Winding my way through the mountains of the PCH (as a passenger in a minivan, nonetheless), I began to not only sweat from both my palms and my feet, but to consider my mortality. As someone who’s afraid of heights, it’s the fall itself that is the scary part – smashing into the earth, limbs all akimbo, or landing face-first in the asphalt-hard water seemss like sweet relief from the ordeal of falling. Which made me ponder what would be the absolute worst way to leave our earthly realm?
Certainly there are torturous scenarios out there that would be terrible; say, being starved to death as you are forced to watch Justin Beiber and Debralee Lorenzana act out the “ghost” interaction scenes from Grey’s Anatomy. But that’s pretty far-fetched and wouldn’t have a long-term impact on your not-dead legacy.
I’d say there are five factors to consider:
1. Pain – How much does the actual death event itself hurt? Eaten by piranhas is probably worse than taking a liner down the third base line to the temple at a Dodgers game.
2. Suffering – The longer term interpretation of pain, both mental and physical.
3. Avoidability – If you, for instance, find yourself hanging out with the hard, pipe-hitting colleagues of Marsellus Wallace, you probably could have avoided the whole pliers and blow torch situation by choosing not to rape Mr. Wallace. Death via terminal illness (not brought on by poor life choices) is at the opposite end of the spectrum.
4. Humiliation – If the paramedics that find you are stifling laughter rather than solemnly noting your departure from the mortal coil, you may have made some poor choices. Good rule of thumb: if you are being rushed to the hospital with a life-threatening injury, you should find yourself spending ten times more energy worrying about your injury than explaining your behavior (“I was heading to a costume party when my penis fell into that blender”).
5. Impact on Loved Ones – If you weren’t a total dick, you will probably leave behind friends and relatives that will be saddened by your loss, no matter which way you go. Some scenarios, like deciding to shoot people from a bell tower and getting taken out by a sniper, will have a longer-term impact as they try to figure out “why?”
Conclusion I gave strong consideration to getting pulled apart via multiple semi-trucks, a la The Hitcher. Seems like it would max out the first three categories (don’t pick up a f-cking hitchhiker!) but might be a little light on the last two. The last two are pretty tough, it takes something along the lines of an (allegedly) Carradine-esque autoerotic asphyxiation incident to really get high marks there, and even that doesn’t max out category five (let he who doesn’t choke/pleasure himself cast the first stone).
And then I recalled a story from a few years ago in beautiful Washington state, a memory I had repressed as successfully as most of the events of summer 2001 at TBTNLSA. I’m not going to link to this sh*t, but trust me, it happened in real life. The absolute worst way to die, is to die from internal injuries suffered while filming a video of you getting banged by a horse. This not only ruins the horrifically painful last hour of your life (“I was leaning over a picnic table, playing some Electronic Quarterback in sweat pants, when this horse comes from out of nowhere”) but ruins the life of your family (“Dude, I heard your dad enjoyed playing bottom for gay horses”) and friends (“We were more like acquaintances.”).
iPad So, anyway, if you’ve been paying attention, you noticed that Apple held up last month, so I’ll be putting together the iPad giveaway (presuming, god bless those marketing geniuses, that I can buy one) next week. Haven’t exactly figured out the parameters yet, but it’s somehow going to be based on driving new people to the site or otherwise helping spread the motherf*cking word…have to talk to my buddy who knows about stuff like that – I took all numbers classes in business school, no marketing for the kid…and it shows…any suggestions also welcome, whatever form the contest takes, it’s probably gonna go for four to six weeks – no free lunch, son…
Have a good weekend, and stay out of the stables,