August 8, 2012

An Honest Liar

I came across this YouTube clip for a documentary in-progress about the Amazing Randi called An Honest Liar.

I've always liked the type of acts that Randi did in his day, the kinds of acts that Penn & Teller do now.  These guys will tell you they are going to trick you and then do so and you end up being glad they tricked you.

I still recall a Penn & Teller bit on TV where they were dropping things into liquid nitrogen and towards the end they were playing with a live mouse and they made it look like they dropped it into the tank.  They ended the bit abruptly there and never did any resolution.  To this day I'm not sure if that was part of the act or if they made a mistake and accidentally killed that mouse.

Being entertained, even if it is in a puzzling manner, is one thing, but being tricked by claims of supernatural powers is a completely different matter.  Randi's experience at exposing frauds and charlatans for what they were has fascinated me.  There are some good YouTube recordings of his work and speeches from over the years.

I particularly liked the one about Homeopathy.  I really didn't know what homeopathy was about and after viewing the video and then doing some online reading I was quite shocked.

Here is an intro to the upcoming biography:

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