Back in the day I used to do a weekly feature every Friday that I used to call Your Friday Dose of Woo. For purposes of the bit, woo consisted of particularly ridiculous or silly bits of pseudoscience, quackery, or mysticism, such as the Quantum Xrroid Consciousness Interface. Amazingly, I managed to keep that up for a couple of years, but over time I started sensing that I was getting a bit too repetitive. The same bits of pseudoscience kept recurring. Over time I had to dig more and more to find suitable bits of woo that amused me enough to inspire me to ever more over-the-top heights of sarcasm.

Earlier this week, it occurred to me that, should I ever want to resurrect YFDoW, I could easily just do a weekly column about some bit or other of utter nonsense from goop, the website and now lifestyle magazine developed by actress turned into this generation’s Oprah Winfrey (at least with respect to promoting self-indulgent, New Agey nonsense like jade eggs). I don’t plan on doing that, mainly because it’s been a long time since I’ve been able to tie myself to an artificial schedule of having to do a specific kind of post on every Friday. That doesn’t mean that I can’t take today to thank Gwyneth Paltrow for providing me with what is likely to be a long-term go-to source of pseudoscience and quackery, a well that I can draw from whenever the mood hits me.

Only $30? What a bargain!


After all, where else could I purchase Psychic Vampire Repellant? That’s right. You read that right. goop is selling actual psychic vampire repellent! But what is this product, actually? Glad you asked:

A spray-able elixir we can all get behind, this protective mist uses a combination of gem healing and deeply aromatic therapeutic oils, reported to banish bad vibes (and shield you from the people who may be causing them). Fans spray generously around their heads to safeguard their auras.

This is how you use it:

Shake gently before each use. Spray around the aura to protect from psychic attack and emotional harm. Avoid contact with eyes. Do not ingest or inhale.

And such a bargain, at a mere $30 for a 3.4 oz bottle!

But, I ask (that is, after asking where I can get me some of this), what the heck is in this stuff? Only the highest quality ingredients:

Sonically tuned water, rosewater, grain alcohol, sea salt, therapeutic grade oils of: rosemary, juniper, and lavender; a unique and complex blend of gem elixirs, including but not limited to: black tournaline, lapis lazuli, ruby, labradorite, bloodstone, aqua aura, black onyx, garnet, pyrite and mummite, reiki, sound waves, moonlight, love, reiki charged crystals.

Skeptics that goop’s customers are, I’m sure they want to know who the reiki master is who’s charging those crystals up. Inquiring minds want to know. (Too bad Paltrow’s customers aren’t exactly what you would refer to as “inquiring minds.”) Fortunately, I am, although I have to question whether wasting my inquiries on the sort of mystical, “empowering,” New Age bullshit that Paltrow sells is a good use of my brain cells. Probably not, but it amuses me, at least to a point, and if it helps explain why what she’s selling is bullshit it’s worth it. It’s also worth it because I can point out that Paltrow’s minions over at goop are learning a bit about how to protect themselves from charges of selling quackery and unproven medical treatments:

Disclaimer: This product has not been evaluated by the FDA. Gem Elixirs are not intended to diangose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical condition. Gem Elixirs are not intended to replace the advice or care of a medical professional.

This is what we refer to a Quack Miranda warning.

Of course, psychic vampire repellent is so silly that there’s really not much to do with it but to point at it and mock. However, it’s also of a piece with everything that Paltrow is trying to do, as was revealed by an interview with her published by her new goop Magazine that appeared earlier this week. It’s almost as though she’s trolling her detractors in a way. The photo of her portrays here in a bikini covered in mud. Then she describes the origin of her interest in quackery (I know, I know, to her it’s “health and wellness”). It began when her father became ill and required a feeding tube after surgery:

But yes, getting back to wellness: Long story short—when my dad got sick, I was twenty-six-years-old, and it was the first time that I contemplated that somebody could have autonomy over their health. So while he was having radiation and the surgery and everything, and eating through a feeding tube, I thought, “Well, I’m pushing this can of processed protein directly into his stomach,” and I remember thinking, “Is this really healing? This seems weird. There’s a bunch of chemicals in this shit.”

