Better Know a Skeptic – 10 Questions for aDam Gardner
“Better Know a Skeptic” is a series of articles introducing the members of the Ottawa skeptics by asking ten questions.
Name: aDam Gardner
Screen name: aDam Rulz
Member Since: Forum member since February 2008, attending meetings since July 2008
Chosen quote: “You must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance.”
1) Briefly describe yourself. What do you do for a living, etc.
I’m a recently married 31 year old who shares a home with 2 cats, a rabbit and 2 birds. I’m a computer engineer by education and have a computer system support job for the Government.
2) Why are you a “skeptic”? Was there a “wow” moment?
I’ve always questioned things that sounded fishy, and early on came to my own decisions about most things paranormal. Though I can’t narrow down when I specifically “became” an atheist it was probably in my early teens and would says I’ve been a skeptic of sorts since then. There wasn’t really a “wow” moment. I was not aware of the skeptic movement until a friend of mine, Halden, shared the Ottawa Skeptics site with me, and I immediately realized that this was a group of people who shared my own feelings about the world.
3) What are your hobbies/interests?
I have a great love of movies, TV and comics, especially anime and other animation, with Sailor Moon being my favourite franchise. I enjoy cosplaying at anime conventions. I’ve always enjoyed video games, both old school and more recent ones. I make videos for a general geek interest website I’m part of that I often do costumed, and have recently started working on some podcasts. I also do Taekwondo.
4) What are you passionate about at the moment?
There’s not much I’m not passionate about. I love my wife and my cats. I’m really into this whole skeptics thing recently, and am having a great time with the Reality Check podcast. I find myself often getting in very heated debates about skeptical issues.
5) Do you have a hero? Why him/her?
I don’t. I look up to a lot of people, but no single person is someone I would say is a hero.
6) If you could have dinner with 5 people, dead or alive, who would they be and why?
Jesus of Nazareth, Naoko Takeuchi, a Neanderthal, Jessica Alba and a really good translator.
7) Do you have a favourite: album, musician, sports team, movie, TV show, book? (Feel free to list one, some, or all.)
My taste in music is embarrassing and I don’t know or care anything about sports. My favourite TV show and book are both Sailor Moon, the greatest story ever told, and my favourite movie is Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind.
8) What grinds your gears?
Hostility towards skepticism. Maybe it’s just because people enjoy arguing with me, but I find myself constantly confronted with people who are completely hostile towards me being a skeptic, and try to find flaws in the basic idea of critical thinking. Some people seem militantly indifferent towards important issues, and seem almost offended by the idea that someone could be bothered by people believing in something which is false.
9) Tell me something I don’t know about you.
I’m not circumcised…
… actually a lot of people already know that.
10) Why are we here?
Life seems to be some kind of almost accidental result of ideal circumstances, followed by billions of years of evolution by natural selection. I don’t believe there’s any reason to us being here, so we should just be happy that we are. Life on earth is this amazing improbable thing that should be cherished and preserved at all costs. Enjoy what time we have, because as much as I’d love to think otherwise, I haven’t seen any reason to believe there’s anything waiting for us once it’s done.