackman’s extensive list of credits include The French Connection, The Conversation, Superman, Mississippi Burning and Unforgiven. His final roles before his retirement were The Royal Tenenbaums, Runaway Jury and Welcome to Mooseport. Hackman is considered one of the greatest actors of all time.

On This Day

  • 1536 – Anne Boleyn, Queen of England, stands trial in London on charges of treason, adultery and incest; she is condemned to death by a specially-selected jury.
  • 1940 – Richard and Maurice McDonald open the first McDonald’s restaurant.
  • 1957 – At Malden Island in the Pacific Ocean, Britain tests its first hydrogen bomb in Operation Grapple.
  • 2010 – Jessica Watson becomes the youngest person to sail, non-stop and unassisted around the world solo.

Deaths

  • 1886 – Emily Dickinson, American poet and author (b. 1830)
  • 2003 – June Carter Cash, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actress (b. 1929)
  • 2020 – Fred Willard, American actor, comedian, and writer (b. 1933)

Last Meals

Clarence Dixon had a last meal of KFC, a half a pint of strawberry ice cream and a bottle of water before he was executed last week. 

Dixon was sentenced to death for the murder of Deana Bowdoin, a university student, back in 1978. 

The blind 66-year-old served life behind bars and was executed by lethal injection, the first execution in Arizona since 2014.

As is protocol, inmates on death row get served a final meal of their choice and Dixon made his choice of chicken and ice cream according to documents given to the flying monkeys.

DNA linked Dixon to Bowdoin’s murder case in 2008 when he was already in prison serving a life sentence for a sexual assault in 1985. 

Leslie James, Bowdoin’s sister, released the following statement ahead of Dixon’s execution: “Deana was a beautiful person, inside and out. She was only 21 and in her last semester at ASU when she was violently taken from my family.” She said the last 44 plus years of reliving the murder as well as the trial had been horrific for the family. She continued: “As victims, the Arizona Constitution guarantees a prompt and final conclusion of this matter. Our parents wanted nothing more than to ultimately see justice for Deana. Unfortunately, they both passed away before punishment could be imposed.” 

The US Supreme Court denied Dixon a last minute stay of execution and he was given a choice between lethal injection and gas chamber. 

In the Arizona lower courts, the judge said that whilst Dixon evidently suffered from schizophrenia, in his legal opinion, he remained rational enough to comprehend proceedings and why he was being put to death. 

Prior to Dixon, Joseph Wood was the last person to be executed in Arizona. He ended up struggling and gasping for air for almost two-hours as he ended up being given more than a dozen doses – around 15 times the amount required according to the state’s execution protocol of drugs needed to kill a prisoner. 

Currently, in Arizona alone there are 112 people on death row however in recent years the state, like many others, has struggled to get hold of the drugs required for execution as more and more companies block their products from use. 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Cate Blanchett (53), Sofia Coppola (51), George Lucas (78), Tim Roth (61), Robert Zemeckis (71), Francesca Annis (77), Jim Howick (43), Danny Huston (60), Greg Davies (54), Siân Phillips (89), Martine McCutcheon (46), Robert Pattinson (36), Samantha Morton (45), Iwan Rheon (37), Harvey Keitel (83), Zoë Wanamaker (73), Mark Heap (65), Stephen Colbert (57), Dennis Rodman (61), Stevie Wonder (72), Rhea Seehorn (50), Malin Akerman (44), Rami Malek (41), Emilio Estevez (60), Vanessa Williams (59), Ving Rhames (63), Gabriel Byrne (72), Stephen Baldwin (56), Jason Biggs (44), Shohreh Aghdashloo (70), Jeffrey Donovan (54), Tim Blake Nelson (58), Pam Ferris (74), Holly Valance (39), Coby Bell (47), Jadyn Wong (37), Bono (62), Maureen Lipman (76), Rosario Dawson (43), Glenda Jackson (86), Billy Joel (73), and Grace Gummer (36).

Dead Pool 8th May 2022

Another week, another newsletter… Bet you’re all getting bored of these!  

