Nerd Nite Fargo


Virgin Satan Swamp Gas- October NN

Hold on to your butts, nerds- October is here!  Details for our almost serendipitously creepy show:

The Virgin Lives!  The Slasher genre has been going strong for nearly 50 years with long-running franchises like Halloween, Friday the 13th, and A Nightmare on Elm Street. The most well known trope is that of the “final girl.” Looking back through decades of slasher films, we’ll examine this trope along with other recurring themes in the genre. What can these movies tell us about ourselves and the society we live in?

With a movie collection that exceeds 1300 titles, Clare Sojourner Harris Palmer considers herself quite the movie nerd. During her time studying sociology at Minnesota State University Moorhead, she took every opportunity she had to use film to examine the culture we live in. She’s incredibly excited to return for her fourth (?!) appearance at Nerd Nite Fargo!

Devil Inside: A Tour of Satan through Time.  Throughout history, the devil has been prevalent in many if not all cultural belief systems. often used as a fear tactic to push the masses to obeying a prescribed morality. But what if we shifted perspective and looked at the character of Satan through a different lens? This NN talk is going to explore different perspectives of Satan through history up to the current modern day. Soul selling paperwork will be made available to all those interested.

Kyle T Strand is physicist and weirdo currently residing in the Red River Valley. He has a penchant for darkness, but also believes in a strong positive morality. Kyle is known for his love of mathematics, the avant obscure, and his shy sense of self. He is in not currently affiliated with the Prince of Darkness, but he also doesn’t believe in absolutism.

Swamp Gas from a Weather Balloon was Trapped in a Thermal Pocket and Refracted the Light from Venus.  The flash of light you saw in the sky is not a UFO…until it chases you through a field. A history of UFOs in Fargo, including a first hand account of a strange night in the country and possible explanations for what exactly was experienced and witnessed.

Dusty O Schultz was born and raised right here in Fargo, ND. Hobbies include using an axe to split wood the old fashion way, fixing anything that does not contain a computer, constantly looking for another classic car to buy, and rocking out to his favorite jams.  When not doing any of that, Dusty maintains his status as the self-proclaimed roller coaster champion of the world.

…Plus booze, candy (because what’s Halloween without candy?), and general excellent nerdery, all at our beloved Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  October 17th, 7PM (doors at 6:30).  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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Sept NN: Chimera Cahokia Apocalypse Now

Good morning Nerds- I hope you are all having a stellar weekend.  I am recovering from a night of epic DND play at Paradox Comics- they had a special event to raise money for 4Luv of Dog here in Fargo.  Since it was a charity event, we were allowed to buy unlimited re-rolls for $1 each.  Did you know a table of six nerds can spend $66 in three hours trying to save their pathetic L1 assess from running out of hit points?  Now you do. 😀

Anyway, Sept details are here!  Check it:

Meet Me in St. Louis: Cahokia, Medieval America’s great city.  Remember sitting in your favorite class, history, and being in awe of the beautifully complex Medieval city near St. Louis? No? Well, no worries- after this talk, you will be. 🙂  Along the floodplains of the Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri, the great city of Cahokia dominated the Medieval world of America.  Learn about sacred sacrifices, America’s first pastime, and something called Black Drink…we’ll even try the last one with a little help from Proof.

Amanda Butler is an archaeologist and geoarchaeologist specializing in North American Archaeology. She is currently finishing her dissertation and teaching at Minnesota State University Moorhead

Channel Your Inner Survivalist and Know When and How to GTFO What does BOB have to do with SHTF and a possible TEOTWAWKI.  A journey though acronyms and apocalypses.

Dan Novacek is a benefits extraordinar by day, apprentice prepper by night, and a legend in his own mind. Hope Novacek is an Accountant by trade but lives the Pug Mom Life.