It was where I started to make the connection, or to wonder if there was a connection, and started doing a bunch of research on sugar and cancer and environmental toxins and pesticides and everything else. And I think what happens is, as soon as you test something and it works and you feel better, you really catch that “wellness” bug.

“There’s a bunch of chemicals in this shit”? I have news for Paltrow: There’s a bunch of chemicals in everything, including each and every thing goop sells. Heck, her psychic vampire repellent is full of chemicals. She named some of them. Of course, whether the chemicals that are advertised as being in there actually are in there, who knows?

It turns out that Paltrow has become so credulous that she’ll try almost anything, no matter how ridiculous. She views this as being brave, inquisitive, and adventurous. I view it as being so “open minded” that her brains fell out long ago. I could tell from her interview that she had tried detox foot baths, one of the most outrageous health scams out there. She didn’t feel any better after that (surprise! surprise!); so she moved on. She also tried some sort of “color therapy,” but apparently it wasn’t fo her.

She’s also very, very much into “cleanses,” like the Master Cleanse and the Alejandro Junger cleanse:

It’s only a three-day cleanse, and also I’m very “all or nothing.” So I was very amped up on the idea of seeing it through to completion. My best friend did it with me and she ate a banana on the second day, and I was like, “You f%$ked it up. All results are off.” I felt very toxic and sluggish and nauseous on the second day, and by the third day I started to feel really good. And in the book, some people do it for seven days, ten days, thirty days. I was like, “I’m good with the three-day introductory cleanse.” And I remember the next day, I was like, “Oh wow, I just did this cleanse and I feel so much better, so I can have a beer and a cigarette now, right?” It was the nineties.

But I do remember feeling that that’s where I caught the bug. And then the Alejandro Junger cleanse was really instrumental in terms of explaining to me that, especially as detox goes, our bodies are designed to detoxify us, but they were built and designed before fire retardants and PCBs and plastic, so we have a much, much more difficult time, and the body needs some support, which is why cleanses can help. I just anecdotally felt great and so I started doing more and more. And by the time goop came around and we started writing about wellness content, then it started to get really fun. And the girls make me try everything. I’m always the one.

As I like to say, “detoxification” is fashionable nonsense. There are a couple of “flavors” (if you’ll excuse the term) of rationales for “detoxification.” One is that we’re “poisoning ourselves from within,” also known as autointoxication. The idea here is that the poop accumulating in our colons is leeching “toxins” into the bloodstream through our colons and slowly poisoning us, causing all manner of chronic disease. Never mind that we don’t have 20 lbs of built up fecal matter in our colons, as those claiming that “death begins in the colon” often opine. The colon is very good getting rid of the body’s solid waste; it doesn’t accumulate except in the case of significant disease. When it does, it usually results in acute, not chronic illness. (Toxic megacolon, anyone?) The second rationale is more like the one that Paltrow makes, that “chemicals” are assaulting out body in such quantity and new forms that our livers are no longer able to “detoxify” our body without help. The problem, with this claim is that it’s just not true, either. There is no need to “detoxify.

Not surprisingly, Paltrow is now starting to think that medical marijuana will be an important “natural” health aid and treatment for various things that we evil, reductionistic “Western” doctors don’t accept. Never mind that the evidence for the utility of medical marijuana for most of the conditions for which it is advocated is, at best, thin and, at worst, nonexistent.

Paltrow also has a—shall we say?—rather loose interpretation of what constitutes good medical evidence:

And then we are as a culture, very resistant to more natural options.

I think there’s a general reticence to this idea that we can be autonomous over our own health, that there are other options. So, that if you have arthritis or IBS, you can maybe, possibly, make a diet change that’s really impactful. There might not be board-certified physicians doing double-blind studies that can lay out the results in the same way; the empirical evidence is anecdotal. But, you’ll have people really resistant to the idea, like it’s better to be on five prescription drugs than to maybe cut gluten out of your diet.

