NOTE: The names of researcher are being temporarily withheld pending official approval of these posts.
June 27. After a power packed smoothie, the day kicked off by being stripped and searched (hair, ears, mouth, armpits, private areas) by the delightful Nurse Una Cronin from the UCC School of Nursing. The search took place under the watchful eyes of Dr. Q and Dr. X. Once I was given the all clear, I was blindfolded with cotton gauze and a roll of bandage.
In order to conduct document these tests in as bulletproof a way as possible, I developed an original system of hand gestures which I would use concurrently with my verbal call. Thus, the card and the hand gesture would be recorded simultaneously, in order to prevent audio manipulation in the editing process.
I completed 277 tests before the day was over. The first 250 tests were conducted with Zener cards. The next 25 tests were also conducted with Zener cards but at a considerable distance (separate buildings). My hit rates while at a distance were comparable to my other hit rates (over twice the Mean Chance Expectation).
The final two tests were conducted with playing cards. The first was a near miss. The second was a direct hit. I requested that the tests be stopped at that point. The two tests with playing cards are not included in the statistical evaluations.
The data is still under review, but the general consensus of the researchers was that the odds of my results occurring by chance were beyond one in a million.
Their conclusion? A classic one: Further research is needed.
A second round of testing was scheduled for three months later. In this coming round of testing, the number of researchers would double. All subsequent tests would be conducted: at a distance, behind a one-way mirror, in an electromagnetically shielded room, and cameras would be prohibited in the testing areas.
(Spoiler alert: these conditions would not impact my results.)