Chimera embryos: No longer science fiction!  What are these chimera embryos that you’ve heard about? Tiny pigs growing inside humans? Tiny humans growing inside pigs?! Tiny human organs growing inside tiny pigs growing inside mother pigs?!? Is your head exploding yet? Once we figure out what they really are, let’s talk about the ethical and social implications of our current scientific technology. Some discussions to look forward to: human consciousness in a pig, or two pigs mating to form a human fetus!

 Kimberly Booth is an Assistant Professor of Practice in the Department of Biological Sciences at NDSU. She teaches biology for non-science majors, in which she focuses on two major goals: 1) providing a scientific lens by which to evaluate societal issues and 2) fostering curious and scientifically literate citizens. Her research interests include how teaching techniques used in the classroom affect student learning.

That’s what I know!  See your beautiful faces on Sept 19th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), at the Gastropub.  Space is getting scarce lately, so get there early to get your favorite spot.  OR roll the dice, show up late, and sit down next to a stranger who may become your new BFF.  (See what I did there?  DND callback joke?  Dice?  Heh?)

Stay nerdy, my friends.

🙂 T

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August NN: Sexy Fat Music

Happy Monday, Nerds.  Sorry for the delay in getting these deets posted- if you’re ever impatient to hear this month’s topics, they are often posted earlier on our Facebook Group, because Hope is far more studious than I am. 🙂  BUT, I digress.  Here for your entertainment, I am pleased to present AUGUST NERD NITE!!

Comically Sexy. Comic books captured our imaginations with tales of sole survivors of a alien races or wall crawling mutants who fight crime, stop the villains, and even save the world from almost certain destruction. One uber important and obvious question remains unasked and unanswered: “Are they good in bed?”Jade Harveland, a sex educator and trainer at Enchantasys intimate boutique, is certified by the American college of sexologists. When not preoccupied helping improve sex lives or playing D&D, he breaks down which characters from comic books are or aren’t sexy, and sometimes has a toy sperm hanging off of his glasses.

The Physics of Music. What is a soundwave? Why does a guitar sound like a guitar? Why does classical music sound different than jazz? We’ll look into these ideas and explore how physics ties into the sound of music! –Eric Horn graduated from Minnesota State University, Mankato with a double- major in music and marketing. He currently attends the Berklee College of Music Online for Composition for film, TV, and Games.

The Ketogenic Diet: How to Lose Fat by Eating Fat. In this talk, we’ll learn what ketosis is, how to deal with the Atkins flu, and study 30 days of eating, body composition analysis, and results. –Christian Buhler, who you may recognize from previous Nerd Nites as the guy continually delivering gin-sodas to the drunken MC, has finally decided to take a night off from serving to speak at NN.  His interests include healthy eating, bitcoin mining, and not writing his own biographies.

…plus prizes, general nerdery, and ofc…BOOZE.  See you this Wednesday, August 15th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T


July NN: It’s hot outside, but it’s HAWT at Nerd Nite

Happy hump day, Nerds.  I hope you haven’t all melted in this crazy heat- clearly someone forgot to tell the weather that we North Dakotans prefer temps that don’t heat up a beer to undrinkable degrees in nanoseconds.

Anyway, July NN deets are here!  Mrs.  Dani Harveland of Enchantasys Adult Boutique is teaching us all about a topic that should be near and dear to our nether-regions: the wonderous Kegel exercise.  And yours truly finally gets to gush about a [perhaps not so] well kept secret: horses are dicks, but it’s okay.  Read on:

What the F*** are Kegels? Ever heard the buzzwords “kegels”, “ben-wa balls”, “fifty shades”? You’re about to find out what they actually are and how they benefit you. A hands on (without using hands) approach to exercising an area you didn’t think you needed.  Named after some old guy because of course it was. Dani Harveland: Sex geek, geek geek, all around cool chick. Aspiring sexologist. Enchantasys resident sexpert. NOT A DOCTOR.

