For many others, though, the evening’s programs prove a sufficient diversion. Mark Siddall, the curator of the poison exhibition, hosts a well-attended session, with crowd members shouting out answers out of turn.
Why, he asks, do we bother studying poison?
“To kill people!” someone says.
“To stay alive!” suggests another.
During the children’s sleepovers, Mr. Siddall informs them, “the first answer is ‘to help people.’ ”