Archive for the ‘death’ Tag

09-20-2016 Journal – Jim Croce Remembered!   Leave a comment

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I’ve had the pleasure over the years of listening to and sometimes enjoying many styles of music.  I have eclectic tastes ranging from opera to blues to jazz but by far many of my most favorite singers have been the balladeers such as Gordon Lightfoot, Harry Chapin, and of course, Jim Croce.

Both Harry Chapin and Jim Croce died before their time which was a great loss to me and remains so to this day. It’s been 43 years sine Croce was killed in a plane crash in Louisiana and 35 years since Chapin died in 1981 in a car accident.

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Here’s a short blurb on Croce’s death.  He’ll always remain on my IPod and continue to make me smile when I listen to his music.

“On Thursday, September 20, 1973, during Croce’s Life and Times tour and the day before his ABC single “I Got a Name” was released, Croce, Muehleisen, and five others died when their chartered Beechcraft E18S crashed into a tree, while taking off from the Natchitoches Regional Airport in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Others killed in the crash were pilot Robert N. Elliott, musician Maury Muehleisen, comedian George Stevens, manager and booking agent Kenneth D. Cortose, and road manager Dennis Rast. Croce had just completed a concert at Northwestern State University’s Prather Coliseum in Natchitoches and was flying to Sherman, Texas, for a concert at Austin College. The plane crashed an hour after the concert. Jim Croce was 30 years old.”

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R.I.P. JIM

YOU’RE STILL MISSED

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08-16-2016 Journal – Death Trivia!   Leave a comment

We do a lot of trivia on this site which usually consists of total useless information about totally useless things and people.  Today will be a miscellaneous mish-mash of things I’ve discovered recently.  First is something called the Manner of Death statistics.  It’s a list created by some group somewhere telling us all how we are dying in descending order of frequency. Enjoy!

Heart disease: 614,348
• Cancer: 591,699
Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 147,101
Accidents (unintentional injuries): 136,053
Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 133,103
Alzheimer’s disease: 93,541
Diabetes: 76,488
Influenza and pneumonia: 55,227
Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 48,146
Intentional self-harm (suicide): 42,773

That’s enough to send a cold chill up anyone’s back. The perfect way to start your day.  Next is a list of injury types, hospital data, and a whole lot more.

  • Number of medically attended injury and poisoning episodes in the population: 39.5 million
  • Episodes per 1,000 population: 126.3
  • Number of visits (to physician offices, hospital outpatient and emergency departments) for injuries: 80.1 million (includes visits for adverse effects of drug, medicinal or biological substance)
  • Number of emergency department visits for injuries: 43.0 million (includes visits for adverse effects of medical treatment)
  • Number of discharges for fractures (all sites): 1.1 million
  • Number of discharges for poisonings: 260,000
  • Number of discharges for certain complications of surgical and medical care: 1.0 million

Mortality

Total number of deaths: 192,945

Deaths per 100,000 population: 60.2

Poisoning

Number of poisoning deaths: 48,545

Deaths per 100,000 population: 15.4

Traffic Deaths

Number of deaths: 33,804

Deaths per 100,000 population: 10.7

Firearm Deaths

Number of deaths: 33,636

Deaths per 100,000 population: 10.6

Are you feeling more secure now?  Do you even want to leave the house?  It appears that life in these United States is a real crap shoot.  Roll the dice and hope for the best every time you leave the house.

I admit I’ve depressed myself with this posting so I’ll keep this last item short. On this day in history many people have passed on. Here are two that died on this day that I thought might interest you.

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1948 Babe Ruth, Baseball legend (NY Yankees), dies in NY at 53

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1977 Elvis Presley, American musician, dies at Graceland at 42. Official cause of death is cardiac arrhythmia

I THINK I’LL GO BACK TO BED

04-28-2016 Journal–Do You Exist? Where’s the Paperwork!   Leave a comment

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It’s April 28th and two days ago we had two inches of snow here in Maine. The temperatures remain in the twenties at night and I’m sick and tired of sleeping with an electric blanket.  I actually think that April has been colder than March which is bizarre and sucky at the same time.  Also that sunburn I had from a week on the deck in March has slowly faded away. I’m back to being my old self . . . pasty white . . . and that’s just sad. Enough of my weather rant, I’m boring myself.

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Now for my rant of the day.

I haven’t been looking forward to today because I’m getting dragged back into civilization kicking and screaming all the way. I’m required to run errands for some dentist I’ve never visited, for an effing insurance company that I don’t like.  For five years I’ve had this dental insurance but all of a sudden they’re requiring me to prove I’m in a relationship with a women that I’ve been living with for seven years. All of a sudden the "politically correct" police have found me and are making demands on me once again.