Bonus!  If you’re a little shy to raise your hand and ask a question about kegels, you can go to SLIDO.COM and enter code NNF72018 to post your question anonymously.  We’ll answer them at Nerd Nite and no one will ever know it was you!  BUT, anonymous doesn’t give you the right to be a pervert or a jerk, so let’s keep those questions respectful, please. 🙂  Anyway, next topic:

Horses are Assholes & Other Fun Facts About Our Equus caballus Friends.  By human standards of behavior, horses can be straight up dicks. They push you around, they kick, they bite, they get in your space, etc. HOWEVER, by horse standards of communication, these assholey methods actually lead to relatively peaceful life within the herd. In this talk, learn to embrace the way horses communicate to make a similarly peaceful relationship between you and your equine pals. Tracy Kurtz: fluent in horses, sarcasm, beer, and exactly four other things.

PLUS Dani is bringing some bitchin’ adult, possibly battery-powered prizes courtesy of EAB, we’ll play some trivia to cover for the fact that our third speaker had to drop out, and we’ll drink some beer in the AC, because GD it is freaking hot outside.  All of this on Wednesday, July 18th, 7PM (doors at 6:30) at Fargo Billiards and Gastropuband all for free, because we love you guys. <3 See you there.

🙂 T

PS- here’s a flyer to share.

July 2018 NN Flyer


Story time.

At the end of last summer, I was lucky enough to attend Unglued’s annual summer camp, which is just like the summer camp from when you were a kid with workshops and crafts, and playing in the lake, and camp battles…

…but now it’s even BETTER, because there is BOOZE because we’re adults.  Naturally, some of the workshops they offered involved booze, because Drekker Brewing and Proof Artisan Distillers were two of the camp’s sponsors.  I took two classes from Proof that weekend: one about distillation and the making of gin, and how it doesn’t always have to taste like angry pine trees and how you can make a bitchin’ Old Fashioned with it, and another class on how to make your very own best- if unorthodox- bloody mary (add a splash of pineapple juice.  It’s frickin’ amazing.  Seriously).  The Bloody Mary class was Sunday morning and I figured I had nothing to lose since it was the last day, so I got so shitfaced that I don’t even remember the Camp closing ceremony and slept the whole way home.

And now, Fargo Nerd Nite would like to offer that same experience  to YOU, dear nerds (if somewhat abbreviated and slightly less ham-blasted, because it’s a school night), with our



Ms. Andrea Anderson (winner of the 2015 HPR Cocktail Showdown, Bartender’s Battle, and Area’s Best Mixologist award, now Proof’s Cocktail Development Ambassador and person who taught me that only heathens shake their bloody mary) and her trusty sidekick Mr. Jeremy Meldinger (distiller extraordinaire, self-described service industry lifer) will present three beautiful talks about the history of booze in America, the making of botanical spirits (AKA flavored vodka waaay before UV ever poisoned the waters with that blue lemonade bullshit), and the building of cocktails and flavor balancing, so you never have to be let down by an Old Fashioned ever again.  SUPER BONUS: they are bringing SAMPLES TO TRY so you can wet the ol’ whistle and LEARN at the SAME TIME.

Because this is Nerd Nite, baby, and that’s how we do.

So JOIN US Wednesday June 20th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub for a heavy dose of think and drink.

And maybe arrange a ride home.

🙂 T

May NN: A Logical Chitin Hololens.

Wow, it’s been a hot minute, nerds.  I apologize for the delay, but at last I am posting the fine details of our May Nerd Nite.  We are going to PLAY WITH EXPENSIVE TOYS, learn HOW TO WIN ARGUMENTS, and find out what a hippo farting in the fog actually sounds like. 😂Read on.

Chitin: From Crunchy Insects to Lobster Plastics, a Tale of a simple Biopolymer.  Of course, on hearing the word chitin, everyone’s immediate thought is, “Wow, isn’t that one of the most abundant polysaccharides in nature with an awesome structure comprising of long-chain polymers of N-Acetylglucosamine?” …Assuming that’s the case, there’s no need to write much more here since we’ll all just get together and extol the virtues of this extremely versatile biomolecule and its important role in things like making lobsters insoluble and bugs crunchy. One of the most important structural components of a large number of animals, we’ll discuss how chitin is also at the heart of a great many directions in current research in both biomedical and bioplastics studies.

