I remember being laughed at constantly as a kid when I had to admit I was a Webelos scout, and being an undergrad interested in science often gets me the same equivalent of laughs/condescension. Still, I’m trying to get involved, and here’s my current accumulation of badges as member of the S.S.O.E.R.A.A.P.;
The “Talking Science” Badge
– When I get together with friends, they tell me to lay off the evolutionary science. Despite my best efforts, words like “adaptive” and “spandrel” still sneak back in anyway.
The “I blog about science” badge
– And do I ever…
The “Destroyer of Quackery” Badge
– I have not, as yet, become the target of the likes of Michael Egnor, but that doesn’t mean that I’m willing to back down over a fight. This gets especially tricky when friends/relatives bring up topics like “The Secret”, UFOs, and cats that can predict death.
The “I can be a prick when it comes to science” badge
– Somewhat follows from the previous one; I can, at times, get a bit overzealous in the face of mumbo jumbo, quackery, egnorance, creationism, etc. At least I usually say I’m sorry…
The “has frozen stuff just to see what happens” badge (level 1)
– Last summer I found an abnormally large dead wolf spider at the bottom of a pool and after examining it, I stuck it in the freezer just to see what happened. Other than contract its limbs a bit, the results were not very impressive.
The “I know what a tadpole is” badge
– Anyone else remember “Grow-A-Frog”?
The “somewhat confused as to what scientific field I actually belong to” badge
– I might not be a real scientist yet, but that doesn’t mean I can’t be confused. Given my interests expressed on this blog, vertebrate zoology/ecology seems to be my category, only such a category doesn’t seem to actually exist (at least not at Rutgers).
That’s about it, really. There are other potential badges I’d love to add, but being that I am not actually a paleontologist, I don’t work with large dangerous animals, I’m not a marine biologist, and I generally don’t have any real field work under my belt, those badges will have to wait.