When I heard she was going to be in town, I thought it would be fun if I could somehow swing an interview with herÂ to post here onÂ Skepchick.Â IÂ was sure a print interview would be the best I could do, and in the back of my mind, I knew there was a good chance she wouldn’t even have time for that.
But we don’t get these chances often, so I decided to go for broke, and I asked her if she wouldn’t mind sitting down with me for a video conversation. I figured if she agreed, we couldÂ talk about her work, the NCSE, and basically what it’s like to be Dr. Eugenie Scott.
And to my amazement and great delight, she said she would love to do it!
I was psyched, but at the same time I was nervous, because nowÂ I had toÂ find a way to make it happen.
Fortunately, my friend and fellow Greater Houston Skeptic Society member, Chris Moyer, has his own audio/video production business, andÂ without hesitating a second, he agreed to produce the video.
Things were coming together nicely, but now the question was, where to shoot the interview.
Well, since Dr. Scott was lecturing at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, and since it is the epitome of cool places in Houston for science enthusiasts and skeptics, it just made sense to ask them first.
And again to my amazement and great delight,Â the museum staffÂ saidÂ they would love to have us use their facility! In fact, theyÂ said they couldÂ set us up in one of their classrooms, which I found appropriate, considering a good portion of Dr. Scott’s work is geared towardÂ keeping good scienceÂ in public schools. And theyÂ agreed toÂ provide us anything we needed within reason. Hey, sometimes being polite and asking in a friendly manner works wonders.
At any rate, we were set.
Well, the day finally came, and when Dr. Scott and I got to chatting, we covered topicsÂ that ranged fromÂ the Texas State Board of Education toÂ the evolution of creationism toÂ women in science and skepticism. And before we knew it, time had gotten away from us. So what follows is the first two segmentsÂ inÂ a series of nine videosÂ chroniclingÂ our conversation.
Hope you enjoy.
Now by way of brief commentary, I will just say what you all no doubt know. Eugenie Scott is an amazing person. I am proud to have spent even a short amount of time with her. In a post last year, I said of Neil deGrasse Tyson:
“. . . he is the type ofÂ person, theÂ kind of mind,Â this world needs. He sees things clearly, but he does not arrive at conclusions and opinions without deep consideration. He is passionate, personable, and bright. I thoroughly enjoyed his company, brief as it was.”
And I can say no less of Dr. Scott. I am not easily impressed, butÂ I found herÂ very impressive.
Also,Â ChrisÂ Moyer deserves to be sainted or knighted or both forÂ producing this interview with very little compensation. His company is called Dropframe Video. You can contact him at Malachi Constant (even if you’re not a Vonnegut fan),Â and if you ever need audio or video work done, show him some love and hire him. You will definitely be pleased with the result.
Skepchick reader, Naomi (Geek Goddess), also donated her time freely to help out.Â Big thanksÂ to her as well.
And finally, hat’s off to Steven Cowan, Erin Flis, and Melodie Wade of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for accommodating us, and allowing us to disrupt their normal day for a little while. Next time you’re in the Houston area, take the whole family down to the museum for a day, and help them celebrate their 100th birthday. You won’t regret it.
Stay tuned for PartsÂ 3 andÂ 4Â of my conversation with Dr. Scott to be postedÂ tomorrow.