I didn’t think that I would post something today.


Because it’s my birthday!

After opening the packages, reading the cards and having a very relaxed start of the day, I looked into my emails and found a lot of nice messages. More congratulations emerged on twitter and facebook. But the nicest note came from someone called Shirley; almost certainly not knowing it was my birthday, she sent me the following email:

From: shirley
Subject: your work

Message Body:
I’ve just come across your website and can’t believe you actually have set up a whole site devoted to trolling alternative medicine, which may not be your area of expertise but helps millions of people every day. why is it so hard for you to acknowledge that illness and pain most often has an underlying emotional cause.? could you be suffering from some unresolved trauma of your own?
either way, you’re a dickhead.

And why do I find this nice?

Simple, because it confirms that my work here is important, that I am doing the right thing, and that I am making progress. Thank you Shirley for this unexpected gift; you made my day!




Let me use this occasion to thank everyone else who send me birthday messages.

9 Responses to Isn’t it great to be appreciated?!?

  • Happy birthday Professor Ernst. Thank you for your web site and book – I was given your book at Christmas and greatly appreciated it.

  • Happy birthday to you, Prof

    I give the gift of pedantry.

    I think Shirley was merely insulting you not engaging in anything so advanced as ad hominem argument. In the latter, the target is attacked as if the target’s personal qualities have a bearing on the quality of their arguments. Shirley was being insulting in calling you a “dickhead” presumably because she couldn’t do anything more meaningful.

    That’s a pity, because in her brief email she managed to pack four really excellent fallacies; poisoning the well, argumentum ad populum, post hoc ergo propter hoc and begging the question.

    Some of the distinctions among fallacies are a bit subtle and I’d be open to correction if anyone disagrees with my analysis.

    Have an enjoyable day.

  • Hee hee. That really is a tribute isn’t it? May I wish you many happy returns of the day.

    It is the grit in the oyster that makes the pearl – and you are a rather successfully irritating form of grit! But all for the greater good.

  • Dear Edzard,

    Happy birthday. Thank you so much for your tireless work, I’m sure I’m not the only reader whom you’ve enabled to stop believing in alt-med then progress to seeking expert medical help.

    My sincerest best wishes,

  • A very Happy Birthday to you Prof. Ernst.

    Thank you for your efforts.

  • Your books and work have recently changed many of my mistaken beliefs.
    My ex-chiropractor is as greatful to you as Shirley. He really is a dickhead!

    Happy birthday Prof

  • Happy birthday! Four days after mine, six after my younger son’s, one before my Mum’s – all the best people have birthdays at this time 🙂

    And what a great day to have Ernst’s Law confirmed once again.

  • Nachträglich: herzlichen Glückwunsch und alles Gute zum Geburtstag!
    Erfreuen Sie un bitte weiter mit Ihren humoresken, ernsten und im besten Sinne aufklärerischen Artikeln.
    “Aufklärung ist der Ausgang des Menschen aus seiner selbstverschuldeten Unmündigkeit.”
    Daran arbeiten Sie mit.
    Vielen Dank!

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