This Day in Death

6.3.16: Muhammad Ali – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 3:40 pm June 6, 2016

SvA_fullAli and Superman, seen here settling a dispute over the most tasteful way to publicly wear too-short man trunks. I’m giving it to Ali on a technicality, since Supes is kinda cheating by wearing a unitard underneath. Show us them supergams or go back to Krypton, Kal-El!

As I’ve long since gotten sick of telling you people, I only do sports posts on this here laffy laff site when someone of great notability has passed. You see, most sports are simply too violent for me. I’m a humanitarian, and I can’t bring myself to witness people putting themselves through that kind of punishment for such trivial rewards as fame and fortune. Now watching street people fight each other for half of my Filet-O-Fish, well, that’s a beautiful display of survival skills. Maybe I’m just more interested in what really matters in this world.

Regardless of why your lapsed morals caused you to develop such an unquenchable bloodlust, you’ve no doubt marveled at the almost unbearably graphic facepunchery of storied boxman and civil rights activist Muhammad Ali. Unfortunately, Ali passed away over the weekend due to a respiratory illness brought on by Parkinson’s Disease. While the odds of him triumphantly punching his way out of the grave and challenging Death to a rematch are slim, I advise keeping an eye on it for a few days anyway, as that would be wicked metal.

Crowned “Sportsman of the Century” by Sports Illustrated and “Sports Personality of the Century” by the BBC, Ali was noted for his pre- and post-fight talk and bold fight predictions just as much as his boxing skills inside the ring.

But he was also a civil rights campaigner and poet who transcended the bounds of sport, race and nationality.

Asked how he would like to be remembered, he once said: “As a man who never sold out his people. But if that’s too much, then just a good boxer.

“I won’t even mind if you don’t mention how pretty I was.”

In his later years, Ali’s struggle with Parkinson’s stripped him of both his mobility and his characteristic speech. It’s like he made some bizarre Faustian deal where he got to be great at two things and then had those two things taken away from him. You know, I don’t get why the devil feels like he has to pull that sneaky shit every time. You’re already getting an eternal soul, why add insult to injury with the whole “ironic loophole” thing? Let some poor schmuck enjoy 70 or so years of having the girthiest dong without any weird unforeseen complications, and then you get to hold complete dominion over him for literally all of the remaining time in existence. It’s already a pretty lopsided deal, and you’re trying to sweeten the pot? Pettiness does not look good on you, Prince of Darkness.

Source: BBC

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2.4.16: Earth, Wind & Fire Co-Creator Maurice White – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 1:54 am February 10, 2016

 MAURICE_WHITEGotta hand it to the guy: They told him a suit made out of pure ivory wouldn’t be comfortable, but he wouldn’t budge. Sometimes a man just has to feel like he’s encased inside a giant mastodon tusk.


Maurice White, co-founder of legendary funky, souly-type band Earth, Wind & Fire, has died after a protracted battle with Parkinson’s disease. Also dead: usage of the Oxford comma in band names. As far as I’m concerned it doesn’t get any more soulful than proper grammar, and I, a white guy who was born in the 80s, would know a few things about soul.

The springy, elastic soul-pop of “Shining Star,” which White co-wrote, earned them their first Number One, and paved the way for hits like the joyful “Sing a Song,” the percussive and brassy “September,” their swinging cover of the Beatles’ “Got to Get You Into My Life” and the robotic disco of “Let’s Groove.” Rolling Stone included the group’s sweetly smooth 1975 single, “That’s the Way of the World,” on its list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

It seems to me that after White’s death, coupled with the very recent deaths of musicians Glenn Frey, Jimmy Bain, David Bowie, Dan Hicks, Paul Kantner, and others, it’s officially time to bury (tee hee! Death pun!) the “they always die in 3s” hogwash you people won’t stop clogging up my social media with.

All of those deaths have occurred in just the first five or so weeks of the year. And those are just the musicians you, Joe and Jane Jockstrap of Mooseknuckle, Indiana, have heard about. It doesn’t include musicians who may be extraordinarily famous in genres or parts of the world you don’t think about, or exceptionally-talented yet largely unknown musicians, or the huge contingent of notable non-musician deaths. Do you really think the giant space lizard that decides who lives and dies is catering its decisions to what you specifically know about? Nothing revolves around you, and I’m here to add some Galileo-level perspective to your myopic diet of selfie soufflés and… I don’t know, hashtag hashbrowns, maybe. I’ll come back to this part some other time.

What you’re really experiencing is a phenomenon known as apophenia. Simply put, your brain is forcing you to see nonexistent patterns, even if it requires tossing out evidence that disagrees with said patterns, because accepting the reality that shit just kinda happens without any kind of grand scheme is too existentially terrifying for your brain to process. The human brain: Just pretty much doing whatever for five million years.

So what’s the harm in holding up bullshit statistics if they make you feel more comfortable about the inevitable black sprawl of total inconsequence that is your death? Well, for starters that comfort is dishonest, and therefore evasive. You haven’t made peace with your mortality, and are actually actively denying it by denying how arbitrary death is. Secondly, since notable people die literally every day, deciding which three “count” is a shitty and judgemental thing to do. That kind of distinction should only be left to qualified and astonishingly square-jawed deathbloggers ahem hem.

And that’s how one little change in your life can make you a better, less cynical person. Next time I’ll explain how you can help enforce local parking ordinances by stealing hubcaps from parked ambulances. Hey, that spot is metered, big shot!


Source: Rolling Stone

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9.7.12: Dorothy McGuire of the McGuire Sisters – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 7:39 pm September 12, 2012

And people said that sewing three women together and calling it a vocal act would never work. It’s a human centipede… of talent!


Dorothy McGuire of the McGuire Sisters, seen above in what I have to assume was a performance from Macbeth (that’s right, it’s an intelligent reference, crack a book sometime), is dead today from Parkinson’s disease and dementia. So I’m once again forced to learn about someone I’ve never heard of before. Which is hard for me, because I have the cognitive retention of a guinea pig. The doctors say it’s a medical marvel, “but not in the good kind of way.”

The McGuire Sisters were as well known for their matching outfits and hairdos as for their vocal harmonies, which helped them earn six gold records between 1952-68.

And they even talk in unison! At all times! It’s not creepy at all!

Source: Rolling Stone

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