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A new start in 2011.
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wimminz in Academia Answers!!
Tuesday, December 14, 2010

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Saturday, December 11, 2010

cute? or THE CUTEST?
Friday, December 10, 2010

10 mo in the life of Gerty-Z (The one-year meme)
Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Today I had to fire someone
Thursday, December 2, 2010
November (6)

The joy of the interview
Monday, November 29, 2010

Are you writing an tenure-track job application?
Monday, November 22, 2010

Women in Academia Q&A
Wednesday, November 17, 2010

muddling in mentoring
Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Lost in translation?
Saturday, November 6, 2010

If you were an incoming graduate student, how would you choose where to rotate?
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
October (6)

Spooky!
Sunday, October 31, 2010

How NOT to work in my lab
Monday, October 25, 2010

Out on the job market
Friday, October 15, 2010

Make it rain!
Sunday, October 10, 2010

If I wasn't doing this...
Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I *heart* conferences!
Monday, October 4, 2010
September (6)

Should you pay undergrads that work in your lab?
Sunday, September 26, 2010

The scientist-in-training
Sunday, September 19, 2010

It's not a pissing contest
Monday, September 13, 2010

What I wish I knew...
Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Beery Bladder-not necessarily from a Beery Friday
Friday, September 3, 2010

Ambition, in the world of grant-writing
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
August (8)

A quick note.
Thursday, August 26, 2010

Moving on up...
Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sunday afternoon panic attack
Sunday, August 22, 2010

Advice for the new grad student
Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The purpose of the K99/R00
Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Am I ruining your marriage?
Friday, August 13, 2010

All about ME!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Hello!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
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Gerty-Z

I am starting my lab as an Assistant Professor at a Big Research University (summer 2010). I have a super partner and an adorable kiddo, Mini-G. I tend to rush into things and then figure them out as I muddle along. I'm sure that will be true here, too. I hope to use this space to maintain my sanity and share my perspectives on science and academia. These perspectives may sometimes qualify as rants. There will undoubtedly be some crazy times on the tenure track. Gmail me [at] primaryinvestigator

My posts are presented as opinion and commentary and do not represent the views of LabSpaces Productions, LLC, my employer, or my educational institution.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

UPDATED WITH ACTUAL CONTENT!!!

So, some of you may have been confused when earlier today this post went live without any content*. D'OH!


Gerty realizes she posted a blank

 

I totally fucked up and didn't even know it until I powered up my trusty iPhone early in the morning while I had some coffee before I went out for my run. At that point I coudn't make the empty post disappear, so I headed out on the trails for my super-awesome, super-soggy run (WOO HOO!). When I got done I had just enough time to scrub the mud off my legs before the crazy day of toddler fun with Mini-G. I managed to take down the blank, but couldn't put anything in its place. Sorry!


Of course, I had some great shit to put here, too! Fucking nuggets of wisdom, I tell ya! And I can't withold the good shit any longer. So, without further ado:

Gerty-Z's surefire plan to NOT work in my any lab
1. If you are an undergrad, please PLEASE make sure to contact me for the first time the day before the add-drop deadline. Make it clear that if you can't do research for credit that you won't get student aid this semester. Mention that I am YOUR LAST HOPE and YOU HAVE A FAMILY TO SUPPORT.

2. If I don't immediately (< 3 h) answer your email, a great idea is to just come by lab

3. signing off an email with ;-) is always a winner (srsly, wtf?)

4. If you are a prospective postdoc, mention that you are interested in working with me because "you like PCR"

5. Avoid reading any publications from my or anyone in my field. In fact, it is best if you are not sure what field I am in.

6. Be convinced I work on "human disease"

7. or, as Biochem Belle noticed: don't show up*! Especially if you have sent me at least 5 emails trying to schedule a meeting.

 

Hope you all had a super weekend!

 

*the first two comments are from the un-post, for your entertainment

This post has been viewed: 1025 time(s)

Blog Comments

biochem belle
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So the answer to the title - Just don't show up? Tongue out


Gerty-Z
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well, crap! I knew this would happen eventually. Clearly, I didn't mean to post this yet. Embarassed


JaySeeDub
Dub C Med School
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I had a student once demand to know where my PI (at the time) was.  Mind you she came up to us at a bar on a Saturday night.  And when we all could not tell them where she was (I'm not giving out home addresses to crazies at a bar...ever), they started screaming at us.  It was all very fun to watch the bouncers cart them off.

