5 Huge Disasters Caused By Idiots

5 Huge Disasters Caused By Idiots

Whether to impress a sexy person (or just because we really wanted that special-edition dabbing Minion from the claw machine at the bowling alley), we’ve all done dumb things for dumb reasons. Still, the worst that happened is an embarrassing conversation with an emergency medical responder. It’s unlikely our idiotic actions caused catastrophe on a city-wide, industry-wide, or even global scale. The same can’t be said for the fallout when …

当你想给性感美人留下深刻印象时,总会选择做点蠢事。但最糟糕的结局无非也就是送急诊。我们的愚蠢行为不太可能会影响到整个城市,整个行业,甚至全世界。下面几位呢,就可以说是蠢得出类拔萃了。

dabbing Minion: (影视角色)小黄人
catastrophe: n.  大灾难, 大祸, 突变

A Nuclear Disaster Was Traced Back To Some Morons Who Thought Cesium Looked Cool

In 1985, a chemotherapy clinic in Goiania, Brazil moved offices, leaving behind an outdated cesium-based radioactive device. Already, we’re not off to a great start: leaving radioactive materials just lying around is a fairly major no-no. Since the building was left abandoned, it soon became a popular squat for homeless people living on the outskirts of the city. Think you know where this is going? We promise, you don’t.

1985年,巴西戈亚尼亚市(Goiania)的一家化疗诊所搬走了。办公室里留下了过时的铯放射性装置。好了,我们已经有了个很好的故事开端。这栋建筑被废弃后,它很快就成了广受无家可归者欢迎的避难所。你是不是觉得知道故事结局了?不,相信我,你不知道。

chemotherapy: 化学疗法
no-no:禁忌之事
squat: n.窝, v.蹲坐,
outskirt: 边缘的,外围的

On September 13, 1987, two scavengers entered the former treatment room of the clinic and stole the lead cylinder of the cesium device, hoping it was worth something. There was only one problem, as far as they were concerned: they couldn’t get the thing open. They also suddenly started feeling extremely ill, but they were determined to dismantle the device. Finally, they managed to crack open the cesium capsule and immediately started scooping out the glowing blue substance they found inside. If you know this kind of person, we probably don’t have to tell you that they tried to light it on fire.

1987年9月13日,两名拾荒者进入该诊所的前治疗室,偷走了装有铯装置的铅筒,希望能换点钱花花。对他们来说,只有一个问题:这玩意打不开。尽管立刻感到很不舒服,但他们还是决心把这个装置拆开。最后,他们想办法打开了铯胶囊,发现了里面发光的蓝色物质,立即把它舀了出来。如果你认识这类蠢货,也许可以想象,他们还试着用火点燃它。

dismantle: 拆除…的设备, 分解
capsule: 胶囊,
scoop out: 舀出,接应

Having done all the cool things they could think to do with the device’s contents, they took it to someone even dumber than them: their local junkyard owner, who paid them for its scrap metal. After he noticed the glowing blue stuff, he invited all his friends and family to come look and even let them take some of it home. One of them let his six-year-old daughter use it like body glitter. By the time the authorities figured out what happened, four people were dead and hundreds more had simply suffered huge doses of radiation. Those two original scavengers? They both required amputations. Hopefully, it was worth whatever the junkyard owner paid them.

在做完了所有他们想到能做的酷事之后,他们把它交给了一个比他们更蠢的人:当地的垃圾场老板,他付钱买下了这块“废铁”。当他注意到那些发光的蓝色东西后,他邀请了所有的朋友和家人来看,甚至还让他们带了些回家。其中一个让他六岁的女儿把它当做化妆的闪粉使用。当当局查明发生了什么事时,已经有4人死亡,数百人遭受了大剂量辐射。最早的那两个拾荒者?他们需要截肢。希望垃圾场老板付的钱够数吧。

A Broker Threw The Oil Industry Into Turmoil On A Drunken Whim

Go easy on yourself the next time you drunkenly text your ex; at least you didn’t screw up a global industry. That’s what Steve Perkins did when he got home after a multi-day bender in June 2010, texted his employer that a sick relative would unfortunately keep him out of the office that day, and then bought seven million barrels of oil.

下次你醉醺醺地给你的前任发消息时,别紧张,至少你没有搞砸一个全球性行业。2010年6月, Steve Perkins在喝了几天后回到家中,给雇主发短信说,自己有个亲戚生病了,得在家办公,然后购买了700万桶石油。

screw up: 拧紧,搞砸,毁掉

The stock market is equal parts graphs and magic, so we’re not even going to try to explain how Perkins’s blackout boo-boo pushed the price of a barrel of oil up by almost $2. We can tell you, because smarter people told us, that while that might not seem like a lot, it usually takes a war to see that kind of change. It didn’t take long to sort that out, but the company on whose behalf Perkins bought the oil, PVM Oil Futures, needed considerably more coddling. He’d spent $520 million of their money to buy the oil, creating losses of $10 million for the company because, again, finances are wizardry. They were pretty grumpy about that, considering they only brought in $12 million of annual income.