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

The Hairy Bikers star Dave Myers has said that he is undergoing chemotherapy after being diagnosed with cancer. The TV chef said that he’d decided to discuss his diagnosis publicly because he didn’t want to “hide under a rock”. He also disclosed that he would be losing his hair in the coming months. Speaking on his podcast, The Hairy Bikers: Agony Uncles… A Right Pair of Aunts, on Friday, Myers told his on-screen cooking partner Si King that he would be taking a step back from filming and attending food festivals with the Hairy Bikers this summer. “Anyway Kingy, I’ve got to come clean now,” Myers said. “I haven’t been too well recently and basically, I’ve got to have some chemo, you know all this anyway, so this year is going to be a bit quiet for me. I’m not going to be filming, some of the festivals I’m not going to be able to go to, some I may be OK but this year’s a bit of a write off for us.” The 64-year-old continued: “I would love it if people respected my privacy and just let me get on with it and give Si and our team all the support they need, that would be great. But look, the prognosis is OK, I’m going to be fine. I’ve just got to tuck in, look after myself, eat sensibly and get over this mess, flog books, and be a happy person. So within that, that’s where I am,” he said. “I may be a baldy biker for a while so it’s just a warning, I don’t want to make a fuss about it, I look alright bald actually,” Myers added, with King joking that his friend had looked like “an upside-down Hells Angel” when they first met. “Under different circumstances I would embrace it more I feel, but under these circumstances it’s simply something I have to live with, get on with it and crack on,” Myers said. The presenting duo met in 1995, releasing their first cookery TV show The Hairy Bikers’ Cookbook together in 2004. Myers competed on the 11th series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2013 with Karen Hauer, where they made it through to week seven.   

DJ David Hamilton has been diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer as the veteran broadcaster said it makes him look like he has a suntan. The legendary BBC broadcaster was admittedly left confused when friends expressed how his skin glowed and he had a healthy look about him. Unbeknownst to the radio legend, he had in fact been living with cancer. The veteran DJ explained he has been diagnosed polycythaemia vera – a rare type of blood cancer. Symptoms of the condition can include itchy skin, headaches, blurred vision, red skin and tiredness according to the NHS. David, who is best known for his presenting gigs on BBC Radio 1 and 2 as well as Top of the Pops, was in fact suffering from an unusual cancer. The 83-year-old admitted he was “caught on the hop” by his diagnosis after suffering no other signs of illness. He only became concerned when he began urinating blood one day and was referred to a specialist by his doctor that he was diagnosed with polycythaemia vera. The rare condition causes the body to overproduce red blood cells, causing the skin to develop a “very rosy complexion”. He explained: “I didn’t have any other indications, such as dizziness or tiredness, and that’s why the diagnosis caught me on the hop. When my GP sent me to St Luke’s, I said to my wife, ‘What am I doing here, I don’t have cancer? I was feeling perfectly fine, except for I was peeing blood, which is always a worry, but that could have been due to an infection. They told me I had too many red blood cells, and I was at risk of a heart attack or a stroke. They said the condition is called polycythaemia vera, and I needed to have treatment and have blood taken, to get my red cells down to a safe level.” He went on: “The word ‘cancer’ freaks everybody out. But my consultant said to put it in perspective, ‘if you’re going to have cancer, this is the best cancer you could possibly have’. That was very comforting. Too many red blood cells gives you a very rosy complexion, so it looks like you’ve got a suntan. So everybody who sees me says how well I look!” David, who lives in Sussex with his wife Dreena, continues to present a lunchtime show on Boom Radio radio six times a week despite his diagnosis. He began taking chemotherapy pills to treat the incurable condition over but is awaiting confirmation from his consultant if he requires further treatment. 

