A year after winning the Ig Nobel Prize in chemistry, Miguel Apatiga tells how it changed his life, in an essay in The Guardian. He begins:
Ever since our research was first published, people who hear about it for the first time just can’t help laughing. Well, the fact is that most sane people would not dream of trying to turn cheap tequila into diamonds. In fact, at most of the scientific conferences I have attended, the first response to the reading of any paper on the topic is laughter, and a lot of it. But then the audience quietens down. There is no doubt that this research makes people laugh … and then think.
I had never heard of the Ig Nobel prizes until I was called and informed that I, together with the two other authors of the research, had been nominated. At the beginning of the conversation, I thought it was just an ingenious prank, but after hanging up, I checked the internet….