Subject: And you thought you had a bad day...
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* Surprised while burgling a house in Antwerp, Belgium, a thief fled out
the back door, clambered over a nine-foot wall, dropped down and found
himself in the city prison.
* In 1976 a twenty-two-year-old Irishman, Bob Finnegan, was crossing the
busy Falls Road in Belfast, when he was struck by a taxi and flung over
its roof. The taxi drove away and, as Finnegan lay stunned in the road,
another car ran into him, rolling him into the gutter. It too drove on.
As a knot of gawkers gathered to examine the magnetic Irishman, a
delivery van plowed through the crowd, leaving in its wake three injured
bystanders and an even more battered Bob Finnegan. When a fourth vehicle
came along, the crowd wisely scattered and only one person was hit-Bob
Finnegan. In the space of two minutes Finnegan suffered a fractured
skull, broken pelvis, broken leg, and other assorted injuries. Hospital
officials said he would recover.
* While motorcycling through the Hungarian countryside, Cristo Falatti
came up to a railway line just as the crossing gates were coming down.
While he sat idling, he was joined by a farmer with a goat, which the
farmer tethered to the crossing gate. A few moments later a horse and
cart drew up behind Falatti, followed in short order by a man in a
sports car. When the train roared through the crossing, the horse
startled and bit Falatti on the arm. Not a man to be trifled with,
Falatti responded by punching the horse in the head.
In consequence the horse's owner jumped down from his cart and began
scuffling with the motorcyclist. The horse, which was not up to this
sort of excitement, backed away briskly, smashing the cart into the
sports- car. At this, the sports-car driver leaped out of his car and
joined the fray. The farmer came forward to try to pacify the three
flailing men. As he did so, the crossing gates rose and his goat was
strangled. At last report, the insurance companies were still trying to
sort out the claims.
* Two West German motorists had an all-too-literal head-on collision in
heavy fog near the small town of Guetersloh. Each was guiding his car at
a snail's pace near the center of the road. At the moment of impact
their heads were both out of the windows when they smacked together.
Both men were hospitalized with severe head injuries. Their cars weren't
* In a classic case of one thing leading to another, seven men aged
eighteen to twenty-nine received jail sentences of three to four years
in Kingston-on-Thames, England, in 1979 after a fight that started when
one of the men threw a French fry at another while they stood waiting
for a train.
* Hitting on the novel idea that he could end his wife's incessant
nagging by giving her a good scare, Hungarian Jake Fen built an
elaborate harness to make it look as if he had hanged himself. When his
wife came home and saw him she fainted. Hearing a disturbance a neighbor
came over and, finding what she thought were two corpses, seized the
opportunity to loot the place. As she was leaving the room, her arms
laden, the outraged and suspended Mr. Fen kicked her stoutly in the
backside. This so surprised the lady that she dropped dead of a heart
attack. Happily, Mr. Fen was acquitted of manslaughter and he and his
wife were reconciled.
* An unidentified English woman, according to the London Sunday
Express was climbing into the bathtub one afternoon when she remembered
she had left some muffins in the oven. Naked, she dashed downstairs and
was removing the muffins when she heard a noise at the door. Thinking it
was the baker, and knowing he would come in and leave a loaf of bread on
the kitchen table if she didn't answer his knock, the woman darted into
the broom cupboard. A few moments later she heard the back door open
and, to her eternal mortification, the sound of footsteps coming toward
the cupboard. It was the man from the gas company, come to read the
meter. "Oh," stammered the woman, "I was expecting the baker." The gas
man blinked, excused himself and departed.
* A fierce gust of wind blew 45-year-old Vittorio Luise's car into a
river near Naples, Italy, in 1983. He managed to break a window, climb
out and swim to shore -- where a tree blew over and killed him.
* Mike Stewart, 31, of Dallas was filming a movie in 1983 on the dangers
of low-level bridges when the truck he was standing on passed under a
low-level bridge -- killing him.
* Walter Hallas, a 26-year-old store clerk in Leeds, England, was so
afraid of dentists that in 1979 he asked a fellow worker to try to cure
his toothache by punching him in the jaw. The punch caused
Hallas to fall down, hitting his head, and he died of a fractured skull.
* George Schwartz, owner of a factory in Providence, R.I., narrowly
escaped death when a 1983 blast flattened his factory except for one
wall. After treatment for minor injuries, he returned to the scene to
search for files. The remaining wall then collapsed on him, killing him.
* Depressed since he could not find a job, 42-year-old Romolo
Ribolla sat in his kitchen near Pisa, Italy, with a gun in his hand
threatening to kill himself in 1981. His wife pleaded for him not to do
it, and after about an hour he burst into tears and threw the gun to the
floor. It went off and killed his wife.
* In 1983, a Mrs. Carson of Lake Kushaqua, N.Y., was laid out in her
coffin, presumed dead of heart disease. As mourners watched, she
suddenly sat up. Her daughter dropped dead of fright.
* A man hit by a car in New York in 1977 got up uninjured, but lay back
down in front of the car when a bystander told him to pretend he was
hurt so he could collect insurance money. The car rolled forward and
crushed him to death.
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