Amid rumours that Putin is planning to take a temporary leave of command due to ill health, experts are anticipating a big announcement on Russia’s 9th May ‘Victory Day’. Experts are keenly watching Vladimir Putin’s public appearances for further signs of ill health, amid rumours attributed to a Kremlin insider that the Russian president is due to undergo surgery, possibly for cancer. The rumours appear to have originated with the hugely popular Russian Telegram channel General SVR, which claimed that Mr Putin’s doctors have warned him the surgery might incapacitate him for “a short time”, and that during this period the president will briefly hand over the reins of power to an aide. There has been no official confirmation regarding Mr Putin’s alleged ill health – the Kremlin has not commented on the reports, either to confirm or deny them – but recent videos and pictures showing him shaky, fidgeting and puffy-looking have fuelled speculation that the 69-year-old may be suffering from one of a number of conditions including dementia, Parkinson’s or cancer. Russia observers are divided on how much attention to pay to the health rumours, with some even suggesting it could be a deliberate ploy from the Kremlin – given how tightly Russia controls any media output relating to the president. The latest claim about Mr Putin’s health was made on a Telegram channel which is purportedly run by a former Russian Foreign Intelligence Service lieutenant general, using the pseudonym “Viktor Mikhailovich”. According to the Flying Monkeys, in a video on the channel it is claimed that Mr Putin recently had a two-hour “heart-to-heart” conversation with close aide and secretary of Russia’s security council, Nikolai Patrushev. Mr Patrushev, who is a former chief of the Federal Security Service, was told that he might be given charge in a handover lasting a few days, and the president “made it clear” to him that he views him as “almost the only truly confidant and friend in the system of power”. “I would say there is a great deal of speculation about President Putin’s health,” Theresa Fallon, founder and director of the Centre for Russia Europe Asia Studies in Brussels, told The Flying Monkeys. “Putin has always tried to emphasise his fitness and vigour, which is part of his brand. Illness does not fit with Putin’s strong man narrative that has been carefully cultivated over the years by the Kremlin. This makes me wonder if there is really something else going on behind the scenes,” she said. Last week, a video resurfaced from a mid-February meeting showing Mr Putin seeming to shake uncontrollably as he welcomed Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko. 

On This Day

  • 1886 – Pharmacist John Pemberton first sells a carbonated beverage named “Coca-Cola” as a patent medicine.
  • 1902 – In Martinique, Mount Pelée erupts, destroying the town of Saint-Pierre and killing over 30,000 people. Only a handful of residents survive the blast.
  • 1950 – The Tollund Man was discovered in a peat bog near Silkeborg, Denmark.
  • 1980 – The World Health Organisation confirms the eradication of smallpox.

Deaths

Last Week’s Birthdays

Stephen Amell (41), Vicky McClure (39), David Attenborough (96), Alexander Ludwig (30), Richard O’Sullivan (78), Naomi Scott (29), Adrianne Palicki (39), George Clooney (61), Pippa Haywood (61), Gabourey Sidibe (39), Henry Cavill (39), Zach McGowan (42), Lance Henriksen (82), John Rhys-Davies (78), Richard E. Grant (65), Michael Palin (79), Adele (34), Will Arnett (52), Christina Hendricks (47), Bobby Cannavale (52), Rob Brydon (57), Frankie Valli (88), Sandi Toksvig (64), Dwayne Johnson (50), Ellie Kemper (42), Matt Berry (48), David Suchet (76), David Beckham (47), Engelbert Humperdinck (86), and Lily Allen (37).

Dead Pool 1st May 2022

Welcome to another bank holiday special, in which nothing special happens! And what’s this? More points to award?! Yup! Ceri had Kane Tenaka listed, so 31 points! Paul C had her down as his Woman, 131 points and Dave listed her as his Cert, 131 points!! Well done all three of you. Which means we have a new points leader! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Kim Woodburn has been rushed to hospital – and fans are worried for her. The 80-year-old TV star posted a photo from her bed, revealing that she has a mystery illness and underwent treatment. Kim managed to sit up in bed, while connected to an oxygen machine, and gave a smile to the camera. She appeared to show she was feeling in good spirits, by placing a cardboard bowl on top of her head, pretending it was a hat. Sharing how she can’t get back to her own home, Kim captioned the joyful photo: “My hospital outfit. Do you like the hat? Home tonight! Yippeee!” Kim is a ‘household name’ and rose to fame on show How Clean is Your House. She came onto screens back in 2003, fronting the show alongside Aggie MacKenzie. Before fame, she was working as a professional cleaner and earned around £1,000 a month. However things changed for the star when she entered the Big Brother house in 2017. She joined on Day 11 and finished in third place. The star was constantly involved in heated blows with her housemates on the show – making some of the most memorable moments in reality television history. She also had an infamous row with Coleen Nolan on Loose Women. Viewers got more than they bargained for when Kim and Coleen appeared on the show in 2018. With their explosive spat ending in tears and storming off, it’s safe to say their simmering feud had been a long time coming before their appearance on the ITV show. The two woman clashed in a highly charged episode billed to be a reconciliation after their Celebrity Big Brother stint, in which Kim claimed Coleen had ganged on on her with seven other housemates to bully her – which Coleen denied. The chaotic interview stunned viewers of the usually family-friendly show, as Coleen and Kim went to war on live TV, culminating in the How Clean Is Your House star storming off the  set in tears. 

