SkepchickCON Psychic Challenge 2012


Do you know who is calling when the phone rings? Do visions come to you in your dreams? Do you hear voices in your head? Were you a beekeeper in a past life that knows where everyone’s keys are now? Were you a key-keeper who knows where all the bees are now? Did you totally know I was just going to ask that? Did I say that or was it the voices in your head? Do you think skepticism is pretty cool but maybe, just maybe you could potentially be… PSYCHIC?

Well, here is your change to prove it!

Or in geek-speak here is your chance to use statistics combined with imagination and the power of elimination to try and score yourself, not only a FREE pass to SkepchickCON at Convergence but some other super-cool prizes too.

It’s time for the official SkepchickCON Psychic challenge 2012!

All you have to do is guess what is in this BOX:

Use your psychic power. Tell me what is in the box.

And if you have ALREADY guessed that there is more than one box, you are proving how wise and/or psychic I totes knew you were!

Yep, there are a total of FOUR boxes. Each with a different item in the box.

Here are the rules:

Tell me your official guess in the comment section of this post.

Be specific.

Each commenter is allowed a total of TWO guesses per secret box post per week.

I will post one box a week for four weeks.

That means YOU can guess two times per post per week. Guess more than that and even if you are spot on your guess will not count.

The first person to guess the contents of a box in the comment section gets to pick from the prize list below.

Once a prize is picked, it will be marked off the list. So winners can’t pick the same prize twice.

If no one guesses exactly what is in a particular box I will show the item to Rebecca and then together we will decide which guess is closest to the actual contents and give a prize to that commenter.

Winners will be announced in the comment sections of each post and in any follow-up posts.

I will give one hint each week.

I have sent a photo of what is in each box to an official, classified Skepchick for verification purposes. Then, I sealed the boxes. They will not be opened again until the contest is over.

The boxes have been sealed.


Prize 1: I will personally pay for someone’s pass to get in to Convergence/SkepchickCon! You have to get there and find somewhere to stay but I will pay your admission to the event!

Prize 2: A drink created and named after the winner for the Skepchick party created specially for you by our resident Mad Art Lab cocktail specialist, Anne Sauer! Recipe will be provided! And we will toast to you at the Skepchick party at SkepchicCON with you if you can make it or in honor of you if you can’t.

Prize 3: A four pack of surprise Surly-Ramics given to you at SkepchickCON if you can attend, or mailed to you if you can not. You can tell me if you prefer nature or science themes.

Prize 4: A Skepchick shirt signed by all the Skepchicks who attend SkepchickCON 2012. If you can attend we will give it to you there, if not we will mail it to you after the event.




This week’s hint: There are no Surly-Ramics in any of the boxes.

Random fact: The boxes are 6”x6”x6”. Good luck and I hope to see you at SkepchickCON in July.


More info about SkepchickCON at Convergence can be found here.




Amy Roth

Amy Davis Roth (aka Surly Amy) is a multimedia, science-loving artist who resides in Los Angeles, California. She makes Surly-Ramics and is currently in love with pottery. Daily maker of art and leader of Mad Art Lab. Support her on Patreon. Tip Jar is here.

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  1. First Guess: A vibrator

    Second Guess: A toy car with a bear sitting in it (a toy bear, not a real bear obviously…)

  2. OK, here’s my first guess:

    A small, off-duty Czechoslovakian traffic warden. (I hope that’s specific enough :)

    My second guess:

    A single ticket for Convergence/SkepchickCon.

  3. box number one contains the following: a cat; a small amount of a radioactive element; a geiger counter; and a vial of poisonous gas.

  4. First Guess: A baby sloth. Since I know you aren’t likely to put a live one in there, this would be a picture of a baby sloth.

    Guess 2: A toy dinosaur

  5. I’m sensing something “crawly” so I want to say an “insect” of some sort but my spirit guide is screaming “Happy Monkey Tree Ornament” so…they are my two guesses.
    1. insect
    2. Happy Monkey tree ornament

  6. The shirt to be designed at Skepchickcon, which was created using precognition.

  7. Guess what it has in its boxezez? Not a fair riddle. We see what it’s doing:

    String or nothing!!!!

    Seriously folks:

    1. a sock
    2. keys

    Because they all have to go somewhere.

    PS. Can someone let me back into my house. It’s raining and even if I can access wi-fi from my porch I’m still bored and hungry.

    1. Seriously? Don’t do what I did when I was locked out in the rain last December, which is throw a brick through a window and then throw a neighbor’s kid in after it.

      1. I would disbelieve you as the events you describe seem improbably unwise, but…

        Oh, and in my house now. Without any bleeding children in the vicinity.

  8. You guys probably aren’t guessing correctly because all of your skepticism is ruining the flow of psychic energy.

  9. The spirits are telling me that one of the boxes is filled with an odorless colorless gas comprised of 78% Nitrogen 20% oxygen and some trace gases.

  10. Your superb geekiness alone will not win you this round. You must accurately describe the item in the box.

  11. Buddy Christ?

    God, because God is everywhere?(random fake-theist guess)

    An eyepatch.

