Following my last post of quirky death possibilities, here are a few I’ve known about myself.
American dancer Isadora Duncan, (1927-1977) known as the mother of modern dance, was strangled by her own long scarf which got tangled in the rear hubcaps of her open car while driving in France. (She was right to avoid ballet. Feet are destroyed by dancing on your toes.) Duncan had, herself suffered a terrible loss. Both her children and their nanny drowned when their car rolled into the Seine.
I paid my respects at her grave while visiting the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris.
I lived for awhile in the Hollywood Hills of L.A and passed the famous sign every night driving home from work. I couldn’t help but think of actress Peg Entwistle, who leapt to her death from that high sign. Peg (1908-1932) was only 24. In her suicide note, she started by saying ‘I am afraid, I am a coward, I am sorry for everything… Peg was distressed because roles didn’t come her way. I believe I once read an offer of a role reached her father a few days after her death.
I once had a neighbour who was a compulsive hoarder. We worried about fire from all the papers and magazines. We also worried about the woman having to manoeuvre around and over all the stacked stuff. Her bed was piled high and couldn’t be slept in. (She apparently slept with her sister nearby.) We were required to clear out her apartment.
Our manager suggested I read ‘My Brother’s Keeper’ by Marcia Davenport. I did — and will never forget it. It is a true story about Langley and Homer Collyer, who lived in a 5th Avenue Manhattan Mansion they inherited from their mother. They never married. They never worked. Money was not a problem. They also never threw anything out. At their deaths in 1947, they’d accumulated more than 140 tons of dilapidated stuff.
The brothers feared intruders and set up traps. Langley, himself, was caught in one and crushed to death by trash falling from above. He was on his way to bring brother Homer some food. Homer, who was paralyzed and confined to an old, rotting chair, died about 12 days later from starvation.
Interesting book. Read it if you can. It IS fascinating.
They say horses will find a way to hurt or kill themselves, no matter how safe you try to make their environment, but they’ve got nothing on people! I remember some years ago a young man died in San Diego by walking off a cliff because he was concentrating on his cell phone… I think he was nominated for a “Darwin Award”, which are “given out” to idiots who manage to kill themselves, thus helping the human species along via natural selection.
Hi Susan: I’ve known of people crossing the street and getting killed because they’re on their cell-phone. Some people are, indeed, pretty stupid. Take care. I love you. Maughm
Wow! some of these things are unimaginable and absurd because they could have been avoided with some common sense. But it’s easy to say standing from the sidelines.
You’re right: But they are not able to realize what they are doing to themselves. It is really sad. Thanks, as always, for reading. Cheers, Muriel
Yes, very sad!
Indeed. Especially since they could have lived so well. Fond regards, Muriel
The Collyer brothers sure were unusual. To hoard that much stuff is something else. Probably there barely was any space to move around in within their house.
You’re absolutely right. Strange that they both lived like that. There were only very narrow passages through all the trashy stuff. Good book, but sad it is about real people. Stay well. Muriel
This book shall definitely give me the creeps. At some point, all of us have behaved like obsessive hoarders, but when things get serious, it is called a psychological disorder. I know a man who lives nearby, he has hoarded things from his childhood. He still has his school geometry box, and spoons he used to eat with!
Interesting post, as always
What I find so interesting and sad about these two brothers is that they obviously BOTH were unable to realize that what they were doing wasn’t normal. They had enough money to get help. Very sad. What terrible lives they had. As always, thanks for reading. Love, Muriel
Such depressing lives, the Collyers. Sad they couldn’t get any help. Makes one glad to be living the life we are!
I agree Jaya: Interesting that so many with mental disorders refuse to acknowledge there is anything wrong. The Collyers had all the money they needed to get help, but they didn’t see it. Very sad. Love, Muriel
I guess if they realised it they would get help. Or if there was someone who cared enough to push them. Can’t help but feel that must be a reason for most disorders, the lack of a loving person/ family.
The problem with mental illness is that too often, the person affected cannot see it. They don’t think there is anything wrong with them, so even people who care can’t help. Loving family or friends too often can’t do anything about it.
One can only hope that scientists will work at ironing out these glitches in the brain. Maybe in the near future? Fingers crossed
You are optimistic Jaya: I’m not so sure about that — although I do hope. Love, Muriel
Wow, those are some horrible tragedies. I will definitely read that book you mentioned. Thanks for sharing these unfortunate stories.
Do so, it IS a fascinating book about real people who could have had a wonderful life. These things DO happen. Thanks for reading, regards, Muriel