I was schooled by Neil deGrasse Tyson — and it made me sick

Okay, I’ve been lax (understatement of the year) about writing any new posts.

Why? Well, first of all, I’m a procrastinator. Second, I am a very lucky person: as a reporter covering weather and science, I get to write about the things I love for a living.

I also get distracted by bright, shiny things.

Me...at work. (Vinnie Garcia/Vine)

Me…at work.
(Vinnie Garcia/Vine)

But it’s time to write about this.

Sure, it happened more than a month ago, but in my defence I became violently ill…well, you’ll see.

Point one: I love Pluto.

Pluto and its moon Charon, with newly discovered moons, Hydra and Nix. (NASA, ESA, H. Weaver (JHU/APL), A. Stern (SwRI), and the HST Pluto Companion Search Team)

Pluto and its moon Charon, with newly discovered moons, Hydra and Nix. (NASA, ESA, H. Weaver (JHU/APL), A. Stern (SwRI), and the HST Pluto Companion Search Team)

Point two: I love Neil deGrasse Tyson. Not in a weird way, just in a oh-my-god-he’s-the-coolest-thing-EVAH way.

Back to Pluto.

My love for Pluto isn’t a logical thing. I know that. I know all the reasons astronomers feel that it shouldn’t be considered a planet. But, what can I say? I’m an extremely loyal person. Pluto deserves better.

Now, about Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Tyson is an incredible voice of scientific literacy. I have followed him with almost religious fervour since a friend introduced him to me.

So it was with great excitement that I found out he was going to be awarded the University of Toronto’s inaugural Dunlap Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics on March 21. I waited six months for the day. Tickets sold out in seconds. Seconds. But I was fortunate enough to get a press pass.

Neil deGrasse Tyson at the University of Toronto's Convocation Hall, March 21, 2014.

Neil deGrasse Tyson at the University of Toronto’s Convocation Hall, March 21, 2014.

If you don’t know, Tyson is an accomplice in the murder of Pluto (the actual killer is astronomer Mike Brown, though he claims that Pluto was merely a casualty of his discovery of Eris, a dwarf planet that lies beyond Pluto; I’ve had words with him).

So, of course Tyson started off his lecture with Pluto. He pulled up a slide that said “Pluto (it’s still not a planet).”

Turning to the audience, he asked: “Now, does anyone have issues with that?”

I did.

In fact, I had purposefully worn a very special shirt.

So I stood up and said that I did, pointing at my shirt.

“Oh, look at her,” Tyson said. “She’s like ‘Look at this t-shirt.'” He stood, chest puffed out, spreading his jacket and moving from side to side. You can watch it below at 1:45.


(Neils Walkau)

A few minutes later, Tyson went on to list to me (yes, to me personally! Though he called me “Ma’am” which made me feel very old) the reasons why Pluto was demoted (you can watch that at 6:40 of the video). All through his lesson, I kept arguing, but it was pointless.

Finally, Tyson ended with, “Pluto is among other frozen bodies in the outer solar system. Now it’s one of the biggest among them rather than the puniest planet. I think Pluto’s happier.”

And, as though Tyson held some otherworldly power bestowed to him by the universe, I fell violently, violently ill in the middle of his lecture (fortunately for everyone, not actually IN Convocation Hall, which was also fortunate for the gentleman in the row in front of me).

I was crushed. Because all through the rest of his lecture, all I wanted was for Tyson to shut up. I was struggling not to revisit my dinner. Really struggling. I was dizzy, sweating. At one point I almost passed out. How could this be happening this day of all days? I asked myself. I had wanted to introduce myself to him…maybe sneak a “Hello.” Instead, what I got was a run to the bathroom and an experience I should not ever like to relive.

So…yeah. I got schooled by Neil deGrasse Tyson. And he made me sick.

Okay, not really. But it was SO cool. (He’s still wrong.)

Long live, Pluto!

34 comments on “I was schooled by Neil deGrasse Tyson — and it made me sick”

  1. 33Phillipp Reply

    I must say it was hard to find your website in search results.
    You write great articles but you should rank your page
    higher in search engines. If you don’t know 2017 seo
    techniues search on youtube: how to rank a website Marcel’s
    way

  2. south carolina football roster Reply

    We just lately bought 138 acres of woods and it additionally has a fantastic trout steam that runs by means of it.
    Loads of cleared an area a bit within the woods to construct our
    house this summer.

  3. waste management colorado phone number Reply

    The 2006, 26 July Doe Run obtained the ISO 14001:2004 certificates
    (17) and the 2008, 11 March was eliminated because
    the corporate didn’t fulfull the Peruvian environmental
    laws, and did not have appropriate measures
    for preventing the air pollution (18).

  4. reformas integrales madrid economicas Reply

    five hundredextended familyrevolting disgustingElectricistasnuclear familytwo five hundredtwoextended familyennuclear
    familyfive hundred nuclear familyrevolting disgustingMadridtwo , nuclear familyrevolting disgustingrealizamosrevolting disgustingextended
    familyfive hundred five hundredextended familytodorevolting disgustingtwo five hundredextended familyrevolting disgustingtiponuclear familytwo five hundredextended familyrevolting disgustingdetwofive hundred tworevolting disgustingtrabajosfive hundred twoextended familyenrevolting disgustingextended
    familyfive hundred twonuclear familyrevolting disgustingelectricidadrevolting disgustingextended familyfive hundred twoextended familyenextended familytwofive hundred nuclear
    familypisosnuclear family, five hundredrevolting disgustingviviendastwo, twoextended familyrevolting disgustinglocalesnuclear family nuclear familyrevolting disgustingcomercialesrevolting disgusting,
    five hundredrestaurantesrevolting disgustingnuclear familyfive hundred yrevolting disgustingtwofive hundred twonuclear familyrevolting disgustingbaresextended
    family.

