I saw this exchange earlier today on CNN:
Rick Sanchez: Look at those buoy readings from the Pacific! That’s nine meters!
Scientist Guy: Yeah. That means that w-
Sanchez: OMG HOW MUCH IS THAT IN ENGLISH?!
Scientist Guy takes two seconds to do a calculation in his head.
Sanchez: ANSWER ME! WHAT IS IT IN ENGLISH?! ENGLISH: DO YOU SPEAK IT?
Scientist Guy: It’s, uh … about 27 feet.
Sanchez: That’s a 27 foot drop in the water level! TWENTY-SEVEN FEET! AHHHH!
Scientist Guy: Right, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be a 27 foot tsunami when it gets to Hawaii.
Sanchez: BUT WON’T YOU ADMIT THAT IT WAS A 27 FOOT DROP! GO ON AND ADMIT IT!
Scientist Guy: Yes. But, again, we can’t be sure-
Sanchez: OMG BE AFRAID! GET WORKED UP! MAKE HAND GESTURES!
Scientist guy: Okay. Hold on. Yes, we know there’s a tsunami coming, but there are a lot of factors that we don’t know abo-
Sanchez: SHUT UP I SAID BE AFRAID! HYSTERIA! RATINGS! DRAMA! HYSTERIA! THIS IS IMPORTANT! JUST ADMIT THAT THIS IS IMPORTANT!
Scientist Guy: Um, yeah. I’m just going to go ahead and back away from you now.
After I some Twittering about that, I thought, “You know, Rick Sanchez should probably be interviewing noted Theological Seismologist Pat Robertson. I think that would be more his speed.”
I really hope that a producer took Rick Sanchez aside and said, “Hey, Rick? Listen, man, it’s great that you’re so excited and everything, but when we invite a scientist onto the air to calmly explain science to our viewers, maybe you could be a little less Nancy Grace and a little more professional newscaster. That’d be great.”
There’s a card in the Zendikar expansion for Magic: The Gathering called Landbind Ritual. It’s a sorcery card that gives you two life for each plains card you control, and it has one of the most beautiful flavor texts I’ve ever read:
“Honor this place, for our children’s children will stand here and speak these same words again.” - Ayli, Kamsa cleric.
I would love it if this card was handed out to every person who visited a national park. I would love it even more if people would speak these words to their children … and truly mean them.