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I’ve been forced recently into opening a joint savings account at my bank with my better-half, then transferring money into that account, just to prove to any concerned insurance idiots that I’m still eligible for their dental insurance. This is the same damn insurance carrier I’ve been with for five years. Nothing has changed but they still have that urge to cause me to jump through a few hoops. I’m not a happy camper right now and there isn’t a damn thing I can do about it.  It just goes to show that getting off the grid in any fashion whatsoever is a gigantic effing NO-NO!  If they can’t control you in some fashion they think they’re not doing their job.

So I’m off to my appointment with a bank finance officer who can finally convince these morons that I actually exist.  Once that paperwork is forwarded to the insurance carrier and they are happy . . . TA DA . . . I’ll return to the bank immediately and close the damn account, thumb my nose to all of them, and go about what’s left of my life or until someone else gets in line to screw with me.

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Just so you know, this crap will never end until you’re dead and buried. But God forbid you don’t die properly or THEY may require your family to dig you up to prove your still in the casket.  Make sure your family knows to fill out the required exhumation forms in triplicate or THEY might raise their insurance rates or cancel them altogether.

LAND OF THE FREE, HOME OF THE (Politically Correct) SLAVES.

01-19-2016 Journal – January Blahs!   Leave a comment

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Maine has finally found it’s typical winter weather. No more warmth, no more green anything, just ice, snow, frigid cold, and nothing much else in sight for at least another three months.  Just great . . .

Now that the holidays have come and gone and things have calmed down a little we can now ready ourselves for the next fiasco, Valentine’s Day. I won’t go into my normal rant about crappy made-up holidays but I’m not too excited by it. I was hoping the Super Bowl might get me interested in something but since my team was crushed by Denver . . . .  who cares.

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This time of the year wears on a person like nothing else. Too much time to think and to reexamine your life and the prospects for the future. I have to say even that gets boring as hell after a while.  Right in the middle of all of this I received news of the passing of a good friend.  He was my ex-brother-in-law and a kindred spirit for almost twenty years.  I always admired him for his intellect, his terrific sense of humor, and his competitive spirit. My divorce separated me from my ex-wife and unfortunately for me I lost contact with him and his family as well. There was very little I could do about it.

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In recent years he’d been suffering from illnesses that finally took his life. It was a huge loss for his wife, children, and grand children and for me as well. Just one more thing to think about on these gray and cold days of winter.

I’m forced to fall back on my sketching and painting to keep my mind right. I know it’s getting bad when I’m starting to get excited about having my car inspected in February.

R.I.P. JOHN

09-17-2015 Journal – CSI-Saco, ME   Leave a comment

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On any given day I’m never sure what’ll  happen around here but today even surprised me a little. I was minding my own business and enjoying my life until I found a corpse in my driveway.  I make it a point to be aware of what goes on around my residence by checking things regularly every day. I was able to determine the time of death based on my last patrol of the property and let me tell you that corpse was fresh.

With my investigative background it took only a quick glance to determine that this death was not accidental. . . . it appeared to be murder. I could plainly see the blunt force trauma to the head and several deep puncture marks along the side of the body. It wasn’t pretty. 

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‘Deadly head trauma to be sure.’

I closely searched the surrounding area looking for obvious clues but found nothing.  This investigation really couldn’t be all that thorough because I no longer have access to the appropriate forensic equipment except for latex gloves and a big, old magnifying glass I found in a drawer.

In recent weeks there’ve been reports of suspicious behavior by a gang of delinquents (coyotes) roaming around the neighborhood after dark and wreaking havoc throughout the area.  It’s resulted in the loss of a number of  household pets and those guys are persons of interest.

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‘He never had a prayer.’

There was no way to identify the body so we’ll just call him Mickey Doe.  He had brown hair and a large unruly mustache. I was able to get a couple of photos of the body but they added very little to the investigation. As you can see this will be a difficult case to solve and I expect it will go cold rather quickly.

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‘Some serious bite marks.’

My main suspect lives across the street and is often seen skulking around looking for trouble. He had motive and opportunity because I saw him just before finding the body as he was high-tailing it home to hide under the porch.

As of this report the case remains open. I was forced to remove the body from the driveway and reverently picked it up by the tail and tossed it into the woods.  We have no refrigeration facilities here to store corpses.

Another sad and merciless loss of life here in Maine.

BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR THIS GUY

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FANGED AND DANGEROUS

01-17-2014 Journal Entry–Aging!   Leave a comment

You know, there is a time in your life when you’re forced to deal with getting older.  It’s a little difficult because mentally we all still feel like we’re in our twenties.  As in growing up there’s a process that you must experience and when growing down (aging) you must again go through a somewhat similar but more depressing process, like it or not.  I think it’s just a way for us to slowly over time confront and accept the reality of our mortality.