  5. wedding planning Reply

    Hiya very cool web site!! Man .. Excellent .. Wonderful ..
    I will bookmark your site and take the feeds additionally?
    I’m satisfied to find numerous useful information right here in the publish, we want work out extra strategies on this regard,
    thanks for sharing. . . . . .

  6. client builder system Reply

    An email from you’ll doc this notification, and allow
    DSI to validate the status of the chance and track it in This can qualify you for Consumer
    Builder compensation when new business results.

  7. Mohammad Reply

    Great beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend your web site, how can i subscribe for
    a blog web site? The account helped me a acceptable deal.
    I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered
    bright clear concept

  8. tedxcambridge 2015 fall Reply

    I did this as a result of I love Memphis and I like to be taught.
    I noticed TEDx Memphis as a possibility to bring those
    two collectively. Join our 3-instances-a-week e-mail and
    get sizzling and fresh Memphis content material on to your
    inbox.

  9. driver jobs in istanbul Reply

    In case you dont keep in istanbul you’ll be able to take fast tours ranging from the airport including
    transfer. That is most likely a protracted-shot, however: Im
    a documentary scholar on an Erasmus-exchange in Istanbul.

  10. Gcocgems.Com/ Reply

    Game makers have been forced to develop strategies for offering in-game purchases,
    a trend that is spreading to the PC and console gaming space as well.
    Some allow each gaming profile to be customized separately, allowing adults
    to enjoy games not meant for younger audiences. Always find out if the games your
    children are playing contain material that is suitable for their age.

  11. family winter vacations in the us Reply

    A examine conducted among 1,500 women in rural Wisconsin found that those who take vacations twice a yr
    or extra have been less prone to become tense, depressed or drained than those who took holidays once every two years.

  12. web design software windows Reply

    The web has had all the user interface elements
    and patterns you may need for some time now (and
    no, parallax is just not one thing we really ever wanted).

    There is a new development of automated net design companies,
    arguably began by The Grid It’s a service to construct basic web sites which makes design choices—semantic ones—primarily based on synthetic intelligence.

  13. hotel deals nyc labor day weekend Reply

    Denver Airport Shuttle by Colorado Airport Transportation offers
    to and from the Denver International Airport a passenger choose up service for Corporate Enterprise
    Travelers, Vacationer, and Local Passengers to any Lodge, Conference, Concert or Home in Colorado.

  14. recipes for ground beef and rice Reply

    This web page contains numerous very different tasty recipes for stuffings as well as serving ideas.
    The recipes on this web page provide cooking ideas in addition to plenty of tasty serving recommendations.
    These recipes element a variety of tasty methods to cook ostrich meat either shortly or slowly
    to tender and succulent perfection.

  15. website Reply

    If you would like to add spice to your planet within the room,
    so you can surprise your man you might want to consider acquiring sexy lingerie.
    Beautiful and sexy lingerie variety has become for sale
    in all styles, including petite and plus size at 5000Styles store.

  16. english textbook scavenger hunt Reply

    Before 4th rank, which was my first year while in the public-school process that I had been always advised was
    therefore poor I did ACE program. After I started third grade, I had
    been certainly behind my public school friends.
    You can even find links to online learning resources mentioned in the book.
    Agree with the place you are creating about books;
    I occasionally utilize a page in a publication if it has the right kind of training,
    but these may be difficult to find. Also simple –
    Textbooks are often created She’s many ESL textbooks’ author and although I’ve
    simply utilized this particular book, I’d bet that any of her other ESL books are going to be extraordinary.
    Grammar Inuse – Advanced as my textbook evaluation – As far by Raymond Murphy goes,
    this really is my second-choice grammar textbook.
    Used to do my very own ESL publication evaluation that is swift on the spot and were left with
    some items!

  17. www.lavishlimos.net.au Reply

    It has accommodated a lot of people in its heart and is going in a real good pace towards the advancement in the
    daily life. Right: in the list of electrical equipment is an additional generator and battery, a heating and air conditioning equipment is
    more productive – as required by a huge passenger compartment.
    Also find out if you are entitled to a refund of your deposit money if you cancel
    at some point.

  18. male strippers in Perth Reply

    They are also proficient in organizing theme based parties for your bosom friends.
    A Florida based for-profit college is accused of using female
    exotic dancers and strippers to lure young male students to enroll
    in its academic programs, according to Aljazeera. Choose a dependable high
    pressure cleaning company.

  19. Ciara Reply

    If the mould is more than surface deep or if it comes back after treatment,
    stronger measures will have to be taken. Different kinds of windows need various cleaning mechanisms.
    To save with this tip just pour about a tablespoon into your drain and
    ad about a quarter cup of vinegar.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>