Sunday, February 26, 2006

So I was thinking about ways that I could die...

...and I figured, hey, why not share this morbid line of thinking with my loyal cynickites? After all, nothing brightens a fella's day like hearing about how an opinionated jerkoff like me could end up toe-tagged.

Now then, because I am so disturbingly fond of lists, I've broken this subject down into two separate sections. At the end of the article, if you ever get there, you'll find the most likely manner in which the Angel of Death (aka Azrael the cat) will be taking the batteries out of my biological clock.

For reference, of course.


5.) Run over by a steamroller-- Yes, this seems fairly unlikely to happen outside of a Chuck Jones cartoon, and I imagine the actual result would be far messier and more unsightly, but come on. Which of you hasn't thought about being pressed into a two-dimensional version of your former self -- a stunned look on your flat face -- by a runaway steamroller?


And you?

You over there? Man, none of you?

Hmm. Must just be me then.

4.) Shot by a nail gun-- Okay, so driving a nine-inch nail through your skull scores pretty low on the Intelligent-Ways-to-Accidentally-Dispatch-Oneself-ometer (TM), but +500,000 points for kickass inflicter of death, y'know?

A nail gun. Arguably the single best proof of mankind's occupation of both the topmost and bottommost rungs on the evolutionary ladder. Topmost: It is an easily-acquired "tool" that shoots out nails with a frightening degree of pressure and it's not even considered a weapon. Hell, I can hop on down to Home Depot right now and pick me up one of these bad boys --seven-day waiting period, background check, and any logical reason for owning one be damned. Bottommost: It's a glorified hammer.

And hey, memo to the brain trust of nail gun owners: Whaddaya say we keep those temperamental hole-punchers on the bottom shelf from now on, okay? No more of this "well, it just kinda dropped on my head while I was reaching up to grab the miter saw" business.

3.) Crushed by a falling piano-- Okay, this is another method of death you're more likely to find happening to Yosemite Sam than your next-door neighbor, but what a story it would make, huh?

MY NON-EXISTENT NIECE: Who's this a picture of, Daddy?

ONE OF MY INTERCHANGEABLE BROTHERS: Why, that's your dead Uncle Matthew. He was the most beautiful man in the history of evolution.

MY NON-EXISTENT NIECE: Well, that goes without saying. What happened to him?

ONE OF MY INTERCHANGEABLE BROTHERS: He was crushed by a falling piano.

MY NON-EXISTENT NIECE: Uh, how does something like that happen?

ONE OF MY INTERCHANGEABLE BROTHERS: It's practically unheard of. We're very proud of our Matthew.


Other acceptable heavy objects to have fall on your head: a safe, a letter from a large sign on a building, a walrus. Death by maverick air conditioning unit, however, is far too mundane to be considered a cool way to eat it. If this happens to you, no one will be impressed. I'm sorry.

2.) Eaten by a dinosaur-- All right, so the paleontological world has a bit of work cut out for them in order for me to realize this bizarre dream of mine, but in the meantime I think it is beyond the scope of any rational argument to deny that being bitten in half by a rogue (is there any other kind?) theropod would be the personification of coolness. Just imagine this righteously awe-inspiring obituary:

His Right High Lord Emperor Matthew "Chuckles" Patten I, ph.D., D.D.S., Esq., C.S.A., Q.C., H.M.S.S.: The Empire of St. Chuckles O'Plenty's Super Happy-Time Funland, which comprised the nations formerly known as the Partially United States of America and the Deliberately Segregated Second Southern Confederacy, lost its flawless and dashing leader on June 18, 2157, when an eighteen-year-old daspletosaur named "Alan" escaped from its owner's private saurian menagerie and burst onto the grounds of His Perfection's royal estate.

Emperor Patten, who at the time of his unplanned vivisection was engaged in his favorite pastime of feeding teenage pop stars to starving feral dogs, had his upper torso completely severed from his lower torso in one bite. Witnesses, which included clone descendants of Scarlett Johansson and Keira Knightley, described the sight as "wicked awesome" and "just the way that filthy bugger would've wanted to kick off."