Former Emmerdale star Malandra Burrows has vowed to stay positive while she is treated for breast cancer. The 56-year-old has had a stage three tumour removed from her left breast and is about to start chemotherapy. But she says: “I do not want to make this cancer my life. “When I tell people, they say to me, ‘I can’t believe you can talk about it and be so positive,’ but it’s the reality and you have to be positive.” Malandra, who portrayed Kathy Glover in the ITV soap for 16 years, was diagnosed in February after discovering a lump the month before. After seeing her GP and being referred to a hospital for a scan and an ultrasound, a consultant asked her to return and bring someone with her. Malandra said: “I thought, ‘I’ve got to take this on my own.’ I’m single and I felt I couldn’t do that to a friend. When I went in, I found myself greeted by a Macmillan nurse and I just knew. She nearly broke down telling me, but I just went, ‘Don’t be daft!’ We’ll get through it and I’m going to ring that bell. I had already galvanised myself before hearing the news so I’ve never cried about it. I’ve kind of gone into combat mode. If I look back, I’ve given it everything I can and that’s all I can do. When it’s your life at stake, you’re prepared to do everything to get through. That’s helped me focus.” Doctors told Malandra her type of cancer may have been caused by going through the menopause. She told our flying monkeys: “Davina [McCall] has done a fabulous job of bringing menopause to the forefront, but I had never heard of menopausal cancer. They told me that, because of the oestrogen and the way your hormonal balance changes, it’s one of the most major causes of breast cancer.” She decided to share her story to help raise awareness and encourage women to get checked out: “I tell all ladies, go and get a mammogram. No matter what age you are, if something seems suspicious, go to your GP. 

Paul ‘Bonehead’ Arthurs has revealed he has cancer. The Oasis legend and former guitarist, who currently plays as part of Liam Gallagher’s  solo band, took to social media to share the news last Tuesday. Sharing a statement, he began: “Just to let you all know I’m going to be taking a break from playing for a while. I’ve been diagnosed with tonsil cancer, but the good news is it’s treatable and I’ll be starting a course of treatment soon. I’ll keep you posted how it’s going”. The Manchester rocker continued: “I’m gutted I’m missing the gigs with Liam and the band. Have the best summer and enjoy the gigs if you’re going, I’ll see you soon xxx”. Fans and artists alike have rushed to offer the Manchester rocker their love and support, with his longtime friend and touring bandmate Liam sharing his response to the news. Also taking to Twitter, the Everything’s Electric singer wrote: “Sending BIG love to the 1 n only Bonehead and his family wishing you a speedy recovery we’re all thinking of you rasta you’ll be back on stage bfore you can say r we doing Colombia LG x”, because picking up the phone is far too much trouble…  The news of course means that Bonehead will miss Liam’s shows across the summer, including two iconic dates at Knebworth on 3rd and 4th June, which were set for the Queen’s Jubilee weekend. Bonehead is credited with being one of the founding members of the legendary Manchester band. In the late 1980s, while working as a building contractor, he started a band called The Rain with his friends Paul “Guigsy” McGuigan, Tony McCarroll and Chris Hutton, which would later go on become Oasis when Liam Gallagher replaced the late Paul Ashbee, the man who introduced Liam to Bonehead, believes the rhythm guitarist was even more instrumental in the makings of the band than people think. “People think it was Noel and Liam who created the sound of Oasis but it wasn’t – it was Bonehead,” he told the flying monkeys. ”Liam was the frontman, Noel was the poet who came later. It was a jigsaw puzzle. It was meant to be. “Definitely Maybe was Noel’s therapy, it was his poetry – but it was Bonehead’s core sound. I know because I’d heard it back when they were still called The Rain.”

On This Day

  • 1807 – The Slave Trade Act 1807 takes effect, abolishing the slave trade within the British Empire.
  • 1840 – The Penny Black, the first official adhesive postage stamp, is issued in the United Kingdom.
  • 1945 – World War II: A German newsreader officially announces that Adolf Hitler has “fallen at his command post in the Reich Chancellery fighting to the last breath against Bolshevism and for Germany”. He had in fact died the day earlier.
  • 1956 – The polio vaccine developed by Jonas Salk is made available to the public.
  • 1994 –Three-time Formula One champion Ayrton Senna dies from an accident during the San Marino Grand Prix.
  • 1999 – The body of British climber George Mallory is found on Mount Everest, 75 years after his disappearance in 1924.