It really began to bother me a few years ago when I received an email from a former high school class president requesting I attend my 45th high school reunion.  I read the email and never seriously thought about attending.  You see, I hated high school and really had no desire to see any of my former classmates.  I had two close friends during those years and both  have passed away. The first died just months after graduation in a nasty car accident and the second died about twelve years ago during liver transplant surgery. Any old girlfriends with their accompanying sexual adventures have long since been forgotten.

I was given a webpage to visit created by my old classmates that had updated information on just about everyone in the class.  I took a look around the site and the only thing that caught my eye was the death list.  It was a huge shock to see that almost forty percent of my graduating class had passed away.  It was surprising but not totally unexpected.  I adjusted over time to the shock and began to deal with the reality of it.  I never attended any of my class reunions that were held over the years because I preferred to remember my classmates as they were and not be slapped in the face with the new reality of what they are now.  Too damn depressing.

Time goes on and age continues to creep up on you.  You can see and feel the physical changes as they occur and you adjust.  Aches and pains continue to worsen and again you adjust.  You spend a great deal of your life adjusting to changes that you knew were coming but really didn’t take all that seriously. It’s a slow and never-ending shadow in the back of your mind that you try to ignore but can’t.  Every time you have a quiet moment it pops up to let you know the process is continuing.

You’re probably wandering what prompted this depressing monologue so let me explain.  Yesterday I was given some news that at first didn’t shock or surprise me but later kept coming back to haunt me.  My ex-wife of many years had remarried shortly after our divorce and had given birth to a son. We’d been divorced a couple of years but she still made the effort to meet with me because she wanted to introduce me to the boy.  She and I had tried for years to have children but could not.  We met for just a few brief minutes and I held the little guy in my arms for just an instant. Before I knew it they were gone and I never saw either of them again.  That little baby boy now 31 years old had just died from a lethal drug overdose.

Life as always goes on but it was just another reminder of how quickly and easily life can be taken from us.  Sorry about the depressing post but I needed to tell someone about it. No one is exempt from this aging process and I’ve done my part to remind all of you of that fact. Live your life to the fullest every blessed day.  It could end tomorrow.

04-18-2013   2 comments

For as long as I can remember I’ve been fascinated by death.  While in the service and during my years as a police officer I was forced to see a great deal of it.  I’m unshockable by death itself but not in the ways in which  some people exit this reality.

I’ve been a big fan of the annual Darwin Awards for decades because they highlight the funny and odd ways people die.  It’s not really macabre because humor makes dealing with almost anything easier.  The Darwin Awards pick out a few selected incidents each year and give a fairly graphic description of their stupid, funny, and sometimes ironic deaths.  I guess my one wish would be to die in any fashion that keeps me off their list.  Dying in a stupid or embarrassing manner is just not acceptable.

I always knew there were many deaths that the Darwin people chose not to publicize so I decided to do some research of my own.  Here are a few that caught my attention even though they didn’t make the cut for Darwin. They are from many countries and cover many decades of time.

