Mr. Wizard has died. I actually assumed he’d died a long time ago.
I loved his show on Nickelodeon when I was a kid. When I was growing up in Dubai, we weren’t restricted on chemicals you could buy, so I had a great big chemistry set I had put together myself — big bottles of HCl, Sulfuric Acid, Zinc, Potassium Permanganate, anything I could mix together to produce a gas and then explode.
My favorite was mixing HCl and zinc in a flask, filling a balloon with the resulting hydrogen discharge, then sticking a match to it. Way cool. Of course the KMnO4 + H2O2 catalytic discharge of oxygen was equally explosive and cool (that’s potassium permanganate dropped into hydrogen peroxide). I still have some KMnO4 somewhere around the house.
Interestingly, and on Mr. Wizard, my Aunt Daisy absolutely disliked the guy. She mentioned one time that she knew him. That’s all she said, but when he came on, she left the room or demanded I go elsewhere to watch.