Geller in Australia

James Randi --- WIzard ((no email))
21 Oct 93 11:28:08 EDT

When Erich von Daniken (author of "Chariots of the Gods?" and other such
trashy but highly successful stuff) visited Australia a few years ago,
his promoter rented out a huge hall, advertised his appearance there,
then suddenly announced that illness in von Daniken's family had called
him back home, and the appearance was cancelled. Very few tickets had
been sold, and the theory was offered that when certain artists showed up
in Australia, someone in their family would fall ill just before the show.

Just this last week, the Curse of Down Under seemed to have taken effect
once more. Uri Geller showed up prepared to display his wonders in
Melbourne. A sizeable hall was rented, and while Mr. Geller ranted to
the press about how he was going to sue (again?!) someone in Melbourne
who had made unsatisfactory remarks about him, the Saturday and Sunday
show tickets went on sale. Lo! The producer of the show regretfully
announced that Mr. Geller's party (including a rough-looking biker named
"Riley") had to rush back home without making the appearance -- due to a
sudden illness in the family.

The NOVA program was a great success. The ratings were far beyond
anything WGBH-Boston expected, especially in the middle of a World Series
game. (Rating:5, Share:8) Calls have not stopped since the program.
The program that followed, "Front Line," dealt with this bullpoop of
"facilitated communication" as a means of helping autistic children. It
was VERY effective, and I highly recommend it.

I'll be on "Politically Incorrect", a program on Comedy Central cable
TV channel, soon. No date announced, but I'm taping it Friday night.
Watch for it.

James Randi.