Calling all Brits

| 44 Comments

UPDATE: I just found out this event has been cancelled at the last minute. So don’t come. I will, however, still be around all week and attending other Darwin Day events until the 11th.

I just wanted to let PT readers across the pond in England know that I am zipping over there for a Darwin Day talk this coming Sunday, February 5th, in Shrewsbury. The details are here, and used to be here but have been dropped for some reason. Actually, I am speaking a week before Darwin Day, and they appear to have a whole series of events planned.

Naturally, I will be talking about the Kitzmiller case and in particular how we discovered the “smoking gun” tying ID to creation science. Following my talk will be a, um, unique musical event (see description).

Shrewsbury appears to be gearing up for a massive DarwinFest in 2009, the 150th anniversiary of the Origin of Species. They are not paying me or anything, but I do get to spend the whole week running around on a Darwin tour recommended by my host Mark Pallen, who among other things is a Type III secretion researcher, bioninformatics specialist, and a Darwin fan so crazed he has set the Origin of Species to a reggae beat. He found out about little old me when he read my Big Flagellum Essay, but that is another story for another time.

So anyway folks, make the talk if you can, or drop me an email ([Enable javascript to see this email address.]) and we might be able to do a mini-Howlerfest at one of the local bits of Darwiniana.

44 Comments

What a shame its in england. If anyone gets up to the (real) north, i.e. Scotland, I’d be happy to introduce them to some real beer.

Nick, Will you be able to make it to Dawkins talk in London on Feb 13th? A few of us from here are going.

I will try to make it to your talk, but am doubtfull. Jeez Louise, you haven’t given us much notice. But I will try.

As for this…

Posted by guthrie on February 3, 2006 06:12 PM (e)

What a shame its in england. If anyone gets up to the (real) north, i.e. Scotland, I’d be happy to introduce them to some real beer.

England has at least as fine a selection of ale as scotland, probably better ;)

Personally, I like Boddington’s… the cream of Manchester.

(Sorry, guthrie.)

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A few of us Brits have been inspired by the Panda’s thumb to set up a UK forum to resist the infiltration of Creationism into UK schools:

Science Just Science

we have also come across another British site with the same concerns, and will be getting in touch to join forces:

Black Shadow

enjoy your time in the UK Nick - and remember to test our beer in moderation! ;D

Damn! Shrewsbury’s a bit far away fron Helsinki: there’s no way I’ll be able to make it back in time for tea.

Anyway, Nick, you’ll find this site will help make your stay in the Dear Old Country more pleasant.

Bob

Yes, Panda’s Thumb has lots of commenters from Britain and maybe other Commonwealth countries – they give themselves away with spellings like colour, defence, organise, and centre. At first I was surprised that there were so many, but then I realized that since Britain has no church-state separation, British ID opponents have little hope of getting ID banned there, so they send their comments over here to help stir up trouble. LOL Here in the USA, the opponents of ID keep insisting that it is just a religious concept (it is not) just so they can use the church-state separation principle to try to get it banned from public schools.

While you are in Britain, maybe you could check out the information in the following article, titled “Creationists taking over state schools” –

http://www.angelfire.com/nb/lt/docs[…]tionists.htm

The article notes, “ the powerful and extraordinarily wealthy creationist movement in the USA is impressed by the ease with which money buys access to children in the UK. “

I don’t know how current the article is – it appears that it was created in 2002, and it had a minor update in July 2005.

As for beer, one of the most popular American brands, Miller High-Life, is so bland that I can’t drink it, and Budweiser, the most popular brand, is pretty bland too. People in other countries would not put up with such stuff.

The Angel fire site is quite old and hasn’t seriously been updated since 2003 - which is why British PT’ers have started the new ‘Science, Just Science’ forum mentioned above.

Why not drop by to say hello! and to cheer us up?

Posted by Andy H. on February 4, 2006 05:16 AM (e)

Yes, Panda’s Thumb has lots of commenters from Britain and maybe other Commonwealth countries…

Why have you changed names Larry?

UPDATE: I just found out this event has been cancelled at the last minute. So don’t come. I will, however, still be around all week and attending other Darwin Day events until the 11th.

Oh Larry?Andy why do you promote creationism ?