And at goop, our job isn’t to recommend, or to have an opinion: We’re just like, this is fascinating. Let’s ask this doctor this, let’s ask this doctor that. I think we know that, for example, we’ve tried certain things that are more holistic, and they’ve had incredible effects. But it doesn’t behoove a pharmaceutical company or chemical company to spend lots of money on trials about whatever it is.

Hmmm. If only there were a way to determine whether going “gluten-free” helps irritable bowel syndrome or arthritis… If only… Oh, wait, there is! It’s called science. It’s called randomized clinical trials, which Paltrow just dismissed in favor of a much weaker form of evidence prone to all sorts of biases, including the human tendency to confuse correlation with causation and the regression to the mean of symptoms, in which people tend to take remedies when their symptoms are at their worst and then attribute the regression to the mean of their symptoms to whatever they took or did, regardless of whether it actually affected the course of their symptoms or not.

How convenient, though. Paltrow washes her hands of responsibility for selling quackery by, in essence, invoking a variant of JAQing off. We’re not recommending anything, Paltrow is saying, we’re just asking questions that you can ask your doctors! Oh, and big pharma isn’t interested in our questions or remedies because it can’t profit off of them. Profiting off of them is our business model, after all! We make false health claims for profit!

Now here’s what’s irritating. There’s no denying that it’s an unfortunately effective tactic, but it’s irritating nonetheless. But what do I know? I’m just a middle-aged white male. Obviously my criticism of the pseudoscience and quackery peddled by goop is a product of my wanting to oppress women—or at least my being afraid of women “empowered” by goop to—gasp!—ask questions. So spake The Paltrow:

I really do think that the most dangerous piece of the pushback is that somewhere the inherent message is, women shouldn’t be asking questions. So that really bothers me. I feel it’s part of my mission to say, “We are allowed to ask any question we want to ask. You might not like the answer, or the answer might be triggering for you. But we are allowed to ask the question and we are allowed to decide for ourselves what works and what doesn’t work. We’re allowed to decide for ourselves what we want to try or not try.”

Oh, bullshit. Paltrow and her minions are more than allowed to “ask questions.” Paltrow just doesn’t like the answers she gets because her questions are premised on belief in pseudoscientific quackery. None of that stops her from bravely marching deeper and deeper into the swamp of pseudoscience for profit disguised as female “empowerment”:

Yeah, I mean, I think it’s our mission to empower women. Our mission is to support women with content, product, ideas, where they can get closest to their real identity and have the courage to speak and operate from that place. Whatever it is that they want to do in the world, whether they want to stay home with children, whether they work, whether they want to start a second career, whether they want to understand, like, you know, how an alternative health modality might benefit them.

Our mission is to have a space where curious women can come. We are creating an opportunity for curiosity and conversation to live. That the knock-on effect of that conversation is that somebody might think to themselves, “Oh, wow. This is how I can manage a difficult relationship at work.” Or, “Wow, like, maybe I can improve my relationship with my mother or my understanding that this is her personality.” Or, “Wow, maybe if I up my vitamin C intake, let me try it, let me speak to my doctor or see if it’s something I should do.” You know, whatever it is. So, we know that the world follows the consciousness of women. So we’re just trying to create this environment where, really, women again, can just feel okay about getting close to themselves and working from that place.

That space? Well, one example was Paltrow’s ridiculous “wellness summit” earlier this summer. Oh, and haters gonna hate, not because they support science and recognize Paltrow for the snake oil saleswoman that she is. Oh, no. It must be because they’re afraid of “empowered” women:

Yeah, when we had our wellness summit a few weeks ago, it was so incredible to see all of these curious like-minded women congregating in a space, making friends, having conversations, exploring all these different avenues together. It was really powerful. You know, it’s like, how do you control that? If there is an inherent cultural fear of women getting together and talking, pushing boundaries, you control it by ridiculing them for talking to each other.

No, women weren’t being ridiculed for “talking to each other.” Gwyneth Paltrow was being ridiculed for being a con artist, selling bogus “wellness” to women in the name of “empowerment.” And she didn’t like it. Not one bit. She did richly deserve it, too.