His Handsomeness left behind a legacy of improvements to the quality of life on planet Earth. Among them: Replacing the televised Winter and Summer Olympics with "Saved by the Bell" marathons; mandatory vasectomies for all male inhabitants of the Bible Belt; extending the standard 'week' from seven to eleven days, allowing for a six-day weekend; a steady supply of Kleenex made available to all liberals should they encounter any perceived political incorrectness, however trifling and insignificant; the replacement of unions with the highly-successful "Work or Don't Get Paid" guilds; the discontinuation of Miller Lite; the hugely popular de-vocal cording of the late Ashlee Simpson; replacing all nuclear warheads worldwide with Nerf products, resulting in the Great Nerfing of France in '14; decreeing that any major skirmishes between countries will be decided by an oil wrestling match featuring the hottest young female representative of both nations, to be officiated by the Emperor himself; the legalization of punching potheads at random; and, ironically, the funding of Operation: Where the Fuck are the Dinosaurs we were Promised Already?

He is survived by his wives, the clone descendants of: Scarlett Johansson, Keira Knightley, Jessica Alba, Jessica Biel, Jessica Simpson, Tyra Banks, Gabrielle Union, Angelina Jolie, Denise Richards, Jennifer Garner, Kiana Tom, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jennie Finch, Alyssa Milano, Elle Macpherson, Adriana Lima, Gina Carano, Alessandra Ambrosio, Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, Jaime Pressly, Charisma Carpenter, Emma Caulfield, Hillary Duff, Bianca Lawson, Piper Perabo, Torrie Wilson, Stacy Keibler, Jaime Koeppe, Sienna Guillory, Vivica A. Fox, Angela Bassett, Diane Lane, Bethany Joy Lenz, Sophia Bush, and Evangeline Lilly, among others.

As you can see, being eviscerated by a deinonychus or albertosaurus really helps punch up an otherwise bland obituary.

1.) Squeezed between the thighs of a gorgeous woman-- Uh-oh. My fetish is showing. But really, any honest, self-respecting, red-blooded heterosexual male reading this blog (and I know you're out there) has no choice but to agree that finishing out one's mortal years gasping for air between the firm, tanned, toned, flawless quads of a sex kitten would make that touchy life-to-death transition just a shade more tolerable. Even better, try this as a non-lethal exercise in the bedroom. It comes highly recommended.

I could go on and on about this glorious fantasy of mine, but I've got women and gay readers to consider here, and this is more than any of you ought to know about me as it is. Guess I'll just have to break down and finally buy that Goldeneye DVD already.


5.) Drowning-- I can't tell you the number of times I've you read in an article or heard in a news show that drowning is a very peaceful way to die. Really? Choking, panicking, and flailing helplessly for over a minute is considered "very peaceful," is it? Wow. Just go ahead and cancel my swimming lessons then, chief.

I'm sure every one of you has experienced the "very peaceful" feeling of water going down the wrong pipe at some point in your banal lives. And do you remember feeling calm and ethereal as your mind drifted tranquilly towards the Great Beyond? No. You don't. You remember hacking painfully while clawing at your throat and hunching over like some a retarded bellringer while your brother pounded you on the back, which did nothing but add a sore back to your already ugly situation.

Drowning would suck.

4.) Shot by a nail gun-- Because, let's face it, at the end of the day, you're still just that asshole who shot himself with a nail gun.

3.) Shot by a hunter-- (NOTE: There will be no obvious, cheap jokes about Vice President Cheney's recent hunting accident contained in this section. If you're so desperate for topical humor with all the staying power of an uprooted weed, go watch a late show on TV)

It's important that I state here and now that I do know some intelligent and responsible hunters, though I myself am no fan of the practice. I also happen to know some embarrassingly stupid turds who revel in the genocide of members of the animal kingdom's lower branches. Sadly, the bad examples outnumber the good ones by a rough personal estimate of 31,405 to 1. What does this mean? It means that if you live in deer country, stay the fuck indoors during hunting season, big guy.

CYNICKITE: But why? I'm not a deer, or a turkey, or a squirrel [Editor's note: What self-respecting grown man hunts a lousy fucking squirrel? Get a life. Jesus.]. Hell, I don't even look remotely like any government-sanctioned huntable creature. Why would I have to worry about going down the drive to my mailbox during hunting season?

