Things that have recently reminded me of Tech:
1. The cannon's east coast trip.
2. The smell of solder. One of our machines broke in lab, and instead of paying $1000-2000 to get it fixed, we decided to pay $155 for the part and fix it ourselves. Since I'm the one with the most soldering experience (tee-hee!) I got to solder it back together (in the end this was just sticking two wires together). As soon as I started and the scent hit me, I was back in Ruddock, it was late Tuesday night and everyone was finishing their phys labs. Ah, the memories! At least this incident was mercifully exploding capacitor free.
3. The fact that after I soldered I was so proud of myself I called up Techers so that they too would be proud. (Patrick, Trisha and Will are all doing fine, for those interested).
4. By habit, I've slipped back into using the "intercom" to contact others in lab.
5. Easter - the only holiday I routinely spent at Tech, and the only time the food was actually better than home.
I'm tired. But not as tired as usual. Surfing on the high of fat and sugar (thanks Wendy's!) and hoping that that, plus copious amount of caffeine, will keep me awake enough to finish tonight's experiments. At least they're going okay. Not terribly new or exciting, but okay. Yay reproducibility.
Good thing about lab: The boss and I sat down to talk data and papers yesterday. Figured out I've got the data for 1/2 of two different papers. That's the good news. The bad news is now I have to work my butt off for the next couple of months to get things finished. Plus, I have to do the experiments I don't really want to do before I get to do the fun ones. I feel like a little kid who has to eat her brussel sprouts before she can have brownies. Oh, well, I suppose brussel sprouts are good for me. And I'll hopefully sneak a brownie in every now and then.
Hmmm...I think good experiments are as good as brownies. I'm a nerd. Not that that's surprising anyone.
Other than lab stuff which is filling up more and more and more of my life, there has been some fun recently. SC and I saw Wicked last night at the Boston Opera House. It was wicked Oz-some! Now I'm giving up all claims to non-nerdiness! Eh, it's late and I'm still in lab, I'm excused. All nerdiness aside, it is a very good musical, with a story that feels familiar and new at the same time. Plus a night out on the town is always a good thing. Extra special thanks to Mama and Papa SC for the tickets.
Back to staring at flo curves...
Long time, no blog. My excuse is that it's been a long couple of weeks. My boyfriend and my boss got sick at the same time, which means there's extra to do both at work and at home. But, since they both ended up at the hospital, I'm guessing they weren't faking and therefore will be forgiven.
Other than that life continues as usual. Well, much as usual. My bed's on the floor because the boxspring broke in the middle of the night last week. Kinda weird, but the mattress is actually more comfortable when it's just on the floor, so that's a nice surprise. Scarecrow and I started playing Scrabble this week, which has been fun. My mom's a Scrabble fanatic (we even watched the national Scrabble championship on ESPN2) so I've been trained to be pretty decent. I think I'm having more fun than he is, though, cause he gets mad when he loses.
On the needles: Super secret project for someone who will actually read this (!) Also, ocean blue scarf which is not as much fun to make since I found out it has too high a percentage of wool to be comfy (I'm allergic). I'm thinking it will end up a good present for someone...
Watched more Gilmore Girls this evening. I know I like a show when The Fear starts to creep in - are the creators of the show going to mess this up? Are they going to keep my now beloved characters safe and happy? Are the story line going to continue being creative and interesting and not at all that sitcom crap that clogs the airways where you know exactly what is going to happen in the rest of the episode even when you haven't seen it yet?
It's interesting to compare this to the other DVD series Scarecrow and I are watching (Buffy, Angel, Battlestar Galactica). With Buffy and Angel, the end is already done. While they both end up a little more depressing that I might have hoped, I know the plots remain well thought out, with all the fantastic foreshadowing and complete plot development that Joss is so good at. While I remember The Fear popping up while watching the last episode of Buffy when it originally aired, I can now watch safe in the knowledge that nothing is going to happen that is so bad that it will ruin the memory of the entire series. There will be no George Lucas getting full of himself and not only making terrible prequels, but even going back and messing up the three movies that were so good in the first place. There will be no stupid pregnancies that show up just because the writers couldn't come up with a better plot twist. There will be no "it was only a dream" sequence that wipes out entire episodes. These events are always so disappointing and just ruin everything.
It's amazing how involved we become with the characters in our TV shows. We feel like we know these people who show up every week in our living rooms and entertain us with their latest exploits. So much so that we yell at the TV, or laugh out loud, or cry our eyes out. We feel entitled to quality entertainment, expect our favorite shows to live up to our high expectations, sulk when they don't. My emotional outburts tend to be greater with TV more so than with books, but that may just be the noise factor (TV is already noisy, therefore I can add to it without embarrassment. The book just makes ruffly page noises).
