Pyramid Power

Inspired by our recent rediscovery of the wonderful 1970s children's book Strange Things to Do and Make, and short of things to do thanks to this never-ending winter, we decided to put the book's experiment on pyramid power to the test! Can a model pyramid be used to preserve something like a small piece of food?

Here's what we did. First we cut out some equilateral triangles - we used psychedelic dayglo card for a more authentic Hawkwindy effect, but any card will do.

Then Nomi decorated them with some far-out Egyptian designs. She used an Eye of Horus, a feather of Ma'at, a scarab beetle, plenty of ankhs and, of course, a blue-lotus flower (upon which Ancient Egyptians seem to have been permanently whacked).

Next, we taped the triangles together to make a pyramid. (By the look of my wrinkly old hands, it seems I could use a bit of pyramid power myself, eh readers?)

The book suggests using your pyramid to preserve a piece of meat (ugh!) or a dead butterfly. We chose the less icky option of a button mushroom, which we placed on its special plinth, right under the apex of the pyramid.

We made sure the edges were aligned to the cardinal directions, and as this was an experiment, we left an almost identical mushroom outside as our control.

Then we went away for a week to the mountains of Snowdonia.

Imagine our excitement when, on our return to Oxford, we lifted back the pyramid to see what was inside!

Good lord! The mushroom seems to have been turned into a miniature plastic unicorn!

Just kidding! No, what we found was a perfectly preserved button mushroom (seen here on the right), all dried and shrivelled up and, um, pretty much identical to the control.

So it looks like it's Spirit of Free Inquiry: 1, Pyramid Power: nil (though it must be said that the mummified mushroom was just a nadge drier and harder than the control - make of that what you will).

Tune in next time when we make our very own Orgone Accumulator to see if it really does 'make ya feel greater.' (Um, or quite possibly not.)


  1. I have a brass pendent from c. 1980, inscribed with mystical symbols, that is supposed to somehow contain a flattened pyramid with all of the powers appertaining thereto. I still don't know how they did it!



Featured post

Shroom: ten years on

I find it hard to believe but it's exactly ten years since my book Shroom: A Cultural History of the Magic Mushroom was published. Thou...

Popular Posts

Twitter Updates