Friday, October 07, 2005

US Outsourcing Prayers to India

The eagerly awaited 2005 Ig Noble awards were presented last night at Harvard University. While the winner of the Medicine category for prosthetic dog testicles has been getting all the buzz, I thought it fell short of two great winners at the 2004 awards. For those of you who didn't read my blog entry about them last year (which would be all of you, as I wasn't blogging until July of this year), I would direct you to scroll down the Ig Noble awards page and check out them out.

The most interesting 2004 award was the one for Psychology, "Gorillas in Our Midst", which is a study of "...sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events." Perhaps I was drawn to this by my interest in Illusion, an ongoing subtext of my blog. Without Illusion, or its bedfellow "willing suspension of disbelief", how could any of our religious (and by "any" I mean "all"), political, social, or educational institutions exist? What to speak of stage magic.

The most amusing on all sorts of levels of the 2004 Ig Nobles was the one for Economics:

"With Roman Catholic clergy in short supply in the United States, Indian priests are picking up some of their work, saying Mass for special intentions, in a sacred if unusual version of outsourcing,"


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