Everything Can Kill You

  • #1
russ_watters
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This thread is motivated by this thread: https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=515565

We have a lot of discussion in this forum about things that might kill you (cell phones are popular right now). To help illustrate the fallacy for the thread above, this thread is dedicated to finding out if there is anything that can't kill you. Because as we all know, everything from knives to iPods to TV to cute little kittens can kill you (and as every cat owner knows, kittens will kill you on purpose!) My position is that everything can kill you. So hit me: try to find something that can't kill you.

Rules: "Things" means physical objects. I don't want to get into a pseudophilosophical argument about whether or not "love" or "music" can kill you.

So have at it!
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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Gelatin nailed to a tree?
 
  • #3
Evo
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I can't think of anything that can't kill you.
 
  • #4
Evo
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Gelatin nailed to a tree?
What if you try to eat it and choke to death on it?
 
  • #5
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Then it wouldn't be nailed to a tree.
 
  • #6
Evo
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Some people claim that smelling underarm deodorant will kill them from yards away.

Of course there is no evidence that a "smell" can do you any harm. There would actually be a need for a certain amount of a substance to enter your bloodstream. Anything else is imaginary, there is no scientific support for it. Of course imaginary fears can kill people.
 
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  • #7
russ_watters
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Gelatin nailed to a tree?
You can't nail gelatin to a tree. Again, no psuedophilosophical arguments about whether imaginary things can kill you.

Caveat: Trying to nail gelatin to a tree could cause puncture wounds and tetanus, both of which can kill you.
 
  • #8
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any physical object can kill you, amass enough of it and you can suffocate on it
 
  • #9
S_Happens
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Some things you'd certainly have to get creative with.

I wonder if anyone has ever choked on a lifesaver candy. Barring making it a projectile, I can't come up with anything. I'm not familiar enough with diabetes (or lifesavers actually) to know if that small candy could cause a problem.

I've got a lot of spare cardboard pieces/small boxes from recent packages. There's not enough to crush or suffocate anyone. Maybe if one of the pieces made it's way to a tiled area like the kitchen it could pose a slipping hazard...
 
  • #10
Pengwuino
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Love can kill you, ever so slowly.

Peanut butter can't kill you. It is absolutely perfect in every way and the only side effect from large consumption is extreme happiness.

I win.
 
  • #11
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Cats can kill you
 
  • #12
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Peanut butter can't kill you. It is absolutely perfect in every way and the only side effect from large consumption is extreme happiness.
I just tested this, results were conclusive with Pengwuino's argument. The paper will be published in the next issue of Nature.:approve:
 
  • #13
chiro
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One of the fundamental notions in toxicology is that its the amount of whatever that can kill you (i.e. the dose). Even water fits into this category.
 
  • #14
disregardthat
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As we know, what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger, so we can reduce this search to what actually makes you stronger. Since we are talking about physical objects, we can always lift them to increase muscle strength, and that would make us stronger.

Conclusion: nothing can kill you, only make you stronger. This amazing feat of logic will put an end to the crazy claims of crazy scientists.
 
  • #15
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A puff of argon, blown on my left foot.
 
  • #17
Ivan Seeking
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A puff of argon, blown on my left foot.
Neutrino flux.
 
  • #18
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well, i'd sort of agree with minute outgassing from random products, but then you run into something like a toxic FEMA trailer, and suddenly being locked up fairly tight in an aluminum can with formaldehyde and whatnot from insulation and such... and you've got a problem.

i suspect that guy would maybe get some peace of mind from a simple activated charcoal air filter. it's a good general purpose adsorbent for small molecules. that is, assuming he's in a goldfish bowl and not some drafty shack.

now, my diet mt dew is chock full of benzoates and brominated veggie oil. but still, we love mt dew...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dmCh_0AsEyk
 
  • #19
mege
A life-support chamber?
 
  • #20
Redbelly98
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Gelatin nailed to a tree?
A puff of argon, blown on my left foot.
Hey, you only get to name the object, not specify it's manner of confinement or the means by which you come into contact with it. Otherwise "vial of poison, locked away in a vault where it can never touch me" would qualify.
 
  • #21
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Schrödinger's cat may not be able to kill you?
 
  • #22
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Guns and knives couldn't kill me. I'm already dead from my cell phone.
 
  • #23
russ_watters
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A puff of argon, blown on my left foot.
Trip over the hose and fall and hit your head.
 
  • #24
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Trip over the hose and fall and hit your head.
The puff didn't kill, the hose did.

Hey, you only get to name the object, not specify it's manner of confinement or the means by which you come into contact with it. Otherwise "vial of poison, locked away in a vault where it can never touch me" would qualify.
And a ton of any substance would kill you if it fell on you. What's the point of the thread again?
 
  • #25
russ_watters
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And a ton of any substance would kill you if it fell on you.
A ton of water can kill you, but it won't necessarily kill you if dropped on you.
What's the point of the thread again?
About once a week someone comes here with a fear about something ridiculously unlikely to kill you and I'm trying to illustrate the absurdity of such fears by demonstrating that if you fear one such thing, you pretty much have to fear everything. So I opened this thread as a companion to that one.
 

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