Geologists are generally calm, deliberate individuals who methodically sift through the science and reach a reasoned conclusion.
However, there are several topics that are sexy enough where a reasoned conclusion is reached with some louder conversation and a more raucous atmosphere.
One of those topics is the origin of petroleum -- and the special AAPG Research Conference at the Calgary convention provided a platform for some of that good old-fashioned scientific, verbal mud wrestling.
The conference drew over 100 attendees and featured 13 papers, with the morning session focused on the inorganic concepts in the morning and the organic view in the afternoon with discussions after each segment.
Perhaps it's because of the passion exhibited in the discussions that caused Playboy magazine (that's right, it's THAT respected scientific journal Playboy) to become interested in receiving materials about the research conference -- and in conducting a follow-up interview with one of the conveners.
It seems the American men's magazine has been working on an article about the late Thomas Gold, the contrarian astronomy professor at Cornell University who was a strong, vocal proponent of abiogenic gas -- and the discussions at the AAPG meeting provided a definition of schisms of thought among scientists.
When the Playboy article will appear was unclear at press time. So the only reasonable way to find out when it appears is to buy a subscription, right, boss?
For the pursuit of scientific knowledge only, of course.
-- LARRY NATION