After hunting down story after story of food-related attacks, we at TheCooksDen have a few pieces of advice for our readers:
Beware the banana gone bad. Keep your eyes peeled for the diabolical durian. And, above all, learn to fear the contemptible carrot.
For it is these, the humble, seemingly innocent foods that can rise up and strike against their human oppressors. Often without warning, and sometimes in a deadly manner.
And so, without further ado, we present some of the most viscious attacks of Foodstuffs Against Humanity.
Enjoy and, as always, eat safely.
Never bring a banana to a gunfight
Maryland is a state that has many fine things going for it. Their median income is the highest in the country at just over $70,000, according to US Census data. The unemployment is about 2.5% lower than the national average and the cherry on top is that their criminals are total dunces.
In 2008, a man walked into a Monrovia 7-11 and demanded money from the cashier. The assailant brandished no weapon and the cashier outright refused. At that point the doomed, albeit resourceful, robber grabbed the nearest item he could find with which to attack the cashier. This happened to be a banana. The criminal began what he must have thought would be a rather sound beating. The incredulous cashier, not about to get taken by some banana-wielding bandit, pulled out a knife. Summoning all his intelligence, the robber realized he was in a losing battle and bolted.
No word on whether the banana was taken in as evidence or sold and eaten as a healthy and delicious snack.
He put it where?!
According to that bastion of integrity, The Sun, a 62 year old Hong Kong man tried to commit suicide by plunging a cucumber into his uh... posterior, only to be discovered by his daughter hours later in a pool of blood. He was shipped off to a local hospital where he had the vegetable removed.
The old man claimed later that he was attempting to perform hara-kiri also known as seppuku or "ritual disembowelment"; a kind of suicide first performed by the samurai in feudal Japan. The process generally doesn't employ the use of fresh and delicious greens, but usually (in fact always until now) a tanto blade or knife inserted in the belly.
The obvious question that comes to mind is could Mr. Wei not have found a knife anywhere in his home, or even something remotely sharper than a cucumber? Or was he ashamed of his true intention? Perhaps doctors told him he needed more fiber to aide in his bowel movements and didn't think he'd opt for a direct application. Whatever the case, at least Mr. Wei survived with little more than hurt pride. Which is more than can be said for that poor cucumber.
Orange jumpsuit not required
People do some pretty outlandish things when they're drunk and about to be incarcerated, but in Kentucky they take it to a new level.
In early March of this year, Toni Tramel was jailed for public intoxication in Owensboro, Kentucky. After processing, she was escorted into a room with a female jailer and told to change into that oh-so-stylish orange jumpsuit donned by many of our nation's best.
She apparently didn't care much for wearing her uniform and instead, whilst removing her bra, squirted the accompanying officer in the face with a fair amount of breast milk.
In response, the detention center labeled the liquid offense as a "bio-hazard" and charged the lady with third degree assault. To date she's on $10,000 bail and awaiting trial.
For law enforcement in Kentucky, it seems that a little spilled milk IS something to weep over.
Good place for a stakeout
Here's the most inspiring food-attack-related story we've heard all year. And it answers that age old question "What happens when you cross a blind man, his wife, and a spiky stinky fruit?"
The Sin Chew Daily news reported on a Chinese couple who went into their durian orchard late at night on June 8th, 2007, because they had suspected thieves were taking the stinky fruit. The farmer, Cheah Ah Khoon, who happens to be blind, asked his wife to guide him through the orchard to a spot that would give them a good vantage point for catching thieves.
As the night wore on a loud noise signaled the falling of a durian fruit from very high up. Cheah and his wife weren't able to move in time and the fruit hit the man directly on his head. The durian continued its flight by ricocheting off his cranium with enough force to strike his wife in her head, rendering her unconscious. The blind man, battered by the initial contact, was able to muster enough strength to hoist his wife upon his back and slowly feel his way through the orchard to his home. Cheah's wife was later sent to an area hospital where doctors said she sustained no serious injuries.
Somebody please give that man a Purple Heart. Or at least a Durian-colored one.
Beware the tiny tree
Be mindful of where you sow your seeds. According to BostonHerald.com, Ron Sveden of Brewster, MA was released from a hospital earlier this year after he had symptoms of: listlessness, pneumonia and eventually a collapsed lung.
The news wouldn't be that interesting if it weren't for the way he found himself in the hospital. Apparently he'd been munching on greens and a seed got stuck in his throat and began to sprout. He reported that he was constantly coughing and felt that he had no ambition to do anything. The doctors examined his windpipe first and thought he had a tumor of some kind. When they got inside, though, they found a miniature, growing, bean plant. The beanstalk was removed safely and the patient recovered fully.
His family is happy for his safety and have gifted him cans of peas and seed packets as a tongue-in-cheek joke. Let's hope he's learned his lesson and doesn't snack on his present.
Maybe it was overcooked?
Of all the many fine foods brought to us from the Old Country, it appears that lasagna is the best with which to brain your husband.
Amanda Trott of Atlantic City was arrested in the summer of 2008 after launching a frozen lasagna at her husband during an argument, striking him on the top of his head.
Had the pasta dish been fresh, the family Trott surely would have had a collective laugh, forgot about their worries and slurped processed tomato puree from dad's beard. Unfortunately for the Trott's, the lasagna was straight from the grocery store's frozen foods section and gave daddy a nasty welt and mommy a trip to the pokey.
