This Day in Death

8.30.12: DEATH HOAX ROUND-UP! Bill Cosby, Rhianna, Eddie Murphy and Bill Nye – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 6:19 pm August 30, 2012

Oh hey there, Wranglin’ Cowboy Monkey! It seems like only yesterday that I clumsily Photoshopped you into existence. Sorry about that. This must be how God felt after making the sea lamprey. Go away, sea lamprey. We don’t want what you’re selling.


There’s nothing wrong with a good hoax. From “War of the Worlds” to the Cottingley Fairies to the guy who keeps telling me that this is HIS apartment and that he’s totally gonna call the cops if I keep breaking in, hoaxes trigger our brains’ H-zone receptors and help in the production of vital amino acids, according to a sentence in this paragraph.

But the emphasis there is “good” hoax. The idea of simply posting that a celebrity has died and then waiting to be effortlessly debunked in the information age is positively Blues Cluesian in its shortsightedness. What’s the goal there, aside from fucking up the whole “living obituary” system I’ve got going here?

That’s why it’s all the more baffling to me that there’s been a recent rash of dead celebrity hoaxes (or hoaxi, if you’re okay with just making words right the fuck up). And so, as the internet’s leading postmortem custodian, allow me to take a minute to throw down some sawdust and mop up the vomit Twitter and Facebook have unceremoniously spewed upon my sacred hallways.

Bill Cosby – Okay, I think this one was just a preemptive effort. Last I checked, Cosby is about a hundred thousand years old and has slowly transformed his body into a round, blob-like consistency, which I can’t imagine is the best way to keep your vital signs up. Unless replacing Cosby’s cellular structure with Jell-O is all part of some exciting new viral marketing campaign from the psychopaths at Kraft, it’s not hard to believe he’d be gone.  But no, he’s still around, wearing awesome sweaters and only saying shit in public if it requires him giving ≤ 0 fucks.

UPDATE: Or it was just some dong.)

Rhianna – I dunno, man. Maybe it has something to do with just being awful in general. Or maybe it was just retaliation after we as a society developed the collective Pavlovian response of laughter every time that clip from “Battleship” is on tv and Rhianna tries to look hardcore while saying “boom” as if it’s this generation’s “I’ll be back.”

Eddie Murphy – This one was supposedly the result of a snowboarding accident. I can only assume it wasn’t meant to be taken seriously to begin with because I’m pretty sure no black person has ever gone skiing. Also, why do white people all talk funny? Ha! I’m saying what we’re all thinking!

Bill Nye – This was probably blowback for Nye posting a video begging parents who believe in creationism not to force it onto their kids. Urhm… that, uh… that doesn’t tend to go over too well with the folks you’re directing it at, Nye. Valiant effort, but maybe next time try to aim a little lower. Maybe just see if you can get them to take off those Truck Nutz first.

Source: USA Today.  Also, Facebook and Twitter and Gossip Cop and the LA Times and practically every other goddamn site on the internet. See, this is why I mainly stick to pornography and flash games based on 80s sitcoms.

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6.19.12: Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak – HANGING ON! OR MAYBE DEAD!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 1:38 am June 21, 2012

He was Egypt’s most Tommy Lee Jonesian president.

Why hello there, “Hanging On” tag. We haven’t seen you around here in a while. So, what, you think you’re better than me, now? Because you’re not. You’re not better than me.

Egyptian news reports late Tuesday that said [former president Hosni] Mubarak was “clinically dead” sent fireworks into the night and cheers among the banners blowing in Cairo’s Tahrir Square. But like so much else in Egypt, things were not as they first appeared. Officials hurried out their own statement: Mubarak, sentenced to life in prison this month for complicity in the murder of hundreds of protesters in the uprising that toppled him last year, was actually in critical condition and on life support.

“But what does any of this have to do with fluffy ducklings?” exclaimed the exasperated husk of what once was CNN. “Is there any way we can make this story 15% more xtreme?”

Anyway, the accusations levied against Mubarak included the aforementioned complicity, as well as economic fraud, shutting down internet and telephone service, and once trying to block out the sun with a giant mechanical disc. That last thing may have actually been Mr. Burns, but I already closed the Mubarak tab so I’m just winging it now.

