James Randi --- Wizard (
Wed, 8 May 1996 04:04:24 -0400

Uri Geller was widely advertised as being called into action to save the failing
Reading football club in the UK. That effort, though Mr. Geller assured
everyone of imminent success, was anything but. However, all hope is not

>From a pet forum on the Internet, we read:

>Miss Ellie, the hamster belonging to Reading Football Club, died
>recently and was given a fitting burial in one of the goalmouths
>at Elm Park. Quite remarkably, after a dismal run all season,
>following the burial Reading have totally transformed their
>performance with a 3-0 win at home to Wolves, which incidentally
>saved them from relegation. Goals seem to come particularly freely
>at Miss Ellie's end. The team are convinced that they are now
>receiving supernatural assistance from Miss Ellie. Earlier in the
>season they employed Uri Geller to psyche them up, which failed
>totally, but it seems that the powers of a hamster are stronger
(Note: "relegation" is UK football talk for "oblivion")

Now, I trust that Mr. Geller will act in a chivalrous manner, and will resist
claiming that his powers, working over a period of several months, and not Miss
Ellie's, achieved this small wonder. Respect for the dead would seem to be
called for here, and I, for one, will not cast doubt upon the ability of a dead
rodent to lead a football team to victory. As for spoon-benders, I have serious
doubts, which seem to have been reinforced by this episode.

James Randi