Dead Pool 31st March 2024

Been a while since someone scored, it must be time to send out the Flying Monkeys! 

Look Who You Could Have Had:

In Other News

Arnold Schwarzenegger has shared some health news. The Terminator star and former California governor revealed on his Arnold’s Pump Club podcast that he has been fitted for a pacemaker after having undergone three open-heart surgeries. “Last Monday, I had surgery to become a little bit more of a machine: I got a pacemaker,” he said. “First of all, I want you to know I’m doing great! I had my surgery on Monday, and by Friday, I was already at a big environmental event with my friend and fellow fitness crusader Jane Fonda,” he continued. “Nobody would ever have thought I started the week with a surgery. I want to thank my whole team at the Cleveland Clinic. All of the doctors and nurses took amazing care of me and made the surgery as painless as possible,” he added. Schwarzenegger initially underwent two open-heart surgeries in 1997 to replace his pulmonic valve and aortic valve. Normally lasting 12 to 15 years, he underwent surgery to get both replaced again in 2018 and 2020. The actor also added a bit of levity. The photo he shared shows a reclining Schwarzenegger with a red wire running out of his ear into what looks like a Looney Tunes version of a time bomb resting on his chest. Of the “pacemaker,” he wrote sarcastically, “you can only see it if you’re really looking for it.”  

Pope Francis skipped the traditional Good Friday procession at Rome’s Colosseum to ‘protect his health’, the Vatican said, making a last-minute decision that added to concerns about his frail condition during a particularly busy period. Francis had been expected to preside over the Way of the Cross procession, which re-enacts Christ’s Passion and crucifixion, and composed the meditations that are read aloud at each station. But just as the event was about to begin, the Vatican announced that Francis was following the event from his home at the Vatican. “To conserve his health in view of the vigil tomorrow and Mass on Easter Sunday, Pope Francis will follow the Via Crucis at the Colosseum this evening from the Casa Santa Marta,” a statement from the Vatican press office said. While Francis had also skipped the event in 2023 because he was recovering from bronchitis and it was a particularly cold night, his decision to stay home this year suggested his plans had changed suddenly. The 87-year-old Francis, who had part of one lung removed as a young man, has been battling what he and the Vatican have described as a case of the flu, bronchitis or a cold all winter long. For the last several weeks he has occasionally asked an aide to read aloud his speeches, and he skipped his Palm Sunday homily altogether. The decision to stay home appeared to be very last-minute: Francis‘ chair was in place on the platform outside the Colosseum where he was to preside over the rite. His close aide, Monsignor Leonardo Sapienza, was on hand and moved the television screen around on the platform so Francis would have a better view of what was going on inside the Colosseum itself. But at 9.10pm, five minutes before the official start of the procession, the Vatican press office announced on Telegram that he wouldn’t attend. The chair was quickly taken away. In addition to his respiratory problems, Francis had a chunk of his large intestine removed in 2021 and was hospitalised twice last year, including once to remove intestinal scar tissue from previous surgeries to address diverticulosis, or bulges in his intestinal wall. He has been using a wheelchair and cane for over a year because of bad knee ligaments.  

The Who musician Roger Daltrey has reflected on his generation after reaching a milestone age, stating: “I’m on my way out.” Daltrey, who has been the frontman of the rock band since 1964, stepped down as the curator of the annual Teenage Cancer Trust (TCT) gigs, which take place at Royal Albert Hall, weeks after his 80th birthday on 1st March. He has now reflected on his decision to end his time as the event’s curator, suggesting it stemmed from a desire to “be realistic” about his future. Writing in a “backstage diary” for The Times, Daltrey said: “I have to be realistic. I’m on my way out. The average life expectancy is 83 and with a bit of luck I’ll make that, but we need someone else to drive things. I’m not leaving TCT – I’ve been a patron since I first met the charity’s founders, Dr Adrian and Myrna Whiteson, more than 30 years ago – and that will continue, but I’ll be working in the back room, talking to the government, rattling cages.” Daltrey said he had concern “about how many words” he had to remember ahead of recent shows he performed, and admitted to feeling nervous beforehand. “On at 8.40pm and I’ve got to say I really feel it tonight,” he wrote, adding: “We haven’t done anything for seven months and this winter’s been brutal. I’ve been in hibernation. For the whole of January, I lost my voice completely. I live like a monk and if I went on tour for a week I’d be fit as a butcher’s dog again, but tonight, for the first time in my career, I think, ‘Blimey, this is hard.’”

On This Day

  • 1889 – The Eiffel Tower is officially opened.
  • 1990 – Approximately 200,000 protesters take to the streets of London to protest against the newly introduced Poll Tax.
  • 1998 – Netscape releases Mozilla source code under an open source license.


  • 1837 – John Constable, English painter and educator (b. 1776).
  • 1855 – Charlotte Brontë, English novelist and poet (b. 1816).
  • 1913 – J. P. Morgan, American banker and financier (b. 1837).
  • 1993 – Brandon Lee, American actor and martial artist (b. 1965).
  • 2002 – Barry Took, English comedian, actor, and screenwriter (b. 1928).
  • 2016 – Ronnie Corbett, Scottish comedian, actor and screenwriter (b. 1930

Death by Balls – Part 2

Death by Yoga Ball: For centuries, yoga has provided physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being to those who commit to it. But in this freaky case, yoga – more specifically, a yoga ball – led two women to their untimely deaths.

