Reality: your bridge to marital bliss

Reality: your bridge to marital bliss

Reality: your bridge to marital bliss

Bad Astronomy
The entire universe in blog form
Dec. 20 2007 2:15 PM

Reality: your bridge to marital bliss

I received an email today that is one of the best I've gotten all year, if not of all time. I will simply post it here, with permission from the author, Linda Lindsey.

To: badastro@badastronomy.com Subject: Thank you for helping me get married ;-)

Phil Plait Phil Plait

Phil Plait writes Slate’s Bad Astronomy blog and is an astronomer, public speaker, science evangelizer, and author of Death From the Skies!  

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Bet you've never gotten that one before. But, yeah, if it weren't for you and your info on the moon hoax we never would have gotten married.

Here's the story. While working in Iraq, I met the most wonderful man. After several months we both realized that our relationship could possibly lead to marriage. There was just one problem. He seemed to believe every conspiracy theory out there, thanks to his bizarre grandmother. One of those was the moon hoax. I knew that I could never spend the rest of my life with a man who could not see the difference between reality and woowoo. Therefore, I devised a test. If he could indeed overcome his overbearing grandmother's force fed ideas to understand the truth, I would have to go ring shopping.

I decided that the moon hoax would be the simplest to conspiracy to tackle. I already knew about you and pulled up your website, then spent several government hours and pages of printer paper to assemble a little packet that I insisted that he read. He did and began arguing his point. Every "proof" that he would come up with I would hunt up, usually finding the answer somewhere on your website, and present to him. It took a few weeks, but he ran out of arguments. I then laid all the paperwork out on the bed in front of him, introduced him to the idea of Occam's Razor and rational deduction. Another week or so went by, and he started asking questions and for clarification of various facts.

In February of 2006, we got married while home on R&R. We've been slowly tackling Evolution (thanks to Carl Sagan), the grassy knoll and the Holocaust. I'm happy to say that he no longer automatically believes what people in "authority" tell him. He thinks things through for himself, talks to me about them and does research on the Internet by himself (an amazing feat when you know that he, a man who is now 40, never used a computer before 2005). He's come a long way, and I get joy out of showing him new things and listening to him tell me about various scientific discoveries he's read about. A whole new world has opened up to him. It's all because you laid out the facts in such an accessible manner.

So, thank you for helping me discover that this wonderful man is truly as incredible as I thought he would be. We look forward to growing old together, bantering ideas about and mock battling over that silly sound stage idea.

Linda Lindsey

Ain't reality grand?