    Madagascar. The entire country.

    A Polaroid of Scott Sigler.

    A CD of George Hrab and/or Roy Zimmerman songs.

    A sticker having to do with vaccines.

    A pet rock.

    A Chick Tract.

    A mojo bag.

  12. I think it’s a Lego character keychain. Do I have to specify which character?

    My second guess is a shot glass.

  13. first guess: A picture frame.

    Second guess: A cute teddy bear.

    I feel like I just bought myself a lottery ticket. :(

  14. Are you keeping the boxes under flourescent lighting or something? I’ll have to guess then. One of them is a lottery ticket and another is a bent spoon. If not, that’s what they should be. I won’t tell anyone if you switch it, I promse.

  15. 1: A raygun t-shirt?

    2: The Elizabeth Cady Stanton “deal with it” button?

    C’mon psychic powers, activate!

  16. Guess 1: a stapler
    Guess 2: a handy homeopathic remedy to improve cognition

    However my psychic method does include shaking the crap out of the box so I may be at a disadvantage in this one.

  17. At this point, I really want to start making seriously absurd guesses. I’m pretty much disqualified forever, but “eggy in a basket” and “the north end of a south-bound mule” are burning a hole in my brain!!!

  18. Hi Skepchick

    Long time reader, first time poster. Learned about you from SGU. Hi, Rebecca!

    I posted the nitrogen/oxygen joke before I noticed someone else made it already :(
    Sorry, Waters.

  19. “What’s in the box? Nothing! Absolutely nothing!”


    A Hug Me, I’m vaccinated! stuffed bear.

  20. Guess one: A lime green pacifier
    Guess two: A polka dot bow tie

    Yeah, my psychic senses are really odd in the visual colour spectrum.

  21. Nobody is going to guess any of these. A couple of the “closest guesses” are bound to be hilarious.

  22. First Guess – Nunzilla.

    I’ll make a second guess when I have another stroke of genius, or at least get to stroke a genius.

  23. Rats, my psychic powers just kicked back in, but I’ve already made my two guesses. But I KNOW WHAT IT IS! Don’t worry I won’t tell anyone, but I will nod and smile knowingly at the reveal.

    1. By “created” do you mean invented in America or do you mean produced or manufactured in America? One more little favor please……will you please cheat and tell me what is in the box and then I’ll guess? Isn’t that how “real” psychics do it?

  24. Come on guys. It’s not a meatball sub or a pizza because leaving a meatball sub or a pizza in a box for a month would be gross.

  25. 1. Snookie action figure.
    2. Was gonna be tomato, but I shall go with—Wonder Woman bracelet.

  26. OK I don’t think this will count because I already guessed before the hint, but I really think it’s a can of Chef Boyardee.

  27. I love this!

    Guess 1: The Flying Spaghetti Monster (a model of Him, of course)

    Guess 2: Ceramic tiles

      1. Wow! This is so exciting! As a lunar psychic, though, I was really bound to get it right on account of the SuperMoon. I should also let everyone know that there will be major celebrity relationship news before the next full moon and that the economy will probably do something, too.

        All of the prizes are incredibly awesome, and I’ve given it a lot of thought. In the end I was incredibly torn between Prizes 2 and 3, but since I will probably order some more Surly-Ramics in the near future, I’d like to choose Prize 2, please!

        Thanks so much! :)

        1. Excellent! Would you like the drink named after your avatar name or your actual name or a nickname?

          1. One Downey comin’ up! Will hopefully have it ready for the next post on Friday!

    1. I had the meatballs! And I’m wearing my Spaghettification t-shirt (complete with FSM, my most religious t-shirt.) I can’t believe how close I was. On the other hand, there already is a Buzzed Aldrin, so a Buzzed Parsec would be a little redundant.

      Congratulations, Cybercedd! Add a dash of methanol and you could call it a Downey Woodpecker.

  28. Rats, I’m too late. I guess I need to check out this part of the skepchick blog online instead of reading it on the can on my Kindle. Here’s what the voices in my head told me to guess. I hope my dire predictions below don’t befall Cybercedd.

    Guess 1: A green furry baby sloth pelucha (aka stuffy, plushy, stuffed toy).

    Guess 2: In case guess 1 is too specific and wrong, and on the assumption that no one else will guess correctly…. an object less than 6″x6″x6″ big.

    It occurs to me that this contest is either going to show that despite the fabulous incentives, there are no people with real psychic powers in this forum, or if someone manages to guess one of the objects, she will conclude that she has psychic powers and will join one of the forums on, make terrible life decisions based on her faith in her psychic powers and die young of drug addiction, or at the hands of a poorly chosen mate. Since this consequence is too horrible to wish on anyone, the task should be to guess the specific contents of all four boxes. If one is really psychic, that should be a cake walk (what the hell is a cake walk anyway?) BTW, doesn’t Randi object to you stealing his million dollar challenge idea? This contest sounds a bit like a rip off of that concept. ;)

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