“Become a scientist they said, look at the world from a different perspective they said.” I believe Science to be either a whining girlfriend or a reassuring mother. Anyway, Science is as fascinating as Einstein’s wits and as annoying as the Sheldon guy from the Big Bang Theory. Most of the time, Science can drive you insane unless you’re Dr.Hannibal who we’re told is psychologically impenetrable in a number of movies. The quest to seek scientific answers is not bound by a trail of breadcrumbs. It is a series of unfortunate and misleading events that guides you to the Mountain of Illumination. From dissecting orphaned dead bodies and studying human anatomy to perfecting the flawless human by injecting different strains of DNA and whatever, Science is ” A Beautiful Body” but controlled by minds of Dr. Hugo Strange, Aldrich Killian,Jekyll and so on.
1. The Ultimate Endurance
Oh God, does it really have to end this way! Picking up weights, body building, 6 packs, a little bit of Tai chi is what a typical man aches for and it probably defines him the best. But having multiple weights stacked on to your package (The very thought is making me spike up in visual pain, I hate this topic!) is too extreme no matter what kind of a mumbo-jumbo science experiment it is! Hebert Woollard and Edward Carmichael jumped at the chance. (Why would anybody jump to this chance, it’s not like you’re winning a casino!) These two fellas were studying the phenomena of referred pain, the phenomenon in which injury to an internal organ causes pain to be felt elsewhere in the body .Shockingly, the choice of organ was decided by the scientists! The gruesome experiment began with weights being added (OK then, so no off springs!) and separate charts of testicular pain were maintained to note down observations.However, their findings haven’t been authenticated yet since no other scientist is willing to undertake such an experiment!
2. The Real Spiderman
On November 1933, Peter Parker…… Dr. Allan Walker Blair invited a female black widow onto his left index finger. The guest had no manners, she bit the professor. But the doctor was a gentleman, he held the dangling spider for 10 seconds allowing its venom to enter his body. Apparently Dr.Allan wanted to study the effects of a female black widow’s poison. As expected,he began to experience breathlessness and severe pain began to set in. He was taken to the hospital where Blair wanted ECG to be taken to find out the changes the venom was enforcing but the measurements never spiked. After a tormenting week, Blair came to a conclusion that a black widow’s venom could be deadly for man!
3. Two-Headed What?
Organ transplanting was a new science territory back in the 1950s and Vladimir Demikhov was determined to make some breaking news. So, he decided to create a two-headed dog, Let me talk you through the details- attach the front end of a puppy to the neck of another dog by grafting its shoulders and head. Demikhov managed to create not one two-headed dog, but 20 of them, most of which died within a few weeks. His experiment lead to advances in heart and lung transplants in humans. Ever heard of a two headed-monkey, google it!
4. Human Soul Has Weight?
This is one dark chapter in scientific history! Dr. Duncan MacDougall, a creepy American physician came up with a theory that human soul has weight. The very moment, everybody went bonkers! He also claimed that he could measure the mass of the soul as it gets ready to depart. After a serious of bizarre experiments, he arrived at a conclusion that human soul must be around 21 grams. An uncanny Ducan managed to kidnap (I guess!) 6 TB patients who were “in the process of dying” and weighed them. Not only this, he also carried similar activities on dogs and mices. Soul weight has been elaborately discussed in Dan Brown’s ‘The Lost Symbol’, something called Noetic Science I guess!
5. The ‘Human Billy Goat
Want to shed those extra pounds! Follow Frederick HoelzeL diet. Right from his teen days, Frederick was used to eating things that weren’t went to be eaten for instance ‘glasses’ and some other items in the same league When he moved on to become a researcher, he decided to munch unusual materials in order to estimate the rate of ingestion. Sand: 52 hrs, pellets: 22 days, beads: 40 hrs, rolled twine: 1.5 hrs and along came diarrhea! He continued this diet for years to come and the press named him the ‘Human Billy Goat.’ Point to remember: His favorite meal was surgical cotton, an integral part of his daily diet!
