Dead Pool 20th April 2014
Welcome all, on what would have been Adolf Hitler’s 125th birthday, no doubt had things turned out differently, we’d be celebrating a national holiday, oh, hang on, we are! Some other guy died, thus creating the Easter Break. Lucky eh? Perhaps we should take this as a precedent and murder other holy people every few weeks so we can have a couple of days off each month. Anyone care to offer up some names?
No deaths last week, so no points, again a slight dearth of celebrity deaths, but when has that held us back?
Look Who You Could Have Had:
- Edna Doré, 92, British actress (EastEnders), emphysema.
- Gabriel García Márquez, 87, Colombian author (One Hundred Years of Solitude, Love in the Time of Cholera), laureate of the Nobel Prize in Literature (1982), pneumonia.
- Derek Cooper, 88, British broadcaster (The Food Programme) and food journalist, Parkinson’s disease.
In Other News
BBC News presenter George Alagiah has been diagnosed with bowel cancer. The presenter of the BBC News at Six, Ten and GMT on BBC World News will take a break from his on-air duties while he undergoes treatment. A statement from the BBC said: “He’s grateful for all the good wishes he has received thus far and is optimistic for a positive outcome.” Alagiah, 58, first joined the BBC in 1989 and spent many years as one of the BBC’s leading foreign correspondents before moving to presenting, reporting on events such as the genocide in Rwanda and the conflict in Kosovo.
Bob Wilson, the former Arsenal goalkeeper and broadcaster, has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Wilson, 72, who played more than 230 times for Arsenal during the 1960s and 70s and who was capped twice by Scotland, has cancelled work and charity commitments while he has treatment. The former BBC TV presenter said: “I am very confident that the treatment I am receiving will prove successful and kindly ask that my privacy is respected at this time.”
After two sad pieces of news, I feel we need a feel-good story, so lets have a laugh at David Cameron being stung by a jellyfish. Whilst bobbing gently in the Spanish waters of Lanzarote, the prize cunt was attacked by an aquatic hero. It seems other bathers warned the PM that there were ‘loads of jellies down there’ so he rushed in to save his children. If only he’d do the same thing for this country. Sadly the sting he received, which left him shouting in pain, didn’t even require medical treatment. The not so transparent creature with a frightening lack of substance will be returning to work at Westminster next week, the jelly fish will be awarded the OBE in this years honours list.
Pensions minister, Steve Webb, is keen to tell pensioners upon their day of retirement how long they have left to live. Estimates of life expectancy would be based on factors such as gender, where they live, and whether they smoke. The information would help them plan their finances more efficiently, according to the minister. It’s a shame he feels that people who have paid into the system all their working lives are suddenly a burden upon us all, I’d hate to be his father. If you feel the need to guesstimate your date of demise, have a go here. Personally I’m going to die on Saturday 23rd May 2037, so I won’t even see my retirement, much to the joy of Steve Webb.
On This Day
- 1862– Louis Pasteur and Claude Bernard complete the experiment falsifying the theory of spontaneous generation.
- 1902 – Pierre and Marie Curie refine radium chloride.
- 1918– Manfred von Richthofen, aka The Red Baron, shoots down his 79th and 80th victims, his final victories before his death the following day.
- 1926– Western Electric announce Vitaphone, a process to add sound to film.
- 1939– Adolf Hitler’s 50th birthday is celebrated as a national holiday in Nazi Germany.
- 1951– Dan Gavriliu performs the first surgical replacement of a human organ.
- 1964– BBC Two launches with a power cut because of the fire at Battersea Power Station.
- 1968–English politician Enoch Powell makes his controversial Rivers of Blood speech.
- 1999 – Columbine High School massacre: Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold kill 13 people and injure 24 others before committing suicide at Columbine High School in Columbine, Colorado.
- 2010–The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven workers and beginning an oil spill that would last six months.
- 1912– Bram Stoker, Irish author (b. 1847)
- 1991– Don Siegel, American director and producer (b. 1912)
- 1992– Benny Hill, English comedian and actor (b. 1924)
- 1999– Rick Rude, American wrestler (b. 1958)
Horrible Ways to Die #6 by Dexychik
Now, crucifixion was used by Greeks, Romans, Persians and Carthginians as capital punishment. In terms of the gospel, Jesus probably didn’t carry his own cross to Golgotha, because it would have been enormously heavy. However, the victim usually carried the crosspiece of their cross, before being flogged. This was the part their hands were nailed or bound to.
Now, the placement of the nails are not precisely known because there’s little archaeological evidence, and translations are unreliable, but the nails were either put through the palm of the hand, or through the radial part of the arm, using the arm bones as support to stop the arm being dragged down over the nail. Of the two, the palm would be more painful if the nerves in the palm were severed.
Once nailed to the crossbar, the crossbar was nailed to a vertical stake. The feet of the victim were nailed into place, both at ankle and through the sole into a support just below the feet, again to stop the feet slipping. The cross wouldn’t be particularly huge, probably suspending the victim only a couple of feet or so above the ground.
So far so hideous.
Crucifixion was a very slow death. It took days. Part of the reason the gospel crucifixion is different is that Jesus died in three hours. There is an explanation in the text – someone pushed a vinegar-soaked sponge into Jesus’ face. He then threw his head back and died. Throwing your head back when being crucified will cause your chest to expand, but not be able to deflate again. It’s likely that Jesus, or whoever the writer based the story on, suffocated. People were not usually tortured once up – the Roman stabbing Jesus to check he was dead was probably because his death was unexpectedly quick. The legs of crucified people were often broken to speed death up.
Death was usually from a combination of blood-loss, shock, exposure, and dehydration. Infection could also play a part – imagine how long you’d be hanging for a localised infection to kick in.
People could be crucified upside down, which meant a much faster death. There were also different models of cross, aside from the tradition one of Christianity. The crux immissa had four arms to attach the limbs of the victim. The crux commissa had three arms, and the crux decussata was the same as a St Andrew’s Cross, allowing the victim to be spreadeagled and mutilated.
The body was left on the cross until it rotted away, as a deterrent. And the practice continued in Japan until the 19th century, although most other countries had stopped by the middle ages. Non-lethal crucifixion is occasionally practised as a devotional act, frowned upon by the Roman Catholic church, and as a punishment in Yemen.
Happy Easter! Next time, being broken on a wheel!
Last Week’s Birthdays
Adrien Brody (41), Loretta Lynn (82), Anthony Michael Hall (46), Emma Thompson (55), Emma Watson (24), Seth Rogen (32), Benedict XVI (87), Ellen Barkin (60), Victoria Beckham (40), Jennifer Garner (42), Conan O’Brien (51), James Franco (36), Tim Curry (68), Edward Fox (77), Al Green (68), Ron Perlman (64), Julie Christie (74), Robert Carlyle (53), Sarah Michelle Gellar (37), Samantha Fox (48), Bobby Vinton (79), Jimmy Osmond (51), Martin Lawrence (49), Lukas Haas (38), Jan Hammer (66), Sean Bean (55), Hayley Mills (68), James Woods (67) and Rick Moranis (61).
2013 League Table
Next week peeps!