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I clearly remember the first time I realized that something was amiss with my perception of science.

It was the summer of 2001. I was a second-year graduate student studying hydrothermal chemistry at the University of Washington, in Seattle. At the moment of my realization, I was in New York exploring an exhibit about hydrothermal vents at the American Museum of Natural History. As I was inspecting an intricate diorama of a remotely operated vehicle diving on a vent field, my younger brother, fascinated by the setup, asked, “How come when you talk about this stuff, it always sounds so complicated and boring?” I didn't have a good answer.