The Sciences


Bad AstronomyBy Phil PlaitApr 14, 2011 2:42 PM


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Last weekend I was in NYC attending the Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism, aka NECSS. It was a lot of fun, as I kinda figured it would be. Skeptic conferences usually are! And of course it was a chance to catch up with a lot of old friends. Attendees are writing their opinions of the meeting all over the place (like here, here, and here for starters). I'll spare you the recap, which would boil down to how awesome my talk was, and cut to the chase which is to thank Michael Feldman from the New York City Skeptics, and all the folks from the New England Skeptical Society for inviting me and throwing such a fab conference. I'd be remiss, though, if I didn't include this little bit of funnery. Skeptical singer songwriter and BA friend George Hrab was at NECSS. On Geo's last album, "Trebuchet", he wrote a tune called "Death from the Skies" -- based on the brilliant book of the same name. He plays the funky beat, and I read statistics of getting killed by various astronomical events. We performed this song live both at Paddy Reilly's, a bar where Geo had a gig, and to close out the ceremonies. Here's the recording of the latter, which is pretty laid back considering how many octillions of Joules of energy I'm talking about:

[embed width="610"][/embed]

And what the heck, here we are at the somewhat more rambunctious bar the night before:

[embed width="610"][/embed]

See? If you go to skeptic meetings you can experience stuff like this live. It's way too much fun. There are photos of NECSS popping up all over the place (search Flickr

), including for example a nice set by Bruce Press

. I also like this shot of Geo and me

taken by Brian Engler. Apparently I had just stubbed my toe. NECSS really is a terrific event. I hope to see you all there next year!

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