Dire News


“Dick” Shot

by on Feb.15, 2015, under Games, Health, Kids, Recreation, Toys, Weapons

Ex Vice-President Dick "Dick" Cheney started the trend. dickcheney_shotgun While on a hunting trip, he shot 78 year old Harry Whittington, a Bush-Cheney campaign donor from Austin, Texas. #shootafriendintheface The injuries from birdshot are visible on his face as Harry Whittington, the man accidentally shot a.. Whittington had a heart attack after a piece of buckshot migrated to a heart muscle, but most of the other wounds were superficial. A grateful Whittington later appeared on television to apologize for the incident.

Medical drawing of injuries to Harry Whittington

"My family and I are deeply sorry for all that Vice President Cheney and his family have had to go through this week," Whittington said. But it was too late to prevent the new fad of shooting a friend in the face. #shootafriendintheface Six year old Yang Yang was playing with his cousin in Neijiang, in southwest China's Sichuan Province, when thy came across a gun. Yang's cousin, also six years old, picked it up and shot him in the face. yangyang3 The boys returned to their house about ten minutes later, according to their grandmother, who said, “They were crying, and Yang Yang's face had a huge hole, bleeding profusely.” yangyang2 Doctors removed all 325 pellets from the blast. yangyang1 Yang's father said that both boys were terrified at what had happened. Like Whittington, Yang is expected to survive, though there will be substantial scarring. shotgun2 But he's lucky. Shotgun wounds to the face can be much more serious. shotgun_forensic And apologizing to Dick Cheney won't make it any better.
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Everything Is Awesome

by on Nov.01, 2014, under Art, Family, Kids, Parenting, Recreation, Toys

We showed some interesting costumes in What We Pretend To Be, and while they're nothing new, we saw a variety of Lego-themed costumes. lego-block01The basic Lego block and the generic Lego man used to be the mainstays of the Lego costume set. lego-costume02 But then Lego started licensing movies and games. You can even go to a Lego store and customize a Lego figure to look like you. lego-costume04 Now there are superheroes, like the members of the Justice League lego-costume05 Famous pop stars like The Village People lego-costume06 Whoever these guys are (we were afraid to ask) lego-costume07 Even if its a Lego zombie. lego-costume08 Some costumes take less effort than others. boba Caillen Sheppard loves Legos. He has an extensive collection including a large number of Star Wars pieces. The seven year old from Ontario wanted to be Lego Boba Fett, and his father, Keith Sheppard, 41, tackled the job with enthusiasm. lego-boba01 Much of the suit, which took about 100 hours to build, was made from Sintra, a rigid, lightweight PVC. Insulation foam board was used to make the dome shape of the helmet, and the rocket tips and exhausts were constructed from Plastazote, a closed cell foam. The graphics were cut from adhesive vinyl, applied over the paint, and then clear coated for durability. lego-boba05   The attention to detail, compared to the original Lego creation, is amazing. And like the Lego creation, the antenna and backpack are removable. lego-boba03 It's no surprise that the costume took first place at the Burlington Toycon, as Keith Sheppard is a graphics designer, a long-time star wars fan, and a great father. lego-boba04
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Hard Landing

by on Jul.20, 2014, under Games, Health, Recreation, Toys

Parents want to encourage physical activity, and the backyard trampoline is a great way for the kids to get some exercise and tire themselves out. elms-trampoline No matter what you tell them, they're not going to jump one at a time. They are not going to stay in the middle. They won't be jumping straight up and down. That's what a bed is for. Trampolines proclaim their innocence with their stretchy bouncy surfaces, but beneath the vivacious exterior they are vicious predators. tramp_drew Drew suffered three stitches and some swelling on his 12th birthday after a trampoline accident. tramp_stothard Daniel Stothard lost an eye when a spring broke on his trampoline and flew into his face. The importer of the trampoline reports that it's not a common accident. "We have sold 250,000 trampolines with 15 million springs and to our knowledge, nothing of a similar nature has ever happened before.” tramp_kollin02Kollin Galland at 14 was an accomplished athlete. He had mastered the double back flip on the diving board and trampoline, and was ready to try again. tramp_kollin01 This time he landed on his head, damaging some vertebrae and paralyzing him. tramp_kollin03Fortunately, most trampoline accidents are minor, at worst involving broken bones. tramp_bone01 We don't know how many trampoline accidents are preventable, but here are some statistics that may reflect on the problem.
  • 98% of all trampoline accidents that cause serious injury happen within 5 miles of home. Try using a trampoline located further away.
  • 99.7% of all trampoline injuries are caused on the way down. Avoid injury by staying in the air as much as possible.
  • Try to land on your feet -- both at the same time, and pointed in the same direction preferably.
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The Drive To Succeed