股票市场就是等分图和魔法,所以我们不打算解释Perkins的上头行为是如何推动每桶石油价格上涨近2美元的。我们可以告诉你,因为有聪明人解释说,虽然看起来不多,但通常需要一场战争才能引发这样的变化。没过多久事情就搞清楚了,但Perkins为其购买石油的公司PVM石油期货公司就惨了。他花了公司5.2亿美元购买石油,造成了1000万美元的损失。是的,损失。金融就是这么神奇。考虑到他们年收入只有1200万美元,可想而知,他们对此不太开心。

grumpy: a.  脾气暴躁的, 生气的

When his li’l oopsie was discovered, Perkins was fined, legally banned from trading stocks for five years, and treated to what was hopefully one hell of a “you’re fired” speech. He was then immediately hired by a commodities firm in Geneva to train new brokers because a white guy in a suit has to physically dodge job offers on his way home from the corruption store.

当发现他的“小失误”的时候,Perkins被罚款,五年内禁止交易股票,听了一次“你被解雇了”的演讲。随后,他立即被日内瓦的一家大宗商品公司雇佣,培训新的经纪人。毕竟他还是个白人嘛,不愁找不到工作。

commodity: 商品货物
corruption: n.  腐败, 堕落

A Man Burned Down A City Trying To DIY A Sword

On all the best Discovery Channel shows, the hosts always say the same thing before they do something cool: “Kids, don’t try this at home!” Apparently, they need to send a memo to adults as well, because John Gomes of Cohoes, New York didn’t see any way building a makeshift barrel-forge in his backyard to make a sword could go wrong.

在所有的探索频道优秀节目中,主持人都会在做很酷的事之前这样说:“孩子们,不要在家里尝试这个!”显然,他们也需要给成年人发一份备忘录,因为纽约科霍斯市的John Gomes认为,在他家后院用桶来锻造一把剑没什么不对的。

makeshift: 权宜之计

On November 30, 2017, Gomes was inspired by an episode of Forged in Fire on the History Channel to forswear the inflated prices of his local mall sword store and make his own. Sure, he didn’t have any of the equipment to do it, but what he did have was an apartment with a backyard and a steel barrel in it, and that’s just as good, right? Unfortunately, it was a rather windy afternoon and he couldn’t get the fire hot enough, so he moved the barrel closer to the building. The steel barrel full of fire. To the wood structure. Because it was windy.

2017年11月30日,Gomes受历史频道《烈火锻造》一集的启发,拒绝了当地商场的剑店虚高的价格,选择自创品牌。当然,他没有任何设备来做这件事,他所拥有的是一间带后院的公寓和一个钢桶,那也一样好,对吧?不幸的是,那是一个风很大的下午,他无法把火烧得足够热,所以他把桶移近了大楼。装满火的钢桶。靠近木结构的大楼。因为风实在太大了。

forswear: to make a liar of (oneself) under or as if under oath ; to deny under oath; to reject or renounce under oath
inflated: adj. 膨胀的, 充了气的, 通货膨胀的

Obviously, the building caught on fire, and because of that stubborn wind, it quickly spread across town. In the end, 28 buildings were destroyed or damaged, and the resulting cloud of smoke was so dense and massive that it appeared on the radar of the National Weather Service. Miraculously, no one was hurt, but a lot of businesses and families were left homeless, so Gomes’s neighbors had plenty of reason to be salty. He pled down to a year in jail and more than $620,000 in restitution, so now he really can’t afford a sword.

很明显,这座建筑着火了,趁着强风,它很快蔓延到全城。最终,28座建筑物被摧毁或损坏,由此产生的浓烟团密度巨大,出现在了国家气象局的雷达上。奇迹般的是,没有人受伤,但很多企业和家庭无处可去,所以Gomes的邻居有足够的理由保持警惕。他被判入狱一年,赔偿62万多美元,所以现在他真的买不起剑了。

stubborn: a.  顽固的,棘手的
miraculously: ad.  非凡, 不可思议, 令人惊叹, 奇迹般地
pled: (plead的过去分词) 以…为借口, 以…为理由, 辩护, 申明, 抗辩,
restitution: n.  归还, 偿还,

A Woman Wanted To “Help” Her “Bored” Firefighter Friends

In 2019, Sadie Renee Johnson was a 23-year-old Oregon woman who just wanted to help her friends. They happened to be firefighters, and they were starting to find the long shifts sitting around the firehouse tedious. Johnson interpreted this as “Please start a fire for us.”

