Power to the people! In the form of a small silicone bracelet into which is embedded a Star-Trek-The-Next-Generation-esque hologram (an entire deck being outside the range of present technology).
Athletes and, even more importantly, celebrities the world over have begun to don the Power Balance wrist trinket in the pre-Copernican belief that its vibrational powers will aid them in their quest for glory.
According to the website, the bracelet is “designed to work with your body’s natural energy field. Founded by athletes, Power Balance is a favorite among elite athletes for whom balance, strength and flexibility are important.” The hologram itself
is based on the idea of optimizing the bodyâ€™s natural energy flow, similar to concepts behind many Eastern philosophies. The hologram in Power Balance is designed to resonate with and respond to the natural energy field of the body.
Shaquille O’Neal wears one. He says that it “really works!” O’Neal remembers one game in which “there were about three of my teammates with the product on and we won that game by 57 points!” His towering seven-foot-one inches and weighing in the vicinity of a Volkswagen Beetle apparently had nothing to do with it.
England’s Daily Mail, in yet another scoop, is reporting that actors Gerard Butler, Robert De Niro, Demi Moore and others more important than you or I will ever be are wearing the trinket, too. The paper quotes co-inventor Josh Rodarmel (his brother Troy was the other inventor):
Everything in nature has a set frequency. The body has a frequency and things which cause negativity to the human body â€“ like cellphones and radiowaves â€“ break down its natural healing frequency.
My brother and I worked out a way of putting good frequencies into our holograms so they balance out the body, making it stronger and more flexible.
The frequencies embedded in the holograms clear pathways and lead to maximum energy flow.
It works in different ways for different people. Athletes say they can last longer on the field, that they have better balance and that their muscles recover quicker.
Non- athletes say that it works for them, too, giving them extra boost off the field, in many areas of life including the office and in the bedroom
The neoprene version of the mystical jewelry is only thirty bucks, so you can afford to buy more than one. And many people have: so many people that the company is awash in the green. To bleed off the excess, the company is “partnering” with the “Ovarian Cancer Research Fund.” The OCRF is so keen on “partnering” that it does it with QVC, a cable television channel whose sole purpose is to sell useless effluvia like the…well, like the Power Balance bracelet.
Now, it’s easy to convince the bottom layer of our mental society—athletes, actors and actresses, “personalities”, chiropractors and the like—of nearly anything. So the brothers Rodarmel stunt was not a difficult feat.
They’re only mastery was in reaching a critical mass of the cognitively challenged to sport their wares. Once one celebrity is in on the cause, all the other ones want to be, too (witness global warming, Tibet, Obamacare, and on and on).
If I didn’t have a conscience, I’d be doing the same as the brothers. They’re making a fortune! The bracelets produced in bulk cannot be more than a few cents on the dollar, and they’re selling for many, many times that. Their markup is so high that it cannot be long before they’re subject to a glowing story in the New York Times.
In the interest of “objectivity”, the Times will drag up somebody—probably a physician; certainly not a physicist—to say something along the lines of “There’s no evidence that Power Balance provides a benefit.” Evidence! Who cares what those eggheads want: De Niro is wearing one and swears by it. Besides, what can it hurt?
It can’t, really. Unless you get it caught on a train door handle as the train is about the depart the station, there’s no bad thing that can happen to you when wearing it.
Unfortunately, I do have a conscience, so I cannot bring myself to duplicate the boys’ ploy. But I would like to get in on the money. What I can do is make them a little bet. I’ll bet them $any amount that I have United States of American dollars that in a planned experiment of my design, their wristband proves no better than a (similarly appearing) sham bracelet at boosting performance of any kind.
My design will be so scrupulous that any honest person will have no qualms agreeing to it. But I don’t expect the brothers to take my bet. James Randi has had a similar one standing for years, and nobody—except for the odd, delusional dowser—has ever taken it.
My test will sure be better than this one.