  • In New Orleans in 1985 a guest at a party for lifeguards celebrating their first drowning-free swimming season in memory drowned Tuesday, the director of the New Orleans Recreation Department said today. Madlyn Richard, the department director, said the body of Jerome Moody was found on the bottom at the deep end of a department pool as the party ended. She said Mr. Moody, who was 31 years old, was not a lifeguard, but four lifeguards were on duty at the party.
  • Jim Fixx died in 1984 (ironically his arteries were plugged with too much cholesterol). He left a legacy of thousands of joggers and runners that he introduced to the pleasures and benefits of jogging and the sport of running. His book, The Complete Book of Running, became a best seller among running books. When Jim first took up running in the 1960’s, he weighed 220 lbs. By the time his book was published, he had trimmed down to 159 lbs, and was an accomplished runner.
  • An ice cream truck driver in Thailand died while laughing in his sleep. Damnoen Saen-um, 52, laughed for about two minutes yesterday and then stopped breathing, the Nation newspaper reported. Damnoen’s wife tried to wake him but he kept laughing. An autopsy suggested that he might have had a heart attack. "I have never seen a case like this. But it is possible that a person could have heart seizure while laughing or crying too hard in their sleep," said Dr. Somchai Chakrabhand, deputy director-general of the Mental Health Department.
  • A 38-year-old lawyer with the Toronto law firm of Holden Day Wilson, did indeed plunge to his death from the 24th floor of the Toronto Dominion Bank Tower in front of several horrified witnesses. The firm’s spokesperson said “He was testing the strength of the window. There was a lot of joking about how the window wouldn’t open on a hot day. Apparently, it was the second attempt [at testing the window] that one of them popped out and he went through."
  • A church organist was found dead at his Teesside home naked inside a giant plastic bag. Ian Kemp, 48, from Stockton, was found alone in his house bound by his wrists and shins, an inquest heard. A vacuum cleaner was also connected to the bag and it is believed Mr Kemp died after the machine had sucked all the air out of the bag.  Teesside Coroner Michael Sheffield said such incidents were sometimes connected to sexual gratification.
  • "Escape artist The Amazing Joe Burrus, a recovering drug addict, wanted to give back to society by performing a Houdini-like stunt for a rehab-clinic benefit in 1990. For the act, he was covered under six feet of dirt and wet cement in a locked coffin while bound in chains and handcuffs. After the nine tons of glop were poured on, the coffin collapsed and Burrus was buried alive."
  • Brent Tyler and Chelsea Tumbleston (both 21) worked together as waiters at the Wild Wing Café in Columbia, South Carolina. Now this is the Deep South: You must understand that here, lovebirds follow strict courtship rituals. Brent told Chelsea she was pretty as a picture. Her heart a-pitter-patter, Chelsea told Brent he was a most worthy gentleman caller. Then they went for a midnight fuck on the roof. We know they waited to get naked until reaching the building’s metallic pyramid-shaped roof because their clothes were found there. Their nude bodies were not so lucky, discovered lifeless on the street 50 feet below.

I recently had someone tell me in conversation that death by fire was a “terrible way to go”.  I think he was full of it because in my humble opinion there is no good way to go. I’ve had people tell me they’d prefer to die while making love. Sorry, I’ll pass on that one too.  I never want to die no matter what the circumstances.  I plan on going kicking and screaming all the way.

11-07-2012   2 comments

I guess I must be suffering from post election withdrawal.  It’s such a relief to have the election and all of the associated nonsense over with.  So I’ll start this day enjoying my breakfast of eggs, bacon, toast, and coffee.  I guess as long as the simple things I enjoy stay the same it helps me deal with the bigger things that suck.  I stayed up late last night reading  more of Harry Potter and occasionally surfing to Fox News to check on the election returns.  Needless to say I slept in a little later than usual this morning because I knew what I was going to wake up to.

This little breakfast nook of ours is on the second floor overlooking the road that passes by the house.  We seem to be on the route for a continuing stream of bicyclists, runners, and soccer moms with their kids and dogs. It’s an easy way for me to people watching from a safe distance without alarming anyone. People these days are very nervous, and rightly so.

I’ve noticed one thing in recent months about the runners that jog by here. They all look like they want to die with their red flushed faces and wobbly knees. I thought running was supposed to be a good thing.  All I’ve ever heard from the obsessed runners that I know is how this huge rush of endorphins surges through their skinny yet healthy bodies.  I hate to be the one to tell them that I can also get a huge rush of endorphins by smacking myself on the hand with a hammer.  Truth be told I’d rather have the smack with that hammer than to be running all over God’s creation.  Let me tell you a story I was told from my late father a few years ago.  Listen to the story and then get back to me about how healthy jogging can be. Here we go.

My father worked a blue-collar job all of his life and for most of those years his job was extremely physical so he never was into lifting weights, hitting the gym, or running.  His boss’s name was Mr. White and he worked primarily in an office position that required almost no physical activity.  Mr. White lived a few miles from our home and every morning as my dad was driving to work he’d see Mr. White jogging along in his cute little running outfit. He’d give my Dad a nod or a wave and continue on down the road. Now you must understand this, Mr. White was not overweight or in need of bodybuilding and appeared to be a healthy individual who was using running for stress relief.  One morning as my father’s work day began he was called to the office and told that Mr. White had passed away. He asked under what circumstances and was told that Mr. White had been found lying along a road approximately a half mile from his home, dressed in his jogging outfit, and dead from a heart attack.  What’s the moral of the story you ask.  That’s an easy one for me, don’t freaking jog.

I’m not criticizing those people who love running but I just thought it was ironic as hell that a guy that appeared to be as healthy as Mr. White dropped dead while jogging.  You can be sure of one thing, you’ll never see me running along a road anywhere unless there’s a guy close behind me with a gun.  Just saying.

I’m  rambling on and on because I truthfully don’t want to get off my ass and do anything today.  Maybe another coffee and some loud kick-ass music might do the trick.  We’ll see.

Posted November 9, 2012 by Every Useless Thing in Just Saying

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