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Poppycock

Dream Meditation Is a Bit of a Snore

Dream Meditation Is a Bit of a Snore

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
August 8, 2016

Whatever Dream Reality Cinema is offering me, it isn’t science. It is a pleasant experience—the first time, anyway—but a costly one.

Giving Nootropics a New Try

Giving Nootropics a New Try

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
July 29, 2016

Nootropics, by definition, certainly exist. But when we talk about nootropics anecdotally, we often mean something else: drugs that exist on the fringe, not yet completely acknowledged by science, or outright sidelined by it.

Hot Drinks

Hot Drinks

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
July 7, 2016

The question remains: If I get a coffee at my local takeout or make tea from my kettle is it typically hot enough to raise my cancer risk?

Is the Scientology Personality Test Scientific?

Is the Scientology Personality Test Scientific?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
June 17, 2016

We just wanted to see whether the OCA would give us any special insight that other personality tests, such as the famed Myers Briggs Type Indicator, didn’t offer… As we explained that we were there to take the personality test, voluntarily, rather than being prompted on the street, her eyes grew wider.

Online Harassment: Citation Needed

Online Harassment: Citation Needed

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
May 3, 2016

No study is perfect, and any study will face its limitations. This is why we rely on reporters to analyze and accurately report on research, going beneath the headlines and press releases.

10 Astounding Moments in a Creationist Textbook: Revisting Of Pandas and People

10 Astounding Moments in a Creationist Textbook: Revisting Of Pandas and People

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
April 25, 2016

There’s a tricky thing about science. If you base your theory on gaps in scientific knowledge, your theory will only last until science closes those gaps.

The Woman Who Took On Popoff: The Hidden Story of Crystal Sanchez, the Peter Popoff Whistleblower

The Woman Who Took On Popoff: The Hidden Story of Crystal Sanchez, the Peter Popoff Whistleblower

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
April 18, 2016

Peter Popoff says he's a healer and a prophet of God. His former employee says he's something quite different.

I’m an ENFP: We’re Confused by Personality Tests

I’m an ENFP: We’re Confused by Personality Tests

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
January 6, 2016

As far as confirmation bias goes, it had been working against Myers-Briggs, and Myers-Briggs had won. I was impressed. But is impressive enough to make it useful?

What’s Wrong with Dr. Phil

What’s Wrong with Dr. Phil

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
November 18, 2015

I went to visit Dr. Phil myself last week. The show is taped just a mile from my home in Los Angeles. Obtaining tickets was one website visit and a phone call away. In no time, I had two tickets to be in the audience the very next week.

“Gorgeouspil” Didn’t Make Me More Gorgeous

“Gorgeouspil” Didn’t Make Me More Gorgeous

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
November 4, 2015

Starting to feel age tugging at your jaw line? Does your doctor tell you that you have a case of the uglies? You need a little Alex Chiu.

Does a New Documentary Prove Shaken Baby Syndrome Doesn’t Exist?

Does a New Documentary Prove Shaken Baby Syndrome Doesn’t Exist?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
October 20, 2015

The Syndrome Sabotages Its Credibility.

My Ninety Seconds of Cryotherapy

My Ninety Seconds of Cryotherapy

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
September 10, 2015

The emails were adamant. Everyone wanted me to undergo cryotherapy: step into a -260°F stall, alone and naked, for three minutes, and feel the toxins flutter away into the ether.

Do Essential Oils Cure Everything?

Do Essential Oils Cure Everything?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
August 13, 2015

My understanding of essentially oils was essentially (sorry) that they were concentrated versions of various smelly things: lavender, eucalyptus, rose. And that aromatherapy enthusiasts used different smells to evoke different emotions or mental states. But aromatherapy turns out to be only a small part of the essential oils movement.

Will This New Study Help End Schizophrenia?

Will This New Study Help End Schizophrenia?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
March 19, 2015

This fall’s announcement that schizophrenia is likely not one, but as many as eight disorders, could impact treatment for almost as many Americans as there are people in Los Angeles.

I Oil Pulled for a Month and All I Got Was This Sore Tongue

I Oil Pulled for a Month and All I Got Was This Sore Tongue

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
July 23, 2014

All I had to do to perfect my pearly whites was swish a tablespoon of oil (sunflower or sesame is preferred) around my mouth for twenty minutes a day, pulling toxins out of my teeth and gums and “improving my overall oral health.”

Milk Doesn’t Aggravate Autism: How PETA and Jenny McCarthy Became Unwitting Bedfellows

Milk Doesn’t Aggravate Autism: How PETA and Jenny McCarthy Became Unwitting Bedfellows

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
June 16, 2014

According to the animal rights group PETA, childhood autism may be diminished with a dairy-free diet. In fact, any such correlation has been roundly debunked.

The Weekend I Became a Reiki Healer

The Weekend I Became a Reiki Healer

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
May 7, 2014

I am a Reiki practitioner, but I don’t believe in Reiki. That may sound like a contradiction, but apparently it isn’t.