Deaths

Last Week’s Birthdays

Jamie Dornan (40), Julie Benz (50), Joanna Lumley (76), Gal Gadot (37), Kirsten Dunst (40), Sam Heughan (42), Johnny Galecki (47), Burt Young (82), Michelle Pfeiffer (64), Daniel Day-Lewis (65), Uma Thurman (52), Kate Mulgrew (67), Jerry Seinfeld (68), Willie Nelson (89), Penélope Cruz (48), Jessica Alba (41), Jay Leno (72), Jenna Coleman (36), Russell T. Davies (59), Sheena Easton (63), Pablo Schreiber (44), Channing Tatum (42), Giancarlo Esposito (64), Tom Welling (45), Kevin James (57), Jet Li (59), Joan Chen (61), Renée Zellweger (53), Al Pacino (82), Gina Torres (53), Hank Azaria (58), Talia Shire (76), and William Roache (90).

Dead Pool 24th April 2022

Welcome all, to a death-lite version of the Dead Pool Newsletter. Unsurprisingly, no points this week, but with a certain Russian upping his ante, I’m sure we’ll all be dead ten times over by next week. 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Everyone’s favourite ‘superhero’ has been arrested in Hawaii for the second time in recent weeks and charged with second-degree assault after allegedly throwing a chair at a woman. Hawaii Island police responded to an incident at a Pahoa home early Tuesday morning and arrested Ezra Miller, aka The Flash. Police said that the 29-year-old actor “became irate” after being asked to leave a private residence and threw a chair at a woman, striking her in the head. The woman reportedly was left with a cut on her forehead half an inch deep. This is not the first legal issue Miller has faced in Hawaii recently. In late March, the Fantastic Beasts star was arrested in a karaoke bar in Hilo for disorderly conduct and harassment. He was accused of harassing a woman at the bar, at one point grabbing a microphone from a 23-year-old woman and later lunged at a 32-year-old man playing darts. Miller was then arrested and his bail was set at $500 (£381), which the actor paid. He’s certainly setting himself up as a woman hater as back in April 2020, a video surfaced in a since-deleted tweet that appeared to show Miller choking a woman and throwing her to the ground. The video was confirmed to have taken place at Prikið Kaffihús, a bar in Reykjavik that Miller frequented when in the city. A bar employee identified the person in the video as Miller and said he was escorted off the premises by staff after the incident. Miller, who was born in New Jersey, has played The Flash in the DC universe for a number of years and is set to star in a standalone movie scheduled for release next year. I bet DC wished they stuck with Grant Gustin.  

Former World Darts Championship finalist Mike Gregory has died aged 65. Gregory, known as the ‘Quiet Man of Darts’, was confirmed to have passed away on Tuesday morning, 30 years after his remarkable final appearance in the World Darts Championship. Gregory faced Phil Taylor in the final, and excruciatingly missed six match darts to clinch the title after a superb showing. The 65-year-old enjoyed a glistening career in darts, reaching the final of World Masters twice in 1983 and 1992 as well as winning the Unipart British Professional, the MFI World Matchplay and the News of the World twice. His last major title came in 1995 in the Unipart European Masters, and Gregory then proceeded to take a break from darts, making only a few appearances in the Scottish and Welsh Open before officially retiring. Having then continued as a county player, it occasionally looked as though Gregory could return to the BDO scene, but it never came to fruition.  

Vladimir Putin’s health has been called into question yet again after a video showed him tightly clutching a table throughout a meeting with Russian defence minister Sergei Shoigu. The clip has sparked fresh theories about his health, which has reportedly deteriorated since he launched Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. In the footage posted online by the Kremlin, the 69-year-old Russian president grabs hold of the corner of the table with his right hand as soon as he sits down for the meeting, and keeps hold of it for the entirety of the 12 minute clip. Mr Putin can also be seen intermittently holding the edge of the table with his left hand while Mr Shoigu reads him a statement. The footage shows Mr Putin’s right thumb constantly moving as he listens to his defence minister, and it has been suggested that the fidgeting could indicate that he was trying to hide a tremor typical of Parkinson’s disease. Sir Richard Dearlove – former MI6 head – and Professor Gwythian Prins – previously a Nato adviser – have claimed that Mr Putin has shown signs of the progressive nervous system disorder. In the clip, Mr Putin moves his feet up and down, appears restless and tense, and clears his throat a number of times while listening to his defence minister – who reportedly suffered a heart attack recently at the age of 66. The Russian president also sits slightly hunched, with his spine pressed flat against the back of the chair, in contrast to Shoigu who appears to be sitting more upright and without the need for any support. Anders Aslund, an author and former adviser on Russia and Ukraine, said that both men looked like they were not in good health. “Shoigu has to read his comments to Putin and slurs badly, suggesting that the rumours of his heart attack are likely. He sits badly. Poor performance. Worth watching,” he said.  

