Nerd Nite is an evening of empirical entertainment, back from the dead. Three nerds give short talks… in a bar. History. Science. Linguistics. Japanese astrodendrochronology. Unlike that time at your thesis defense, drinking and good-natured outbursts are encouraged!

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Half Sour at 755 S Clark St, Chicago

Doors at 7pm, Presentations begin at 7:30

Tickets (only $5!) are limited by the awesome, intimate space. Grab yours early!

We have a wonderfully varied mix of topics this month! Join us for a drink (or drinks) as we learn about what happens when your brain freaks out, why your grandmother told you not to leave out potato salad, and how protecting the children from movie influences morphed into mass murder being less scary than a penis.


What Happens in Vagus Does Not Stay in Vagus – Michael Maloney

I’ll be talking about your Vagus Nerve, in public! Does that make you nervous? I hope it does because otherwise it isn’t doing it’s job properly. The Vagus Nerve manages your cardiovascular system and your flight or fight responses, but there is so much more. We’ll be talking about how we find antidepressant medications, voodoo deaths, our reptile mode, and that your gut instincts might be caused by bacteria. So have a drink, take a deep breath and relax as we explore some biology behind our psychology.

Michael is a Therapist and former Research Counselor. He also has a history of anxiety disorders and panic attacks, particularly involving public speaking. Will he have a panic attack at Nerd Nite? He is anxious to find out!

SPOILT! The Science of Food Preservation – Laura Lanford

The CDC recommended avoiding California lettuce last month due to an outbreak of e-coli O157:H7, one of the nastier varieties! There are plenty of nasties that also like to munch on the same foods humans do, and over the years we’ve learned tips and techniques for stockpiling fresh food to eat later while avoiding unpleasant, and sometimes deadly, consequences. Fermentation is one of them, so grab a beer and settle in to learn what, and how, we keep kept food from killing us.

Laura Lanford is a regular Nerd Nite speaker and a fan of experimenting with food preservation. Results have varied.

This Talk is Not Yet Rated – Tom Rammer

The film rating system seems innocuous; just a helpful guide to assess the age-appropriateness of a given movie. As you may guess from this being a whole talk on the topic, the Motion Picture Association of America shapes the breadth of our country’s cinemagraphic art more than you may realize. From the Hayes Code of the 1930s to this month’s controversy over Lars von Trier’s new movie, you’ll learn about the historical arc of the shaping of American movie censorship.

Nerd Nite’s program and A/V coordinator moves to the front of the house for the first time to talk about one of the (many) topics he loves: cinema!