The kids went to stay with neighbors where, we can only hope, they enjoyed only fresh and soft foods.
Joining the ranks of John F. Shrank and John Hinkley Jr., a seemingly-innocent pretzel failed in an attempt at trying to assassinate a sitting President of the United States.
In 2002, President George W. Bush was relaxing, as he was often prone to do, taking in an NFL playoff game when a pretzel lodged itself deep in his throat. Engaging in a life or death struggle, George eventually succumbed to the pretzel and passed out, hitting his cheek and lip on a coffee table as he fell to the floor.
Unfortunately for the just-short-of-competent leader, there was no one else in the room to lend assistance. It seemed an inglorious end for the man who coined the term "they misunderestimated me." But, when all seemed lost, the pretzel miraculously worked its way free and Bush recovered fully.
The President went on to prematurely declare "mission accomplished" in Iraq and botch relief efforts surrounding Hurricane Katrina. No word on what happened to the pretzel.
Better than a sharp stick (Photo: Ed Yourdon)
In July of 2006 the AP reported that Roderick Vecsey, a forty-six year old Connecticut man, overwhelmed by rage, launched a carrot at his wife Pamela and struck her in the eye, blinding her.
Pamela was rushed quickly to the hospital where doctors worked tirelessly to restore her sight. But they were unsuccessful; the carrot had done its work.
Roderick (henceforth known as "the launcher") was taken to jail and charged with second-degree assault and disorderly conduct. The judge might have been a little bit more lenient had he offered his battered wife some ranch dressing to bury the hatchet, but the heartless scamp did no such thing.
Save the Guinness, leave the Schlitz!
Talk about an enviable way to go. In 1814, London brewery keg burst. That might not have been such a big deal, except that the keg contained over 100,000 gallons of beer. The resulting violent explosion caused a domino effect, knocking apart other kegs and flooding the streets of London with an estimated half million gallons of beer.
Oh the humanity! Houses were destroyed and a nearby pub's wall was caved in. All in all about 8 people died from drowning that day. A ninth was reported to have died a day later from alcohol poisoning.
But the opportunity-seeking people of early nineteenth century London would not sit idly by and cry over spilled milk, uh beer. They began filling up every pail they could get their hands on from the seemingly endless river of beer.
To help pay for all the damages the flood had caused, locals displayed a few of the eight corpses at which people could look for a nominal fee. And like any bright idea fueled by alcohol, they probably felt pretty bad about that one the morning after.
Pick Your Poison
Ivanka Perko, a Slovenian immigrant to Australia, died in a way that, according to her friends, suited her noteworthy life. A banana did her in.
Perko was 73 years old and had an unfortunate medical condition that made her skin thin and easily damaged. One evening while opening a banana she lost her grip and the banana slid down her leg leaving a nasty gash. She was taken to the hospital but did not survive.
Perko, as a girl, lived in a country under Nazi occupation who fled under the cover of darkness carrying not much more than sack of black pepper used to distract police dogs. The Saturday Daily Telegraph reported that she was aware of the irony, stating whimsically on her deathbed "I can't believe that after all this time it was a bloody banana that killed me."
It wasn't me — I swear!
Imagine this — You're a farmer and you've just put in a long 8-10 hour day. Your muscles are wearied from daily strain and the only two things you can think about as you climb into bed are your warm sheets and the next day's work.
Now imagine that you're being violently awoken by a pants-less man vigorously rubbing you down with spices and beating you with an eight-inch sausage (that's sausage in the literal sense). Well, according to Sacramento's KRCA, that's exactly what happened to two Fresno farmers.
After the farmer awoke, spicy sausage wielder Antonio Vasquez fled the scene, but was later discovered by Fresno police in a nearby field with money stolen from the house. The aggressor was taken to jail for assault but the sausage was unable to be used as evidence as it was discarded by the fleeing man and eaten by a dog. The dog was not questioned.
Deadly weapon(Photo: Grongar)
Kids in Sussex will (and do) find anything with which to pummel each other. A 15-year-old boy at a Sussex secondary school was taken into police custody in early 2008 after he attacked another boy with a French baguette.
The police questioned the boy and later cautioned him with common assault. I'm not sure what the other options were. Offering bread with no wine?
Apparently there seems to be a pretty serious weapon problem in Sussex schools, but that would have to be one piece of stale French bread to cause any real damage. I guess it's true what the NRA says: if you take away our guns, the criminals (and teenagers) will still find a way.
At least it's not oil
For some Bostonians, the Great Molasses Flood was a "sweet" death.
In 1919, The Purity Distilling Company was busy stockpiling enormous quantities of molasses. Rumor has it this was in inticipation of Prohibition — molasses is a key ingredient in rum. Regardless of their reasons for storing such an enormous load of goo in the highly-populated North End, disaster struck.
On a relatively balmy day in January, a gigantic tank holding over 2 million gallons of molasses, exploded into the streets.
The molasses, moving at 35 mph, destroyed almost everything in its path. The brown, sticky waves were so tall and so tenacious that some buildings were lifted off their foundations. A nearby train was derailed. The death toll reached 21 people with 150 injured.
Boston locals say you could still smell the molasses well into the 1980's.
The Purity Distilling Company was held liable and forced to pay damages. Funny, it seems we're still having a lot of problems with companies spilling millions of gallons of black goo due their ineptitude.