This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site you agree to our use of cookies. To find out more, see our Privacy and Cookies policy.
Skip to the content

Share this

Free weekly newswire

Sign up to receive all our latest news direct to your inbox.

Physics on film

100 Second Science Your scientific questions answered simply by specialists in less than 100 seconds.

Watch now

Bright Recruits

At all stages of your career – whether you're an undergraduate, graduate, researcher or industry professional – brightrecruits.com can help find the job for you.

Find your perfect job

Physics connect

Are you looking for a supplier? Physics Connect lists thousands of scientific companies, businesses, non-profit organizations, institutions and experts worldwide.

Start your search today

Blog

Science that’s hard to swallow

swordswallower.jpg
Dan Meyer won an Ig Nobel prize for publishing a paper on the side effects of sword swallowing.

By Margaret Harris

It’s not all doom and climate-change gloom here in conferenceland, however. Many readers will already be familiar with the Ig Nobel prizes, which are given annually in honour of science that makes you laugh, and then makes you think. But it’s not every day that you get to see a proud Ig Nobelist in the flesh — and it’s even rarer to watch one of them swallow 12 inches of solid steel, as Dan Meyer is doing in this photo (he swallowed an even bigger blade — 24 inches, long enough to reach the base of his stomach — at the press party later that night).

Meyer is president of the Sword Swallowers Association International, and he won the Ig Nobel for medicine in 2007 for co-authoring a paper in the British Medical Journal on “Swordswallowing and Its Side Effects”. These side effects include – unsurprisingly – both sore throats and, erm, death. Fortunately, nothing so drastic occurred tonight, and if Meyer did get a sore throat afterwards, I’m sure plenty of people would have bought him a drink to help soothe it.

This entry was posted in AAAS Annual Meeting 2009. Bookmark the permalink.
View all posts by this author  | View this author's profile

Leave a comment

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Guidelines

  • Comments should be relevant to the article and not be used to promote your own work, products or services.
  • Please keep your comments brief (we recommend a maximum of 250 words).
  • We reserve the right to remove excessively long, inappropriate or offensive entries.

Show/hide formatting guidelines

Tag Description Example Output
<a> Hyperlink <a href="http://www.google.com">google</a> google
<abbr> Abbreviation <abbr title="World Health Organisation" >WHO</abbr> WHO
<acronym> Acronym <acronym title="as soon as possible">ASAP</acronym> ASAP
<b> Bold <b>Some text</b> Some text
<blockquote> Quoted from another source <blockquote cite="http://iop.org/">IOP</blockquote>
IOP
<cite> Cite <cite>Diagram 1</cite> Diagram 1
<del> Deleted text From this line<del datetime="2012-12-17"> this text was deleted</del> From this line this text was deleted
<em> Emphasized text In this line<em> this text was emphasised</em> In this line this text was emphasised
<i> Italic <i>Some text</i> Some text
<q> Quotation WWF goal is to build a future <q cite="http://www.worldwildlife.org/who/index.html">
where people live in harmony with nature and animals</q>
WWF goal is to build a future
where people live in harmony with nature and animals
<strike> Strike text <strike>Some text</strike> Some text
<strong> Stronger emphasis of text <strong>Some text</strong> Some text
WordPress Appliance - Powered by TurnKey Linux