Everybody dies.
It's a fact of life. But some people like to cross over to the other side with some style.
 Here is a sampling of ways to die.


Ants: Venom from a single fire ant is minute; however, when an entire ant colony is triggered into a massive attack the concentration of venom is toxic. The venom contains several allergenic proteins that can cause chest pains, nausea, dizziness, shock, coma or death. Fire ant fatalities since 1965: 4,289.

Barbecues: For the last 100,000 years humans have eaten fire-cooked meals. Sitting three times a day in front of a smoking fire was the leading cause of non-accidental death for the primitive man. Nevertheless, the tradition persisted and became America's favorite way to cook—77 percent of all U.S. households own a barbecue and in 2004, 740 million servings of barbecue food were sold. Barbecue cooking caused 203 incident-related fatalities in 2003 and approximately 4,000 injuries occurred to kids under 4 years old.

Chinese Food Syndrome: This condition—caused by a pharmacologic reaction to monosodium glutamate (MSG), a popular white powder used to season food—sometimes mimics heart attacks, causing chest pains, facial pressure and burning sensations throughout the body. A 1995 FDA report concluded that asthmatics and people who can't tolerate large amounts of MSG may be at risk of death, with no way to tell aside from trial and error. Although MSG is no longer used regularly, labeled as such, it is still found in many foods labeled as "hydrolyzed soy protein" and "natural flavoring(s)." Food additives killed 56,981 in 2002.

Dildos: In Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Kansas, Colorado, and Alabama there are laws that make the possession of dildos illegal. There are 1,200 accidents reported annually in emergency rooms for treatment of conditions caused by the misuse of mechanical dildos. While the Department of Justice lists no murders from dildos, one female was killed in a car crash on I-95 near Washington, D.C. in 2002, apparently distracted while using a "Pocket Rocket" driving home.

Exercise Equipment: These are supposed to improve your health, right? Sales of exercise equipment reached $6 billion in 2005, displaying America's urge to get fit. However, since 1975, 4,399 people have died while using exercise equipment such as treadmills, rowing machines, weights, stationary bicycles, and cross-country ski machines.

Fashion: Throughout the ages, when it comes to women's fashions, style has always beat comfort and form. The stomach girdle was used by women as far back as 1800 B.C., to constrict their waists and amplify their busts. Gone with the Wind's Scarlett O'Hara had her waist tightened to an impossible 18 inches. Total deaths due to artificial constriction since 1850: 29,865.

Golf: The most popular sporting activity for people over 50 is golf. The third and 18th holes are the most fatal, with 3,120 golfers dying in a five-year study period, usually in the rough or in sand traps. Most deaths on the golf course are health related; only two percent are caused by golf clubs or golf balls.

Halitosis: Each year, Americans spend $2 billion on toothpaste, toothbrushes, oral-care gum, mouthwash, and breath mints, yet 90 million people still have chronic halitosis, known in the common vernacular as "bad breath." The particular danger here comes from an infection caused by Helicobacter pylori, a cancer causing agent that can lead to stomach cancer among other things. This bad breath does not originate in the mouth but rises from the stomach. Halitosis appeared as either the primary or secondary cause of death on 31,987 death certificates in 2002.

Impotence: Overexertion is the primary cause of death when taking potency medications. Viagra is relatively safe except when mixed with nitroglycerin, a drug given to many heart patients. But many men don't care about the risks, saying "If I have to go out, that's the way I want to go out." Deaths among men after taking impotence drugs are at 11,344 per year.

Jaywalking: Mother always said look both ways before crossing the street. More than half of pedestrian fatalities are due to jaywalking. And jaywalkers hit by cars are not considered victims but lawbreakers. In New York City, a driver hit an 80-year-old woman and he was arrested for driving without a license, not for the woman's death. Jaywalking fatalities since 1990: 14,902.

Kissing: Kissing disease, or mononucleosis (also known as "mono"), is a contagious viral infection transmitted primarily by sharing saliva. The infection most often infects kissing-crazy 15-to 17-year olds, and causes fever from 102 to 104 degrees, red throats, swollen lymph glands in the neck and swollen spleens. Epstein-Barr virus, considered the cause in infectious mono, is attributed to 7,000 deaths per year.

Latex: Latex sensitivity is an allergy to anything rubber, including medical gloves, condoms, birth control devices, balloons and underwear bands. The body does not detoxify latex; the greater the exposure and the longer the person touches the latex, the harsher the reaction. Since 1995, rubber allergies have killed 3,976.

Masturbation: People who die while masturbating do so accidentally and not because they had hairy palms or warts, went blind, or bumped into something with an erection and died of internal bleeding. Through the 1950s, masturbation was called the hidden plague and a "killer of youth." Death or disability can occur, however, when untested props are used. Three middle-aged men died from electrocution, somehow employing a hair dryer into their practices and an elderly man died of a heart attack while masturbating with a vacuum cleaner. 3,761 die while engaging in autoerotic activities in the United States each year.

Nonstick pans: Nonstick coated aluminum cookware with damaged or scratched surfaces emit toxic fumes when used. Since smoke or carbon monoxide detectors do not register toxic cooking fumes, some avoid death from scratched pots and pans by keeping parakeets and canaries in the kitchen— they expire promptly when a malfunctioning nonstick frying pan is in use. 1,500 lung disease deaths have been directly attributed to these popular utensils.

