Skeptics with a K: Episode #073

Crosses, barbecues, Greece and go-carts. Plus passwords, apple trees, unbelievers and Microsoft-certified advice. Getting away scot free, it’s Skeptics with a K.

  1. #1 by Claude on June 1, 2012 - 11:58


    You have unfortunately been beaten on the “wifer” controversy by Bill Maher.

  2. #2 by Stuart Ritchie on June 1, 2012 - 14:07

    As long as you don’t – as promised in the episode – tell me to ‘fuck off’, can I point out that you’re not quite right about ‘the exception that proves the rule’?

    Rather than meaning ‘this instance tests your “rule” and shows it to be incorrect’, the phrase in fact means ‘this unusual instance shows that the rule is in effect the rest of the time’. So, the example given in the link below is that if you see a sign saying ‘no parking on Sundays’, that’s the exception that shows that, on every other day, parking is acceptable.


    Love the show, etc (it genuinely is the best of all the skeptic-related podcasts, and I’ve heard a few!).

  3. #3 by Mike on June 1, 2012 - 17:11

    Yep, we’re aware of this obscene error and it’s entirely my fault (in several ways)! Correction will be put out on the next show.

    Cheers Stuart!

  4. #4 by Mike Fulford on June 1, 2012 - 21:40

    See the idea is that by using the old timey cersion of Muslim it makes the bit more Biblical like. I mean after all we know Jesus spoke with a London accent as transcribed by King James.

  5. #5 by Chris on June 3, 2012 - 21:16

    A couple of years ago I kept getting those “there is a virus on your computer” scam calls. At first I just hung up, but they kept calling. One time I was frustrated and just yelled in the phone that they were evil scammers. Yet they kept calling back.

    I finally just decided to ask them one thing: “Which computer?.” Being married to a computer nerd for thirty years we have multiple computers. The scammer replied “Your Dell.” I told him we did not own that brand and he hung up.

    I did not get a call for a couple of years, but when I did I used the same question. This time the scammer was a bit more persistent and a bit clueless. He replied it was the Windows XP computer. And then I asked him “Which Windows XP computer?” He repeated the same reply. I finally told him if he had access to see there were viruses he should be able to tell me the computer’s network name. He became angry and hung up.

  6. #6 by Spil Guitar on June 4, 2012 - 00:05

    Another fine show.

    Lego is short for “play good” (leg godt) in Danish.

    I loved the phone-story.


  7. #7 by Anna on June 20, 2012 - 10:31

    Just wanted to let you know that “scot” in the phrase “scot free” comes like you mentioned from a Scandinavian word for tax but it is not pronounced scot it’s actually pronounced as scat (written as skatt, skat, or skattur depending on your Scandinavian language of choice). The word incidentally also means treasure (at least in Swedish).

  8. #8 by Antony Wootten on June 15, 2015 - 08:39

    I doubt anyone will see this comment as I’m writing it 3 years after the episode went out, but I’m going to write it anyway:

    Great show as always! Shock horrow though when Marsh completely credulously stated that Shakespeare definitely did invent words that hadn’t been used before. How on earth can you be sure of that, Marsh? As Mike says, it could just be that his use of these words is the earliest known recorded example of words and phrases which were already in use. We have no way of knowing. Tut tut. You’ll be believing in God next, or invisible dragons in my garage…

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