When the tv show the Big Bang Theory first appeared, I wasn’t sure I liked it. I mean, weren’t people laughing at the nerdy scientists as often (or more often) than they laughed with them?
Well, I learned to love the show because I think it’s generally fair, even if it plays to extremes stereotypes regularly. I’m an astronomer in a physics and astronomy department, and I know people with traits much like those portrayed on the show. And a lot of us really do argue about which Star Trek movie is best (2 or 4) and worst (1 or 5). I mean, I’ve had a superhero costume party (I was Dr. Strange), played the same games they do, read the same comics, etc. They speak to me.
Anyway, I’m hosting a party this weekend and decided to make this strange and strangely popular tv show the theme. We’ll have pizza (they like pizza), long island ice tea (oh that’s good tea!), Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock, Pictionary with special science and genre topics. I’ve got red and blue sheets that will help me dress as the Doppler effect for light. Episodes of the show will play on the background tvs. Most of the guests will be astronomers or physicists, so if they come as they are, they’ll fit right in.
I think it should be a lot of fun. Real life in a physics and astronomy department is sometimes like the show. We were arguing a few weeks ago about whether or not hobbits went “bald” and lost the hair on their feet, and could benefit from Rogaine. And about how accretion disk orientation biases might shift quasar luminosity functions significantly. And the theoretical physicists do look down on the engineers with only masters degrees. 😉
Any other suggestions for party activities or decorations that I can incorporate on short notice? No, I don’t have time to set up bouncing a laser off the moon, but maybe a contest to verbally put astrology in its place the most effectively…