Source: The LA Times

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4.15.12: Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 8:44 am April 16, 2012

Robin is the cool-looking one.


According to, uh, Catholic Online (because it was the first search result and research is hard), Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees has fallen into a coma after a bout of pneumonia and is reportedly near death. So get ready to delete those two Whitney Houston songs you frantically downloaded in February and replace them with “To Love Somebody” and “I Started a Joke.” Pretending to give a shit must be exhausting.

The development comes as little surprise: Gibb has been in failing health for the past few years, including suffering from a twisted bowel, which is behind only Pink Sock Disease on my list of shamefully humorous yet bizarre illnesses that I had previously assumed were just made up to justify the continued production of ER. I really need to stop making so many lists.

Alright, Block Quote: Give me something to fill out this post so I don’t have to resort to the weak “Stayin’ Alive” joke everyone on Facebook is gonna be patting themselves on the back for making next week.

News of Gibb’s condition elicited a flood of support on social network sites and in the music community.

Rocker Peter Frampton tweeted “My positive thoughts go out to Robin Gibb and all of the Gibb family. I am wishing you the best and hope for a quick recovery. Much love 2 U.”

“Much love 2 U?” Jesus, Frampton, is Prince writing your tweets for you? It’s nice to see that you treat a fellow musician’s imminent death with the same solemn dignity that a fourteen-year-old girl injects into a one-handed text message. Make a damn effort and type that shit out. You’re already on thin ice for Blues Brothers 2000. If movies could feel shame that thing would’ve committed seppuku on opening night.


Source: Catholic Online

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3.29.12: Legally Dead Old Lady – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 4:33 am April 4, 2012

Did you know that Carl von Linné, a Swede, is responsible for the extensive classification system of species and families that we still use for all plants and animals? There. Now you learned something and don’t have to feel bad about spending the rest of your workday reading Smurfs slash fiction.


An elderly woman in Sweden has received a letter from a tax agency that declared her deceased. When reached for comment the woman said the experience was almost as unpleasant as paying her taxes. HA HA! LENO’D! But for real, she didn’t say that.

The mistake has plagued her life – meaning that she is officially recorded as “dead” at any establishment with a record of her details.

When the 87-year-old recently needed to get medicine from the chemist, for example, she was denied her prescription as the chemist’s records stated that she was a “non-existing person”.

“She saw that I was standing there and that I had my proof of identity with me, so after a while I was allowed to get my medicine anyway. But it dragged out a good while,” the woman said.

She has also been forced to contact the social insurance agency and her bank to make sure her pension keeps coming in.

GodDAMMIT, lady. You’re OFF the grid! Why are you fighting this? Sure, you can’t get your old lady pills, but you know what you *can* do when everyone thinks you’re dead? Any fucking thing you want. Anything! Untreated osteoporosis is a small price to pay when you can rob a bank or steal a police cruiser or burn down a museum. They have no way of finding you! The whole scam’s been working out gangbusters for Tupac! For fuck’s sake, it’s like elderly white women haven’t learned anything from 90s rap. We’re gonna watch this “Life Goes On” video one more time, but I’m getting really sick of screening this at nursing homes. You people don’t appreciate a fucking thing.

Source: The Local

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3.18.12: Gallagher – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 3:47 am March 22, 2012

Prop comedy *and* a trash ‘stache? He must use that sledgehammer to beat back the constant waves of pussy.

American’s favorite dated, food-themed prop comic (step it up, Carrot Top!) Gallagher is recovering from a heart attack and medically induced coma. In solidarity, please fly your finest transparent plastic tarp at half-mast tomorrow.

Hey Block Quote! Why do you hot dogs come in packages of 8 while hot dog buns come in packages of 10? That’s just wacky!

The funnyman, 65, was taken out of a medically induced coma Sunday morning, and began moving and breathing on his own shortly afterward, according to E! News.

The comedian was put under after suffering a heart attack before taking the stage at a bar last Wednesday, marking his second heart attack in the span of a year.

According to early reports, the comedian complained of chest pains before his show at the Hat Tricks club in Leweisville, and was rushed to a nearby Texas hospital.

The medically induced coma was considered a precautionary step.

