Somedays It Just Doesn't Pay To Get Out Of Bed

by DavalosMcCormack on March 2, 2010

manneken_pis_crop So, everyday the staff here at Healthy and Simple try to come up with new ideas, new approaches, new thoughts on how   you  can lead a healthier, happier life. We are very creative in trying to make the best of a bad situation but some    days

you hear something that has us shaking our heads saying, “you know mate, you should just have stayed in bed.” That’s how I felt when I read about the man who apparently electrocuted himself after urinating on a power line he had just knocked down.

You read that correctly. Authorities in Montesano, Washington State,  say that 50 year Roy Messenger crashed his car into a power pole, knocking it down, and sending his car into the ditch. Roy was reportedly not seriously hurt in the accident and he got out of the car and called a relative to help pull his vehicle out of the ditch. That’s when he decided to take a leak while waiting. Police think that Roy didn’t see the live wire from the downed pole in the ditch and when he peed on it the urine stream apparently served as a conductor, allowing the electricity to reach his body. Bang.

Not a very dignified way to go.

Now the blogosphere is rife with questions about whether urine is a solid enough stream to actually allow electricity to flow up it. Frankly, I don’t know Roy or his urinating prowess well enough to judge, all I know is that he took a leak without taking a look and now he’s dead. Regardless of whether it happened the way authorities think or through some other fluke of nature and science, Roy is still gone. And that’s never a good way to end your day.

A quick check of the National Safety Council’s Odds of Dying statistics shows that accidental electrocution is the ninth least likely way to die (behind hornet, wasp or bee sting – lifetime odds of 1 in 56,789; lightning – lifetime odds of 1 in 79,746; and the least likely of all, fireworks at 1 in 340,7333) but that’s not likely to be much consolation to Roy and his family.

I’m thinking that most forms of accidental electrocution are more commonplace, work or home accidents. Not too many peeing on live wires that you just brought down yourself. Roy must have really needed to go. Because he went. And now he’s gone.

There have been stranger deaths in history. For instance the Greek playwright Aeschylus is reported to have died after an eagle dropped a tortoise on his bald head. It’s thought the bird mistook the shiny pate for a stone and was hoping to use it to break open the tortoise’s shell. For a man of the theatre it was oddly appropriate. One minute you are in the wings, the next you are wearing them!

Then there is the case of poor old Sigurd I of Orkney, a fierce Scottish warrior of the 9th century who defeated and then decapitated his enemy Maelbrigte. To show off his war trophy, Sigurd stuck Maelbrigte’s head on his saddle. But as he rode off Maelbrigte’s decapitated dentures kept rubbing against Sigurd’s leg, eventually causing a small wound which became infected and a few days later Sigurd died. He obviously hadn’t taken into account his enemy’s infectious smile!

But, getting back to Roy. Reading about his untimely and unfortunate demise it is a reminder  that eating the right food and exercising regularly and taking care of yourself will do wonders for you, but they’ll only take you so far. The rest is up to you, the fates, your bladder, and the occasional flying tortoise or an enemy’s bite!

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