A parody of the Nobel Prizes, the Ig Nobel Prizes are given each year in early October—around the time the genuine Nobel Prizes are announced—for 10 achievements that "first make people laugh, and then make them think." Organized by the scientific humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research, the awards are presented by Nobel Laureates and are often intended to draw attention to scientific articles that have some humorous or unexpected aspect. What are some of the prize-winning topics?
Back in the day
One of the first flying aces in history, Roland Garros was a French aviator and WWI fighter pilot. Early in the war, Garros fitted a machine gun to the front of his plane so that he could shoot while flying and soon downed three German aircrafts. While on a mission in 1915, his fuel line clogged, and he was forced to land behind German lines. He was captured and held as a prisoner of war until 1918, when he managed to escape and rejoin the French army. What happened when he returned to combat?
Born on a day like today
Widely considered one of the greatest distance runners in history, Haile Gebrselassie is an Ethiopian long-distance track and road running athlete. Over the course of his career, he has broken 25 world records and won numerous Olympic and World Championship titles, achieving major competition wins in outdoor, indoor, cross country, and road running races as short as 1,500 meters and as long as full marathons. In 1995, he beat the world record for the 5,000-meter run by how many seconds?