by on Jul.07, 2014, under Animals, Technology, Toys

Recent technology advances make it look like the self-driving car is just on the horizon. selfdrive01 It's not a new idea. There have been some early attempts, but they were quirky and not ready for the general public. herbie Some were unpredictable. selfdrive05 Others were just too complex and unaffordable. selfdrive02 But with industry giant Google developing a self-driving car that's already in the testing stages, we might actually see something that the average person can afford. selfdrive03 While it looks promising, we don't think potential competitors should give up yet. Volvo is one of the leaders in assisted driving vehicles. selfdrive12 To demonstrate the lightweight steering on its latest generation of trucks, Volvo modified the steering column on a Volvo FMX truck and engaged the assistance of mechanization expert Charlie. selfdrive11 Charlie, a hamster, controls the steering. selfdrive09 While the intelligence is built in, programming is performed by a technician, using the "carrot and stick" method. Actually he uses carrot sticks. selfdrive08 Charlie, from Oxfordshire, England, required a few weeks of training to master the new Volvo Dynamic Steering. selfdrive07 Steering around tight bends on a quarry road in northern Spain, Charlie is one more step in removing the human component in driving. selfdrive10
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Soccer Scar

by on Oct.08, 2013, under Games, Health, Kids, Toys

Kavan Ryan is the goalkeeper for the Codland Colts, a youth soccer team in in Redditch, Worcestershire, UK. kavan_ryan1 He was playing a match against Alvechurch Youth on Aug 14 when he unexpectedly collapsed when an opposing player when in for a plunge and struck his leg with his soccer shoe. blades-legend-sleek-soccer-bootBut instead of the more common studs, the player was wearing newer blade soccer shoes. Coldland Colts executive Andy Taylor thinks blades should be banned from kid's soccer. "I regard bladed boots should be criminialized from kids’ football. Kids wear them on paths and sand and the blades become sharp, roughly similar to a weapon." kav2 Kavan's leg was sliced open and bleeding profusely. His father Rob Copestake,  said: " I’ve never seen anything similar to that, and I’ve played a lot of football. My large apprehension was that it had strike a principal blood vessel and Kavan could’ve bled to death...A lot of people felt physically sick." It took ten stitches to close the wound. kav4 The referee mentioned the plunge into was a outcome of "youthful over-enthusiasm." A spokesman for Alvechurch described the damage as "terrible" but stressed there was no malevolence intended. He said, "I regard people reacted to the damage – and, yes, it was really bad. But it was not the outcome of aroused play." But schoolboy Kavan yesterday shrugged off the incident, which happened just 20 minutes into his debut for the club.
He said, "I'm OK really, I just can't wait to get back out on the pitch again. It's just one of those things really. I ran out to smother the ball and he came running through, didn't even slide, he just stamped on me. I got up and started hopping around and pulled my shorts up to just see my skin hanging off."
"That's when I started screaming." kav3 Although the tackle was regarded as accidental rather than malicious, a spokesperson for West Mercia Police said: "We can declare we are investigating an accusation of assault in connection to this incident." No charges have been filed at this time. Kavan's father remarked, "We are unaware when Kavan will fool around once again – he’s hobbling at the moment. When it happened, he mentioned he longed for to stop work football. But it’s a one-off injury, something similar to that will never come about to him again. We do know he will be scarred for life."  
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Kids Under Control

