It’s Not The Only Way To Go! By Trevor Plumbly
Some cling to the ideal of quietly passing away in their sleep while others feel that falling in the field of battle is the best way to go. Sadly, when it comes to kicking the bucket, we don’t really have much in the way of choice. But let’s spare a thought for those that fate decided to exploit to introduce a bit of variety into the process:
- In 1912, Franz Reichelt, a tailor, fell to his death from the first level of the Eiffel Tower. He leapt off in order to test his new invention ‘the parachute overcoat’. It failed. To paraphrase the bible, ‘As you sew…’
- Isadora Duncan, the celebrated founder of modern dance, was a lady given to dramatic dress, favouring long flowing scarves. In 1927, she was a passenger in an open sports car when her flowing scarf caught in the wheel spokes, causing a broken neck. A literal example of ‘breakneck speed’.
- In 1947, the Collyer brothers, compulsive hoarders, were found dead in their New York home. It appears that the elder brother, Langley, was crushed to death by a mass of books when he accidently triggered a booby-trap he had rigged for burglars. His brother, Homer, who was blind and paralysed, died of starvation some days later. Not many people can claim a death caused by their own collected works.
- In 1983, poor old Richard Wertheim was acting as a linesman during an American tennis tournament when a faulty serve from Stefan Edberg struck him in the groin and he collapsed, hitting his head in the process. He died from severe cranial trauma. Next time you complain about bad service, remember Richard.
- 22 year-old Franco Brun, whilst being detained in a Toronto prison in 1987, choked himself to death by trying to swallow a copy of Gideon’s bible. Yet further proof that God will get you every time?
- In 1994, Jeremy Brenno, a 16 year old golfer from New York, threw his club against a bench in a fit of frustration. Part of the broken shaft rebounded, piercing his heart. He died shortly after. I suppose it could be said that if he had lived, he would have been below par and possibly handicapped.
When you’ve gotta go, you’ve gotta go I guess, but if any reader is in contact with the old boy up there, perhaps you would ask him if, when he comes for me, would he mind tiptoeing in to do the job, rather than kicking the door down as per the aforementioned.