An option for suicide “with elegance and euphoria” is how Lithuanian-born Ph.D. candidate Julijonas Urbonas (London’s Royal College of Art) described his “Euthanasia Roller Coaster,” currently on the drawing board.
Urbonas’ model of “gravitational aesthetics” would be a third-mile-long, 1,600-foot-high thrill ride engineered to supply 10 Gs of centrifugal force (a spin at about 220 mph) to induce cerebral hypoxia, forcing blood away from the head and denying oxygen to the brain.
Euphoria (and disorientation and anxiety, but not pain) are likely states to precede the brain’s shutdown.
Urbonas insisted that users would have the option through the first two minutes of the three-minute ride to rethink their decision and bail out (or else to push the final “FALL” button).
Suicide is legal in four European countries and Oregon and Washington.
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An open-government advocacy group’s survey of federal agencies, revealed that eight of them have unresolved Freedom of Information Act requests that are over a decade old, including one pending for more than 20 years.
The 1976 FOIA law requires resolution within 20 business days, with a 10-day extension under “unusual circumstances.”
Also — regarding the FOIA — a request by the city of Sioux City, Iowa, for background documents regarding the recent Postal Service decision to move jobs from Sioux City to Sioux Falls, S.D., was met promptly — with the Postal Service’s forecast that the likely fee for the documents would be $831,000, even though under the law the first two search hours and the first 100 documents are free.
(Send your Weird News to Chuck Shepherd, P.O. Box 18737, Tampa Fla. 33679 or go to www.newsoftheweird.com.)