Perhaps recognizable as the hairy nutter in the tie-dye lab coat and possessing a Scottish accent most kindly described akin to a hippo farting in the fog, Graeme Wyllie can be found either teaching chemistry at Concordia College or terrifying small children with science as part of the outreach organization Concordia Science Academy. After many years at the University of Notre Dame, failing to convince people he wasn’t Irish, he took his PhD and headed north in search of adventure, spending 3 years as a postdoc at NDSU before attempting to escape the area and making it maybe 3 miles to Concordia.  With a goal of making science accessible to all, Graeme continues to fulfill his role as Fargo’s Scottish Science Guy (and under the terms of the Highlander Exclusion Principle, there can be only one!!).

Intro to Logic in 20 Short Minutes.  Learn the fundamental vocabulary and skills you need to master argumentation in a reasonless time. Deduction, induction, validity, soundness, fallacies and more. A whole college-level course in just the time it takes to drink a pint.

Dr. Randy Cagle is Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences and Professor of Philosophy at Minnesota State University Moorhead. He received his Ph. D. from the University of Memphis, has taught at Northern Illinois University and Humboldt State University, and got roped into this by volunteering on the wrong trivia team on Friday nights.

Living Your Future Life in Mixed Reality.  Mixed reality is the blending of physical and digital worlds. Mixed reality empowers us to break free beyond boundaries and unleash the creativity of every person, forever changing the way we collaborate, create, learn, and play. Come to this talk to learn about Mixed Reality and experience it first hand by using a Microsoft device called the Hololens.

Kevin Honeyman is a long time Design Manager at Microsoft. His focus is designing business software that people use to do their job. While that may sound boring to you, it is his passion and what makes him a nerd. Kevin is not an expert on Mixed Reality, but simply an enthusiast that enjoys demoing Hololens to people who haven’t experienced it before.

Kevin will also have assistants demoing the Hololens technology so we can all try it out.  See you all at 7PM (doors at 6:30) at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub, Wednesday May 16th.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

Inbound: May Nerd Nite

Happy Hump Day, Nerds.  We’re still gathering details for our May show, but it promises to be awesome.  Concordia’s Dr. Graeme Wiley is returning with the breakdown on chitin, one of the baddest biopolymers in the animal kingdom.  Mr. Kevin Honeyman is stepping in for Matthew Chaussee of Be More Colorful, with a demonstration of Holographic Augmented Reality, with toys for us to try!  And Dr. Randy Cagle of MSUM will present Logic 101: fundamental vocabulary and skills you need to master argumentation in a reasonless time. Deduction, induction, validity, soundness, fallacies and more. A whole college-level course in just the time it takes to drink a pint.  Or several pints.  We don’t judge.

Anyway, mark your calendars for Wednesday May 16th, 7PM, at the Fargo Billiards and Gastropub, and I’ll have more details soon.  Y’all have a great night.

🙂 T

April NN: Artificial Morals

Happy Thursday, Nerds!  AT LAST I can present to you the details of our April show.  However, since one of this month’s topics may hit a little close to home for some people, I urge you to consider the very important content of this video:



With that out of the way, for your consideration, I present, APRIL NERD NITE:

What is Artificial Intelligence?  Well before the birth of the first computer, the concept of a thinking machine has captivated the human imagination. Through the 20th century, pop-culture has been flooded with futuristic depictions of a new intelligent race: machines that drive cars, interpret medical scans, advise hedge funds, compose music…when days of machine learning can eclipse a decade’s worth of human experience, we start to wonder what our future looks like. Will AI increase unemployment? Become sentient?  Surpass human authority? We’ll tackle these questions by dispelling the misconceptions that pop-culture portrayal has fostered around AI. –Jed Shanley

Jed: short for Jedi Knight, because he delivered himself from the womb through a lightsaber cesarean section. By day, he is a writing consultant for the University of Minnesota, and in his free time, enjoys researching a variety of topics such as minimalism, ethics, linguistics, skepticism, and of course, artificial intelligence.