That's a good question. And by "good" I mean "the opposite of good." Never underestimate the stupidity of your average gun owner. Feeling the intense desire to store a virtual artillery five feet from your kids' playroom is already a strong indicator that brain cells are an endangered species in the mind of an N.R.A. enthusiast. Now, throw a high-powered rifle and a license in that genius's grubby, stubby paws, and you've got an impressive recipe for legalized involuntary manslaughter.

Being shot by a dim-witted, over-eager, potbellied Bush supporter would be insult enough, but what will really take points off the coolness of your ceasing and desisting is the fact that someone honestly mistook you for a spindly, fur-covered, four-legged ruminant with a glazed look in its eye. This will unquestionably put your loved ones in an awkward and unwelcome position when tactless funeral attendees ask how you died. And no one wants that.

TANGENT ALERT: Can we please, please dispense with the weak but beloved rationale of the hunting community that we "need" to shoot deer regularly because allowing their unchecked overpopulation would be far more cruel? I mean, come on, you biology class failures, you really think Mother Nature didn't have a highly workable plan put in place for exactly this kind of situation? It was called predator-prey relationships, and it lasted successfully for millions of years. Hell, there are places on the planet were it still, believe it or not, seems to be working! Honest! You can't make this stuff up, I'm telling ya. But because we nature lovers here on the North American continent just can't enough of shootin' things, we've taken wolves, cougars, and bears (you know, those "predators" in the "predator-prey relationships?") out of the mix. Well, fine then. There's not a hell of a lot we can do about that now.

But don't feed me that tired line of "we're doin' it for da sake o' dem poor deers! Ya know, so dey don't starve 'n stuff!" No, you're not. You're doing it because you like the taste of venison, or your interior decorating preferences lean towards the animal carcass motif, or you are a closet sociopath. So just be honest about it, okay? Because let's face it, your average hunter is certainly unequal to the task of justifying his behavior in any intelligent ecological sense. Oh, and he's also ugly and insecure about his manhood.

2.) Dying on the toilet-- Look, I don't care how many hit records you made or how many classic movies you starred in, there is absolutely nothing you can do while sitting on the crapper that will leave a positive lasting image in the minds of those you left behind.* It doesn't matter if you were wrapping your arm off for your latest heroin injection or pondering the state-soul analogy as presented by Socrates while rereading Plato's Republic ... YOU DIED ON THE CAN, MAN! That's gross. It is. Really, really, just, you know, sick and disgusting.

And that is exactly how every single person will remember you.

The worst part is, there ain't a goddamned thing you can do to prevent it from happening to you. I mean, what are you gonna do? Avoid bathrooms and walk around with a diaper under your Levi's? Then you're that guy. And that guy's even worse!

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not bad-mouthing bathrooms here. Hell, I get the vast majority of my reading done while, er, unclogging the laundry chute, so to speak (sorry, ladies). And there are plenty of other fun things to do in a bathroom as well, especially the ones at my bachelor friends' places that are well-stocked with Victoria's Secret catalogs and Maxim magazines.

Er, or so they tell me. Heh, heh. Uhhh, moving on ...

* The single exception to this rule is if you are eaten by a dinosaur while sitting on the toilet. Please consult the movie Jurassic Park for confirmation.

1.) Having a heart attack while watching "Full House"-- Just imagine: You're tired, you've had a rough day, you just want to sit in your favorite chair and relax while letting some insipid yet highly-popular TV series melt your cares and your brain away. Your left arm grows a little tingly as you pass by the Sci-Fi channel. Hmm, that's weird, but oh, well. ESPN, which legend has it was once a sports network, is showing the World Championship of Gin Rummy, so you keep clicking away at the remote. Now you're sweating, and it's not because of that built chick in the Bowflex commercial you just watched a second ago. You really are feeling a bit peakish now that you think about it, but hey, it's just been that kind of day, right? Ahh, here we go. TBS. Those fellas can always be counted on for an amusing syndicated sitcom. Now, just as soon as this station identification is over, we'll settle in for some -- What was that? You just -- you just felt a sharp pain in your chest. The left side of your chest! You clutch at your heart and grab for the phone, but all you succeed in doing is falling helplessly to the floor. Oh my God! You're having a heart attack! You're having a heart attack! Help! Help, you need to get some -- Wait a minute. What is that? What the hell is -- Is that -- Oh, fuck! It's "Full House!" You're gonna die while watching "Full fucking House!" Help! Someone! Help! Anyone, please! Someone please turn off that stupid fucking show! I can't believe this is happening to -- !

