Tuesday, October 26, 2010

RIP: Paul the Psychic Octopus

Small in stature, kind of slinky and slimy in a way, but a hero to all, Paul the Oracle Octopus died today in his underwater home at Sea Life Aquarium in Oberhausen, Germany. He was born in Weymouth, England but spent his life in Germany. He was around 2 1/2 years old.

Paul rocketed to fame with his uncanny predictions of the outcome of sporting events, most notably the outcome of eight World Cup matches this year. Paul's prognostications were made by choosing a mussel from one of two transparent boxes on which the flags of the two opposing teams was painted. There was something like a 1 in 256 chance that he would get all eight predictions right. Paul made some enemies in his adopted homeland when he predicted Germany's demise in the games. But the little cephalopod was a hero in Spain for predicting their eventual win over The Netherlands.

In a World Cup that was roundly seen as rather boring and full of annoying officiating and noisy crowds, Paul stood, or should we say swam, out as a truly amazing spectacle.

RIP Paul.

No comments: