I'm somewhat nonplussed by the (all too obvious) conclusions of a group of British medical researchers.
A 20 year study of the Darwin Awards, an annual review of the most foolish way people have died, found almost 90 per cent were 'won' by males.
Named after Charles Darwin, who postulated the suvival of the fittest, it recognises those who have inadvertently improved the gene pool by elimiating themselves from the human race by astonishingly stupid methods.
Worthy candidates have included a man stealing a ride home by hitching a shopping trolley to the back of a train, only to be dragged two miles to his death before it was able to stop, and the terrorist who unthinkingly opened his own letter bomb on its return after he posted it with insufficient stamps.
Other examples include the man who shot himself in the head with a 'spy pen' weapon to show his friend it was real, and the thief attempting to purloin a steel hawser from a lift shaft - and unbolted it while standing in the lift which then plummeted to the ground, killing him.
. . .
Of the 318 valid cases ... 282 (88.7 per cent) were awarded to males and just 36 to females, a gender difference entirely consistent with male idiot theory (MIT) that states men are idiots and idiots do stupid things.
. . .
Dr Dennis Lendrem, of the University of Newcastle, said ... an honourable mention must go to the man who slipped when using a belt sander as an auto erotic device and lost a testicle.
Repairing his scrotum with a staple gun, he was able to salvage his remaining testicle thus failing to eliminate himself completely from the gene pool, so he did not qualify for an award and was eliminated from the analysis.
. . .
Dr Lendrem said: "Despite these limitations there can be little doubt Darwin Award winners seem to make little or no real assessment of the risk or attempt at risk management. They just do it anyway. In some cases, the intelligence of the award winner may be questioned.
"For example, the office workers watching a construction worker demolishing a car park in the adjacent lot must have wondered about the man's intelligence.
"After two days of office speculation - how does he plan to remove the final support to crash the car park down safely? - they discovered, on the third day, that he didn't have a plan. The concrete platform collapsed, crushing him to death and flattening his mini-excavator."
He said anecdotal data support the hypothesis alcohol makes men feel 'bulletproof' after a few drinks, and it would be naive to rule this out.
"For example, the three men who played a variation on Russian roulette alternately taking shots of alcohol and then stamping on an unexploded Cambodian land mine.
In case you were wondering, the mine eventually exploded, demolishing the bar and killing all three men.
There's more at the link.
Haven't these (allegedly) medical researchers ever watched kids at play? From infancy onward, most little boys are a darn sight more
The Darwins, dominated by men. Who'd a thunk it?