Oral Sex: When a woman receives oral sex (cunnilingus) air should not be blown into the vagina as it can enter the bloodstream and create an embolism—an air bubble—that can kill the recipient in a matter of seconds. However, a full burst of air, as in blowing up a balloon, is required to achieve this. Other items of odd or irregular shapes (carrots, candles, batteries, soap-on-a-rope) used to create self-excitement can cause these air bubbles as well as they allow more air in than out during the process. 919 women die each year of an embolism obtained while engaging in oral sex and regular intercourse.

Popcorn: Popcorn is the nation's most popular snack food with 17.2 billion quarts consumed each year. In 2004, the EPA began to test vapors released from fully-popped bags of microwaved popcorn. Popcorn factory workers and those at home who inhale microwave popcorn fumes on a regular basis got a rare lung disease from the combustion of dactyl, one of the ingredients in artificial butter flavoring. In 2003, 24 died from inhaling popcorn fumes.

Q-Fever: Originally called Query Fever (possibly referring to the questionable means of acquiring it), it is a disease from a bacterium understood to be transmitted to humans by sheep, goats, and other herd animals. Sheep can live with this bacterium in their bodies but humans cannot. The most direct way to contract Q-Fever (which requires extremely close contact with the animal) is to be amorously involved with sheep, although only two percent of the people infected have admitted to these practices. 65 percent of people who acquire Q-Fever from sheep through "unorthodox means" eventually die—2,302 since 1995.

Revolving Doors: There were 12,231 injuries involving revolving doors alone in 2004. A 37-year-old woman was hit in the ankle so hard with a fast-moving revolving door that her anterior tibial artery ruptured and she died of internal bleeding. Since 1970, mechanical devices, including revolving doors, escalators, auto lifts, and automatic doors have caused 7,491 fatalities.

Sperm Allergy: Starting in 1958, medical records list women who died from bad chemistry—they were allergic to the protein in sperm. Death from sperm allergies starts with swelling around the eyes, sneezing, nasal congestion, vomiting, and diarrhea. When there's too much sperm, a woman's airways swell so much that she actually dies from lack of air. Sperm allergy fatalities since 1958: 415.

Toilets: Unlike other human endeavors like dancing or painting, the time one spends on the toilet has not earned as much print. The average male will sit on his throne the equivalent of three workweeks each year. The most prevalent hindrance to productive toilet time is constipation, prompting over 2.5 million to visit the doctor and spend more than $300 million on laxatives each year. Most deaths while sitting on the toilet occurred from attempts to forcibly push out the contents of the bowels while keeping the nose and the mouth closed. The barometric pressure in the lungs can get out of balance causing the compressions that pump blood through the heart to malfunction. 1,213 die from complications caused by aggressive pushing during toilet time each year.

Umbrellas: In 2002, a Georgia man died when a large pool umbrella he had set up in his backyard was dislodged by a strong wind and sent cartwheeling toward him at the other end of his property, impaling him through the neck and chest. He died at the hospital later that evening. Total injuries from all types of umbrellas since 1975: 19,867; Total fatalities: 91.

Valentine's Day: "From Your Valentine" is duplicated on $937 million worth of greeting cards; another $100 million is spent on candy and flowers each year. With all this attention focused on love, it's no wonder that many who do not have it become agitated and depressed. To avoid feelings of rejection, 15 percent of American women send themselves flowers on Valentine's Day. Annual suicides the week before and after Valentine's Day: approximately 2,900.

Water: In January 2000, a 20-year-old army trainee guzzled 12 quarts of water, trying to make a clean urine specimen for a drug test. Shortly thereafter, she endured fecal abandon, lost consciousness, and became confused; she died from swelling in the brain and lungs as a result of low blood sodium. Over 700 chemicals are found in a glass of tap water, causing 138,000 miscarriages a year.

X-rays: Every time you get an X-ray, radiation, measured in millirems (mrems) enters the soft tissue of your body and remains there nearly forever. It's been proven that people who are exposed to more than 10,000 mrems of radiation in their lifetime, from whatever source, will develop cancer. Even with lead protection or other usage guidelines in place, the moment an X-ray enters the body cell physiology begins to change. 20,000 a year die due to radiation exposure.

Yawning: Reading about yawning increases yawning as does seeing another person yawn. For centuries, doctors saw no harm in yawning, believing it was either a reflex to increase oxygen supply or to expel excessive carbon dioxide. But the real cause of a yawn remains a mystery. Today, medicine looks at the yawn suspiciously only if it occurs in excess. In 2004, yawning while driving caused 1,400 deaths.

Zoofatalism: This is a psychological disorder in which the afflicted get dangerously close to zoo animals or keep wild animals as pets against better judgment. At an Illinois fairground, one 19-year-old tiger keeper was mauled to death when he climbed on top of a cage full of circus tigers and started to defecate. The angry tigers latched onto his ankles and ate him, a piece at a time, as they pulled him through the cage. Since 1999, prospective zoo employees have been subjected to psychological testing. Fatalities by zoo animals since 1965: 1,570.

 





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