Friday, January 06, 2006

The World is an Interesting place

From the Globe and Mail, Thursday, January 5, 2006 by Graeme Smith.
YEKATERINBURG, RUSSIA -- Gennady Varlamov, 67, never wondered much about his childhood during the Second World War. He assumed he grew up in a happy family, living with his mother in a three-room wooden house in a village near the Ural Mountains. It was a modest place, with no electricity or running water, but Mr. Varlamov remembers it as a pleasant home with a garden and farm animals.

His questions started in October of 1993, when he suffered a bad headache. In retrospect, he says, it was probably just a flu symptom. But he went to the doctor anyway, and was referred for X-rays at a hospital in Yekaterinburg, the industrial city at the western edge of Siberia where he lives as a pensioner and part-time security guard at a military tank factory.

An elderly neuropathologist gave him the results, with a quizzical look on his face. Three sewing needles were lodged in Mr. Varlamov's brain, near the top of his skull. Mr. Varlamov still has the doctor's diagnosis, scrawled in blue ballpoint: Three needles -- with lengths of 6, 5.4, and 4 centimetres -- and an average thickness of 0.01 millimetres each.


Anonymous Jeff said...

That's worth $60US, a t-shirt and a beer mug, isn't it?

9:00 PM  

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