It’s hard to have a lot of sympathy for Gallagher’s career, what with the dated and arguably bigoted material, the insane boasts about creating the mosh pit and being a touring college lecturer, and the half-assed attempt to frame being stronger than fruit as social commentary. But Gallagher pulling through serves a very important purpose; Every redneck county fair that he plays draws a crowd away from Jeff Dunham and his cavalcade of racist puppet mouthpieces. A dead terrorist skeleton? Oh Dunham! Are there any toes you won’t step on?

Source: NY Daily News

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02.28.12: Eldery Chinese Woman Who Was Presumed Dead – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 9:48 pm February 28, 2012

She’s the Chinese David Blaine, only minus the sloping caveman brow and the hard-to-place ethnicity.


A 95-year-old Chinese woman has returned from the dead, clawing her way out of her coffin six days after passing, in order to make something to eat. Either that or she wasn’t actually dead. I’m really not sure, since I only skimmed this article.  I’ve just got a lot on my plate right now, you know?

Because Mrs Xiufeng [the victim] lived alone, Mr Qingwang [Xiufeng’s neighbor] and his son made preparations for her funeral, which included keeping the coffin in the house for several days for friends and relatives to pay their last respects.

The ‘dead’ woman was laid in her coffin on February 19, two days after she was discovered.

However, Mr Qingwang chose not to nail the coffin shut ahead of the planned burial on February 24.

The day before the funeral, Mr Qingwang arrived at his neighbour’s house to find the coffin empty and the corpse gone.

After searching for the missing body, the villagers were stunned to find Mrs Xiufeng sitting on a stool in her kitchen cooking.

Well, that’s a heartwarming story. Is there a way we can put a super depressing twist on the end of this?

But, despite ‘cheating’ death, the same local tradition has left Mrs Xiufeng with nothing as, according to tradition, after a person dies, all their belongings must be burnt.

God, that sounds like the shittiest Adam Sandler movie since Little Nicky. Or Eight Crazy Nights. Or Click. Or Grown-Ups. Or Jack and Jill. Dammit, Sandler! Just give us Billy Madison 2! Why won’t you let us laugh?!

A county hospital reportedly believes Mrs Xiufeng suffered an artificial death, during which the person has no breath, but the body remains warm.

I gotta say, that sits a little funny with me. “Artificial death” sounds a hell of a lot like “We have no goddamn idea what happened but we’re doctors so who’s going to question it if we just make some shit up?” I think the big takeaway here is that Chinese doctors are awful. I would sooner get an appendectomy from a chimpanzee than let a Chinese doctor so much as check my pupils. At least the chimpanzee might wear a funny hat or an over-sized white coat with a stethoscope hanging over the neck, and that would go a long way with me. “Ha ha!” I’d say. “Laughter really is the best medicine! You’re alright, Doctor Bananas!”


Source: Mirror

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02.22.12: Daniel Von Bargen (George Castanza’s Boss) – HANGING ON!

Filed under: Hanging On —James @ 10:45 pm February 22, 2012

Hipster Jason Alexandar was photobombing before you even knew that was a thing.


Actor Daniel Von Bargen, best known as Seinfeld’s Mr. Kruger and Chief Grady in Super Troopers, is currently in critical condition after an unsuccessful suicide attempt, TMZ reports. Apparently Von Bargen, distraught over the prospect of having his toes amputated as a result of his diabetes, shot himself in the temple. Somehow this not only failed to kill him but also left him coherent enough to phone police, suggesting he’s either an atrocious marksman or he has a surprisingly tiny head. Ugh. Let the record show that I don’t feel good about any of what I just typed.

TMZ also has audio of his 911 call if you’re the kind of sick weirdo who’s interested in that kind of thing, because I’m not embedding it here. Really, I have Google Reader ceaselessly trawling the internet for any mention of the word “dead” and even I think that shit’s too morbid to listen to. But, you know, whatever gets you through the day, man.

I hope Von Bargen pulls through, but considering he was trying to kill himself surviving sorta doesn’t entirely address the root of the problem here. Hmm. Who would’ve figured this blog would have some posts that end on a dour note? Hindsight’s 20/20, I guess.

Source: TMZ

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