I have read with interest the descriptions of public lectures by esteemed paleontologists reported here on the list. I have never been able to attend one of these lectures myself. However, the report on one such lecture by A. Conan Doyle in The Lost World persuades me that I should make whatever efforts are necessary to observe the proceedings. Herewith an excerpt:
"Creatures which were supposed to be Jurassic, monsters who would hunt down and devour our largest and fiercest mammals, still exist." (Cries of "Bosh!" "Prove it!" "How do YOU know?" "Question!")
"How do I know, you ask me? I know because I have visited their secret haunts. I know because I have seen some of them." (Applause, uproar, and a voice, "Liar!")
"Am I a liar?" (General hearty and noisy assent.) "Did I hear someone say that I was a liar? Will the person who called me a liar kindly stand up that I may know him?" (A voice, "Here he is, sir!" and an inoffensive little person in spectacles, struggling violently, was held up among a group of students.) "Did you venture to call me a liar?" ("No, sir, no!" shouted the accused, and disappeared like a jack-in-the-box.)
"If any person in this hall dares to doubt my veracity, I shall be glad to have a few words with him after the lecture." ("Liar!") "Who said that?" (Again the inoffensive one plunging desperately, was elevated high into the air.)
"If I come down among you----" (General chorus of "Come, love, come!" which interrupted the proceedings for some moments, while the chairman, standing up and waving both his arms, seemed to be conducting the music. The Professor, with his face flushed, his nostrils dilated, and his beard bristling, was now in a proper Berserk mood.)
And this response, it should be noted, came not from the lecture itself, but from a question. The response to a lecture of HP Bakker in particular would certainly add to my knowledge of human nature.