Martin Roberts has described the terrifying moment he saw doctors plunge an eight-inch syringe into his chest before undergoing emergency heart surgery. On  Thursday, the Homes Under the Hammer presenter shared a video to social media explaining that he was in hospital after experiencing chest pains he had initially believed to be due to asthma or long Covid. Instead, doctors found that his heart was surrounded by “a massive amount of fluid”, which was preventing it from working. He had emergency surgery that night and was later told that he’d had “hours to live” when he was operated on. Speaking to the flying monkeys at the hospital, Roberts said that the incident was “the nearest thing to not being here that’s ever happened to me”. He was seen within 45 seconds of arriving at the hospital, where it was discovered that his blood pressure was half that of a healthy person. “It was severe,” he said. “My liver and my kidneys were down to 30 per cent of their normal operational capacity.” Roberts was given local anaesthetic, before doctors drained a litre and a half of fluid from his lungs with a large syringe. “I watched as they drew out syringe after syringe after syringe of this liquid,” the property expert said. “I was awake for this, but I was bit woozy. There was a tube that went in through my chest cavity, down into the sack around my heart.” Roberts said that doctors suspected he had an underlying respiratory problem that had spread to the heart, adding: “It remains to be seen whether I get full function back of my liver and kidneys. I don’t know about the lungs.”  

UK singer Tom Grennan is recovering from an “unprovoked attack” which has left him with injuries including a torn ear-drum, his manager has announced. The 26-year-old is said to have been attacked and robbed outside a bar in Manhattan after performing in New York on Wednesday. He has been forced to postpone a gig in Washington DC on Friday as a result. Grennan’s track Little Bit of Love was nominated for song of the year at this year’s Brit Awards. “In the early hours of this morning after Tom’s New York show, he was the victim of an unprovoked attack and robbery outside a bar in Manhattan,” his manager John Dawkins said in a statement posted online on Thursday evening. “Tom is currently being assessed by doctors for his injuries which include a ruptured ear, torn ear-drum and issue with his previously fractured jaw.” He added: “Despite this Tom is in good spirits but needs to temporarily recuperate whilst doctors assess his ability to continue with his touring.” His manager went on to thank Grennan’s American fans, noting how the singer was “desperate not to let anyone down”, but that the “precautionary decision” had been made to postpone his Washington show until later notice. Grennan initially found fame as the guest vocalist on Chase & Status’s track All Goes Wrong, and he went on to score a number one solo album with 2021’s Evering Road. The Bedford-born singer received two recent Brit Award nominations, including best rock/alternative act, while losing out to Adele’s Easy on Me in the song of the year category. Last month he revealed that therapy had offered him “light at the end of a tunnel”, as he opened up about his fashionable mental health battles.

On This Day

  • 1916 – Ernest Shackleton and five men of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition launch a lifeboat from uninhabited Elephant Island in the Southern Ocean to organise a rescue for the crew of the sunken Endurance. 
  • 1967 – Cosmonaut Vladimir Komarov dies in Soyuz 1 when its parachute fails to open. He is the first human to die during a space mission.  
  • 1990 – The Hubble Space Telescope is launched from the Space Shuttle Discovery. 
  • 2013 – A building collapses near Dhaka, Bangladesh, killing 1,129 people and injuring 2,500 others.

Deaths

  • 1731 – Daniel Defoe, English journalist, novelist, and spy (b. 1660). 
  • 1974 – Bud Abbott, American comedian and producer (b. 1895). 
  • 2004 – Estée Lauder, American businesswoman, co-founded Estée Lauder (b. 1906). 

The Fun in Physics

Particle accelerators are machines that propel charged particles at incredible speeds, generally to collide with other particles. It’s highly advisable that the particles the high-speed particles collide with should not be part of your head, as one man learned the hard way.

On July 13th, 1978, particle physicist Anatoli Bugorski was working his job at the U-70 synchrotron, the largest particle accelerator in the Soviet Union. The 36-year-old was inspecting a piece of equipment that had malfunctioned when the accident happened. Unbeknownst to him, several safety mechanisms had also failed, meaning that when he leaned over to get a good look at his task, a proton beam shot through the back of his head at close to the speed of light.