Basically, goop is a scam. It is nothing more than an online vessel to sell old-fashioned snake oil. Paltrow no more “empowers” women by selling her snake oil than, for example, Stanislaw Burzynski “empowers” cancer patients by selling them his ineffective cancer “cure.”

Comments

  1. #1 Zach
    September 22, 2017

    This woman…is a moron.

  2. #2 Renate
    September 22, 2017

    Would her psychic vampire repellent, help to keep her and here kind out of my way? Because they are not good for my wellbeing.

  3. #3 Christine Rose
    September 22, 2017

    I think all that sand would gum up a spray bottle.

  4. #4 daustin
    September 22, 2017

    The thing about “just asking questions” is that there are often already science-based answers. Paltrow and her quacky ilk count on their marks not to be smart enough to find them.

  5. #5 Ruth
    United Kingdom
    September 22, 2017

    So… that psychic vampire repellent. It’s a $30 room spray, then? Or is it a $30 body mist? At that price, I hope the stupid thing at least has the decency to smell pleasant.

  6. #6 Eric Lund
    September 22, 2017

    Renate@2: Sorry, but the product in question is not effective against non-psychic vampires. Just as it says on the label, it only repels psychic vampires.

    As for “empowerment”, I do not think that word means what Paltrow thinks it means. I would not consider people who are the marks of a scam to be “empowered”. As the old song says:

    But don’t ask me what I think of you
    I might not give the answer that you want me to

  7. #7 Renate
    September 22, 2017

    To me she functions as a psychic vampire, because she brings bad vibes to me.

  8. #8 Nancie K
    United States
    September 22, 2017

    So, that if you have arthritis or IBS, you can maybe, possibly, make a diet change that’s really impactful.

    Should I tell her that drinking Soylent for at least one meal a day is what had a huge impact on my IBS? (From 2 or more flareups a week, to less than one a month.) Most of the ingredients don’t pretend to not be chemicals; it would probably blow her mind.

  9. #9 Julian Frost
    September 22, 2017

    “Psychic Vampire” refers to a toxic person who drains the mental energy and undermines the emotional wellbeing of others. Why that phrase was chosen is puzzling.
    In addition, how does this spray work to counteract psychic vampires? Surely it’s better to just cut them out of your life?

    • #10 Orac
      September 22, 2017

      I know! If all it took to block the malign effects of psychic vampires was some fairy dust made of reiki infused crystal essence and various flower extracts, that’d be awesome. 🙂

  10. #11 Eric Lund
    September 22, 2017

    I would expect pepper spray to be more effective as a “psychic vampire [whatever that means] repellant” than the stuff Paltrow is peddling, but pepper spray may be illegal in some jurisdictions. IANAL. TINLA.

  11. #12 Rich Bly
    Ocean Shores
    September 22, 2017

    I know of something that works for both psychic and regular vampires.

    Go out and trap a skunk. Then on a daily basis have your, now pet skunk, liberally spray you. Not only will this keep any type of vampire away from you but will isolate you from all those disease carrying people out there.

  12. #13 Rich Bly
    Ocean Shores
    September 22, 2017

    Eric, I think skunk spray beats your pepper spray.

  13. #14 Science Mom
    http://justthevax.blogspot.com/
    September 22, 2017

    Frankly women like Paltrow make the rest of us look bad. How ’bout education, reproductive rights and equal opportunites for female empowerment? We just don’t need stupid over-priced spritzes or vag eggs Gwynnie.

  14. #15 Christine Rose
    September 22, 2017

    The first time I heard the phrase “Psychic Vampire” was from the mouth of William S. Burroughts.

  15. #16 Angela
    September 22, 2017

    So vampire spray is real? I saw this pop up in a few places and kind of thought it was a joke. $30 for this stuff?

    @Science Mom: I agree, Paltrow is doing the opposite of empowering women.

