« The Blinding Light Show | Main | “Like the corners of my mind…” »

Trip the Light Fantastic

As those of you who have been watching us regularly might have noticed, Project X is a pretty busy show. Virtually all of our segments involve at least some location shooting – meeting up with scientists on their home turf. Because we shoot most of the show in the summer (longer days + generally sunny conditions = happy production team), we have to work things around scientists’ vacation schedules and general availability, so the end result is the whole series is assembled a bit like a patchwork quilt (or for you techophiles, a torrent!) – you shoot a bit for one episode here, a bit for another episode there, and it only all comes together at the end of the whole production season.

So, even though this is episode #4, the segment at Harvard was the first bit of Project X work I did this summer. It was a nice way to kick things off – spending a sunny August day strolling around the campus of one of the most famous universities in the world. I think I gained a few IQ points just breathing in the air.

I tell ya, I sure had to use those extra IQ points later that day when Dr. Hau started walking me through her experimental setup. Phwoar! Light is a great topic, but there’s not a lot of crazy stories to tell about it from the human body/micro world perspective. We were really keen to feature Dr. Hau and her mind-blowing experiments, so I had to dust off the vastly underused physics portion of my brain to tackle this segment.

I think I managed it alright, which I attribute to always checking out the physics articles in my husband’s Discover magazine collection. I’m glad I had the chance to check out her lab – it’s always nice to meet another female scientist, especially one who has been massively successful in what has tended to be a more male-oriented field, and I really think that she could be a Nobel Prize winner in the future.

That’s about it for this episode – they took it pretty easy on me for this show. I’m glad I didn’t have Marc’s job, running from Officer Fleck – I would have passed out from exhaustion. On second thought, I probably would have done a great job as the corpse.

Anyway, things are back to normal in Project X-land next week, where I am again placed in an amusing and potentially dangerous situation for the delight of the viewers at home! Next week is the memory episode, and while I didn’t have to endure 5Gs, trap gators or come into close contact with tapeworms, I did join up with a crew of free runners in London, England – tune in next Thursday to see our assault on the South Bank!