And people say science isn't exciting.


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Sometimes I wonder what goes on in people's heads. It never would have occurred to me to do any of the things on the list.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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My PhD supervisor was one of those awesome PIs who all the undergrads were afraid of, he didn't tolerate any crap and it was always amusing to see him lay into a student who thought it was OK to pull something like this. Unfortunately it meant they would often come to one of us instead to avoid his wrath!


Genomic Repairman
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I had a student once come up to me in a cafe late one night and ask me to help them work out a problem for them.  I asked them if they thought it fair for me to assign them homework if I randomly caught them outside of school with their friends and they said no way..."Then why the fuck do you think it is okay for you to pester me outside of work?"  Then I politely told the sniveling little shitbag to scram before I smited them with the tip of my boot.


Dr. O
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Oooh...I totally want to sign off with a winker on my next job app email! ;)


Brian Krueger, PhD
Duke University
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Hey! Don't make fun of emoticons.  I'm addicted to them...


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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I hate emoticons! It drives me crazy when people use them for everything. Although my grandma just figured out how to add them to her emails. It's kind of cute when she adds them to every sentence just because she can.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Yep, I'm with you on this one Nikkilina, I hate emoticons almost as much as abbreviations like LOL and LMFAO.  It irritates me even more though that there isn't any better way to convey how hilarious something is and that you are actually laughing out loud!  I was reading a forum post on IMDB for a particular film I was interested in watching the other day and one of the posts had two or three emoticons after each damn sentence, I couldn't concentrate on what they were actually saying!  Needless to say this is how I felt...Yell


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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The abbreviations don't bother me too much, unless they're used at an inappropriate time. In a text it's one thing, but in an email, write out the darned phrase! It isn't going to kill you to write out you or your. Those couple extra letters don't take that much time!


Odyssey
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G-Z:
I've had all those... Some of the postdoc inquiries I've had are just laughable.

"My extensive experience in manual fish fertilization should prove invaluable to your work in molecular biophysics..."


microbiologist xx
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It never ceases to amaze me when people come to interview for a post-doc positions and have read little to nothing published by the lab. I just want to know what these people are thinking or if they are thinking. Of course, if they really like PCR, then who cares.


Gerty-Z
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I am somewhat ambivalent about the emoticons. If I get an email from a friend, it is OK. From a prospective student? Not so much. And I would not ever use them in an email to a colleague. But I swear, if someone starts emailing me with "texting" abbreviations (and they weren't trying to be funny) I would go off the wall.

Odyssey, I would be happy with someone that coherent contacting me at this point. How do people get through a PhD program without a clue? And how did they get my email address?


Will
UC Davis
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Surely these things do not happen!

You wouldn't go for a job interview completely unprepared at this level right?  I mean not showing up or knowing what the person does is fairly basic stuff.  I am often shocked at what people think they can get away with.

GR- awesome retort to the "sniveling little shit bag".


Evie
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Im actually a fan of the stroll by. Ive resorted to that method on occasion.

This one time I had an appt to meet w one of my fav profs, who I was really really hoping would let me join his lab for MS program. I only had a class or 2 w him, so this was not at all a sure thing. I mean, he knew who I was, but I hadnt even volunteered at his lab before.. up until then I was at one of the aerospace labs and I was hoping to switch to the mechanical side. Anyway, that day before the meeting, I ate a sketchy looking sub. It was a bad choice. I then spent the following couple of hours head buried in the toilet, and needless to say I missed my meeting.

I was feeling like shit, and I was sure I had wrecked my chances at his lab, and that my graduate career was over.

Later that afternoon when I was feeling better, I figured, hey, I cant give up! So, I strolled into his lab hoping to see him. He didnt know why I didnt show earlier, and I preferred not to go into details about it.. In any case, it worked. No idea why, but it did. We had a great meeting and he was happy to have me join the team.

Im just saying, sometimes, good things happen from the stroll by ;-)  <---Note the appropriate use of the winky face


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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We had a med student who hounded my undergrad advisor for months to get a summer position with her.  She showed up the first day....and never showed up again!?!  Then when my advisor tried to contact her she wouldn't answer the emails!  Finally our post-doc was able to get in touch with her and the med student said that she didn't like it and didn't want to do it anymore....WTF?  I am still speechless about that one!?


