When Guns are Outlawed, Only Outlaws will have Harpoons

We’ve got a whale of a tale to tell you, lads. On the rivers of Brazil, where harpoons (meaning, we think, what is called in English “spearguns” — we distrust the translation, but “harpoon” is a marvelous word) are outlawed — at least, from November to February — a spearfishing outlaw let loose one of the ¡proibido! devices. Then he and his buddy had to traipse in to the hospital to get the spear taken out of his buddy’s head.

“Unfortunately, they were not careful with the positioning, the distance,” Araguari fire department Deputy Lt. Lucenildo Batista Alves told the site. “And the waters of the river in our region are murky, especially in the very dirty rainy season.”

The metal shaft — which was just inches away from causing more serious injuries or even death — was removed and the man was released from a hospital Wednesday.

Alves said it was not immediately clear exactly how the man was struck, or whether his friend — who was fishing on the opposite side of the dam — had fired the spear. Authorities are investigating the fishing trip, since it’s illegal to use harpoons from November through February.

“We do not know if the friend saw any fish or if the gun fired alone, but it hit the face of this boy,” Alves told PescaAmadora.com, according to a translation of the page. “He was very lucky, as the harpoon crossed the soft part of the mouth, did not reach any bone or more sensitive part, such as the brain. It could have been fatal.”

via Man gets harpooned on fishing trip | New York Post.

It gives a whole new meaning to “he got hisself some ‘poon,” doesn’t it?

13 thoughts on “When Guns are Outlawed, Only Outlaws will have Harpoons

  1. Aesop

    File under: Darwin thwarted, (but to a near-certainty, only temporarily with this pair).

    Rule One violation: Check
    Rule Two violation: Check
    Rule Three violation: Check
    Rule Four violation: Check

    Kudos to his buddy for the Grand Slam of Stupid Awesomeness.
    Usually, but not always, you need to be in someone’s .mil or some local constabulary to unlock this achievement so spectacularly.
    If it turns out they were off-duty Rio cops or Brazilian soldiers or somesuch, it would simply be following the grain.

    But the question begged is, WTH were the hungry piranha when we needed them?

      1. bloke_from_ohio

        GODWIN’S LAW!

        Nietzsche’s philosophy of the Übermensch greatly influenced the Aryan supremacist ideology of the 3rd Reich. Similarly, the Ubermensch idea was itself influenced by the Darwinian narrative of survival of the fittest. Common clichés about stupidity driven self inflicted suffering often sound like appeals to both Darwin and Nietzsche. Despite those facts, espousing a link between said quips and the ethno-supremacist fascism that is the hallmark of both historical Nazism and modern Neo-Nazism is silly.

        Your invocation of Nazis is a very clunky. Ethnosupremacist fascism has nothing to do with the scenario in question. Similarly the scenario is not related to the modern spiritual spin offs found in supremacist movements that style themselves after the 3rd Reich.

        If you are attempting to use historical Nazis or modern Neo-Nazis as a stand in for evil, then you comment almost works since both are best described as such. However it would be clearer to just use the word evil.

        The so called celebration or approval of self inflicted suffering linked to poor decision making is probably not evil. Given that the folks who don’t empathize with the victim did not cause the suffering directly, nor were the liable for it though negligence or malice by way of shaping the environment to cause it, they are not guilty of anything other than perhaps a lack of empathy. Misanthropic behavior is not a good thing, but it is probably not evil.

        Failing to help someone who is suffering when you have the opportunity to do so is evil. But, even then the first responder is under no moral obligation to refrain from calling the victim out for being ignorant, careless, or otherwise stupid in causing their own pain. It goes back to the idea of helping your buddy out, but teasing them relentlessly for their mistake after the blood is dried and wounds have healed.

        Further, most commenters are too far removed from the victim of these stories to actually effectively empathize with them in the first place. In the place of empathy is a sort of impersonal schadenfreude. In the truly jaded, this pleasure might be related to an actual belief that the victim got what their own poor decisions wrought. But for most people it is probably more driven by the inherent humor in human suffering in general and the silliness of the scenario that lead to the incident in more specific cases.

      2. Mike_C

        NAZI? In a word, no.
        But I prefer idiots kill themselves without causing collateral damage to others, and before they breed. Around the time of Gulf War 1 two guys accidentally, and fatally, asphyxiated themselves while huffing nitrous oxide with plastic bags over their heads; this was on Hanscom AFB. They left behind wives, and IIRC three small children. Even then-young me thought “What a pair of idiots.” Sympathy for the widows and kids, not one iota for those irresponsible assholes.

        Anyone catch LT Alves’ comment “We do not know […]if the gun fired itself.”? Strangely familiar, but maybe fishing spearguns do go off by themselves?

        Well, when the harpoonee finally shuffles off this mortal coil he’ll have something to talk about with the shade of Sir Richard Burton.

  2. Loren

    Yeah but what a great comeback after the inevitable “so how’d you get matching pucker marks on both sides?” Followed by “bullshit”. Followed by “that pic has to be fake”
    How many free drinks is that worth?

  3. John M.

    It appears that this fellow fell exactly into the gap between where a bigger brain would’ve meant he was dead, but also would’ve meant that he wouldn’t have agreed to the, “you go in the murky water and drive the fish toward me and I’ll spear him!” plan in the first place.

    -John M.

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