When You Were a Tadpole and I Was a Fish: And Other Speculations About This and That
Best known as the longtime writer of the Mathematical Games column for Scientific American—which introduced generations of readers to the joys of recreational mathematics—Martin Gardner has for decades pursued a parallel career as a devastatingly effective debunker of what he once famously dubbed “fads and fallacies in the name of science.” It is mainly in this latter role that he is onstage in this collection of choice essays. When You Were a Tadpole and I Was a Fish takes aim at a gallery of amusing targets, ranging from Ann Coulter’s qualifications as an evolutionary biologist to the logical fallacies of precognition and extrasensory perception, from Santa Claus to The Wizard of Oz, from mutilated chessboards to the little-known “one-poem poet” Langdon Smith (the original author of this volume’s title line). The writings assembled here fall naturally into seven broad categories: Science, Bogus Science, Mathematics, Logic, Literature, Religion and Philosophy, and Politics. Under each heading, Gardner displays an awesome level of erudition combined with a wicked sense of humor.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Razinha - LibraryThing
A wonderful collection of Gardner writings. As he says, This is another collection of articles and book reviews, of introductions to works by me and others, plus some stray pieces retrieved from ... Read full review
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afterlife atheist Baum Baum’s believe Belloc called cards Catholic centaur chapter Chesterton Church claims claims of parapsychology coincidence color Coulter death disaster dream earth Ella Wheeler Wilcox evil evolution exist experience faith famous Fibonacci numbers Fibonacci sequence ﬁeld ﬁgure ﬁlm ﬁnally ﬁnd ﬁre ﬁrm ﬁrst ﬁve friends G. K. Chesterton God’s heart Hersh human immortality inﬁnite inﬂuence intentionally left blank Jesus Kant Langdon Smith later laws live option magazine MARTIN GARDNER mathematician mathematics Miguel de Unamuno miracles Newton novel ofﬁcials Oz books paradox paranormal parapsychologists person poem precognition prediction psychic published reﬂect reincarnation reprinted REUBEN HERSH Santa Claus scientiﬁc scientists ship sinking Skeptical Smith square stanzas Stevenson story tells theory things Thought tilable tiled tion Tipler Titanic Titanic’s today’s trominoes turn Unamuno universe verse Wells’s White Wilcox Wizard writes wrote York