I Want to Be a Guest at This Dinner Party April 12, 2010

I Want to Be a Guest at This Dinner Party

… mostly because Neil deGrasse Tyson is there. That man is made of awesome.

Hell, everyone else is pretty great, too.

(Click to enlarge:)

You can see the full list of guests here. As poster creator Nick Farrantello says:

Each of the people in this picture has accomplished more for humanity then any of the guys in that other painting.

(via Skeptic Money)

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Including Tyson is pretty absurd and that probably applies to Sagan as well. They’re both brilliant guys, but they’re surely far far revmoed from luminaries like Newton, Einstein, Hawking, Galileo, and Curie. Those men (and woman) are essentially science Gods. Dawkins memetics ideas are quite important for sociobiology, but I wouldn’t include him either.

    Dawkins, Sagan, and Tyson are great as popularizers of science.

  • Pareidolius

    Well then STDwatever, when you make your last supper montage, by all means, don’t include them. To paraphrase Dr. Frank N. Furter “I didn’t make him for you!

  • Alec

    From left to right, my best guesses:

    Galileo, Marie Curie, don’t know, Newton, don’t know, Stephen Hawking, Einstein, Carl Sagan, Edison, possibly Socrates(???), Dawkins, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Darwin.

    Anyone know who the ones I left out are?

  • I think to question Sagan’s place at the table indicates a lack of familiarity with what he actually did during his life.

    That said, it is an interesting, but totally random collection. I would question Hawking being in there. Brilliant, sure, but what effect did any of his work have on humanity? Perhaps *I* lack an understanding of him!

    And no Feynman. Etc. Etc.

  • bigjohn756

    What is Edison doing in this group? All he ever did was to terrorize his workers until they figured out how to make his ideas work.

  • Sive

    Looking at that picture makes me worried about what Marie Curie is slipping in the wine.

  • Salmon of Doubt

    I agree with the general sentiment of the group, questioning the validity of Carl Sagan’s seat at the table exposes a complete unfamiliarity with his work.

    Beyond that, even if all he did in his life as a scientist was to popularize astronomy, physics and biology, it would be enough to merit his position amongst these scientific luminaries. Over 500 million people saw the “Cosmos” in it’s entirety, which goes far beyond a trite “popularization” of science, to introducing science to mainstream culture, forcing an acceptance and understanding of previously unpopular, but true, scientific principles.

    He has done more for the public image of science, skepticism and rationality than any figure has ever, and quite possibly, will ever do.

  • Peregrine

    That puts Pasteur in the place of Judas Iscariot. What interpretation are we supposed to draw from that?

  • Demonhype

    Salmon of Doubt: YES! You beat me to it! Popularizing is just as important. And look at religion–you’ve got a bunch of theologians coming up with ideas in one case and on the other the sort of visible “martyrs” that helped make it well-known and popular. Problem is that a fundemental part of every religion is successful marketing, and that’s not really a fundemental necessity with science–so the popularizers become even more important in that case!

    Pareidolius: I LOVE you for quoting Dr. Furter!

    And Hemant: “[Neil DeGrasse Tyson] is made of awesome.” I am SO stealing that. Because it’s TRUE. 🙂

  • ddr

    I’d buy the poster if it was up for sale.

  • Shane

    I Want to Be a Guest at This Dinner Party


  • muggle

    “Neil deGrasse Tyson is there. That man is made of awesome.” Definitely. I left the groupie thing behind about 35 years ago but is it okay to become one again at age 52?

    No matter what scientists he picked, we’d have had at least one nitpicky skeptic. But Peregrine makes a point. Perhaps there should have been a Creation Scientist in that spot!

    I too am loving the Frank N Furter quote. Not the least because that’s one of the best lines in the movie.

  • Atalaya

    Why the hell is Edison up there? Fuck Edison. He was a thief. Nikola Tesla should be up there.

  • Yay! I got them all right! (I admit, though, that I wasn’t sure about either Oppenheimer or Aristotle — lucky semi-guesses.) Nice dinner party, though.

  • Pareidolius said:

    Well then STDwatever, when you make your last supper montage, by all means, don’t include them. To paraphrase Dr. Frank N. Furter “I didn’t make him for you!“

    “STDwatever”?? Can you read?

