The 19th first annual Ig® Nobel Prizes were awarded on October 1, 2009 at Harvard University's Sanders Room in front of a standing room only audience! Check out these awards. You will learn about things you've always wondered like why don't pregnant women tip over, how can your girlfriend help you during a chemical war, and whether beer bottles make better candle holders than head busters. Ten awards you'll want to vie for next year: Ig Nobel Prizes in Peace, Literature, Physics, Medicine, Economics...
And the winners are...
1. The 2009 Ig Nobel Peace Prize
via Planet Save went to Stephan
Ross, Lars Oesterhelweg, Michael
Thali and Beat Kneubuehl of the University of Bern, Switzerland, for
determining — by experiment — whether it is better to be
smashed over the head with a full bottle of beer or with an empty bottle. "Are
Full or Empty Beer Bottles Sturdier and Does Their Fracture-Threshold
Suffice to Break the Human Skull?" (Answers: Yes and Yes) Now that's peaceful, isn't it?
2. The 2009 Ig Nobel Prize In Medicine
via Fit Sugar went to Donald L. Unger, of Thousand Oaks, California, USA,
for investigating a possible cause of arthritis of the fingers, by
diligently cracking the knuckles of his left hand — but never
cracking the knuckles of his right hand — every day for more
than 50 years.
Though I could not find the study in print, I did find some letters to the editor of the journal, including one from Dr. Unger, that indicated he found no relationship between knuckle cracking and arthritis, at least in his own left hand. He was trying to de-bunk a myth that mothers tell children about why they shouldn't crack their knuckles. "This result calls into question whether other parental beliefs, e.g., the importance of eating spinach, are also flawed," Dr. Unger wrote.
3. The 2009 Ig Nobel Prize In Literature
went to Ireland's police service (An
Garda Siochana), for
writing and presenting more than fifty traffic tickets to the most
frequent driving offender in the country — PrawoJazdy
name in Polish means "Driving License."