Unfortunately Nick I am a little too far away to attend your talk but I would have loved to have gone along. Any chance of you coming to Belfast sometime ? The local fare here is Guinness or Harp by thew way. My wife has a few cans of Guinness which she uses for medicinal purposes (apparently it’s great for boosting your iron levels) The surgeon in Spain who did my dad’s triple by-pass operation even recommended it !

I know Ronald Numbers has given a talk in Queens University, a year or so ago,which I’m sorry I missed.

For a really strict UK creationist site (and I’m not promoting them by the way) check out www.justsixdays.co.uk This site is run by AIG’s latest UK recruit Paul F. Taylor (Not to be confused with the US creationist of the same name Paul S. Taylor, son of the guy responsible for promoting the Taylor trail nonsense I believe). If you want to know how strict he is have a look at his views on Christmas and Santa Claus which are in my opinion puritanical !

Anyway, if you are still in the UK on Monday evening Nick, and have access to satellite TV have look at Revelation TV at 9 O’clock and the World in Focus programme were you will be able to listen to Mr Taylor in person. They will be discussing the recent Horizon programme on ID, which AIG claim on their website today was biased. I thought it was extremely fair and they gave the ID folks a lot of airtime.

They have a phone-in and also allow viewers to e-mail so who knows. Maybe you might get the opportunity to challenge a young earth creationist !

I’ll be here in New York State, of course, but will find an appropriate beverage from the islands and be there in spirit. (Let’s see – McEwan’s Scotch Ale, or Newcastle Brown?)

I gave a talk to the Darwin Festival in Shrewsbury 2 years ago on Darwin’s opponents, which some did not like.

Some in the vicinity of Shrewsbury are trying to make the week more ID friendly on the grounds of giving alternatives to Darwinism. I got the impression that they were succeeding.

BTW the statement on SJS doesn’t realise that the founders of Emmanuel College Gateshead are in fact Anglican Vicars so are hardly members of a Christian sect.Also now nearly 10% of Anglican vicars in England are Young earth creationists and I can give you several names.

England has at least as fine a selection of ale as scotland, probably better ;)

But you dont expect me to say that, do you? ;)

(And i do drink a fair bit of English beer when down south of re-enactment events.)

Personally, I wouldnt buy anything made by Scottish and Newcastles, since they now make everything at a site in England somewhere. They are closing their Fountainbridge brewery in Edinburgh, one of the places they originally started at, and selling the land for development. The only brewery now left in Eginburgh is the Caledonian, although Innes and Gunn make their beer out of the stuff used to condition casks for use in the whisky industry and are based in Edinburgh.

Posted by guthrie on February 4, 2006 03:02 PM (e) …

But you dont expect me to say that, do you? ;)

(And i do drink a fair bit of English beer when down south of re-enactment events.)

To be fair. Scotland does have some decent ale.

It hurts to admit this, but Yorkshire probably has the best beer of any county (as a Lancastrian that is worse than admitting losing to Scotland).

ATM. I am banished to southern England (woe is me). But decent beer can be found with a little reconnaissance.

BTW> What re-enactment do you do? I am in the “sealed knot”.

Michael Roberts Wrote:

BTW the statement on SJS doesn’t realise that the founders of Emmanuel College Gateshead are in fact Anglican Vicars so are hardly members of a Christian sect.Also now nearly 10% of Anglican vicars in England are Young earth creationists and I can give you several names.

That’s an extremely interesting statistic. Would you be interested in discussing this further on SJS? Revamping of the statement of position is in progress at the moment, and of course it’s vital to make it as factually accurate as possible.

I’ll be here in New York State, of course, but will find an appropriate beverage from the islands and be there in spirit. (Let’s see — McEwan’s Scotch Ale, or Newcastle Brown?)

- we won’t be forgetting to toast your health on our Darwin Day meet in London Julie!

Personally, I wouldnt buy anything made by Scottish and Newcastles, since they now make everything at a site in England somewhere. They are closing their Fountainbridge brewery in Edinburgh, one of the places they originally started at, and selling the land for development. The only brewery now left in Eginburgh is the Caledonian, although Innes and Gunn make their beer out of the stuff used to condition casks for use in the whisky industry and are based in Edinburgh.

I did my degree in Edinburgh - I can still remember the when the wind was coming from Fountainbridge - I need to lie down when I think about it.

Do they still make that delicious ‘Belhaven’ beer over at Dunbar?