Or at least, closer to the speed of light than you’d like a proton beam to be traveling at when it shoots clean through your face.

At first, he felt no pain. He knew what had happened, as he had seen a light “brighter than a thousand Suns,” as well as the gravity of the situation. At this point, he didn’t tell a soul, and merely completed his day’s work before heading home and waited for the inevitable to happen.

Absorbing 500 rads of radiation would usually lead to death. Though he didn’t yet know it, he had been hit with between 200,000-300,000 rads. In the night, his face began to swell beyond recognition, prompting him to visit the doctors the following morning. From there, he was taken to a clinic in Moscow, though largely so that his death could be observed rather than for any expectation that his life could be saved.

The next few days saw his skin peel off around the entry and exit wounds, showing a clean path burned right through his skin, skull, and brain. Remarkably, he did not  die. The brain tissue continued to burn away over the ensuing years, and his face became paralysed on the left side, where his hearing was also lost. Weirder still, as he aged the right side of his head showed signs of ageing, while the left side did not.

Over the next few decades, he experienced seizures but remained functional, continued his work as a physicist, and completed a PhD. As far as people who have put their heads into a particle accelerator go (and to be fair, that’s a demographic of one) he was pretty lucky. The narrow focus of the beam, though it caused massive damage, likely kept the damage limited to an area of brain that he could live without.

For the decade after his accident, he was unable to tell anyone about it, given the notorious secrecy of the Soviet Union. He survived well beyond the end of the USSR, however. In fact, the man who put his head in a particle accelerator and lived to tell the tale remains alive to this day.

Last Week’s Birthdays

Jack Quaid (30), Joe Keery (30), Aidan Gillen (54), Djimon Hounsou (58), Shirley MacLaine (88), Barbra Streisand (80), Rory McCann (53), John Cena (45), Dev Patel (32), Gemma Whelan (41), John Hannah (60), Lee Majors (83), Blair Brown (76), John Oliver (45), Amber Heard (36), Jack Nicholson (85), Jeffrey Dean Morgan (56), Machine Gun Kelly (32), Sheryl Lee (55), John Waters (76), Michelle Ryan (38), Robbie Amell (34), James McAvoy (43), Andie MacDowell (64), Toby Stephens (53), Tony Danza (71), Iggy Pop (75), Queen Elizabeth II (96), Andy Serkis (58), Clint Howard (63), Jessica Lange (73), Veronica Cartwright (73), Carmen Electra (50), Ruth Connell (43), Ryan O’Neal (81), George Takei (85), Leslie Phillips (98), Nicholas Lyndhurst (61), Michael Brandon (77), James Franco (44), Hayden Christensen (41), Tim Curry (76), Maria Sharapova (35), David Tennant (51), Hayley Mills (76), Rick Moranis (69), James Woods (75), and Eli Roth (50).

Dead Pool 17th April 2022

A short and quick update this week, I’m sure you’ve all got other stuff  you’d rather be getting on with!

I have to begin this week by belatedly awarding some points. I missed Harry E. Goldsworthy who died on the 16th of February at the ripe old age of 107, which means Paul C gets 43 points, which propels him to second place!!! Well done that man! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

The formidable mother of Sophie Lancaster who was murdered in Bacup has sadly died. Sylvia Lancaster OBE, died suddenly on 12th April in Royal Blackburn Hospital though had been ill for the last couple of years. The mother of Sophie Lancaster, who was murdered in Stubbylee Park in Bacup in 2007, set up a foundation in memory of her daughter, with the name Sophie standing for – stamp out prejudice hatred and intolerance everywhere. In a post on Instagram, the foundation said: “This is the hardest statement to write. It is with great shock and disbelief that we announce that Sylvia Lancaster has passed away. “She died early this morning in Blackburn hospital. She had suffered from ill health for the last couple of years, but her death was sudden and unexpected. Sylvia had such a powerful life force; we cannot imagine a world without her in it. Following Sophie’s brutal murder, Sylvia put her energy into championing people from alternative subcultures and creating educational programmes to tackle prejudice and intolerance. She worked tirelessly to combat the inaccurate and lazy stereotyping that all too often leads to violent prejudice and promoted a culture of celebrating difference; something that leads to safer communities for us all. Sophie was killed, and her boyfriend Robert Maltby left with serious injuries, after an attack in August 2007 from a group of youths who beat up the pair because of their appearance. Recently, Ryan Herbert, who was aged 16 when he was jailed for life in 2008 for murdering Sophie, has been granted parole and will be released on licence. Following her daughter’s tragic death, the foundation, headed by Sylvia, has worked hard to visit schools to speak with youths about Sophie’s story. Sylvia was awarded an OBE for her work.   