by on Aug.28, 2013, under Consumer, Family, Kids, Parenting, Toys

Since we originally wrote about a new system for restraining kids, there have been some delightful new developments in kid immobilization technology. securechild While the design worked well for the purpose, some kids found it to be a bit scary. So we're happy to see that market forces have responded with child-friendly innovations. control_toys2 Introducing Control Toys, which appeal to kids while providing relief to tired parents. control_toys1 For mealtime relief, we have the Baby Trap Chair. No more fussing or fidgeting at dinner. baby_trap_chair And what do you do between meals? Let 'em snack right in their own crib. crib_dribbler If your kid is too old for a crib, there's a Control Toy solution for toddlers too. funny_cage If you want to restrict your kid's range, but not give him an early taste of the juvenile justice system, there's a free range option. happy_heavy_ball Finally, for the ultimate in parental relief while letting your kids make a fashion statement, try this new jacket. lovely_straight_hacket It's a unisex product and is fashionable for both boys and girls. lovely_straight_unisex Next time you need to restrain the kids, make it fun with Control Toys.
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The End of the Tunnel

by on Aug.20, 2013, under Health, Recreation, Technology, Toys

We know that when people get bored, they find ways to occupy themselves. If you have kids, you can be fairly certain that at some point they are likely to stick something up their nose that doesn't belong there.


It is normal for a child to explore his body, according to MedlinePlus. Children routinely place food, seeds, erasers, crayons, beads, and legos into their ears and noses. nose-lego-2 It's part of childhood, and most parents have admonished their kids to keep their fingers and other objects out of their noses. nose-finger Kids know that you can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, and you can even pick your friend's nose. dognose_finger By the time they're adults, they've grown tired of seeing what fits up the nose and start exploring other areas... like seeing what they can fit inside their rectum. We've already covered that -- complete with x-rays. light-bulb-rectum-xray For the truly adventurous, the wanderlust never ends, so what's left to explore? When a 70 year old man arrived at the Canberra Hospital Emergency Room in Australia, he was in intense pain and complaining about bleeding genitalia. He admitted that 12 hours earlier, he had inserted something into his urethra for his anticipated pleasure. The fork had lodged itself inside so firmly that it wasn't even immediately visible. fork-inside After using forceps and a lot of lubrication, doctors were finally able to remove the fork without permanent damage. According to the article, entitled ‘An Unusual Urethral Foreign Body’, it is very rare to find alien objects lodged in the lower urinary tract. The motives for inserting objects into such a sensitive region were difficult to comprehend. They said that practice tends to occur "during states of pathological masturbation, substance abuse and intoxication." urfo1


Pen in Urethra


Going Fishing?


Terminating an electrical connection


Electrical wires in urethra with a knot in bladder

While it's good practice to use a knot for strain relief on some electrical wires, it can make them more difficult to extract. In this case the electric cable made a knot in the bladder during the manipulation so that removal by pulling on the distal ends that were depressing into the meat of the urethra was impossible. Due to the fact that the diameter of the electrical cable was 5 mm, introduction of any endoscopical instruments was considered impossible. A removal attempt was made, however, the knot slipped from the bladder over the urogenital diaphragm into the bulbar urethra. At this point, no further mobilisation was possible and the cable had to be removed by open surgery.

As described in the past literature most foreign bodies are inserted into the urethra by psychiatric, intoxicated, confused or sexually curious patients. The most common reason still seems to be auto-eroticism.


We always thought that was a figure of speech.

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by on Aug.18, 2013, under Food, Health, Kids, Parenting, Recreation, Toys

Three-year-old Shivam is from Rani Bagh area in northwest Delhi. Boys don't spend much time in the kitchen there, but he was bored and didn't have anything else to do. Like three year olds everywhere, he gravitated to the pressure cooker. shivam3 He put it over his head, and got stuck. Hearing him cry, his father Sanjay took him to a private nursing home, where doctors tried unsuccessfully to remove the pressure cooker. shivam2 Eventually  Shivam was sent to a hospital and after two hours of painstaking effort, doctors managed to remove the pot from his head. shivam1 Although it wasn't a good idea to put it on his head in the first place, we admire how well Shivam held up under pressure.
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