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Hartselle Enquirer

Local man receives Ig Nobel Prize

By Staff
A Hartselle man has received a Nobel Prize. Sorta.
Last week, Dan Meyer became the first sword swallower to ever receive the infamous Ig Nobel Prize when he was presented the 2007 Ig Nobel Prize in Medicine at the awards ceremony held at Harvard University. Meyer is co-author of a year-long research study article on sword swallowing published in the prestigious British Medical Journal.
The Ig Nobel Prize was designed to honor achievements "that first make people laugh, and then make them think", and is intended to celebrate the unusual, honor the imaginative, and spur people's interest in science, medicine, and technology. Ten Ig Nobel Prizes were awarded in the subjects of medicine, physics, public health, chemistry, engineering, literature, psychology, economics, peace and biology.
"It's ironic that I never really cared much for science in school," said Meyer, who received his award in medicine. "But now, as a sword swallower, I swallow iron and use scientific principles such as physiology and an understanding of the human body on a day-to-day basis in my work! I'm passionate about preserving this dying ancient art, and feel extremely honored that our research paper on sword swallowing was nominated for and won an Ig Nobel Prize."
In 2005, Meyer and Dr. Brian Witcombe, a London radiologist with an interest in swallowing disorders, collaborated on the article on the medical complications of sword swallowing via nearly 200 emails over the course of a year.
As part of their research, Meyer undertook a comprehensive study by contacting 110 known current and ex-sword swallowers around the world.
and received detailed information from 48 sword swallowers in 16 countries.

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