Before the talk, several of us got together at Annie’s Parlour. It was harmonic convergence, in a sense, of numerous independent groups all planning to go to Annie’s and ending up at the same table, including but not limited to Amanda and myself, PZ and his wife and daughter, Stephanie, Mike, Mr. and Mrs. Linux in Exile, Lynn, and a few others who don’t have links. After the talk, we spent close to an hour hanging around with Amanda and a teacher colleague of hers and his wife, Kristine and Mr. Kristine (Oh, and Kristine regaled us with her famous Jerry Falwell/Richard Dawkins/Galapagos story), and Lynn, conversing about the talk. Also attending in our group was my friend Lizzie and a couple of her buddies. All in all, it was a great social event that I wouldn’t have missed for the world!
Oh, and somewhere in there Richard Dawkins gave this talk, and I enjoyed it a great deal.
I have three bad reviews, one by this guy and two that came in to me after the talk via cell phone from academics who were in attendance. All those people are showing their own lack of grounding with these negative reviews, really. Dawkins came to give a talk to the public about certain ways to look at the complexity of evolutionary process and society. As an academic who actually studies this stuff, I could easily say that Dawkins talk was trite, same-old-stuff we’ve all been saying all along slightly re-wrapped, self evident, and so on and so forth. But I guarantee that Dawkins did not come all the way across the Great Pond to give talks in Michigan and Minnesota and elsewhere for the benefit of Ed Brayton, me, or any other PhD toting scholars. This talk was for the interested public, they’re the ones that packed about four thousand people into Northrup Auditorium, and they are the ones for whom this talk was crafted, and I think Dawkins did an excellent job.
PZ Myers gave a very well crafted and entertaining introduction, by the way. And here is his blog post on the event.
I’ll probably write up a bit more about Dawkins talk and a few further thoughts I have about it. But right now I’m off to bed. It’s a school night!!!!