Michael Roberts wrote:

BTW the statement on SJS doesn’t realise that the founders of Emmanuel College Gateshead are in fact Anglican Vicars so are hardly members of a Christian sect.Also now nearly 10% of Anglican vicars in England are Young earth creationists and I can give you several names.

… news to me. In any case Vardy is into taking over state schools rather than getting vicars to ‘found’ them. Vardy isn’t a vicar - he’s a wealthy car salesman.

.. come over to ‘Science Just Science’ if you can inform us - not a lot of point in enlightening our American cousins if they can’t do anything about it.

I’m sorry, but having lived in Edinburgh for 5 years (as a dirty southern interloper doing my Dev biol degree, and Msc) , and having attended the CAMRA scottish ale festival annually, I can categorically say that what the scottish produce in terms of ales blows the english right out of the water. They have a lot more taste (Innis & Gunn, Deuchars IPA, Fraoch, and anyhting by the Bridge of Allan brewery to name but a few), a lot more variety (see above) and are just, well, better OK?

Although the York brewery puts up a good fight. As does the Badger brewery.

Mmmm. Beer.

At the moment I’d tend to agree, but that’s mostly from spite because the last three seasonals I’ve tried have been completely crap. England does have some virtues beer-wise - London Pride, for example, whilst rather commercialised, is pretty damn smooth.

Best beer I ever had was a seasonal from Greene King, which they are sucky enough to have apparently stopped selling (and their IPA tastes like cat piss). Not that I’m bitter or anything.

Black Sheep and Timmy Taylor are the way forward on the Ale front.

Well don’t forget that a pub’s Landlord/cellerman are every bit as important to a decent pint of real ale as the brewery.

Some damn decent beers… London Pride Abbot Ale Old Speckled Hen John Smiths (the real handpulled stuff not the tins). Bombardier

Wow, I am amzed how much people talk about beer here.

MMm, Badger brewery, Greene King, and others. mmmmmm.

Stephen- I started re-enacting in Sheffield in the Wars of the Roses federation, now I’m back in Scotland I’m with a western martial arts group, doing some re-enacting on the side, of about 1300 to 1500. DO you like swords or bangsticks?

Posted by guthrie on February 6, 2006 07:34 AM (e)

Stephen- I started re-enacting in Sheffield in the Wars of the Roses federation, now I’m back in Scotland I’m with a western martial arts group, doing some re-enacting on the side, of about 1300 to 1500. DO you like swords or bangsticks?

Neither really. I am a pikeman.

Neither really. I am a pikeman.

I’ve done Viking/Saxon shield walls.

Posted by ‘Rev Dr’ Lenny Flank on February 6, 2006 07:47 AM (e)

I’ve done Viking/Saxon shield walls.

LOL. I saw some of those nutters give a demonstration in Manchester a few years ago.

They were using proper weapons. I saw one guy get a hole cut straight through his shield by an axe. Gave him quite a scare. He was lucky it missed his arm.

What is it about beer, re-enactment and an interest in opposing IDC?

I’m another former WOTR-Fed member from Sheffield!

Oh, and the range of real ale produced in England is so broad that I don’t think you can dismiss it by quoting a few Scottish examples (fine though they are).

Richard C

What a small world it is. I’m afraid that to me, pikes look a little dull, theres lots of fighting in medieval battles, plus the clothes are more interestingly different from today. (OK, the politics and religion are less complex at least)

And RIchard C, are you still re-enacting?

I might mention this on http://livinghistory.com/forums/index.php a forum for re-enactors I hang about at.

Posted by guthrie on February 6, 2006 10:09 AM (e)

What a small world it is. I’m afraid that to me, pikes look a little dull,

Dull? Good grief, it gets pretty intense in the pike block. I have yet to come off the field without a fine array of bruises.

Has anyone else notice that whenever the Brits pop up on a thread the conversatio invitably turns to beer?

In my experience Scots beer is great - nice and malty and warming on a cold winters night. Beer down here (Sussex) has the advantage of great hops and is made for warm sunny afternoons in the beer garden. Both are wonderful in there way - but have evolved to local conditions. Lager tastes rubbish here; but ‘Ice cold in Alex’ or even in a Carribean beach bar - is not so bad at all. A malty 80 shillings wouldn’t be quite the thing in that environment. See how a knowledge of Evolutionary Biology can give you a enlightened view of the world: I bet Larry (or Andy?) doesn’t to get to discuss beer with his creationist friends.