Khaw Kim-sum, an anaesthesiologist and associate professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, is serving a life sentence in Hong Kong for murdering his wife, Wong Siew-fing, and 16-year-old daughter, Lily. The 53-year-old from Malaysia purportedly wanted to get rid of the women so he could continue his affair with a student.

Kim-sum filled an inflatable yoga ball with poison gas and placed it in the trunk of the family’s yellow Mini Cooper. The gas leaked out and killed Siew-fing and Lily, who were discovered by the roadside in their locked car.

The women were pronounced dead at the same hospital in which Kim-sum worked. A postmortem examination concluded that they had died from inhaling carbon monoxide. During the trial, witnesses revealed that Kim-sum told them he planned to use the gas on rabbits. He had told police that he had intended to use it to get rid of rats in his home. The professor also suggested that his daughter knew the ball contained carbon monoxide gas and may have been trying to commit suicide. 

Death by Racquetball: Very little was reported about a man who died while playing racquetball. While the vigorous sport is notorious for causing heart attacks, it was not a heart attack that killed this player.

This story was reported in a South Florida Sun-Sentinel article about bizarre deaths. An unnamed man was playing racquetball with his wife. On a return, the woman struck her husband in the side with the ball. The man had no idea that the strike had ruptured his spleen, and he continued playing. A short time later, he haemorrhaged to death.

Ruptures to the spleen are most often caused by a direct blow to the abdomen. The symptoms – pain and bruising – do not always appear immediately.  

Death by Cricket Ball: Cricket players wear helmets, but the helmets do not protect everything. During a cricket match between South Australia and New South Wales, 25-year-old Phillip Hughes was struck by the ball. The ball hit the unprotected area just below Hughes’s left ear. He immediately collapsed, was rushed to the hospital, underwent surgery, and was placed into an induced coma.

The “sport-related blunt-force cerebrovascular injury,” a vertebral artery dissection, led to a haemorrhage. Hughes died two days later, just three days shy of his 26th birthday. Improvements were made to the cricket helmet, but the added guards do not protect the vulnerable area of the neck on which Hughes was struck. A review concluded that the incident was purely accidental, and any changes made to improve safety during the review period would not have prevented it. 

Death by Hurling Ball: Harry Byrne, age 13, died on the playground at St. Kieran’s College in Ireland. The student was hit in the head by a sliotar, or hurling ball, during a lunchtime break. He was rushed to the hospital but succumbed to his injury.

Hurling is a tradition in Ireland, where it is common to see “young lads walking up and down the street with hurleys in their hand, not mobile phones.” The hard, solid hurling sliotar is about the size of a tennis ball. It features a cork core covered by stitched leather and has a mass between 110 and 120 grams.

Hurling is a big deal at St. Kieran’s, and students strive to make the school team and go still further afterward. Young Mr. Byrne was a talented hurler who had won two under-14 championship medals. The school described the incident as a “freak accident” that occurred while the children were playing normally.

Death by Football: Allie Brodie, age 18, had just started her freshman year at the University of Alabama when tragedy struck. While soccer football during a student ministry retreat for her Christian sorority, Brodie was hit in the head and suffered a severe brain injury.

The freshman’s symptoms got progressively worse in the days following the soccer game. She underwent two brain emergency surgeries and spent weeks in a medically induced coma. She was diagnosed with a rare condition she’d had since birth: a tangle of abnormal blood vessels in the brain that divert blood away from normal brain tissue. The soccer ball triggered internal bleeding in the young woman’s brain.

Brodie remained in the coma but later died from complications of the resulting pneumonia. 

Death by Golf Ball: A freak accident on the course led to the death of Australian golfer Rod Gurney in 2021. The 69-year-old was struck in the head by a ball hit by a fellow player. Gurney was attended to at the scene by paramedics but declined to seek additional medical treatment. Over the next few days, however, his condition worsened, and he was admitted to the hospital, where he died.

“Although this death was tragic and sudden,” said his family, “we are heartened to know that he passed doing something he loved.” 

Last Week’s Birthdays

Ewan McGregor (53), Christopher Walken (81), Richard Chamberlain (90), Rhea Perlman (76), William Daniels (97), Daniel Mays (46), Warren Beatty (87), John Astin (94), Céline Dion (56), Norah Jones (45), Eric Clapton (79), Ed Skrein (41), Lucy Lawless (56), Brendan Gleeson (69), Christopher Lambert (67), Marina Sirtis (69), Elle Macpherson (60), Eric Idle (81), Thaddea Graham (27), Vince Vaughn (54), Julia Stiles (43), Lady Gaga (38), Dianne Wiest (78), Orla Brady (63), Nick Frost (52), Quentin Tarantino (61), Nathan Fillion (53), Julian Glover (89), Mariah Carey (55), Fergie (49), Keira Knightley (39), Jennifer Grey (64), Martin Short (74), Diana Ross (80), Lee Pace (45), Sarah Jessica Parker (59), Richard O’Brien (82), Paul Michael Glaser (81), and Elton John (77). 

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