The spate of indignant, even angry, letters from readers decrying the superstitious belief and people's obsession with Octopus Paul is more amusing than the light-hearted global reportage on the celebrated mollusc. Why do we find it so hard to chuckle along with the world at what is merely a delightfully entertaining and totally non-serious account of an octopus with a ‘talent' for prophecy? Let us not sacrifice our sparse sense of humour at the altar of dry political correctness.

R.P. Subramanian,

New Delhi

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I think we have become a humourless people. Instead of laughing off the Octopus ‘oracle' issue, we have readers chastising the creature, governments, footballers and the FIFA. For God's sake, let us treat the thing as a joke. Anyway, it is difficult for the detractors to beat the creature's winning hand since he seems to have had the last laugh!

Christopher Roy,

Chennai

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I do not think soccer, the universal game, has ever been subject to the influence of a so-called psychic creature. Such predictive influence will destroy the spirit and the competitive nature of football. If football and its glory are to be preserved, there is an urgent need for strict controls on the media to prevent them from sensationalising ordinary events.

A. Saratchandran Menon,

Chennai

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Although there is no scientific proof to validate the clairvoyant powers of human beings, animals, birds or other creatures, man has generally been fascinated by seers, soothsayers, foretellers, and visionaries. In the Greek, Indian and Chinese mythologies we come across characters predicting the future.

The power of Octopus Paul cannot be scientifically proved but the proof of the pudding is in the eating. The German octopus was right in all its World Cup predictions.

M. Vathapureeswaran,

Erode

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