Tuesday, July 07, 2009

The Darwin Awards

A Darwin Award is an honour given for people who "do a service to Humanity by removing themselves from the gene pool" (i.e. lose the ability to reproduce either by death or sterilization in a stupid fashion). Wendy Northcutt, author of the books and theories, explains that "The Awards honor people who ensure the long-term survival of the human race by removing themselves from the gene pool in a sublimely idiotic fashion."

There's some rules to win one of these awards:

Inability to reproduce
Nominee must be dead or rendered sterile.
Astoundingly stupid judgment.
Cause of one's own demise.
Capable of sound judgment.
The event must be verified.
Examples of Darwin award winners include:

  • Juggling active hand grenades (Croatia, 2001)
  • Leaving a lit cigarette in a warehouse full of explosives (Philippines, 1999)
  • Jumping out of a plane to film skydivers without wearing a parachute (US, 1987)
  • Trying to get enough light to look down the barrel of a loaded muzzleloader gun using a cigarette lighter (US, 1996),
  • Using a lighter to illuminate a fuel tank to make sure it contains nothing flammable (Brazil, 2003),
  • Attempting to play Russian roulette with a semi-automatic pistol that automatically reloads the next round into the chamber.
  • or attempting Russian roulette with an unexploded landmine.
They even made a movie about it.
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