April 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

when I’m bored in lab
I put all my things in the centrifuge
turn it on
pretend it’s a bomb
and run away.

Another way to get a thrill
is to leave things slightly unbalanced
and hope for the best.

Science is fun.


Solace in science

December 11, 2010 § 1 Comment

Okay, so all of you pretty much know my parents, right? Really cool people, with a pretty substantial art and wine collection, high tolerance for you know, me, great love for Lena, etc. They’re also, like, scientists or something.

I basically grew up around the lab. They work really hard, they enjoy what they do, and because I was mildly well-behaved Interjection: Things I did not expect my almost 3 year old to say: COME HELP ME WITH MY SILLY BAND and some what able to entertain myself, I tagged a long. Result: The smell of yeast is really comforting to me. Bread baking, beer brewing, all sort of remind me of home. The also result is that I just. really. like. science.

I don’t know! It’s half comfort, half something I enjoy. I tried to be an international studies major in college, and got really bored by the fact that I got an A on this final paper that was something about Substantial Landscape Memory in Post World War II Europe, and I think I talked about gang graffiti in LA for like, 3 pages of it. I liked languages, so I studied Chinese, but I just liked my science classes better. Oh my gosh, it’s just like, if you’ve grown up hearing about microtubules and spindle dynamics all your life, what else are you going to do, you know?

So anyway, working in this lab now, and I love it. Wait let me back up still first. The other things my parents gave me was this great community. I love reading papers by people that remember me when I was like, 12. I loved growing up around the Physiology course in Woods Hole. Hey Omar! Hey Paul and Amy! I remember first getting my learner’s permit at 15, and Paul drove down to the Harris Teeter with me to buy beer for some lab party. I thought I was the coolest person ever.!! (Gosh I was so awkward back then.)

It’s cool because I started in this lab doing super plain old tech stuff, running mindless chips for array CGH, preparing samples for exome sequencing (human genetics, as exciting as you think it may sound, is really not that cool. Or you know, if you like fishing, maybe it is cool. Yeah you know what don’t quote me on that. It just depends, it always depends.) And now I’m starting to some real experiments. I’m growing cells and making plasmids and I’m going to start transfecting soon, and I really like this part, the growing, the taking care of something, the long term. It’s cool because I’m a little more on my own. There’s a little more “winging it”, a little more room to fall, a lot more room for error, but it’s more exciting!

Until it’s Friday afternoon at 4:30, you realize that you should have split your cells, you know, hours ago, and all the tissue culture hoods are full.

Then it’s like, great. Why can’t I just put you all in the fridge and wait until monday again?

So I’m at work, Friday evening now, close to 6. My mom’s got Lena. I’m wrapping up, and I’m thinking to myself, Wow, I really like this. I really like working, late even, because it gives me a sense of purpose that’s not related to being a mom, which is really cool. And I’ve felt this before, you know? It’s late nights in Davis Library with Wes, writing poems. It’s studying, ohmygoshi’msogladchineseisover, chinese vocab in the UL. It’s frantically printing out a paper right before class. I love this! I love learning, I love doing, I love, all of these things. And science. My parents just went to ASCB. L and I are going to go to the museum later. Oh, and by the way, I got an abstract in ACMG. That’s the American College of Medical Genetics, to you.

Uhhhh I think I just wrote a really dorky blog entry about work and science.

We also got a new heater for our house. Lena is playing with a stapler. Gotta go.

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