Simon Cowell has sparked concern from fans as he appeared on the first episode of Britain’s Got Talent on Saturday night. Viewers tuning into the show said the music mogul looked “ill”. The 62-year-old has recently recovered from a nasty e-bike accident near his home in London. He broke his arm and also ended up isolating during some of the audition rounds of the show as he caught Covid. But viewers of the show were concerned the star was “seriously not a well man”. They took to Twitter to comment. @traz_mac wrote: “Simon looks ill #britainsgottalent.” @colin84983253 commented: “Simon Cowell with blood blistered fingers there this fell a seriously not a well man.” @StephenMcGraw16 echoed: “God Simon looks ill #BritainsGotTalent.” @TardisPilot1 added: “@SimonCowell doesn’t look well, #bgt.” The show is back on screens for the first time in two years after it was cancelled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Simon has returned to the judges seat alongside Alesha Dixon, Amanda Holden and David Walliams.  

Former EastEnders actress Melanie Clark Pullen has tragically died at the age of 46 following a battle with breast cancer. The tragic star – who played Pauline Fowler’s niece – was diagnosed with illness in January 2019 – and sadly died on March 29 this year after rounds of radiotherapy. She leaves behind her husband Simon and three children. In 2020, Melanie was given the all-clear – telling The Irish News at the time: “I got the all clear. I’m cancer free, which is great, so now it’s all about recovery.” But last June she was diagnosed with a brain tumour. She posted on her website: “I was only given the all clear from cancer 18 months ago and it’s a cruel blow to think that I will now be starting into some kind of treatment again and that this time it will be long term and a permanent fixture of my life.” Melanie kept her fans up to date with her journey, and posted about it as recently as March 14. In her last post, the star can be seen looking full of joy as she visited her family. She played the role of Mary Flaherty in the long-running BBC soap. 

On This Day

  • 1951 – The Peak District becomes the United Kingdom’s first National Park.
  • 1969 – Sirhan Sirhan is convicted of assassinating Robert F. Kennedy.
  • 1970 – Apollo program: The ill-fated Apollo 13 spacecraft returns to Earth safely.
  • 2014 – NASA’s Kepler space telescope confirms the discovery of the first Earth-size planet in the habitable zone of another star.

Deaths

  • 1790 – Benjamin Franklin, American inventor, publisher, and politician, 6th President of Pennsylvania (b. 1706).
  • 1882 – George Jennings, English engineer and plumber, invented the Flush toilet (b. 1810)
  • 1998 – Linda McCartney, American photographer, activist, and musician (b. 1941)
  • 2003 – Robert Atkins, American physician and cardiologist, created the Atkins diet (b. 1930)
  • 2003 – John Paul Getty, Jr., American-English philanthropist (b. 1932)
  • 2016 – Chyna, American wrestler (b. 1969)
  • 2018 – Barbara Bush, former First Lady of the United States (b. 1925)

Last Week’s Birthdays

Rooney Mara (37), Jennifer Garner (50), Sean Bean (63), David Bradley (80), Victoria Beckham (48), Anya Taylor-Joy (26), Gina Carano (40), Claire Foy (38), Ellen Barkin (68), Martin Lawrence (57), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (75), Emma Watson (32), Maisie Williams (25), Luke Evans (43), Emma Thompson (63), Seth Rogen (40), Abigail Breslin (26), Adrien Brody (49), Sarah Michelle Gellar (45), Julie Christie (82), Rob McElhenney (45), Robert Carlyle (61), Peter Capaldi (64), Bokeem Woodbine (49), Ron Perlman (72), William Sadler (72), Erick Avari (70), Edward Fox (85), Peter Davison (71), Saoirse Ronan (28), Jennifer Morrison (43), Claire Danes (43), Andy Garcia (66), Ed O’Neill (76), Shannen Doherty (51), Nicholas Brendon (51), David Letterman (75), Tricia Helfer (48), Matt Ryan (41), and Jeremy Clarkson (62).