Today's picks for civic nerds. 

Image: nps.gov

For Wednesday

Prehistoric Puget Sound 

Take a look back into time through the work of two University of Washington researchers. Graduate student Megan F. Gambs details how the ginormous Glacial Lake Missoula (roughly 19 times larger than the Puget Sound) broke across Washington state and affected the landscape we see today, while UW researcher Adam Campbell explains how life on earth adapted some 650 million years ago. Think a science-fiction landscape of frozen oceans and vast deserts, and you have the prehistoric Puget Sound. 

ENGAGE Seminar: Water, Rocks & The Tropics, Wed, May 22, 6-7:30pm, Town Hall, 1119 8th Ave, $5 (or free with UW student ID)

Followed By...

Double feature! Following a look into the Puget Sound's past, get a glimpse our potential apocalyptic future. But have no fear—Annalee Newitz will detail how to dodge the extinction bullet: We've done it multiple times, she assures. Newtiz writes for the science-fiction/science blog io9, and recently wrote the book Scatter, Adapt, and Remember.

Annalee Newitz: How Humans will Survive a Mass Extinction, Wed, May 22, 7:30-9pm, Town Hall, 1119 8th Ave, $5 (or free with purchase of ENGAGE Seminar ticket)

For Tomorrow

Roots of Obesity

This community conversation, hosted by the Northwest Association of Biomedical Research, explores who's to blame for the obesity "epidemic"—parents, the food industry, or the government—and solutions to reverse the trend.

Food Fight: Who is Responsible for Obesity? Tues, May 21st, 5:45-7:30pm, Kakao Coffee + Chocolate,415 Westlake Ave, $10 general and $5 students.

And For Today

City Communities

Take your lunch to the Harbor Steps this afternoon to hear from Great City Board Member ChuckWolfe. His new book, Urbanism Without Effort, focuses on how to build strong communities among city dwellers in urban environments. Wolfe's work on urbanism has also appeared in The Atlantic and Huffington Post. 

Great City Brown Bag Lunch: Urbanism Without EffortTue, May 21, 12pm–1:30pm, The Harbor Steps, 1301 1st Ave, free. 

Congress Uncovered

Washington Post reporter Robert G. Kaiser reads from his book Act of Congress, detailing the achievements and failures of our most "democratic" branch of government. Get an insider view of the mechanics of Congress, the dysfuctional dynamics within the Capitol, and how special interests and party politics play into the bills that pass (or fail) the floor.

Robert G. Kaiser: How Congress Really Works –and Doesn't, Mon, May 20, 7:30-9pm, Town Hall, 1119 8th Ave, $5

Want to see your nerdy event featured on the PubliCalendar?
Send the details to Carryn at publicalendar@seattlemet.com.