Skeptics with a K: Episode #116

Married exorcists, lying calendars, overstimulated babies and dodgy hips. Plus snakes, swaddling, submarines and spaceport. From the year AD 1717, it’s Skeptics with a K.

  1. #1 by Bevin on February 27, 2014 - 22:24

    Every mouse my friend bought for her snake was packaged in a colorful box with “Somebody loves me!” on the side. It was horrible.

  2. #2 by Tom Williamson on February 28, 2014 - 12:00

    I’d just like to add that I thought the Spaceport was well worth the visit, the tattyness added to the charm of the place!

  3. #3 by Rupert on February 28, 2014 - 19:21

    That’s not true about August being the reason for February having odd days. February has odd days because March used to be the first month. There were then 10 months, ending with December. January and February didn’t exist in the early days and winter was basically off-calendar. Episode 18 of The History of English podcast was really good on this, I think.

    Also: Fantastic Fact! The switch from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar is also related to the fact that the tax year ends on 5 April. Once upon a time the legal (and tax) years in the UK followed the ecclesiastical year, which started with the anniversary of the conception of Jesus, on 25 March. When we lost 11 days the Govt didn’t want to assess people on 354 days tax, so pushed the year end back 11 days.

    (You might already say this in the show. I paused as soon as I heard an inaccuracy to leap on here and correct people.)

  4. #4 by Tracy M on February 28, 2014 - 20:28

    There is one species of snake that is vegetarian… the Bananaconda

  5. #5 by Rebecca on March 2, 2014 - 14:00

    You might be on to something with the enzymes not being the issue with eczema or other skin conditions but there may be some issues with other ingredients – perfumes etc which are often omitted from “sensitive” formulas of washing powders and other personal hygiene products.

    I personally do suffer from a reaction when I use bedding or towels in hotels, B&Bs or friends houses, of course I don’t know what they are washed in but any change from my personal norm creates an eczema attack. Eczema, much like other conditions that a sufferer lives with continuously, will return to the mean, be linked with emotional stresses and also be very personal. But I am very willing to admit that not all biological washing powders are made equal!

  6. #6 by Chris on March 3, 2014 - 16:16

    I got a sling for the second child, because he was not happy unless he was held. This was the baby that I would finally get to sleep (sometimes by driving him in the car), and just as I gently put in the bassinet he would wake up and cry. The sling was the most comfortable, and since he was held to the side a bit I could actually cook dinner.

    The problem with the sling was that the baby was to the side on the hip. Sometimes I would walk to close to something and hit his little head. Oops.

    He graduates in a few months from university with a degree in mathematics, including a minor in applied mathematics. So I guess I did not cause too much damage.

    Also, there was a few months where I did house shopping because we had two kids and just one bedroom (they slept in the dining room). I would tour houses with the toddler in the backpack, and baby in a front pack. Fun times.

  7. #7 by Kevin Vosper on March 7, 2014 - 14:14

    To anyone reading this, could you ask Mike Hall or someone from Merseyside skeptics to contact me my email address is:

    I live in Turkey and the Turkish government has just banned Skeptics with a K along with every other skeptical podcast. We are trying to raise awareness among the skeptical community regarding this attack on skeptical and critical thinking and need support from the Merseyside Skeptics. Unfortunately I am unable to contact Mike Hall any other way so please, if you see this message, ask Mike to contact me.

    Thanks a lot

    Kevin Vosper

  8. #8 by Kevin Vosper on March 8, 2014 - 06:45

    Just a quick update to my last post. Skeptics with a K is, at least at the moment (Saturday 8th March), available again in Turkey. However, the situation remains a difficult one and the government may ban all skeptical podcasts at any time, along with youtube and facebook which are also being threatened. I’ll keep you posted with any new developments.

    Thanks a lot

    Kevin Vosper

  9. #9 by Kevin Vosper on March 10, 2014 - 07:08

    Update, Monday 10th March.

    Skeptics with a K along with every other skeptical podcast banned again in Turkey.

    I will continue to keep Mersyside Skeptics updated.

    Best wishes

    Kevin Vosper

  10. #10 by Kevin Vosper on March 11, 2014 - 12:32

    Final update on this story. It seems that the ban may only apply to educational istitutes such as schools and universities rather than a general ban (I was using my university computer when I discovered this problem).

    Thanks to Richard Saunders and friends for researching this and putting me right.

    Perhaps I should have been thinking more skeptically.

    Thanks a lot

    Kevin Vosper

(will not be published)