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Darwin Awards [Update]
Posted by: McQ on Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Dave Budge brings us this year's Darwin Award winner:
Finally, THE WINNER!!!: [Arkansas Democrat Gazette]

Two local men were injured when their pickup truck left the road and struck a tree near Cotton Patch on State Highway 38 early Monday. Woodruff County deputy Dovey Snyder reported the accident shortly after midnight Monday. Thurston Poole, 33, of Des Arc, and Billy Ray Wallis, 38, of Little Rock, were returning to Des Arc after a frog catching trip. On an overcast Sunday night, Pooles pickup truck headlights malfunctioned. The two men concluded that the headlight fuse on the older-model truck had burned out. As a replacement fuse was not available, Wallis noticed that the .22 caliber bullets from his pistol fit perfectly into the fuse box next to the steering-wheel column. Upon inserting the bullet the headlights again began to operate properly, and the two men proceeded on eastbound toward the White River Bridge. After Traveling Approximately 20 miles, and just before crossing the river, the bullet apparently overheated, discharged, and struck Poole in the testicles. The vehicle swerved sharply right, exiting the pavement, and striking a tree Poole suffered only minor cuts and abrasions from the accident but will require extensive surgery to repair the damage to his testicles, which will never operate as intended. Wallis sustained a broken clavicle and was treated and released. “Thank God we weren’t on that bridge when Thurston shot his balls off, or we might both be dead,” stated Wallis “I’ve been a trooper for 10 years in this part of the world, but this is a first for me. I can’t believe that those two would admit how this accident happened,” said Snyder. Upon being notified of the wreck, Lavinia (Poole’s wife) asked how many frogs the boys had caught and did anyone get them from the truck???

(Though Poole and Wallis did not die as a result of their misadventure as normally required by Darwin Award Official Rules, it can be argued that Poole did, in fact, effectively remove himself from the gene pool.)
Poole removed from the gene pool. This one hurt to read.

Go on over to Dave's blog and read about the runners up.

UPDATE [Jon]: This is a hoax.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Snopes says the story is false

Even if it’s not false, the story allegedly took place in 1996. The Darwin Awards seem to take a long time to award their prizes.
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://
The Darwin Awards are mostly a collection of urban myths which have grown or taken on new "shapes" over the years and are a lot of fun to read but I don’t take very seriously, thus the "Humor" category.
Written By: McQ
"The Darwin Awards seem to take a long time to award their prizes."

Evolution is not a speedy process.
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Beware, urban legend.
Written By: coyote
Well, if the frog catchers story is just a myth, how about a real self-shooter to replace it:
KOKOMO, Ind. — Police said a Kokomo man accidentally shot himself in the genitals as he robbed a convenience store early Tuesday … “The bullet traveled through his right testicle … and then into the bottom part of his leg,” Kokomo police Lt. Don Whitehead said. Police said the man, whom they identified as 25-year-old Derrick Kosch, grabbed the bag full of cash and fled the store. In-store surveillance cameras showed that Kosch shot himself as he placed the gun into the waistband of his pants, police said.
Of course, nobody died in this instance either. Unless it was from laughter.
Written By: MichaelW
Yup, this is what happens when there are multiple "Darwin Awards" being declared. The fact checking on the johnny-come-latelys is usually incompetent. Go to the original:
Written By: Phelps
MichaelW, I guess that’s a case of a robber going off half-c*cked.
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://

I would just say that he didn’t have the b@lls to get the job done.
Written By: MichaelW
hoax or not, we all grew up with people who we would have no problem believing were capable of doing something like that.
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
Just a technical note: bullets travel quickly because the gasses generated from the burning propellant are confined, and expand in one direction, from the base of the cartridge towards the muzzle of the gun. Without the chamber and barrel to confine the gasses, those gasses expand roughly spherically and dissipate before imparting much momentum to the bullet - since the case is less massive than the bullet, what little energy is imparted to the bullet-case combination will accelerate the case more than the bullet.

The discharge of cartridges outside of a gun will be loud and probably startling, but, presuming the case misses one’s eye, unlikely to cause injury.

Corvallis, Oregon Fire Department (just one I could easily find) notes:
How do I store ammunition so it doesn’t harm emergency personnel in a fire?
Firefighters experience the surprise of exploding ammunition in a fire situation with some regularity. When bullets and shells are exposed to fire, as long as they are not chambered in a weapon, they are generally not lethal. They do explode and you certainly would not want to be in the immediate vicinity. Most often, however,they will simply explode and not project the pellets or slugs with much force. The safety gear worn by firefighters has been fairly effective in protecting them from injury in this case.Loaded weapons exposed to high heat, however, will "shoot" and semi-automatic weapons will keep shooting, especially if gas-operated as most repeating shotguns and some rifles are.
Written By: JohnS
URL: http://
Mythbusters (whom I frequently think get stuff wrong, but there you go) did the bullets in a fire thing and essentially, when they exploded the casings went flying and the bullet didn’t. But the casings, some of them, embedded themselves in boards around the fire.

Figuring how close a person’s pelvis is to the dashboard in a vehicle and how, um, soft the reported target, it seems quite reasonable for a .22 shell casing to end up in someone’s testicles. Doesn’t mean it happened, of course, but it’s reasonable.

(Really *really* strange things happen, like some kid who got a multiple hook (squid?) lure down his throat because he was laughing with his mouth open when someone cast badly. The report on that had interviews and the X-rays, but who’d ever believe it otherwise?)
Written By: Synova
This one goes round, like the one about the guy strapping JATO’s to his car, the guys blowing up the trailer by tying the dynamite to the dog’s tail, and the guy who blew himself out of the storm drain while hunting raccoons.

Someone should award points for the most plausible story though.
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Seriosuly. I think this tale was old when I was born, and I’m rapidly approaching the death-barrier of 30...

*runs and hides from the folks over 30*
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
If the shell casing is restrained and unable to move, the bullet will do the moving, whether it is in a weapon’s chamber or not.
Written By: timactual
URL: http://

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