Diverging Perceptions of Personal Moral Values and the Values of One’s Religious Group.  There’s a stereotype that atheists are less moral than religious people. Psychologists (including me) have recently tested the truth of the matter. The answer, it turns out, can be yes or no—depending on how you define morality. -Travis Clark

Travis Clark is an assistant professor at Valley City State University. His research interests include moral psychology and ethics.  His favorite color is purple.

Our scheduled third speaker had to drop out because life happened (don’t worry- Kyle and his talk about Satanism will return this summer).  We’ll make it up to you in cake form, because it’s our third birthday, and your happiness means a lot to us- so much so that we’re willing to buy it with desserts.  See you beautiful nerds on Wednesday April 18th, 7PM, at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

Where the fuck is spring?

Happy Saturday, nerds.  I hope you aren’t as salty about this BS weather as I am.  Take solace in knowing that even if it’s cold and snowy outside, it’s always good weather for thinking and drinking!  Nerd Nite returns on Wednesday April 18th, with a distinctly ethical focus- we’re still gathering details, but topics include:

  • Moral perceptions among various religions: a recent study asked people of various religions how they perceived their morals compared to those of other religious affiliations. Ready to get judgy? Maybe you shouldn’t be.
  • The positive aspects of Satanism: no, they don’t worship Satan or sacrifice goats over pentagrams, and they’re actually super nice people. Get to know the followers of maybe the most misunderstood religion ever.
  • Ethical implications surrounding Artificial Intelligence.  Does Sophia the Robot freak you out?  Is SkyNet coming for us?  AI is taking off like a shot, but just because we can, does it mean that we should?

Neat, right?  PLUS it’s Fargo NN’s third birthday, so we’re bringing cake!  See you at the Gastropub, 7PM.  Until then, stay warm, drive safe, and keep dreaming of temps in the 50s.

🙂 T

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March NN: Diversion Unglued

Happy Sunday, nerds.  Unfortunately, our AI speaker Jed had to drop out this month, but don’t worry, because:

  1. He’s rescheduled for April
  2. We still have two fab speakers for you!  Details:

The FM Diversion – How did we get here and what is next?  The Fargo Diversion – if built – will be one of the largest projects done in the region in the last 40 years. The diversion is designed to reduce the chances of a devastating flood in the Fargo-Moorhead area. Because of its size, the process for planning and then implementing the diversion is complex. We will explore the complexity of such a large project and how that process has gotten us to this point and what is next.

Drs. Christina Hargiss and Jack Norland are professors in the Natural Resources Management Program at NDSU.  Dr. Hargiss teaches the National Environmental Policy Act class and her research focuses on urban ecosystems, impacts of energy development on natural resources, wetlands, and environmental education. Dr. Norland teaches watershed management and does research on restoration ecology and building resilience in socio-ecological systems. 

DIY or Die:  The world of hot glue burns, adult summer camps, and your health.
From Pinterest to Youtube tutorials to r/DIY there are endless opportunities now to do-it-yourself and even make a living at it.  But you haven’t picked up a hot glue gun in 12 years so should you give a shit?  We’ll cannon ball into a pile of doilies and pom poms, cheers with a custom DIY shot glass, and discover why your future 80-year-old self will thank you for learning to weave at adult summer camp.
Ashley Morken is the owner and chief coffee drinker at Unglued – a modern handmade gift shop with crazy awesome events like an annual adult summer camp, monthly late night craft parties, and weekly workshops for kids and adults.  When she’s not falling behind on emails and small business life you’ll find her traveling, petting dogs, dreaming of another impossible idea, and spilling the next cup of coffee with her husband Justin.

You heard right- we’re making shot glasses. 😱   Plus games, prizes, and ALCOHOL!! See you Wednesday March 21st, 7PM (doors at 6:30), Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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