Kevin Trudeau’s $18,000 Weight Loss Plan: A Book Review

Kevin Trudeau’s $18,000 Weight Loss Plan: A Book Review

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
April 18, 2014

It wasn’t selling snake oil that put Kevin in the slammer. In fact, it wasn’t even the “natural cures” books for which he became so famous. It was his relatively forgotten book, The Weight Loss Cure “They” Don’t Want You to Know About.

Not a Saint: How I Bought Con Man Kevin Trudeau’s Belongings

Not a Saint: How I Bought Con Man Kevin Trudeau’s Belongings

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
March 18, 2014

Kevin Trudeau doesn’t have very good taste. I know because I just got back from his house in Ojai, California. Or rather, the house he once owned.

A Grain of Truth: Recreating Dr. Emoto’s Rice Experiment

A Grain of Truth: Recreating Dr. Emoto’s Rice Experiment

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
March 11, 2014

Are you a human? Do you have access to the internet? Then you may already know about Dr. Masaru Emoto, the Japanese “scientist” who magically turns normal rice into gross rice, simply by yelling at it.

My First Trance

My First Trance

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
March 3, 2014

I sat with the older members of a group of twenty-eight people. Twenty were standing. I was the only guest. This was my second meeting with them. They often get together to pray, lay hands on the sick, and communicate with spirits. The spirits don’t talk back, but that doesn’t stop them.

Will Psychics “Cure” Cancer?

Will Psychics “Cure” Cancer?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
February 20, 2014

The online psychic industry is a seemingly bottomless collection of clairvoyants, tarot card readers, psychic healers, and other people in purple outfits.

Be Happy if You Want To: How I Became a Raëlian (Part Two)

Be Happy if You Want To: How I Became a Raëlian (Part Two)

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
December 13, 2013

The Raëlian Happiness Academy was the culmination of our five months undercover with the UFO-believing group. During those five months, we spent many hours in one Raëlian sister’s apartment, cross-legged and staring sublimely into one another’s eyes.

Be Happy If You Want To: How I Became a Raëlian (Part One)

Be Happy If You Want To: How I Became a Raëlian (Part One)

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
November 8, 2013

Ross and I scurry into the Raëlian Happiness Academy four days late. The whole thing is supposed to last six days, but we will only be there two. They are the most important two—the final meditations and the baptism, which occurs on the last day.

Another Tower Fell: My Months with the 9/11 Truthers

Another Tower Fell: My Months with the 9/11 Truthers

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
November 1, 2013

Here in Los Angeles, there are two prominent Truther groups seemingly in competition. We have been attending the biggest and most active one. About twenty-five people attend each meeting. Each one is four to five hours long and mostly consists of Abel showing us YouTube videos and steamrolling conversations.

Hodag: The Legendary, Ugly, Smelly Beast of Wisconsin

Hodag: The Legendary, Ugly, Smelly Beast of Wisconsin

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
September 30, 2013

Three things can kill a hodag: dynamite, chloroform, and lemons. If you see one, you are advised to keep any all-white bulldogs away (that’s all a hodag eats) and call your local fire department or animal control. If you decide to try to kill a hodag yourself, the risk is all on you.

Blowfish Hangover Remedy: Scam or Savior?

Blowfish Hangover Remedy: Scam or Savior?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
September 18, 2013

We each downed two tablets, the recommended dosage. Ross, having had a lot more to drink (he’s part-Irish, you know) considered taking extra, but the recommended dosage seemed advisable. We flipped the box over to see how much of each active ingredient was going into our systems.

Can a Brain Scan Tell You if Your Husband Loves You?

Can a Brain Scan Tell You if Your Husband Loves You?

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
September 10, 2013

How Being in Love Made My Skin Look Great

Is Marijuana Medical? Part Two: My First Time

Is Marijuana Medical? Part Two: My First Time

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
August 7, 2013

When I get my first bag of marijuana home, I have no idea what to do with it. Unlike most medicine, cannabis doesn’t come in a “dosage” so much as in “servings.”

Is Marijuana Medical? Part One: How I Got a Cannabis Prescription from a Porn Star

Is Marijuana Medical? Part One: How I Got a Cannabis Prescription from a Porn Star

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
August 2, 2013

He looks a lot like a doctor from a soap opera: chiseled jaw and yellow-blonde hair. You’d definitely think his name was Keith, which it isn’t. Dr. Keith is going to decide if I can get a prescription for medical marijuana under California’s Proposition 215, the California Compassionate Care Act.

Bath and a Nap: Sound Bathing at the Integratron

Bath and a Nap: Sound Bathing at the Integratron

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
June 6, 2013

Packed with forty or fifty people into a small, domed room in the California desert—a room supposedly blueprinted by aliens—listening to a middle-aged nurse play quartz singing bowls, a person might think they were supposed to stay awake. Not so. At the Integratron, falling asleep is a given.

Up Your Nose with a Rubber Hose: My 30 Minutes at an Oxygen Bar

Up Your Nose with a Rubber Hose: My 30 Minutes at an Oxygen Bar

by Carrie Poppy
Poppycock
May 21, 2013

They will deliver us pure oxygen—double the amount we usually get in the air! It helps cure hangovers. It ends fatigue. It helps with muscle pain and weakness. It curbs jet lag. It dissolves headaches. Some places make even loftier claims about oxygen bars, like that they can help halt cancer or aid chi flow.