  16. #17 Angela
    September 22, 2017

    So this stuff is real? I saw it pop up in a few places and thought it was a joke. $30? Really?

    @Science Mom: I agree. Paltrow is doing the opposite of empowering women. She’s actually perpetrating the old stereotype of women using “feelings” instead of rational thought.

  17. #18 Denice Walter
    September 22, 2017

    Interestingly enough, Paltrow’s own mother, Blythe Danner, is a shill for Big Pharma: she does commercials for an osteoporosis drug, Prolia. There are also advertorial artciles wherein she discusses how she copes with the illness ( kale is great- as well as meds).

    It’s funny how woo-slingers sometimes use ‘women’s empowerment’ as a selling point. See also anti-vax and altie nutritionists.

  18. #19 doug
    September 22, 2017

    What is Paltrow but a greedy vampire preying on the finances and fears of women? Her goop empire is seriously in need of a stake through its heart.

  19. #20 Dangerous Bacon
    September 22, 2017

    It is so typical of woo-sters to try to sell you something when all you need is natural mind-power to ward off psychic vampires.

    Better yet, fight fire with fire – learn to become a psychic vampire yourself. I found a great site that discusses the technique, beginning with complete relaxation:

    “…Now, feel every nerve in your body. Be aware of each and every one. Feel your energy traveling through you, out you, around you, and back into you. Feel the energy pulsate in you. Once you are able to do this comfortably, any time, any where, you are ready for the next step.”

    “Now to feed. You should now be able to meditate and draw energy through you. The only difference is that instead of directing your energy, you must will someone else’s. To do that, feel around. Find someone who has an abundance of energy. Once You have picked out your “victim” or “source”, concentrate on them. If you must look at them, then do so. If not, picture them in your mind. Imagine their energy coming out of them and entering you. Continue to do this until you feel satisfied. You may feel the life force coming from them become too weak. In that case, stop, you do not want to leave them overly exhausted or be noticed. If you do not feel satisfied you may need to feed off more than one person.”

    “As you get more practice, you will be able to this from a distance and over the phone. Perhaps you have a compassionate heart towards the unknowing victim, you can learn to feed off a crowd collectively.”

    This is way cool! I am already feeding quite well off skeptical websites like this one. Feeling just a bit fatigued, minions? Bwa-ha-ha-ha!

  20. #21 Spectator
    September 22, 2017

    Paltrow’s audience is people spending somebody else’s money. They are narcissists needing no sympathy. Paltrow is a con and and in this case, so are marks.

  21. #22 Alena
    September 22, 2017

    Her audience is likely inclined to accept the science behind climate change; that many people accept science selectively, when it suits their world view is most troubling of all. What a bunch of hypocrites.

  22. #23 Dangerous Bacon
    September 22, 2017

    Tom Brady (and his new book) are turning out to be target-rich environments for science-based commentators.

    The Patriot quarterback’s book suggests that drinking lots of water protects you against sunburn, and attacks GMOs. It seems that Tom is also tight with a “personal guru”, Alex Guerrero who was warned by the FTC to stop falsely referring to himself as a doctor, and who has reportedly peddled a supplement claimed to be effective against terminal cancer and other life-threatening diseases.

    “Brady and Guerrero are not merely inseparable; they are now also business partners in TB12, LLC, which has a sports therapy center headquartered at Patriot Place next door to Gillette Stadium. Over the past year, major profiles in Sports Illustrated and the New York Times magazine have focused on the unique relationship between Brady and Guerrero, without even hinting at Guerrero’s checkered past. As Guerrero continues to be monitored by the FTC under his lifetime ban, TB12 will likely be under a microscope to back up claims about the extraordinary training regimen Guerrero has sold Brady—and which Brady and Guerrero are now selling to the world.”

    “Already, the Brady-Guerrero venture has produced a major misstep—one that brought the FTC storming back into Guerrero’s life. Though Guerrero had promised the FTC never to make outrageous claims about his supplements, by 2011 he had a new company, 6 Degree Nutrition, and a new miracle potion. Introduced at a time when NFL players, in particular, had become hyper-aware of the effects of head injuries, it was called NeuroSafe—a “seatbelt for your brain” that promised to protect users “from the consequences of sports-related traumatic brain injury.” The label boasted that the product was “Powered by TB12.” Guerrero, the snake-oil salesman, was back in business.

