Defining Moments: Unexpected Death Edition

When I was a child in Texas, there was a popular urban legend that a middle-aged couple were shopping at Fiesta Mart. The wife plucked a pineapple out of the bin, wincing when she pricked her finger on the spine. A few hours later, she was dead from a snakebite administered by a snake that had ridden along with the tropical fruit from its mother country.

That stayed with me.

More powerful still was a couple in 2004. Real life. Their car stalled during a bad storm, and both of them got out to walk. Unhappily, they stepped into a puddle in which rested a downed electrical wire. In fleeing from the rising flood waters, they were electrocuted to death. That has stayed with me, too.


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