NASA official’s kid’s band booked for conference


Bill Nye danced to his namesake band. (MICHAEL OKONIEWSKI/AP)

But here’s where a microscope might be in order. It just so happens that the band’s keyboardist is the son of the number-two official at NASA. And Lori Beth Garver, the agency’s deputy administrator, showed up at the event to cheer on her son and to dance with Nye in front of a applauding crowd.

Pretty nice way to curry favor, no?

A NASA spokesman tells us that ATK did not pay the members of the band to perform what he called a short set. ATK did not respond to multiple calls and e-mails seeking comment. Nye is available for public appearances—for a fee, of course—and often speaks and entertains at conferences.

A Youtube video of the event shows Nye dancing (every bit as awkwardly and enthusiastically as you might expect) as the band, wearing white lab coats, performs the theme song to Nye’s old show and the song “She Blinded me with Science.”Conference attendees wearing badges sway and cheer. And Facebook pictures of the event show Garver dancing with Nye.

The description of the video says only that Nye “was in the Colorado Springs area and wanted to do a gig with the Science Guys, and the rest is history” but makes no mention of the NASA connection.

It seems Nye didn’t need to give lessons on the theory of relative-ity.

Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.
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