On meeting Bill Nye the Science Guy and Robert Picardo

Here’s a really cool thing I got to do at work. My co-worker Laura was organizing a visit by Bill Nye the Science Guy to visit Goddard and do an interview with Amber, one of our scientists. I agreed to help her out for the day, since these visits are often a lot of work and logistics, and it’s good to have an extra pair of hands. It was an early morning, but totally worth it. As we were waiting for Bill to show up, Laura mentioned that there was some other guy from Star Trek showing up, and I was like, “whuuuuut??” It was Robert Picardo, the holographic doctor, and I was kind of more excited to meet him, because Star Trek.

Anyway, they arrived and we introduced ourselves, and first thing asked if either/both of them were comfortable with people asking for photos, or whether we should tell people no in advance. He said photos were fine. It seemed kind of like he had already resigned himself to the fact that everyone wants a selfie with him. He went into a whole thing about how no one ever knows how to work their phones when it comes time to grabbing a quick selfie, and that everyone always looks at the screen, not the camera lens. (And literally every time he took a selfie with someone, he said “look at the camera, not the glowing screen.”) Anyway, no sooner did we talk about this, then someone came up and wanted a selfie. Then at some point, he growls something to me like “Every selfie is like losing a piece of your soul.” LOL He was an interesting guy – he was perfectly willing to meet people, shake hands, and take selfies, because I think he knows what it means to people, but I think it’s a little like an obligation and just a part of his job. I kind of respect people who do stuff like this even if it’s not their thing, because they get it. I can definitely also see that it would be hard getting approached all the time. I suspect he had a better than average chance of being recognized in a place like Goddard though…

After a day of that I did not ask him for a selfie, though we did take a group one. Also, pretty much every time I take a selfie now, I hear Bill’s voice in my head saying “look at the camera not the screen.” I did ask Bob Picardo for a selfie. :D Bob was very very nice, and he and Bill were really funny together.

Here is the video they shot with Amber – my fav part is this funny bit they did that is tacked onto the very end. They did a couple of takes of it, and it was funny every time. :-)

Also, their visit was posted on startrek.com:
http://www.startrek.com/article/picardo-nye-visit-james-webb-space-telescope

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The telescope was sadly really hard to see because it was in the assembly stand. But Bill took a selfie with it from the only spot you could see the telescope.
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Who’s that in the mirror? Mallory’s pics:
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Me again in the background:
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With Bob Picardo:
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During a break for some food and water, we were hanging out in a project member’s office and Bob and Bill were being silly. So fun!
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With Bill, Bob and Laura & Begoña:
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With Mallory and Merc from PlanetaryTV
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Bill gave Laura a Planetary Society pin, which thrilled her. So fun!
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Here’s him telling us to look at the camera, not the screen! Jolearra’s pic:
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Mallory’s pic with an inset of the actual selfie:
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Jennifer’s pic:
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Jolearra’s photo with Bill’s actual photo inset:
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Jolearra’s group photo:
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Mallory’s group photo:
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This guy saw us walking through integration & test and had a giant arm of boxes and got super excited and somehow managed to shake Bill’s hand. He found us later and asked us if Bill would mind a pic/autograph, so we hooked him up. He was SO happy. It was really great.
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I took this one on Bob’s phone!
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