2019年的 Sadie Renee Johnson是俄勒冈州的一名女性,23岁的她只是想帮助她的朋友。他们碰巧是消防队员,他们开始觉得在消防站长时间坐班很乏味。 Johnson把这解释为“请为我们点把火”

tedious: a.  沉闷的, 冗长乏味的

When she subsequently threw some fireworks out the window of a moving car into the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, she only meant to cause a little fire. You know, just a quick spray job to break up the monotony. But the fireworks lit up the brush along the roadside and expanded northwest, and soon, 51,480 acres of brush and timber were burning. It caused an estimated $7.9 million in damage and took the firefighters more than a month to fully put out the fire. (Their monkey’s paw has yet to be located.)

在之后开着车往窗外的沃姆斯普林斯印第安保留地扔烟花时,她只想引起一场小火灾。你知道,就是那种洒洒水就行,用来打破无聊日常的那种。但烟花点燃了路边的灌木丛,并向西北方向扩展,很快,5万1480英亩的灌木丛和木材开始燃烧。估计损失790万美元,消防队员花了一个多月才完全扑灭大火。

spray: n.水沫,浪花;v.喷射
monotony: 单调
arce: 英亩

Even though her plan hadn’t gone quite as she’d hoped, Johnson resolved to look on the blindingly bright side. After two days, she took to Facebook, asking her friends “Like my fire?” because she wasn’t just gonna not take credit for getting her brawny hero friends off their lazy asses. Unfortunately, Johnson’s foresight isn’t as strong as her can-do spirit, and the Facebook post left little room for interpretation to the police. She was ordered to spend 18 months in prison and pay restitution of at least $50 a month until she’s paid the full price of the damages, which would take over 13,000 years. Just a lifelong, $50-per-month obnoxiousness tax.

尽管计划并没有她希望的那样顺利, Johnson还是决心看到乐观的一面。两天后,她在Facebook上问她的朋友“喜欢我的火吗?”因为帮助强壮的英雄朋友们摆脱懒散的她还没人表扬呢。不幸的是, Johnson的远见卓识并没有她的行为那么出色,Facebook上的帖子也没有给警方留下其他解读的余地。她被命令在监狱里呆18个月,每月至少支付50美元的赔偿金,直到她付清全部赔偿金,这将需要1万3000多年。一辈子,每月50美元的讨厌税。

brawny: 顽强,肌肉强健的
interpretation: 解释
obnoxiousness: 讨厌

A Man Flooded An Entire City To Prevent His Wife From Getting Home

James Scott of Quincy, Illinois lived to party, but his wife was just, like, totally cramping his style, man. One day in 1993, according to his friends, he decided to get rid of the broad, at least temporarily. Having spent some time volunteering on the levees that held back the tempestuous Mississippi River, he knew it would only take a few misplaced sandbags and tarps to put a wall of water between him and the Missouri truck stop where his wife was working and buy himself a few days of freedom. He wasn’t wrong.

伊利诺伊州昆西市的James Scott参加了一个聚会,但他的妻子却完全限制了他的发挥。呵,男人。1993年的一天,据他的朋友说,他决定除掉那个婆娘,至少是暂时的。他花了一些时间在拦住汹涌密西西比河的堤坝上做义工,他知道只要几个放错地方的沙袋和防水布,就能在他和妻子工作的密苏里卡车站之间筑起一堵水墙,为自己争取几天的自由。他没有错。

cramp: vt.  使抽筋, 束缚; n.  痉挛, 腹部绞痛, 铁夹钳
levee: n.大堤
tarp: 防水布

And he would have been able to enjoy them if he’d just kept his mouth shut. He immediately showed up on the TV news claiming that he’d been working on the levees when he noticed the breach and tried to stop it. He’s stuck by that story, but authorities couldn’t help but notice that he looked awfully clean for a man who’d supposedly been mucking about in the Mississippi. Their suspicions deepened when they found out the point where the levee broke, which had been inspected and declared safe only two hours before the incident, was considered its strongest point. When Scott’s friends told them that he’d later bragged about causing the flood, those suspicions hit seabed. Scott was swiftly arrested, becoming the only person ever convicted in Missouri for intentionally causing a catastrophe. He and his wife are now divorced.

要是能闭上嘴,他就能享受到他的自由了。事后,他立即在电视新闻上露面,大谈特谈他一直在堤坝上工作,这时他发现了决口,并试图堵住它。这个故事出卖了他,当局注意到,作为一个本应在密西西比混日子的人来说,他看起来过于干净了。当他们发现溃堤点时,怀疑加深了。溃堤点在事发前两小时才被检查过并宣布安全,被认为是堤坝的最强点。当Scott的朋友告诉当局,他后来吹嘘自己制造了洪水时,怀疑落实了。Scott很快被捕,成为密苏里州唯一一个因故意制造灾难而被定罪的人。他和妻子现已离婚。

muck: v. 施肥, 弄糟n.肥料, 腐殖土; 湿粪
brag: 吹牛

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