So, first, take a look at this - one of my former instructors from graduate school is speaking with John Stewart:
(I tried to embed it, but it wouldn't take, so just go to the website)
Okay, so I have to say that it is very odd to see Brian talking and being relatively calm. He was always very excitable in class and when we'd talk to him in the halls or his office. That being said, look at the expression on his face when he talks about "water mountains" - he's clearly fascinated and enjoying himself. When people say, as the Graham Hancocks and other nutjobs on the planet tend to, that archaeologists "want to make everything boring", they are clearly talking out of their asses. Brian is clearly fascinated, as are his colleagues (myself among them). This isn't boring, it's amazing.
Now, funny Brian Fagan story...
When I was in graduate school, I attended the Society for American Archaeology conferences every year. One year we were in Milwaukee, and I attended one of the evening "meet n' greet" type functions. I walked into the room and saw a crowd of young women gathered around...something. Thinking little of it, I went to grab a snack from the snack table, and heard a British voice call out "Armstrong, haul your sorry carcass over here!" Lo and behold, the young women were all gathered around Brian.
Well, I walked over, and before I could say "Hi, Brian, what's shakin' the bacon, Homeskilet?" he had grabbed me, pulled me to the center of the crowd, and was stating loudly -
"Ladies, you are very fortunate. Let me introduce Matthew Armstrong! He is a brilliant archaeologist, and is clearly one of our rising stars!"
Not sure what else to say, I sheepishly said "well, It remains to be seen..."
"Nonsense, man." Brian then waved his hand to take in the crowd around us, "ladies, expect big things from this man. You are fortunate to be meeting him now, for he is brilliant!"
"Uhh, well, let's see if I can get a job before we start talking about my magnificence..."
"Fair enough. Well, I bid you all a good night."
And with that, he headed out the door and made good his escape.
So, there are two things I learned this night:
1. Brian Fagan has groupies
2. Brian Fagan is rather shy and likes to distract attention away from himself
And so, I am one of the few people I know of who can honestly say that Brian Fagan, perhaps the best known archaeologist currently living, tried to impress women on his behalf.
One more bit o' info: Brian's nickname for me is "software salesman." Probably because I used to work in marketing for the tech industry.