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The Mooney Experience

Just a quick note. I finally got to meet Chris Mooney, my fellow Seed Scienceblogger and the author of The Republican War on Science.

On Saturday, we met early enough to have coffee and a little chat before his book-reading and signing event at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh. The long weekend in local schools (Friday off in Orange Co. and Monday off in Wake Co.) and a break in bad weather we had recently propably prompted a lot of locals to make that last trip out of town for the year this week, so the size of the crowd was not as impressive as it could have been, but those present were good and asked good questions afterwards.

I have to say that Chris has got his schtick down pat – the talk flows smoothly, is funny and to the point, and pre-empts all the usual protestations before they get to be voiced by anyone in the audience. If he comes to your neck of the woods, by all means go and see him.

His visit (which continues today at Regulator Bookshop in Durham and tomorrow at Duke University) was also an opportunity to just hang out (something I am out of practice with), chat and have a beer with friends who are also (science) bloggers, including Dave Munger,
Reed Cartwright and Tiffany, Abel PharmBoy, etbnc and Anton Zuiker.

Chris was not in a mood for a dinner at an elegant place, so instead we went to a cheep-beer/good-bar-food place, my old grad-school haunts where we stayed until midnight, chatting about science, politics, blogging, journalism, hurricanes (the topic of his next book) and many other things.

Even better, Chris gave us each a CD (“Luckless Pedestrian”) of his brother’s jazz band, the David Mooney Trio. I listened to it today and it’s great.