Pharyngula

Paul is dead

With mixed feelings, I announce the demise of Paul the ‘psychic’ octopus.

On the one hand, he was a living creature, and I feel sadness at any death. On the other hand, he was a psychic fraud, and I have no sympathy for those rascals. On the other hand, he was a cephalopod, and those especially deserve to thrive. On the other hand, the hype surrounding him was tiresome and overblown—good riddance. On the other hand, he was being exploited by his trainers slave masters, so he hardly deserves the blame. On the other hand, what a waste of everyone’s time to be playing fake psychic games with already boring football games. On the other hand, he spent his life confined to a really boring tank instead of savoring the splendor of life in the wild. On the other hand, he did have a life of safety and security and readily available food, so it could have been a better life than the typical short and brutal experience of nature.

I guess the bottom line is that I regret the death of the octopus, but am relieved that there’ll be no more of this psychic flim-flam.