I think that, despite all the arguments that TV rots our brains, it also teaches us a lot about life. About how to (or how not to) respond in certain situations - fights with family or friends, declarations of love made to us that we may or may not want to reciprocate, cruel bosses, crazy coworkers. They let us see what might happen if one reaction is given vs another without us having to try each in our own life, to learn from the mistakes of others, even if they are fictional characters (although these are becoming rarer in the age of reality TV). While books do the same thing, TV feels more like real time - we watch the characters month by month over years rather than just learning the story in one lump. We can talk to other fans about what we want to see happen or not, who should get together or not, what decisions we think should be made in the coming episodes - "time out" conversations that can't happen with books that aren't read simultaneously. It's another method of studying human nature that is really underrated.
Wow, that turned into a long thought progression.
In the end, let me just say this: Amy Sherman-Palladino, take care of my girls. Keep them true to themselves and the show. I will fight The Fear and keep the faith, and keep tuning in.
My blot turned out to be a genuine Blot of Truth. Well, I'm assuming the proteins aren't lying to me. Actual signal, actual depletion of proteins over a binding curve. It's more than a girl could hope for. I suppose a girl could hope that her data would analyze itself, and print nice graphs with error bars and standard deviations, but that may be pushing it. Tomorrow - time to do the whole thing again. Yay for reproducibility.
I've decided to start buying the seasons of Gilmore Girls. The show just makes me so happy. The world is so pretty - fall colors, cheery small town America, where everyone knows each other and no one has to lock their doors. When I was younger I dreamt of owning a diner in a small town, where I would know everyone who would come in, and meet new people who were passing through. Of course, I thought this might be a tiny bit dull from time to time, so I wanted to spend half the year at the diner and half searching for dinosaur bones in Montana, which was probably a direct consequence of reading Jurassic Park in the car on the annual family camping trip. Still, there's something nice about a place where you can raise your kids without any worries, and where people still smile at each other and look each other in the eye when they walk down the street. Although it's entirely possible that knowing everything about my own town would drive me crazy, so we'll see.
It's getting late and I have journal club in the morning. And that other binding assay. Gee whiz my life's exciting.
Sometimes I name my experiments. Usually by adding "of Truth" at the end. Gel of Truth, Reaction of Truth, etc. Often this turns into "of Unending Doom" or "of Miserable Failure". The current Blot of Truth is rocking gently in lab, incubating in a milky bath of antibody. I, meanwhile, am stewing in my own juices, worrying about what tomorrow's exposures will reveal. Enough info to get a Kd? 5 Kds? (I'm doing a binding assay - trying to find the various Kds I've been trying to get for 2 years now. Problem is it's not a one protein-one protein thing. It's a protein complex-protein complex thing. Much ickier.) I've been tense all week, since coming up with a new idea for how to go about finding out what I want on Monday. Monday and Tuesday were spent purifying all the necessary proteins (43 proteins in two days...well, more like 6 complexes plus one extra protein, but it sounds better the other way), today the actually experiment was done, and now's the time for just waiting. After describing this, the hope and excitement are creeping back in. Maybe, just maybe, this will all work. Only time will tell...
And now, a parting night time quote as I head to bed:
"These mattresses are firm, but not too firm, just like the Lord!" Joan of Arc, Clone High.
So I've decided to try this blogging thing again. I've never been a big journal keeper, but I feel like I might feel better mentally if I wrote some of the stuff in my head down somewhere, see what it looks like, and see if anyone has anything to say about it. Now I just need to figure out how to make the thing look prettier....I know there are some dusty CS1 facts somewhere in my mind.
Let's see...I'm gonna start with a short summary of my current life. I'm still in Boston, but am now living with my boyfriend (I'm gonna call him Scarecrow here, cause I like it when people have nicknames. Yes, a Dorothy-Scarecrow relationship analogy doesn't quite work, so think more The Scarecrow and Mrs King. Plus I'm more of a Kate Jackson than a Judy Garland anyway). We've been together for a year and a half now, and he's, well, he's my Scarecrow. I love him most of all. I'm in grad school training to be a biochemist, but I don't really want to be a biochemist in the end. I just don't think research is for me, which has left me contemplating my future career options. The current favorite idea is to become a librarian, which I think I'd enjoy. But I am sticking around to finish the whole biochemistry PhD thing, since I only have another year, and the PhD will help in case I want to become a science librarian or work at a biotech firm (and just in case, as my boss said, I get to a point in librarian-ness, where I want to head up the Library of Congress and they won't let me without a PhD. Or I end up working with a bunch of scientists who want to pull power trips on me with their PhDs). This topic will probably come up quite a bit, just to warn you.
I think I'll also use this space to keep up with my knitting projects. Currently on the needles: Furry ocean blue scarf, Kelly's Christmas stocking.
All righty, enough for now. Back to Fairly Odd Parents.