  23. #24 Rich Bly
    Ocean Shores
    September 22, 2017

    Paltrow is missing a golden marketing opportunity. She could market wooden eggs for the man who thinks his female friend(s) are physics vampires instead of jade eggs.

    I don’t have any citations on the effectiveness of this technique.

  24. #25 BBBlue
    September 22, 2017

    Zach- I get it.

  25. #26 sadmar
    September 22, 2017

    @ DB

    Brady and Geurrero are so much worse than goop. Psychic vampire repellent and jade vagina eggs aren’t going to keep anyone away from real medicine, or let them believe they’re protected from some illness for which they’re at risk. NeuroSafe is just as bad as the dangerous cancer scams that got Guerrero kicked out of California. TB12 isn’t just a fly-by-night operation by these two guys. The Patriots have made heavy investments in it, I think in part as a means of giving Brady $$ under the table to avoid salary cap issues. But that makes it a billionaire-backed sports quackery operation. No surprise to me, both Brady and Pats owner Robert Craft are big fans of MAGA Trump.

    • #27 Orac
      September 22, 2017

      Hmmm. I wasn’t that familiar with this particular scam. I might have to look into it…

  26. #28 Chris
    September 22, 2017

    I believe the best way to ward off psychic vampires is to stay far far away from Facebook and other social media outlets. 😉

  27. #29 herr doktor bimler
    September 22, 2017

    It’s funny how woo-slingers sometimes use ‘women’s empowerment’ as a selling point. See also anti-vax and altie nutritionists.

    See also the tobacco industry (a few decades ago).

  28. #30 herr doktor bimler
    September 22, 2017

    “Psychic Vampire” refers to a toxic person who drains the mental energy and undermines the emotional wellbeing of others. Why that phrase was chosen is puzzling.

    Think of it as weaponised projection mechanism, or New-Age witch-sniffing. “I am feeling low-energy and emotionally messed-up, therefore someone else must be to blame.”

  29. #31 herr doktor bimler
    September 22, 2017

    Paltrow is missing a golden marketing opportunity.

    “Lisa, I would like to buy your rock wooden egg.”

  30. #32 Harold Gaines
    Wellington, Kansas, USA
    September 22, 2017

    Sound waves? Moonlight?? LOVE?!?!? These are ingredients? I’m fascinated by the implication that there are more sound waves than moonlight in this stuff.

  31. #33 can't remember my 'nym
    Or where I am
    September 22, 2017

    I third the idea that Gwynneth is doing the opposite of empowering women, she is reinforcing stereotypes about the irrationality of women. And “we know that the world follows the consciousness of women”… what? That is a vacuum of a sentence, it sounds like it came from the Chopra woo generator.

    Also, “toxic megacolon, anyone?” – thanks, but I’m trying to quit.

  32. #34 Alain
    September 22, 2017

    Feeling just a bit fatigued, minions? Bwa-ha-ha-ha!

    Yap, but then, your 3 previous paragraph hadn’t had any effect. Just got off from a medical clinic with a script for good’Ol penicilin 875mg twice daily, 14 days.

    Radiography indicated infected sinus and right lung lobe. Doc told me to take one (pill) ASAP and come back if it’s still infected.

    At the very least, I gave myself a good bday gift (tomorrow), It’s been 2 days I stopped smoking cold turkey.

    Al

  33. #35 Dangerous Bacon
    September 22, 2017

    The link to the article about Brady and his sidekick Guerrero quoted earlier:

    http://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/blog/2015/10/09/tom-brady-alex-guerrero-neurosafe/

  34. #36 DrivingBy
    September 22, 2017

    @Sadmar

    Tom Brady is a truly excellent quarterback, one who achieves through immense discipline despite being an antique (age ~40) in a brutally physical contest. You can see him working for every one of his team’s wins, and often pulling them through when the other team has superior firepower (bigger, stronger, or faster players). He has every day for the rest of his career mapped. Every meal, every training session, every rest period is scheduled, it is how he can still be on the field playing opposite steroidal 20 year olds.

