David McKenney, of Huntingdon, England, is in hospital today, when, for no explicable reason, he started shaking violently, lifted off the ground, and slammed into a crowd of people, injuring dozens. Four other people were injured badly enough to warrant a ride to the hospital as well.
McKenney was attending the 20th annual Cambridge Science Festival with his wife and three children when he began to feel a trembling in his shoulders. Within 20 seconds, his entire body began to vibrate, sending him upwards and outwards into the crowd with little warning.
"I didn't know what to think," said Shirley Tremborne-Davis of Peterborough. "Damndest thing I ever saw.
"One minute, we were at the Hands-On Physics exhibit, watching a student mathematician plot the equation of a thin blue line, when all of a sudden, this man, out of nowhere just flies into the people in front of me. Thank goodness I was agile enough to jump out of the way before he hit," said Tremborne-Davis, who escaped with only a few minor scrapes.
McKenney, whose approximate weight is around 132 kg or 290 lbs, landed on two people who, along with two other people who were injured while trying to dive out of McKenney's way, were transported to hospital with various injuries.
At this time, all injured, including the human projectile, McKenney himself, were said to be in stable condition. Several others in the crowd were treated on the scene with various minor injuries including contusions, cuts and scrapes.
Several of the physicists on hand were asked if they had any idea how this man could have possibly attained such a level of vibration as to actually become airborne. One had a theory he was eager to share.
Dwayne "Donny" Brentson, the student physicist working on the thin blue line equation, said he had a theory that he was working on, and he was amazed that it could have possibly worked on Mr. McKenney.
"It's called the bobble-head theory," said Brentson.
"Mr. McKenney is a large man, and his head is abnormally large in comparison to his body. My theory is that someone possibly nudged McKenney in order to slide in front of him to get a closer look at my experiment, and this set off a small tremor in McKenney's body. This most likely caused his head to bobble side to side. The shudder became a vibration, upsetting the equilibrium in McKenney's body, and, instead of slowly equalizing itself, the vibrations became more violent, sending McKenney upward and into the crowd."
The other physicists agreed this was the most logical explanation for the occurrence. They also said that, while rare, there have been more and more incidents of this nature lately. While they cannot say what is causing this shift in equilibrium, they were all in agreement that it could possibly have something to do with the fast food industry.
"What is interesting," said John Fittlesworth, a physics student at Cambridge, "is that not only are people's bodies getting larger due to an increased appetite for cheap, fast food, but in some, it is also causing an increase in the circumference of the head."
While the students showed concern for the injured, they were outwardly enthused at the prospect of re-creating this spectacle again in controlled experiments for next year's Science Festival.
Fittlesworth says their excitement stems from the fact that they could very well be on the threshold of finally explaining Einstein's Theory of Gravity as a distortion in the shape of space-time.
"Mr. McKenney could very well have experienced a shift into the fourth dimension," said Fittlesworth, "and we can't wait to see what else this man is capable of."
No exhibits were cancelled at the Science Festival, and it is hopeful that it will wind up Sunday without further incident.