On Feynman

in Life Beyond Medicine by

There were 183 of us freshmen, and a bowling ball hanging from the three-story ceiling to just above the floor. Feynman walked in and, without a word, grabbed the ball and backed against the wall with the ball touching his nose. He let go, and the ball swung slowly 60 feet across the room and back — stopping naturally just short of crushing his face. Then he took the ball again, stepped forward, and said: “I wanted to show you that I believe in what I’m going to teach you over the next two years.

As you may (or may not) now, I am a huge fan of Richard Feynman, and when times are as bad as now, I often turn to him (his books, I mean) for solace. Have you read Surely, You’re Joking Mr. Feynman lately? Well, neither have I. Time to read it again, I guess…


Skeptic Oslerphile, Scientist at the Indian Council of Medical Research, National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases. Interests include: Emerging Infections, Public Health, Antimicrobial Resistance, One Health and Zoonoses, Diarrheal Diseases, Medical Education, Medical History, Open Access, Healthcare Social Media and Health2.0. Opinions are my own!


  1. He was a brilliant man… I first heard about him during the Atlantis shuttle disaster reports/findings… I can still picture him pulling the rubber o-ring out of the glass of ice water and shattering it… Such a clear mind!

  2. Feyman was the man. Modern bengaliz whould get a shock if he just walked by…breaking just another myth! No need for much advertised myth busters if you have Feyman around!

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