“There is a curiosity in everyone who comes here. It’s a continent of travels, of seekers, united in the continuation of exploration, learning, the search for greater understanding, the pursuit of pure knowledge.”
This was one of the many interesting thoughts about the scientists of Antartica by of all people, Anthony Bourdain. Unfamiliar? He is the bad boy chef turned journalist who has a weekly program on CNN about culture. Now while the program initially began as a cook’s tour, over the years it has evolved a different sensibility. Through the lens of food, Bourdain accesses many cultures, often hidden in plain sight.
Bourdain’s most recent Parts Unknown is a visit to the scientists working in Antartica, and it shows you their scientific life. Can you detect a position of climate change? Perhaps. But the real value is that you get to see scientists at work. Not wrapped in lab coats, not necessarily huddled around a microscope and certainly not standing at a press conference. You see people you can relate to, people who are working in, as Bourdain states, “the ass-end of the world.” Given all the recent tumult about science in America, this program, in my view, is far more effective than any of the marches or journalist headlines or thought pieces. It 's hard not to come away with a new found respect for the work of scientists. He received a Peabody Award for this series a few years ago,
“He’s irreverent, honest, curious, never condescending, never obsequious. People open up to him and, in doing so, often reveal more about their hometowns or homelands than a traditional reporter could hope to document. A Peabody Award goes to Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown for expanding our palates and horizons in equal measure.”
Take the time to watch this episode; I think you may find it inspirational.