Croatian Music teacher Frane Selak is what you’d call a lucky guy. He’s cheated death seven times and won the lottery. You could say he’s led a charmed life, but Selak doesn’t feel lucky. He explained, “I never thought I was lucky to survive all my brushes with death. I thought I was unlucky to be in them in the first place.”
When 91-year-old George Doughty was rushed to the hospital with pneumonia, his 92-year-old wife, Dorothy, feared the worst. He was sedated and moved to intensive care three days later. His wife of 68 years was unable to visit him because she suddenly became ill with shingles.
Typos are careless spelling or punctuation mistakes. They are usually minor, but not always. Sometimes these small mistakes can cost millions of dollars. NASA, the US space agency, made a little mistake in 1962 that had a big impact. Their spacecraft, called “Mariner 1”, was launched in 1962 with the goal of flying by the planet Venus. The spacecraft was robotic, so there were no people onboard. Because of this, its navigation was controlled by software. Unfortunately, the person in charge of writing the software forgot one character – a hyphen. This missing hyphen caused the software to malfunction. The spacecraft exploded after takeoff, costing NASA $80 million!
Maybe death is just another disease that doctors will one day cure. That was the dream of Professor Robert Ettinger, who is the godfather of cryonics. First dreamed up by Ettinger in the 1960s, cryonics is the freezing of bodies in the hopes of one day being able to bring them back to life in the future. Of course, there is no guarantee that this will ever happen, but the dream is that medical science will advance to the point where this will be possible. Perhaps the idea is not so far-fetched considering that scientists have already revived a small microscopic animal in Siberia after being frozen for 24,000 years.
When Oscar the cat visits with a patient, everyone knows that death is near. Oscar was adopted as a kitten by the Steere House Nursing Center in Providence, Rhode Island. He has the mysterious ability to predict death among the patients.
While it is hard to say what she truly felt, Tahlequah the killer whale appeared heartbroken when her calf died soon after being born. As any mother would, she took it hard, and could not let go. Tahlequah carried her child’s body for 1,000 miles over 17 days before finally letting her go.
Carsie Blanton sings about the futility of worrying about reputations and trying to meet expectations when we’re all on a one way trip to the grave. Life is short, and we should make the most of it. She penned these lyrics while still in her twenties, and for someone so young, she understands a lot about the psychology of regret.
While all phobias are irrational fears, some are stranger than fiction. Most of us are afraid of dying, but people with Apeirophobia are cut from a different cloth. They are afraid of living forever. When Bobby Azarian was four years old, his grandfather died from cancer. Bobby was told the old man had gone to a happy place where he would enjoy eternal life with his loved ones.