Mental Floss

The Unluckiest People in History

Ellen Gutoskey
Some people have all the bad luck.
Some people have all the bad luck. / RichVintage/iStock via Getty Images

If Adolphe Sax wasn’t remembered for inventing the saxophone, he might have gone down in history for a wholly unrelated claim to fame: His sheer number of near-death experiences, from accidentally slurping down a bowl of sulfuric acid to getting in the way of some errant falling cobblestones.

Sax isn’t the only person to have been plagued by almost unbelievably rotten luck. An Alabama woman named Ann Hodges, for example, suffered a massive bruise on her left side after being struck by a meteorite in 1954. The chance encounter was more unlikely than being struck by a tornado, lightning, and a hurricane simultaneously, according to astronomer Michael Reynolds.

Mental Floss editor-in-chief Erin McCarthy is revealing their stories, and the tales of other hapless folks, on this episode of The List Show—brought to you by Curiosity Stream.

Press play below, and subscribe to the Mental Floss YouTube channel for future fascinating videos.