We have arrived!

We are nicely situated in our lovely hotel room in the Melbourne Hilton. Yay, showers! After 15 hours on an airplane, we need them.

There is no rest for the weary traveler, however. We’re charging out on the town shortly to visit the Melbourne Museum — if you’re interested, we’re meeting in the Hilton lobby around 1:30, or otherwise look for the flashing angry eyes of the mob of atheists at the museum at 2.

Breathless adventures await!


  1. Louis says

    PZ, the following are for you and Mary:

    1) Congratulations on safe landing.

    2) Envy because I wish I could be there.

    3) Best wishes for an amazing time. Knock ’em bandy.


  2. Brownian says

    If you see my friend, tell her ‘Hi’ from me. She’ll know what that means.

  3. redwood says

    Welcome to my time zone, PZ, though I’m a few thousand kms north of you. Good on ya to get out and do something to fight jet lag. Helps get over the “sit-itis” from the plane as well. Looking forward to hearing about your adventures, may they be many and mighty.

  4. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Also, our room has this huge bathtub, big enough for two…

    A buddy system to make sure neither falls asleep. Safe idea…;)

  5. Louis says

    Also, our room has this huge bathtub, big enough for two…

    Are you going to Destroy Society™? Or possibly just Cause the Downfall of the Catholic Church™?

    Either way, pro tip: order the champagne from room service, the stuff in the mini bar is overpriced. I understand that if you ask very nicely many concierges can procure recreational pharmaceuticals for your delectation.

    I mean, well, if you’re going to cause the Destruction of Society™, you might as well give a proper go. See if you can involve a pie floater and at least two different monotremes. That’s got to be good for one bishop having an aneurysm at least.


  6. A. R says

    Louis: Are there more than two different monotremes? I can think of echidnas and platypuses.

  7. Louis says


    Indeed. But there are two genera of extant echidnas (4 species if memory serves me).

    I mean, think of the fun you can have with a short beaked echidna AND one of the long beaked species whilst a platypus performs an intimate act upon your person.

    Look at them, with their sexy, sexy cloaca and lack of corpus callosum. They’re begging for it the saucy minxes.


  8. DLC says

    Hm.. PZ in OZ with the Trophy Wife™ and a big bathtub. So envious. I shall have no recourse but to travel back in time and . . . Steal PZ’s Mojo !
    Send in Fatbastard!

  9. Louis says


    MALE platypus? Fuck off! I’m not gay, mate! What do you think I am some kind of pervert?*


    * 3…2…1…

  10. Lyle says

    It seems that we are of like minds. A shower is the first thing I think off after getting off the last airplane of a trip. That and a very, very stiff drink.

  11. lynnwilhelm says

    Also, our room has this huge bathtub, big enough for two…

    And a good thing too, that pool sure looks dirty…

  12. Catnip, Not a Polymath says

    You got the crap-view side of the hotel. It’s much nicer looking the other way (into the room? ;-))

    enjoy the museum. If I wasn’t trapped at work, I’d join you.

  13. Louis says

    A.R., #23,

    With very, very complicated maths. And a whiteboard. With many many coloured pens. And an overhead projector. And some nubile assistants wearing skimpy labcoats…oops I’ve gone!


  14. A. R says

    Louis: That seems an effective methodology. Perhaps entanglement theory would be involved? /snark

  15. chigau (違う) says

    I turned this computer off two days ago.
    Why am I still logged on?
    Have a great time in Oz, PZ and Mary.

  16. Charlie Foxtrot says

    (looks distantly out window)

    Hmm, I sense a presence in my city. One I haven’t felt since…

    (spins in a twirl of cape and strides off)
    (walks into wall. Lands on back)
    (lies there wondering how to explain to the rest of the IT dept why I’m wearing a cape at work)

    Welcome to Melbourne PZ and Mary. Amazingly you’ve managed to pick a beautiful day as well! All the crappy weather came thru during the zombie long weekend just past.

