Stories tagged world's oldest woman


Prepared for the extremely xtreme: This man lives, breathes, and urinates xtreme. He is ready for the Extravaganza.
Prepared for the extremely xtreme: This man lives, breathes, and urinates xtreme. He is ready for the Extravaganza.Courtesy compujeramey
It seems to me… yes, it seems to me that several Fridays have gone by without a single Extravaganza. Who is to blame for this? And what were those missing Extravaganzas about?

As for who to blame, well let’s just stick with the previous administration. But what about the content of the misplaced Extravaganzas? That’s a lot of knowledge to lose, you know?

While the full text of those Extravaganzas must remain hidden until the release of National Treasure 3: Secret Book, I can at least reveal their topics. They were (in the order they should have appeared in) Laser Guns, Celebrity Body Parts, and “Bear” Naked. Shame to have missed them, huh?

But here we are, camping on the beach of the future, once again at the most xtreme of days. Friday. And so, fittingly, today we have an Extravaganza of Xtremes. An Xtravaganza, if you will.

Our first subject fits well into the sky diving, snowboarding, bungee jumping, Mountain Dew drinking tradition: a little old lady. She is Xtremely old. In fact, she may be the oldest old lady ever (the oldest on record, anyway).

Unfortunately, the neighborhood of time and space in which Sakhan Dosova was born (the late 19th century in central Kazakhstan, to be specific) wasn’t very good about issuing birth certificates, so authorities can’t be certain about her exact age. Other records, however, like her Soviet era passport and state ID, seem to indicate that Dosova is 130 years old. Yowza. 1926 Soviet census data states that she was 46 years old that year.

What’s her secret? In an interview with Radio Free Europe, Dosova let the world know that her long life is thanks to lots of cottage cheese and no sweets. She also let the world know that her state pension is unsatisfactory. Oh, Sahkan, you may be the same age as the electric light bulb, but you still speak the same language of old ladies everywhere.

And so we move from the xtremely old to the xtremely tall—we may have a new winner in the category of “World’s Tallest Man.”

Since 2005, Bao Xishun of China has been officially recognized as the world’s tallest man. At 7 feet, 8.9 inches, Xishun is indeed taller than everyone I know. (Put together.) But there’s a new contender in town now. While he’s never been measured officially (“officially” here meaning “by Guinness”), doctors have recently measured 27-year-old Zhao Liang—also of China—at 8 feet 0.8 inches. That’s like… like… like 8 foot long subway sandwiches stacked on end. Except I wouldn’t be scared if 8 subway sandwiches walked into the room. I’d be happy.

How is this possible? Well, it probably has something to do with an overactive pituitary gland (we talked about those in one of the Friday Relationship Extravaganzas). But why does China have all these way-tall guys? Do they have some sort of secret genetics program aimed at dominating Olympic basketball, and controlling the world market (by putting everything on really high shelves)?

Perhaps. Another possibility is that because China has about 1.3 billion people living in it—a huge chunk of the world’s population—it’s likely that they’d have a similarly dominating portion of the world’s super tall people. Sorry if that’s not a very exciting explanation.

The final item in the Xtravaganza is something that I find both xtremely upsetting and xtremely dubious: a Russian man just had a live tree removed from one of his lungs. If you’re cool with graphic, bloody images, you can take a look at the tree and its lung . Otherwise don’t click on “here” or you will be xtremely, or even ztremely bothered. Trust me.

A 28-year-old Russian man checked into the hospital recently on account of severe chest pain, and some blood-coughing. (These are reasonable excuses to go to the hospital, I suppose.) An x-ray showed a tumor in one of his lungs, but a biopsy revealed, along with the abnormal tissue, some green needles. How about that. Surgeons then removed a piece of lung containing what turned out to be an inch-long fir tree. A one-inch tree isn’t exactly big enough to put presents under, but it’s too big for someone to swallow or inhale. The doctors suggest that the guy may have inhaled a bud from a tree, and the bud grew in his lung.

This theory gives me the willies. I have nightmares about things growing on me and in me. I hope I never get pregnant.

However, this theory also seems really stupid. Fir tree enthusiasts out there—is this even possible? What about photosynthesis? What’s going on here?

My own theory, which is even worse than the doctors’ theory, is that this man is half plant, and that the tumor in his lung was what is called a “teratoma.” Teratomas are tumors that sometimes have teeth, hair, or assorted organs growing in them. They are… a little gross. Naturally the teratoma of a half plant man would contain tree limbs and needles. Duh. What are they even teaching in those Russian medical schools?

That's it. Go take a cold shower now.

Sorry, dudes, I had a mental error. The lung tree was, in fact, 5 cm. So it was 2 inches not 1 inch.

116 candles

by Elisabeth on Aug. 29th, 2006

The world’s oldest woman (certified on December 8th, 2005) passed away at age 116. Cause of death was linked to pneumonia.