    Shame that’s he’s gotten associated with quackery, but nobody (well, nobody sane) goes to an NFL QB for supplements etc. Brady is an example of dedication, teamwork, skill and perseverance. Considering the number of people like Hernandez in the league, jumping on what is perhaps some undue influence from his trainer diminishes one of the positive examples in the NFL.

  35. #37 Politicalguineapig
    September 22, 2017

    Alain: Happy birthday and congratulations on quitting smoking. Good luck with eradicating the infection. Lungs are the worst when they’re not working properly.

  36. #38 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    September 22, 2017

    How is it supposed to repel a psychic vampire without garlic?

  37. #39 sadmar
    September 23, 2017

    @ Orac #27

    Do read the Globe article DB linked in #35. It’s really good. It is however, from 2015, so it may not provide a timely hook for a blog post. The only update revealed by a quick web search is here: http://tinyurl.com/y9ke5cro, from May of this year: Brady says his regimen (including NeuroSafe) has protected him from concussions, but his wife reports he’s had enough of them she’s worried about it. IIRC, Guerrero no longer runs the risk of selling and advertising his woo to the public at large. Rather it’s incorporated into the ‘comprehensive training and wellness’ programs TB12 markets to ‘elite’ athletes (at an ‘elite’ price), the exact details of which aren’t generally publicized. The Globe article on the Pats payments to TB12 is here: http://tinyurl.com/y9ke5cro

  38. #40 Politicalguineapig
    September 23, 2017

    Sadmar: No surprise to me, both Brady and Pats owner Robert Craft are big fans of MAGA Trump.

    Like I needed more reasons to dislike football.

  39. #41 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    September 23, 2017

    I ward off psychic vampires by consuming the essences of juniper, coriander, quinine, and lime mixed with carbonated water and alcohol. While listening to “Tattoo Vampire” by Blue Öyster Cult.

  40. #42 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    September 23, 2017

    Dear Orac,

    Whatever I did to first be put on permanent moderation and then move directly to your spam filter, I apologize.

  41. #43 Dangerous Bacon
    September 23, 2017

    Commentary on Tom Brady’s quackery-laden new book (he’s also into alkalizing woo):

    https://deadspin.com/sports-illustrated-nakedly-shills-for-tom-bradys-danger-1797276280

    Looks like Sports Illustrated is feeling the heat about promoting the book:

    https://www.si.com/eats/2017/09/22/tom-brady-book-recipes-avocado-ice-cream-tb12

  42. #44 Vicki
    September 23, 2017

    Is a “gem elixir” some kind of very finely ground crystal, or is this something that has met a gem in the past? I’m thinking either light passed through a gemstone to fall on a container of water or alcohol, or a small piece of that gemstone put into the container for some arbitrary amount of time.

    For the sake of the customers and those around them, I hope it’s not tiny bits of rock being aerosolized into the air around them. That reminds me of the lung damage caused by all the crap people downwind of Lower Manhattan inhaled in the weeks after the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center.

    [Realistically, my suspicion is that whatever they’re claiming, that part is just distilled water, making it harmless, like most homeopathic nostrums.]

  43. #45 LouV
    France
    September 24, 2017

    My best friend did it with me and she ate a banana on the second day, and I was like, “You f%$ked it up. All results are off.”

    Me thinks her friend needs some psychic vampire repellent against her bad vibes…

  44. #46 Cullen Johnson
    September 24, 2017

    Last night I warded off vampires with the essences of juniper, cardamom, quinine, and other botanicals infused in alcohol and carbonated water.

    However, I don’t believe it can be an adequate vampire repellent without garlic.

  45. #47 Kerlyssa
    September 24, 2017

    so how much poop does a person have in them? i wonder that w/e i hear the weird 20+ pound people. someday i will get over my fear and google it

  46. #48 Politicalguineapig
    September 25, 2017

    Er, judging from my exposure to babies, about a pound.

