Mary Roach

Jen Siska

Mary Roach

Sunday, May 9, 2021 7:30 pm PST

05/09/2021 7:30 pm 05/09/2021 America/Los_Angeles Mary Roach https://lectures.org/event/mary-roach/ Benaroya Hall — S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

At Benaroya Hall — S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Literary Arts Icon

Literary Arts

“America’s funniest science writer” (Washington Post), the ever-curious and darkly irresistible Mary Roach is the author of books like Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers and Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, books that are about human beings as much as they are about the human body. Her latest book, title forthcoming, is about often-fraught encounters between animals and people.

All Literary Arts Series, Create Your Own Series, and Super SAL subscribers (except Student/25 & Under and complimentary subscriptions) receive Roach’s forthcoming book.

Roach grew up in a small house in Etna, New Hampshire—she has said her neighbors taught her how to drive a Skidoo and shoot a rifle, though she never made much use of these skills. She graduated from Wesleyan in 1981, and drove out to San Francisco with some friends, where she a few years working as a freelance copy editor before landing a half-time PR job at the SF Zoo. Her office was in a trailer next to Gorilla World. On the days when she wasn’t taking calls about elephant wart removal surgery or denying rumors that the cheetahs had been sucked dry by fleas, she wrote freelance articles for the local newspaper’s Sunday magazine.

In 1986, she sold a humor piece about the IRS to the San Francisco Chronicle. That piece led to a number of humorous, first-person essays and feature articles for such publications as VogueGQThe New York Times MagazineDiscover MagazineNational GeographicOutside Magazine, and Wired. She has also written articles for Salon.com and tech-gadget reviews for Inc.com.

Although Roach writes primarily about science, she never intended to make it her career. Roach stated in an interview with TheVerge.com, when asked what exactly got her hooked on writing about science, “To be honest, it turned out that science stories were always, consistently, the most interesting stories I was assigned to cover. I didn’t plan it like this, and I don’t have a formal background in science, or any education in science journalism. Actually, I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology.”

Roach mostly writes books these days, but she still writes the occasional magazine piece. These have run in Outside, National Geographic, New Scientist, Wired, and The New York Times Magazine. A 1995 article of hers called “How to Win at Germ Warfare” was a National Magazine Award Finalist, and in 1996, her article on earthquake-proof bamboo houses took the Engineering Journalism Award in the general interest magazine category, for which she says she was “let’s be honest, the only entrant.”

Roach is the best-selling author of the previous books Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the VoidBonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and SexSpook: Science Tackles the Afterlife, and Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers.

Event Details

Benaroya Hall — S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

200 University Street
Seattle, WA 98101

View directions.

Know Before You Go

Can't find your tickets? Need access to the digital event?

Most tickets have been emailed for Roach’s in-person event, so be sure to check your inbox for an email from boxoffice@lectures.org. Call us at 206-621-2230 x10 if you can’t find them.

Your e-tickets, which come attached in a PDF with your ticket order confirmation email as well, will contain your digital access password. Return to the event page the night of the event at lectures.org and enter the password where prompted. The program begins at 7:30 p.m. (PDT) and will be available for viewing for a week after the event.

SAL will also send an email the day of the event, containing the same information. If you have opted out of receiving SAL emails, you will miss this important information—please email us at boxoffice@lectures.org and we will assist you.

Have a question for the speaker?

Ticket holders, want to ask Mary Roach a question during the Q&A? Send your questions to rahoogs@lectures.org—they might be asked on stage!

Books

Literary Arts Series and Create-Your-Own Series subscribers receive a copy of Mary Roach’s new book. You should receive a Roach Book Ticket with your admission ticket. Exchange this ticket at the book tables located at the main entrance to Benaroya Hall before or after the event.

Note: Student/25 & Under and complimentary subscriptions do not receive a book.

Our partner bookstore will have copies of Roach’s work available for purchase at their table in the lobby.

Patrons & Grand Patrons, join us for Happy Hour!

Patrons & Grand Patrons, join us for light bites and wine on the Promenade at Benaroya Hall from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m.

Transportation & Parking

This event will be held in the S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium, the largest event space at Benaroya Hall. 

Benaroya Hall is located at 200 University Street, directly across Second Avenue from the Seattle Art Museum. The public entrance to Benaroya Hall is along Third Avenue.

By Car

  • From Southbound I-5
    Take the Union Street exit (#165B). Continue onto Union Street and proceed approximately five blocks to Second Avenue. Turn left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.
  • From Northbound I-5
    Exit left onto Seneca Street (exit #165). Proceed two blocks and turn right onto Fourth Avenue. Continue two blocks. Turn left onto Union Street. Continue two blocks. Turn left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.
  • From Northbound I-5 via Westbound I-90
    Take the 2C exit for I-5 North. Follow signs for Madison Street/Convention Place and merge right onto Seventh Avenue. Turn left onto Madison Street. Proceed three blocks and turn right onto Fourth Avenue. Continue four blocks. Turn left onto Union Street. Continue two blocks. Turn left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.

By Public Transit (Bus & Light Rail)
Benaroya Hall is served by numerous bus routes. Digital reader boards along Third Avenue display real-time bus arrival information. For details and trip planning tools, call Metro Rider Information at 206.553.3000 (voice) or 206.684.1739 (TDD), or visit Metro online. The Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel, served by light rail, has a stop just below the Hall (University Street Station).

Parking
The 430-car underground garage at Benaroya Hall provides direct access from the enclosed parking area into the Hall via elevators leading to The Boeing Company Gallery. Enter the garage on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street. Maximum vehicle height is 6’8″. Blink charging stations are available for electric vehicles. The event rate is $16.

Parking is also available at:

  • The Cobb Building (enter on University Street between Third and Fourth avenues).
  • The Russell Investments Center (enter on Union Street between First and Second avenues).
  • There are many other garages within a one-block radius of Benaroya Hall, along with numerous on-street parking options.

Accessibility

Open Captioning is an option for people who have hearing loss, where a captioning screen displaying the words that are spoken or sung is placed on stage. This option is present at every event at Benaroya Hall in our 2019/20 Season.

Assisted Listening Devices (ALDs) are devices that people with hearing loss use in conjunction with their hearing device (hearing aids or cochlear implants). Benaroya Hall has an infrared hearing system, which transmits sound by light beams. Headsets are available in The Boeing Company Gallery coat check and the Head Usher stations in both lobbies.

Sign Language Interpretation is available upon request for Deaf, DeafBlind, and hard of hearing individuals. To make a request for ASL interpretation, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10. Please note: we appreciate a two-week advance notice to allow us time to secure interpretation.

Wheelchair Accessible Seating and Accessible Restrooms are available in all sections at our venues, and our venues are fully accessible to ticket holders with physical mobility concerns. Guide and service dogs are also welcome. Among other features, Benaroya Hall has designated parking spaces adjacent to elevators in their parking garage. Elevators with Braille signage go to all levels within the Hall. A unisex restroom is also available. For more details on their accessibility features, click here.

We are pleased to offer these accessibility services at our venues, and they are provided at no additional cost to ticket holders. Please contact us with any questions and feedback about how we can be more accessible and inclusive.  Our Patron Services Manager is available at boxoffice@lectures.org, or Monday-Thursday from 10:00am – 5:00pm, and Fridays from 10:00am – 1:00pm, at 206.621.2230×10.