    And what exactly is so irksome about my comment? Tyson, Dawkins, and Sagan aren’t in the same intellectual class as Hawking, Einstein, and Curie. That’s not a knock on them, they’re all brilliant men. But I think the most laudable individuals are ones that do the science, not promulgate it. (It’s also the reason there’s no Nobel Prize for TEACHING Physics.)

    Nonetheless, I’m a great admirer of Dawkins, Sagan, and Tyson.

  • Trans Sami

    I got most of them without looking at the list.

    I thought Oppenheimer was Von Braun, with his hair and dress I assumed it had to be a NASA man and that was the most famous rocket scientist I could think of. Never occurred to me that people that work on nukes dress exactly like people who work on rockets.

    I thought Pasteur was Alexander Graham Bell. Go to wikipedia and look at their pictures, the resemblance can’t be a coincidence. I think they shared a father and didn’t know it.

    I knew that one guy had to be an ancient greek because of the style and Aristotle was one of my guesses with Archimedes, Pythagoras and Socrates.

    I had no idea who the guy standing between Tyson and Darwin was, yet somehow I knew he was British. I don’t like to join in the chorus but I actually considered Dawkins but dismissed it because I didn’t think they’d actually put him next to Darwin and Aristotle. If it hadn’t been a photograph of him holding a cell phone I would have assumed it was Francis Bacon or Lord Kelvin.

  • Claudia

    I got 9 out of 12 without cheating, which isn’t too bad I guess.

    As for people fretting about who’s at the table, I wouldn’t sweat it. The assumption seems to be that this is a table for the greatest scientists and/or intellects. I don’t really think that’s the point. Its a list of the greatest current skepic heroes. The very fact they are at the Last Dinner scene is a clear nod to the fact that these are faces and names that are admired by the modern nonbeliever community. Some for being giants of science, like Darwin and Newton, some for being popularizers, like Sagan and Tyson, and even for the sheer unifying force on our community, like Dawkins. Its not a top 12 list of the best scientists.

    However I think its an outrage that Tyson wasn’t seated next to Newton! Do you want to make the poor man cry? 😉

  • Lukas

    I also think Tesla should be there instead of Edison, but otherwise, I like it.

  • OneSTDV – I’d say Dawkins’ main contribution to science isn’t memetics but rather the gene’s eye view of evolution he introduced with The Selfish Gene. These days we take that view for granted and forget someone had to actually have thought of it first.

    Still, I agree that there are probably others who have contributed more to science/engineering than him, and several of the others (who have already been mentioned in this thread). Thinking of whom you’d personally place at that table is a fun exercise.

  • Jennifer

    I really enjoy this and agree that there are some other great minds who could fit in well. Perhaps a series of these with various characters from science would be interesting? Maybe by discipline: Physics; Biology; Chemistry; Etc.

  • drred.

    If you ask me, the choice of scientists looks too generic, like selecting the most popular scientists out there (Pop Science).

  • Angie

    I agree with Atalaya and Lukas. Let’s get Tesla in there! The man was a brilliant, unconventional thinker who gave so much to science.

    Tesla notwithstanding, I like this rendition of the Last Supper and the social commentary it makes. Clever!

  • drred.

    Also, Sagan’s arm looks awkward.

  • Elsin Ann Perry

    Where can we buy this poster?!

  • a thought

    I bet fantasy Marie Curie gets sick of being the only woman at a lot of people’s fantasy dinner parties.

  • Peregrine

    She can join my fantasy dinner party any time, along with Ada Byron Lovelace, and Grace Murray Hopper.

    Yeah. I’m a computer nerd.

  • TychaBrahe

    Hey, yeah, why isn’t Grace Hopper up there? The woman who invented the concept of computer languages and COBOL?

    I would rather have dinner with Carl Sagan than Tyson (de Grasse Tyson) because Tyson, being currently alive, is semi-accessible, whereas Sagan no longer is, except in these fantasies.

  • The Talented Chimp

    It’s ‘more … THAN’, ‘THAN’, not ‘more … then’, AAARRRGGGHHH!

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