  17. elainethepirate says

    you should wait until tonight and book into the Museum Comedy tour! It’s run by the delightful @labcoatman and will definitely enhance your museum experience.

    book here!

    p.s. I am not affilliated with the tour but have seen ben in action.

  18. dexitroboper says

    What do you think I am some kind of pervert?

    I heard you were all kinds of pervert.

  19. Charlie Foxtrot says

    Alethea, I was planning to leave work early for a pub visit before the conference started of something was on.
    Seems like we’re missing an ‘organiser’ personality-type here this time round.
    I may be able to get four bodies rounded up, which could form a kernel of a gathering. I’ll make some enquiries…

  20. Random Mutant says

    PZ, go to the information centre in Federation Sq and ask for the self-guided walking tours brochures. I recommend the lanes & alleys one. You’ll see a side of Melbourne you didn’t know existed. It’s lovely. You might even see Gog and Magog!

  21. Charlie Foxtrot says

    Alethea – sounds like that’s what it’ll take. (nice cephalopod btw)

    So last time was at Chloe’s Bar at Young & Jacksons. Seemed ok, a bit of Melbourne history, but a bit of a walk to get over to the convention centre for sign-in.

    Maybe the bar under PZ’s hotel? The South Wharf Hilton right next to the convention centre?

  22. says

    I do like the non-walk option, since I am a bit walking-disabled. I’d need to allow super-extra slow pace for me to get back to the conference centre. But I went to Chloe’s last time and I vaguely suspect that there might be a plan for a meetup with PZ there again? Rorschach seems to be the one in the know.

  23. John Morales says


    Just in time! Thousands queue for ‘hugging saint’

    Thousands of people have gathered in Melbourne to meet a spiritual leader known as the “hugging saint”.

    Amma is a Hindu spiritual leader renowned for her humanitarian work but also for hugging everyone she meets.

    It is estimated she has hugged more than 30 million people.

    She has been visiting Australia since 2004.

    Her 2003 trip was cancelled due to the SARS outbreak, a genuine concern for someone who has been known to hug 40,000 people in a day.


  24. Charlie Foxtrot says

    Just checked (yay word-search!) TET epCCCXVI again, Rorschach mentioned yesterday that he thinks PZ would be too busy with other appointments, so it would be just the Pharyngulites. No other plans seem evident.

  25. gardengnome says

    Welcome to Melbourne! Make sure you pronounce it right – it’s Melb’n, not melborn.

  26. FossilFishy says

    My daughter was in that museum with her grandfather earlier today. They just arrived back here so it must have been before any kind of atheist invasion.

    I was already feeling like a bad father because it wasn’t me who took her there, and now I feel like a lazy atheist too because I didn’t arrange to be in Melbourne in case of some kind of meet up. Blah. Blargh. And double damn.

  27. says

    Seconding elainethepirate at #32: Museum Comedy is a you-beaut little ripper of nerdcore fun!

    (in fact I logged on ‘specially to recommend it to you, only to find she had pipped me at the post!)

    Sadly I did my own comedy-festing last week and am back in Sydney now, so won’t be seeing you myself.

  28. invariantspace says

    Dam, i wish I’d seen this sooner, could have skipped uni to come along…

  29. rorschach says

    The museum tour was nice and very enthusiastically done, I’m glad I went along. There will be some kind of meetup tomorrow, details to follow.

  30. RobertL says

    The Melbourne museum has a very nice, smallish, exhibit on Evolution. It covers Darwin and Wallace very nicely.

    And it has a life size replica skeleton of a Quetzalcoatlus. You know, when they say a 10 meter wingspan I go, “yeah – that’s big”.

    When I saw it up close and personal, I was more like, “Holy Snapping Duckshit! That’s the scariest fucking thing I’ve ever seen.”

    It’s skull is literally the same size as me.

  31. 'Tis Himself says

    Melbourne refers to the bit in Arsenic and Old Lace:

    Jonathan Brewster: I think this calls for something special. I think, perhaps, the Melbourne method.
    Dr. Einstein: No! Not the Melbourne method, please! Two hours! All that blood! And in the end, he was just as dead as the other ones.