James Randi --- Wizard (
Mon, 21 Sep 1998 15:36:32 -0400 (EDT)

I just returned from the UK. Very successful lectures at Cardiff,
Oxford, and Liverpool. And I got to spend valuable time with Richard
Dawkins and Lalla. New and valued friends. See? I told you I get to
meet really super people in my line of work.

While in the UK, I felt some chest pains that I managed to ignore, but
on return I was told that they were the result of a blocked artery, so
I went in and had that flushed out. All is well, and I'll be back at
work after a short hiatus -- which I deserve. So there.

While I was in Cardiff, I appeared with Uri Geller (remember him?) on
a late-night TV show. He was in London, about the right distance, I
feel. He told the show host that he wouldn't try for the JREF
million-dollar prize because he didn't trust me. So, just to relieve
Mr. Geller's anxiety over that point, I've asked Dr. Richard Wiseman,
a prominent UK parapsychologist -- and an amateur conjuror -- along
with Dr. John Beloff, president emeritus of the Parapsychology
Association -- a very respected member of the profession -- if they
would agree to conduct a test of Mr. Geller's powers, on behalf of
the JREF million-dollar offer, without my being involved in anything
but approval of the protocol. They've agreed, so now there is nothing
standing in the way of Mr. Geller being tested for the million-dollar
prize! An exciting prospect indeed! We only await Mr. Geller's
naming of a date for this event.

Of the thirteen applicants in the UK for the Pigasus Prize, only two
were contacted. One failed at doing a "reading" because she said she
needed to be continually prompted and corrected, which is essentially
the "20 Questions" game. I'm sure that she still believes she has
powers, but the guessing game/fishing expedition she showed us was
hardly good evidence. The JREF will be preparing a printed transcript
of this encounter, and copies may be had on request. Give us a couple
of weeks.

The other claimant was tested in Glasgow, by a volunteer group from
the the Scottish Parapsychological Association, at my request and
through the courtesy of Dr. John Beloff. She was to read ESP cards,
but showed no talent at the task, in the opinion of those who tested

More anon. Catching up on 16 days of mail and phone calls. Sigh.

James Randi.

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