After a hiatus in July for Nerd Nite Speed Dating and the National Geographic/Nerd Nite/Comic Con party, Nerd Nite San Diego #11 was back to our regular awesomeness at 32 North Brewing in Mira Mesa! As a special welcome-back, schmancy donuts were courtesy of the most generous badasses at Devil’s Dozen Donut Shop (and the San Diego Boss, thanks to her shameless solicitation of gifts from strangers). Beach-n-Bowls food truck was also there, offering local tastiness for those who wanted “real food” and not “just donuts and beer for dinner”.

Dr. William Nericcio brought us The Trials and Tribulations of a Humble (Strange!?) English Professor: Tex[t]-Mex, Mextasy, Eyegiene, and Technosexualities in Paris, Rome, and Beyond

Notorious Mexican-American literature professor, public intellectual, artist, and troublemaker, William Nericcio was born in the fabled “Streets of Laredo,” (or at Mercy Hospital, at any rate). For years he labored under the watchful (sinister?), eyes of siblings and priests at Catholic schools – contributing to internet rumors that he was “raised by nuns”. With an PhD in Comparative Literature from Cornell University, Nericcio now works as the Director of the Master of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences, and is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at San Diego State University.

Tuesday evening we learned about his last decade as a Professor of English and Cultural Studies, beginning with the circumstances surrounding his award-winning book Tex[t]-Mex: Seductive Hallucinations of the “Mexican” in America, followed by his traveling exhibition (and would-be TV pilot) Mextasy. We’ll end with a peek at his new work Eyegiene: Permutations of Subjectivity in the Televisual Age of Sex and Race, and his latest project Robotic Erotic Electric: Techosexual Metamorphoses in the 21st Century.

Alien Education: Keep Your Filthy Paws Off My Uranium

In this talk, we learned the seldom-told tale of the Futures Panel. Advised by the most awesome Dr. Frank Drake (Astrophysicist; Pioneer of SETI, Project Ozma, Voyager Satelite Program, and Extraterrestrial Communications; Member of the Futures Panel), Dr. Ed Strong brought us the story of a small group tasked by Congress to solve a life and death problem: the waste from America’s growing nuclear stockpiles cannot be simply buried and forgotten. Can humans solve the “Forever Problem” by designing a communications system effective across language, culture, intelligence … and all of time to come? And if we do, will the “aliens” listen?

Edward Strong has a Doctorate in Genetics and Genomics. He lives in San Diego while doing his level best to avoid the research lab he was trained to work in. Together with his startup partners, Edward is developing a consumer-focused genetic information service. He also works to help other businesses understand development opportunities associated with recreational genetic testing.

Nothing Butt Time (The Boss gets to name all untitled talks, according to her favorite phrases in the description. Future speakers be warned).

The night’s final talk may have inspired us all to trade in our chairs for dorky standing workstations: Dr. Jacqueline Kerr, Associate Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at UCSD, showed us how to measure butt time, how to gtfo of our chairs, and why we’ll all feel much better for it.