  47. #49 alison
    waiting for the rain
    September 25, 2017

    Quoth GP: So while he was having radiation and the surgery and everything, and eating through a feeding tube, I thought, “Well, I’m pushing this can of processed protein directly into his stomach,” and I remember thinking, “Is this really healing? This seems weird. There’s a bunch of chemicals in this shit.
    So, I’m curious. How else did she think her father was going to get the nutrients he needed while modern medicine went about healing him from whatever he had (I’m guessing cancer)?

  48. #50 Politicalguineapig
    September 25, 2017

    Alison: Photosynthesis?

  49. #51 Johnny
    127.0.0.1
    September 25, 2017

    so how much poop does a person have in them?

    I tried to answer this question. While preparing for a colonoscopy, I tried to keep track of my weight. However, it takes a coupla days – first there is low fiber diet, then liquids, then a gallon (call it eight pounds) of some nasty, thick, salty tasting mixture, consumed and lost over a coupla hours, that not only leaves you with zero poop, you’re lucky to have any bones left.

    With all of that, I couldn’t get a good read, but it can’t be more than a pound or two at most.

  50. #52 doug
    September 25, 2017

    “… some nasty, thick, salty tasting mixture …”
    probably a solution of polyethylene glycol with added electrolytes

    Great stuff, PEG. All sorts of uses.

  51. #53 TBruce
    September 25, 2017

    When I used to do autopsies, we didn’t weigh fecal matter but could certainly estimate the amount. It was usually less than a kilogram. 20 lb is absurd.

  52. #54 Johnny
    127.0.0.1
    September 26, 2017

    Great stuff, PEG. All sorts of uses.

    If the intended use is “produce a case of the squirts that can only be described as ‘copious, sudden, and undeniable'”, then I would agree.

  53. #55 Jane Ostentatious
    September 26, 2017

    TBruce -when I was younger and more foolish, I used to weigh myself obsessively and found the difference between one bowel movement and another was negligible So much for the mythical 20 lbs,. By the by, I first heard that story about 30 years ago. At least two colonoscopies later, and I’ve still haven’t lost 40 lb from preps

    Guess it sucks to be human!

  54. #56 Andrew Dodds
    September 26, 2017

    I’ve had a proper detox* – due to acute kidney failure, I’d advise people against experiencing that – and that involves sticking a great big tube in the vein in your neck and cycle your blood through a big machine.

    I’m pretty sure that there were no mystical crystals involved. Definitely felt much better afterwards. Strange that Gwyneth dosen’t offer it..

    *OK, plasma exchange.

  55. #57 quacks accusing quacks
    September 26, 2017

    what a bunch of prissy shit posting.

  56. #58 doug
    September 26, 2017

    what a bunch of prissy shit posting.

    Fainting couches and clutching pearls can be rented at reasonable rates.
    You may apply for a position as tone troll, but given the current waiting list it is unlikely that a position will come open in this decade.

  57. #59 Alain
    September 26, 2017

    If the intended use is “produce a case of the squirts that can only be described as ‘copious, sudden, and undeniable’”, then I would agree.

    Balistic spring to mind too.

    Al

  58. #60 Roadstergal
    September 27, 2017

    “Whatever I did to first be put on permanent moderation and then move directly to your spam filter, I apologize.”

    So it’s not just me? I thought I was being moderated due to my psychic vampirism. :p

    Let me try my other email…

  59. #61 Narad
    September 27, 2017

    Inasmuch as I can’t leave my current kitten socialization/HDD replacement spot to go get a T6 screwdriver (nor does copying and pasting work on this phone), I’ll mention that a pair of closely spaced colonoscopies has led me to consider GoLytely merely an acquired taste. Best served cold.

    And I never scored better than a C on my prep, despite absolute determination for the second one.

  60. […] Gwyneth Paltrow’s goop: Psychic Vampire Repellent as female “empowerment” […]