The End.

There is a shudder going through my spine as I write these words. How horrible. How truly, truly horrible to think that I could leave this world knowing that the image I'm taking with me as I shuffle off this mortal coil is Dave Coulier's pudgy face contorted into a grotesque caricature of Popeye the Sailorman.

This example is also a very good reason why you should never keep a television set in your bathroom (see previous entry).


Liver failure brought on by an acute case of Irish heritage-- Well, no big surprise here. I've been poisoning my especially resilient liver for close to a decade now, and it's gonna be a fight to the finish between us, let me tell you. Though come to think of it, seeing as how I'm unlikely to find myself in a fatal bodyscissors applied by Jessica Biel outside of a daydream, this would be an all-around pretty decent way to go. For an Irishman in particular. I mean, how many people get to die doing something they loved?

With that optimistic thought in mind, I've just noticed that my scotch needs refilling. Excuse me, you insatiable blog leeches.

In closing, geneticists are even now hard at work attempting to clone styracosauruses and Brooke Burke.

THE CYNICAL IDEALIST'S HATEFUL HINT #58: Don't feel like helping your friend move, or talking on the phone with that egotist who won't shut up, or going to some gay-ass work function after-hours that's meant to be "fun?" Simple. Use this:

YOU (in soft, serious tone; add catch in voice for realism): I'm sorry, I'm not in the mood to [accompany/talk to/help/engage in coitus with] you. My favorite [distant relative/out-of-state friend/non-existent pet/ex-husband/Pope] just passed away. (Follow up with intense, uninterrupted sobbing for as long as necessary)

Believe it or not, the Cynical Idealist has actually used a variation on the above suggestion with surprisingly successful results. So give it a try. No one with a soul will have the nerve to argue with a grieving [relative/friend/animal lover/widow/good Catholic].

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Blogger Patelicious said...

Animal-related deaths are way cooler than being run over on your way to work. Crushed by a python, gored by a charging rhino, throat torn out by wolves. Or, you could die of radiation poisoning while being worshipped as a god by the natives of a micronesian island. I'm sure that crappy Final Destination franchise can come up with a few more entertaining deaths.

3:19 PM  
Blogger Chuckles O'Plenty said...

Yeah, considering my fascination with rhinos, you'd think I'd have thrown a goring by one of those bad boys onto the list. Still, I figured the dinosaur one kinda made up for that glaring oversight.

I will not have any ill spoken/written of my beloved "Final Destination" films. When it comes to cool plot ideas and unspeakably memorable and awe-inspiring methods of death, the FD movies have got that market cornered, whipped, and beaten like a Mexican whore.

Er, I mean mule.

Not that I necessarily associate one with the other.

I must away.

5:42 PM  
Blogger The Fourth Earl of Excelor said...

I couldn't help but think of that first "Naked Gun" movie when you offered up, run over by a steamroller, as number five. "Hey! It's Enrico Palatzo!"

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Ed "Shark Bait" Strege said...

For years I thought a peaceful comfortable death would be the only way to go. Now that I am a few years older and that much closer to Blogging Heaven/Hell, I am convinced that I would like the most intense and painful death possible. I live a rather calm and relaxed life style so on my way out, I want to kick it up and do it right! So here is one of death scenarios; Things I will need: Hang-glider, dull knife, shark infested waters, and insanely hot peppers ground into powder. So I would leap from a cliff flying high over the shark infested waters soaking up the grandeur that is the final minutes of my life. After spotting a shark with a certain sparkle in his eye I will slit open my own stomach with the dull knife spilling blood and instestines into sea. This should stir the sharks into a feeding frenzy. The final step would be to rub my wound with spicy pepper powder before I crash into the sea and wrestle the hungry sharks until they finish me off. I think this death would be both quite painful and perhaps memorable enough to remember my life in the after world.

4:42 PM  
Blogger Chuckles O'Plenty said...

Great. Now I have to rearrange my top 5 list to include your kickass scenario.

6:25 PM  

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