Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Sir C.V. Boys
"At three O'Clock in the afternoon of the day after Christmas in the year 1889 the lights went on in the theater of the Royal Institution of Great Britain in London. The room was filled with a capacity crowd of teen-age boys and girls. This was the opening day of the Science Lecture Festival for Young People. (In the theater on the Festival days adults would be permitted in the rear row of seats only; they would be expected to slip in quietly, and to take no part whatever in any discussion.) The program in the theater was to run on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays for six days, beginning just after Christmas. This year Charles Vernon Boys was to be the lecturer. There were rumors that he had some magical tricks he would show...
...Promptly at three, the lecturer, Charles Vernon Boys, stepped through the opening in the rear curtain and came forward onto the stage. In his damp hands he had a soap bubble nearly a foot in size; he tossed it from one hand to the other as he walked. "It is possible that some of you may like to know why I have chosen soap bubbles as my subject."