Roger L. Simon

The Admirable Michael Crichton

As you all know, the brilliant Michael Crichton just passed away from cancer.  I met Michael a few times back in the early nineties when I was president of the West Coast branch of PEN (we were trying to get him for fund raisers) and was totally intimidated.  How could one person be so smart and so tall? Well, he was. He was also a global warming skeptic, as most of you probably know, which apparently disturbed the bien pensants like Charlie Rose.  I don’t blame Charlie for being agitated.  Like most of his class, he wanted to believe in the validity of AWG but would have to feel as intimidated as I by Crichton’s scientific knowledge. It’s not comfortable to have to deal with someone who can so easily rattle your assumptions when you don’t have the expertise to defend yourself.  I remember reading somewhere that Gore refused to debate Crichton.  I’m not sure this is true, but it makes sense.

Apropos AWG, it’s interesting to compare the BBC’s obituary of Crichton with this complaint about the network.