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1999 Personal Accounts
The Darwin Awards salutes the spirit portrayed in the following personal accounts, submitted by loyal (and sometimes deceased) readers. Next


The Iceman Exiteth 
1999 Personal Account

(1 April 1999, Wisconsin) It is a common practice in Wisconsin, as in most places with high alcohol consumption levels, to place an old car on the surface of a frozen lake and take bets on when the wreck will finally fall through the melting ice. With the warm weather this year, the betting season had mostly come and gone by the time Clinton, 75, decided to test the ice for himself with an 861 International Tractor.

Clinton, of Lake Flambeau, had been a farmer for 58 years and had recently retired from the business. Perhaps he had intended to die as he had lived, or maybe the emissions from the tractor had given him delusions of grandeur; the world will never know.

All was going Clinton's way that day. He had managed to drive his tractor onto the ice of Lake Flambeau next to his boathouse, stand up in the bucket of his vehicle, and begin painting the boathouse. Then the ice, which happened to be covering 30 feet of water, gave way. Man and tractor plunged in, and Clinton didn't come out until the next morning, with the assistance of a dive team.

The headline read "Lake Flambeau claims first victim," which in itself is amusing considering the relatively passive role that the lake played in the drama. This is an example of natural selection based on a change of habitat. Mr. Darwin would have agreed that Clinton was a member of a species more suited to a field of corn than a thawing lake. © 1994 - 2012

Submitted by: Christopher Hayden

Reference: Wisconsin Ladysmith News
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