TAM London video 3: Brian Cox

By Phil Plait | October 21, 2009 8:00 am

Regular readers know Brian Cox: he’s a physicist, a rock star, a TV science documentary host, a skeptic, and a friend. At TAM London I did a very brief interview with him. Since he works at the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, I had something on my mind…

Now, how long do you think it’ll be before every crackpot doomcrier takes this video out of context, and/or seriously?

One thing I really dislike about conspiracy theorists — well, one of many, many things — is their lack of a sense of humor. Maybe the tin foil hat drains that part of your personality away.

They’re too late anyway.

Related links:
Video interview with Ariane Sherine
Video interview with George Hrab
Review of TAM London
The James Randi Educational Foundation

CATEGORIZED UNDER: DeathfromtheSkies!, Humor, JREF, Skepticism

Comments (26)

  1. I’m thinking the delays for starting the LHC will stretch the first high energy collision all the way to 2012… coincidence? Na-na-na, NA!

  2. So, does this mean I should cash in my 401(k)? Because, y’know, if I’m sitting around with all this money tied up in a retirement plan when the Earth is destroyed, I’m going to feel a bit foolish. At least for the length of time it takes for tidal forces to rip everything to pieces.

  3. Flying sardines

    Now, how long do you think it’ll be before every crackpot doomcrier takes this video out of context, and/or seriously?

    Oh not very long I’d think .. 😉 :roll:

    Er .. Phil how many drinks had you and Brian Cox had in that Blackfriars pub behind you there? 😉

  4. alfaniner

    Is it Hay-dron or Hadd-dron? I always thought it was the latter. But I guess since you talked to the guy that actually works there, the former must be correct.

  5. Herschel Orson Welles & Edghar Alin Eop

    Wait this dramatic breaking news just in! :

    At 20.12 (8.12 pm) today a small elite group of scientists turned on the CERN supercollider despite admitting they didn’t know for sure what would happen.

    They promptly found out. All of Switzerland and a third of the surrounding nations instantly vanished in the most gargantuan explosion in human history. Several satellites recorded the huge flash of white light from the ensuing blast – centred at CERN – and the subsequent eruption of material – vapour, gas, dust and rock fragments – far into space and back down to Earth. Initial reports suggest a death toll in the many millions including it would seem the entire population of Switzerland (7 million people) since that nation appears to have been physically destroyed leaving only a vast crater where once there were tall mountains. All scientists and staff at CERN are also believed to have been vaporised.*

    Exactly what went wrong is unclear at this stage but clearly a major unforseen event has taken place.

    Are we all doomed as a result of this calamity? Has a micro-black hole been created? Is a super-nuclear sub-atomic chain reaction going on and if so where and when will it stop? As yet we just don’t know. But the Moon has already shifted away by forty centimeters and a strange plume of material has been detected pouring out of Cabeus crater site of the recent horribly underwhelmingly unspectacular LCROSS impact.

    Stay tuned for more as the news comes in!

    * A small minority opinion holds instead that they were instantaneously transported to a parallel universe or even a hell dimension a la the SF horro movies Event Horizon’, ‘Black Hole’ & ‘Doom’ The simultaneous disappearence of Martian moons Phobos and Deimos seems to support the latter hypothesis.

    .Please God help us all… Kiss your loved ones and hold them tight.
    This could be it! The end of us all! Oh the Humanity! Oh the Black Hole!

    Oh the hangover …! 😮


    PS. Well … okay no. Actually this is the start of a bad SF-horror satire. As far as I know this ain’t happening – yet!

    PPS. No, okay it ain’t goanna happen at all but well … its a fun scenario anyway. (Provided you’re not Swiss that is! 😉 )

    Pity, its going be sound very dated in a few months /years time when the LHC is finally running smooothly & all .. :-)

    – StevoR

    (Don’t ‘spose I fooled anyone any more than Brain Cox did yeah? 😉 )

  6. DaveS

    The old Apple II game pronounced it Hadd-dron. That’s good enough for me. :-)

    BTW, my favorite UTube comment so far:

    “Any images of Plait or Cox sunning themselves on rocks?”

  7. Ginger Yellow

    Ooh, that’s just round the corner from my office. The Black Friar is a lovely pub. Did you try the Timothy Taylor Landlord ale?

    Also, if you really want to give the conspiracy theorists something to chew on, you should point them to Rebecca Watson’s interview with Brian from TAM London.

  8. HyperCube

    On a related note, seems the universe is conspiring to prevent that from happening… http://www.notesfromtherocket.com/2009/10/hlc-stopped-by-future-or-god-or.html

  9. Jack Mitcham

    I have a huge man-crush on Brian Cox. Just thought I’d leave that here.

  10. You have slipped loose the Conspiracy Dogs of War. Bad planning.

  11. Jack, I’ll leave my Mancrush for Dr. Plait. :) Although I must say I really enjoy listening to Dr. Cox’s voice. So that interview was a whole lot of pleasure or me.

    Why are you looking at me that way? 😐

  12. Theron

    Darn – cat’s out of the bag. Now my plan to take out millions in loans I could not pay and would not have to pay would seem to have a flaw in it. Of course, that assumes the bankers are reading Bad Astronomy…..

  13. Beelzebud

    The truth is out there!!!!

    LOL Good stuff!

  14. I don’t think they’d had many drinks, it was difficult enough to get the one.

  15. Sandra (MedTek)

    Did you just turn Brian into a TW*T?
    (doesn’t Brian say Hadd-ron?)

  16. Elwood Herring

    I like Brian Cox, I really do. He’s entertaining and informative, and well worth listening to.
    I just wish he’d stop grinning! Every time he’s on TV he’s got that same fixed grin on his face that never changes. He’s the Cheshire Cat of Science!

  17. @5. Herschel Orson Welles & Edghar Alin Eop

    And here I thought the startup of the LHC would cause the entire planet to black out, and everyone see what will be happening to them in twenty years.


    JPS… yes, I’ve been watching the TV series based on it.

  18. Herschel Orson Welles & Edghar Alin Eop

    Actually I think its caused a mysterious island to start going through time and a certain passenger airflight to crash on this mysterious island which has a weird statute and weirder smoke monster plus some wish fulfillment mechansim .. or something! I think I lost the plot there somewhere! 😉

  19. Flying sardines

    @ 15. Bjørnar Says:

    I don’t think they’d had many drinks, it was difficult enough to get the one.

    You were there? With the BA & Dr Cox? Good pub? Why was it hard to get the one drink – too crowded? Or poor service? Or what?

    They looked like they just possibly might have had a few to me! 😉

    Or maybe if just the one – then a very big and strong one! 😉

  20. Apparently D:Ream are reforming. Wonder if there is a chance of a cameo from Dr Cox?
    Every time is see Brian I have 90s flashbacks because I was DJing at the time and I think I heard that song as many times as anyone…
    Things can only get better…

  21. Just me

    Brian Cox was awesome in Sunshine. 😉

  22. Ginger Yellow

    Flying Sardines: The Black Friar is always pretty crowded, but taking that into account it doesn’t usually take too long to get served.It has a beautiful interior,as well.

  23. Pouria

    @10.Jack Mitcham:
    You and me both!

    @23.Just Me:
    First time I saw Brian Cox was his TED speech, and for the first 30 seconds I couldn’t figure out why the hell Cillian Murphy was on stage :)


  24. Just me

    @25. Pouria

    HAHAHAHA!!! Perfect! You made my day! 😀


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