Archive for June, 2011
Cave aliens, the upside down mountain, unnecessary surgery and links to death. Plus twelve vicars, rain dances, Bergerac and washing your cock. Following a 4% decline in our mental ability, it’s Skeptics with a K.
People are always asking me what skepticism is. As this is a notoriously difficult question to answer accurately in a few words, I tend to mumble something incoherent and run away. The same goes for questions about what happens at Skeptics in The Pub events. Trying to dispel the notion that we simply get together for a few drinks and slag things off is difficult to do in casual conversation. Especially as Skeptics in The Pub does occasionally fit that description. I would rather never have to answer these sorts of questions at all. The problem is that at the same time, I do want to convey to people outside of our strange little world what it is exactly that we do, and why it interests me. Why do I go to skeptical events at all? What first grabbed me and pulled me into this world that so many of my friends and family think is some kind of science cult for the culturally depressed? Read the rest of this entry »
Homeopathy Awareness Week Special! Featuring homeopathic tools, homeopath apologetics and homeopathy for insomnia. Plus the Human Centipede, Captain Kirk, 10,000 scandinavians and googling for Jeremy Clarkson’s penis. Letting people choose, it’s Skeptics with a K.
A few weeks ago I gave a BadNews talk at Ignite Liverpool, a cool evening where people from all manner of backgrounds give 5-minute talks on something that interests them. Here it is, for your viewing pleasure.
Reports in multiple sources at the moment, from the Guardian to CBS, have been telling the tale of a young boy in with what’s said to be an unusual talent.
Taking up the story from CBS:
“Six-year-old Ivan Stoiljkovic appears to be able to attract metal to his chest – including silverware, coins and even a frying pan.
His family says Ivan possesses extraordinary strength and even healing powers.”
“It started as a joke,” said his grandmother. “I said, let’s try this and things just stuck to him. The heavier things actually stuck more strongly to him.”
In total, his family says Ivan can carry up to 55 pounds of metal on his torso.
His upper body appears to be more magnetic and his family says his wounds heal very quickly and leave no scars.
Family members told Reuters that Ivan also has “healing hands” with which he alleviates his grandfather’s stomach pains and has soothed the pain of a neighbor who hurt his leg in a tractor accident.”
The story comes complete with a video of Ivan demonstrating his talents:
Avid magnetic-child-watchers may have heard this tale before, and indeed this isn’t the first time a child from Eastern Europe has been heralded as possessing extraordinary magnetic powers. In fact, just this February a seven year old Serbian boy called Bogdan was filmed demonstrating his own extraordinary skills. Read the rest of this entry »
Regular readers of this site – albeit ones with long memories (I’ve been bad for the whole blogging malarky for a while, I know) – will know that from time to time I like to take a punt on what I think will be in the newspapers soon, to see how good my predictive PR powers are. Here’s a quick, very short and possibly utterly wrong prediction:
Gossip, Girls! How British Women Are Queens Of The Chinwag
British women really are queens of gossip, chattering more than twice as often as men, according to the latest research.
More than half of British women admit to gossiping more than once a day, with many confessing to spending over 600 hours each year discussing the latest celebrity news, with men trailing behind with under 300 hours each year.
Top topics for girly gossip included football veteran and alleged philanderer Ryan Giggs, and new addition to the Royal family and national sweetheart Pippa Middleton.
The survey, carried out by <total guess here – The Carphone Warehouse>, questioned 3000 people as part of the launch of their new <phone/contract/promotion>.
Top 5 gossip topics
- Ryan Giggs
- Pippa Middleton
- Britain’s Got Talent
- Cheryl Cole
- The Royal Wedding
Now, as I say, all of this is pure prediction, and like all predictions it might fall flat on its face! The gender angle is a bit of a guess, as is the number of hours per year, but I’ve a good feeling about a few of the other details. I’ll let you know if it pans out!