6. Let’s Get High!
Dr. Albert Hofmann enjoys the honor of being the first person ever to get high! The Swiss scientist, who gave us kids of a messed up generation- the LSD,after several years of research on plants and the stimulants released by them. He came across the chemical lysergic acid diethylamide that made his first acid trip “real”. The effect was so alluring that he had to stop working for days to come as he suffered from ‘inception’- styled hallucinations. He took 250 micrograms the second time; it took him a new dimension of “Let’s get high!” Hoffman experienced vivid and imaginary fantasies as he rode home from the lab. Despite all that stuff in his body, Hofmann lived till the age of 102. Maybe getting high ain’t that bad!
7. The Human Cyborg
Kevin Warwick, a British Cybernetics professor is the first “cyborg” in history. Dr.Warwick also leads one of the most advanced cyborg research projects in the world.He started implanting chips and electrodes into his body curious to know about the human- machine mechanism. Further research was carried out and he linked the chips to his CNS i.e Central Nervous System which made him possible to command robotic arms. He has also appeared in Stan Lee’s ‘Super Humans’ on History TV. Dr.Warwick is developing day by day!
8. Worm Food
Science is one hell of a subject and Giovanni Battista’s extreme experiments prove it! Giovanni Grassi, a Sicilian doctor is yet another member of the scientific society to be named in the ever-growing Limca Book of weird records! So our guy was conducting an autopsy and came across tapeworms fiddling inside the large intestine. As usual, a peculiar thought came by and on 10 October 1878, the doctor realized he could consume worm eggs and prove it was possible to infect oneself with tapeworms. As you all know, every scientific experiment has to be conducted under strict and pure conditions. Firstly, Giovanni tested himself to confirm his lack of infection. Secondly, he extracted the eggs from the corpse (Oh Dear Lord!) and kept them alive in a solution. Finally, he ingested the eggs on a regular basis. By the month end, Giovanni, being a typical human being experienced stomach discomfort and began pulling out eggs from….. you know! Anyway, the experiment was a success. Years after this science incident, worm ingestion became a cult phenomenon. Gulping down eggs to harvest giant worms inside human stomach turned out into a competition of some sort. Parasitologists underwent a horrible ceremony of self infecting oneself with tapeworms. There were also reports of a Japanese scientist consuming 2000 eggs at a one-time dining and also of a Soviet researcher digging worms from a reindeer’s brain.
9. The Hanging Studies
Death has always been somewhat of a fascination to the intellectual lot. The changes the body and mind undergoes during the last breath has even been explained in a detailed manner by a scientist who personally sat down next to a wailing cancer patient to jolt down notes racing with the pulse of the poor guy! In cases like suicide or death by hanging, the body wiggles like a worm as it fights with all its in-built summation of power to escape itself from strangulation struggle. There was this guy called Nicolas Minovicis, a forensic science professor and he wanted to know how a body reacts during hanging! He designed a device which is actually a rope knot that loops round a pulley attached to the ceiling. On his first trail,Nicolas barely survived 6 seconds. A further leap of faith and the next time, Nicolas brought assistants to pull the rope. With lots of practice, the scientist managed to endure 25 seconds swinging by his neck. For the final showdown, Nicolas had something much elaborate- he decided to hang directly from the ceiling. But this time, the pain was overwhelming and he could last only 4 seconds. A burning neck traumatized him for a month. Later on, the scientist took on a different path of folk and art. Good for him!
10. Self Surgery
If expired medicines, bed bugs, non-sterilized instruments, first time doctors with shaky hands aren’t enough to excite you, try performing a surgery on yourself. That’s what Evan O’Neill Kane did on 15 February 1921. A surgeon by profession, (That’s a relief!)Kane was to undergo an appendix operation. But a scientific impulse struck him and he thought” Will I be able to surgically cut out my own appendix ?” Surprisingly, Kane managed to find the swollen appendix and removed it in a one-of-a-kind surgery that lasted 30 minutes. Obviously, there were some miscalculations but the details will make you skip dinner! So, moving on – 11 years later, 71 year old Kane decides to self operate his hernia condition given the bolstering success of his previous self-surgery. However, the operation was problematic. With failing strength and pneumonia setting in,there wasn’t much life in him. With age comes wisdom. True. With age, also comes death! True-True!