Nerd and geek

BigBang copyA couple of weeks ago the Albany Times Union, (note: the paper hosts a mirror of this blog on their website)  ran a reprint of an editorial from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. To say that it ticked me off would be a significant understatement. Yes – that is an excerpt from it. Which part of not true would you like me to begin with? *exasperated sigh*

When my church nerd and my science geek get going, trust me they get going. Talk about science, I really get worked up when people think that the Roman Catholic Church is anti-science. Without said church there would not be science as we know it… but that’s another story for another day.

consolmagnoon-colbert-reportWhat started out as a letter to the editor quickly morphed into a column that should run in this coming Saturday’s Albany Times Union. Late on Wednesday, TU City Editor Rob Brill called to tell me that someone mentioned in my column would be at SUNY Albany that night. We know it was not Galileo or Pope Francis, so that left me with one choice… Br. Guy Consolmagno SJ! Most recently the Curator of Meteorites as the Vatican Observatory? Could this be true?! Was one of my real heroes, the veritable mayor of nerd and geek going to be in Albany? How did I not know this? I had plans, so I thought I would not get to see and hear his talk.

Long story short, I did get to see and hear Br. Guy – and meet him! It was great fun listening to him. My initial reaction was that I was in the room with joy. His great love for science, planetary science, is clear – along with his deep knowledge, which he loves to share. His faith is apparent as well, shining through every word. And the mix of the two – few people are better suited for promoting the fact that science and faith, particularly the Roman Catholic Church, than Br. Guy, in such a public way.

The topic of the talk was Galileo, and how the simplistic church-squashes-science argument does not hold up. At. All. (I do touch on this in my column.) It made me happy to see a lecture hall full of students and professors, many of them from the scientific disciplines, listening with such rapt attention to the talk. And what a great powerpoint it was! Having arrived late, I missed a bunch of it, but what I saw, I loved. Yes, my church nerd and my science geek were on a big high last night!

Anyway, check out the Albany Times Union on Saturday for the laypersons explanation of such things – and why it makes me so upset every time someone assumes that if one is Catholic, that we still think the sun revolves around the earth!  And here is a chance for you to listen to Br. Guy give a great Ted talk!


5 thoughts on “Nerd and geek

  1. Fran, that sounds like a wonderful experience. Thank you for sharing! I am a huge fan of Brother Guy Consolmagno. I also look forward to reading your letter to the editor :-).

    W. Ockham


  2. Reblogged this on St. Kateri Tekakwitha Parish Blog and commented:
    This is a post from Fran Szpylczyn who is a writer, graduate of St. Bernard’s, works at Immaculate Conception in Glenville and a friend. Look for her upcoming article in the Times Union and watch this TED talk from Br. Consolmagno…will get you thinking!


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