Any news from Nick - I sent him an e-mail but haven’t heard from him (travelling I suppose?)

Fine array of bruises?

My dear chap, the point of medieval is that one wears armour to avoid unsightly bruises.

As for beer- well, one thing one of my American friends wants in the USA is more pubs. She reckons the USA would be a better place with more pubs, howfs, whatever you want to call them.

Push of pike? It’ll be sackbuts and shawms next.

But beer is important. Found some nice beer in Milwaukee last time I was in the USA, in a place next to the bridge with the statue of the duck on it. Can’t remember what it was called, which is a recommendation of sorts. There’s an excellent second-hand bookshop just up the road too.

Re “I am amzed how much people talk about beer here.”

Maybe it has something to do with the geneology or phylogeny of yeast?

Posted by Gav on February 6, 2006 02:07 PM (e)

Push of pike? It’ll be sackbuts and shawms next.

But beer is important. Found some nice beer in Milwaukee last time I was in the USA, in a place next to the bridge with the statue of the duck on it. Can’t remember what it was called, which is a recommendation of sorts. There’s an excellent second-hand bookshop just up the road too.

What the blazes does sackbuts or shawms mean?

Never been to Milwaukee though. However I grant you, being unable to remember the name of a bar is a sort-of recommendation.

Posted by guthrie on February 6, 2006 01:51 PM (e)

Fine array of bruises?

My dear chap, the point of medieval is that one wears armour to avoid unsightly bruises…

Sire, What could possibly be unsightly whit bruises? Pon-my-word tis a manly persuit.

http://www.sealedknot.org/

The pike block is actually the only part of the SK that can be a genuine competition. We are normally trying to physically push the opposition (of course they are attempting to do the same to us).

I propose a toast to the genus Saccharomyces, without which none of this would be possible.

Re “[…] the genus Saccharomyces, […]”

See, I told ya it had something to do with phylogeny! :)

What is it about beer, re-enactment and an interest in opposing IDC?

We all secretly, deep down inside, want to get pig-drunk, don our maille, and go chop the heads off all the monastery monks. :)

Nick Matzke,

Like Dean Morrison I too have not heard back from you, I’m interested to talk to you when you come to Sacramento on the 12th. Karl J. Mogel [Enable javascript to see this email address.]

Stephen E:

Sackbuts and Shawms are Medieval wind instruments. A sackbut is a brass horn that looks alot like a trombone with a slightly smaller bell, and a shawm is a double reed instrument that is a predecessor to the oboe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sackbut http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shawm

You see these alot at Medieval Faires. We just had ours here in Gainesville - kinda scary. Not sure what they’ve got to do with Medieval battle recreations.

Posted by GvlGeologist, FCD on February 7, 2006 12:48 PM (e)

Stephen E:

Sackbuts and Shawms are Medieval wind instruments. A sackbut is a brass horn that looks alot like a trombone with a slightly smaller bell, and a shawm is a double reed instrument that is a predecessor to the oboe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sackbut http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shawm

You see these alot at Medieval Faires. We just had ours here in Gainesville - kinda scary. Not sure what they’ve got to do with Medieval battle recreations.

LOL.

TY for that. I thought you was using am American colloquialism. Never even thought to do a search for an answer.

Still not sure why you used that to respond to “push of pike” though. You don’t happen to be a poet do you?

Well, I think that many medieval wind instruments are weapons of war anyway, like bagpipes. They are very loud and annoying, in part because the music was supposed to be played outside, whereas chamber music with nicer instruments takes place inside.

I’ve never been in a push of pike, unfortunately I can think of several jokes to make in return, but dont fell like it tonight…

I am in the Starbucks in Cambridge, which has surprisingly sucky internet for 5 pounds an hour. Sorry for those who have been trying to email me, internet access has been scarce!

I just saw the Darwin Correspondance Project which is immensely cool.

FYI, I am the first speaker Friday morning for the Birmingham Darwin Day program, described here: http://www.bshs.org.uk/news/display[…]eventID=1157

I can’t believe it, my co-worker just bought a car for $34355. Isn’t that crazy!

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This page contains a single entry by Nick Matzke published on February 3, 2006 5:33 PM.

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