Tesla and Twain

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Mark Twain in the lab of Nikola Tesla, spring of 1894

Mike Daisey tells the story of Tesla’s salons, where he played fast and loose with technology. "When he had you there, he'd show you inventions, then make you part of the inventions," Daisey explains. The inventor "cured" Mark Twain of his constipation with an electrical charge. The pair also loved to use Tesla's X-ray gun against sheets of undeveloped film to capture the images, including several x-rays of Mark Twain's skull.

But then Tesla's mood started to change, and he became withdrawn even as the salons grew more popular. "He became unbelievably fastidious," Daisey says of this period.

(Originally aired: January 25, 2008)

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    Artist: Dorit Chrysler
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    Label: Self-released