Sunday, January 10, 2010

Western Canadian Skeptical Smack-Down

It’s a big week. I’ve been swamped with work leading up to it. Yesterday was the cast & crew screening of “Beast of Bottomless Lake.” Tuesday is the Western Canadian Skeptical Smack-Down. Thursday I move. And at an unspecified date following that (no more than a week later) – I begin working from home. Only two of those are of skeptical note (the film and the quiz) but it serves as a bit of an explanation for why my output has been below average lately. Once I’ve moved, things will pick up again.

I’ve mentioned the film before. I’m not going to go into great detail about the screening here as I’ve spoken about it in detail on the company blog.

The Pub-Quiz is next. Back in August – shortly after TAM7 – I suggested to Vancouver Skeptics in the Pub organizer Fred Bremmer that I would be interested in preparing a pub quiz for the first SitP of the new year. Well, here we are. The plans have grown since that initial discussion. I’ve actually forgotten how the original conversation unfolded, but back in October or November I was chatting with Desiree Schell (host of Skeptically Speaking) and she thought it would be fun to host the same quiz in Edmonton. From there it was a short step to co-ordinating the two quizzes and running them simultaneously – and skyping the quiz so that teams can be competing across provincial lines.

Indeed the technical support team of Skeptically Speaking and RadioFreeThinkers are each putting a team in competition, with a friendly challenge standing between the two.

Nearly all the details are in place – really all that is left are things that we can only deal with on the night.

If by any chance you are reading this before January 12th, and are in either Vancouver or Edmonton, come on out! Either for a team (of four) in advance, or show up and get teamed up on the night. The quiz begins at 8pm in Vancouver, 9pm in Edmonton; at The Railway Club in Vancouver and at Under Dog in Edmonton.

I’ll follow up with the results once the quiz is done. And if the quiz is a big success, I’m betting we’ll do it again next year... perhaps we won’t need the qualifier “Western” next year. And in any case, once the quiz has been done I’ll make the question set available to anyone else in the world who would like to host a quiz. (Indeed, there has already been interest expressed.)


  1. And woe be to you all once Skype allows for a third video chat line, when Team Toronto (*ahem* and nearby!) can play along and remind you just who runs this country after all!

    (P.S. It's Quebec)

  2. I would have LOVED a T.O. (or Quebec) team.
    But no one took the bait when I tossed it out there.

    Regional rivalries woulda been awesome. Leafs v. Habs; Coke v. Pepsi; Shermer v. Behe; Spike v. Angel; Wally West v. Barry Allen