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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It's pretty amazing what students think they can get away with sometimes. A similar situation happened whilst I was doing my masters.  A student showed up for all of one day and then never came back again and thought it was OK not to tell anyone that he wanted to quit.  Seriously, he took funding away from another potentially really good masters student just to decide that he didn't like it after one day - though I suppose we should also blame the people who interviewed him for not spotting that!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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We had a rotating grad student do that here. She wasn't happy that her project involved cell counting, so she just stopped coming in. It was ridiculous, and my PI gave her an earful.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Ha ha, cell counting, I don't really blame her, I don't really blame her.  But on a serious note, haven't these kids ever heard of talking to people about it, trying to get a different project they do enjoy, or simply sticking it out.  My parents always taught me to stick with stuff for at least a while and if I still didn't like it then think about leaving, but I'd never just up and leave.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Wait! Did I just do a 'kids these days' style rant? That's what happens when you're 20's are rapidly slipping into oblivion. Maybe this means I'm ready for kids of my own?


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Hah! I guess you could make yourself feel younger by joining GRM and the donkey for a weekend. Maybe the nipple shirt will show up at some point (fingers crossed).


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Wow, that's definitely two different ends of the spectrum, thinking about having kids vs thinking about spending a weekend with GRM and the donkey. Hmm, which way to go?!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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I'm just saying, there's poop either way. At least with GRM, there's a promise of booze (which you must avoid if you're prego or nursing)! Also, I think the dark side has cookies.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Ha ha ha, 'there's poop either way', love it! I thought there was a news article recently that suggested I was OK to drink when preggers though so should be good there.


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Hmmm ... good point. But I bet it's more fun (and less safe) to drink with GRM.


Gerty-Z
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What the hell!? I get busy for a few days and my commenters spiral down into spending time with GRM + donkey vs. kids? *sigh*

And since when do folks in their 20s get to throw down "kids these days" rants?!??! You ARE still one of the kids! :-)

yep, that was my, using a smiley. Because I'm not asking for a job.

OK folks. Let's not get sloppy here.

 

Will-these things do, in fact, happen. Apparently they will be happening almost daily for the rest of my life.

Evie-I think that there are times that a cruise-by is a good idea. In general I wouldn't react so poorly. But this kid was stopping by because I had not responded to his email. And he had waited 3 whole hours!! Apparently it did not occur to him that I was not responding to his email because I was busy. As a fun add-on, he then sent me an email complaining about how it was not "fair" that I hadn't taken the time to talk to him. But I digress. If you have had interactions with a prof., there may be times that an unannounced stop-by would be OK. But don't get your feelings hurt if they tell you to scram, is all.


Tideliar
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Genomic Repairman said:

I had a student once come up to me in a cafe late one night and ask me to help them work out a problem for them.  I asked them if they thought it fair for me to assign them homework if I randomly caught them outside of school with their friends and they said no way..."Then why the fuck do you think it is okay for you to pester me outside of work?"  Then I politely told the sniveling little shitbag to scram before I smited them with the tip of my boot.

Smote, brother, not smited. But push ups for "sniveling little shitbag"


Tideliar
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Why am I doing this again? said:

We had a med student who hounded my undergrad advisor for months to get a summer position with her.  She showed up the first day....and never showed up again!?!  Then when my advisor tried to contact her she wouldn't answer the emails!  Finally our post-doc was able to get in touch with her and the med student said that she didn't like it and didn't want to do it anymore....WTF?  I am still speechless about that one!?

We had a postdoc like that in a mates lab. Bugged and bugged to join. Finally allowed in and realises she has to work more than 30hrs/week and quit! No fuckin lie. Demanded extra vacations, no weekends and no evenings, wanted a payrise to extortionate levels (like $60k) and then quit when told "no"

Fukken moron


Tideliar
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Gerty-Z said:

As a fun add-on, he then sent me an email complaining about how it was not "fair" that I hadn't taken the time to talk to him. But I digress. If you have had interactions with a prof., there may be times that an unannounced stop-by would be OK. But don't get your feelings hurt if they tell you to scram, is all.

That would have lead to his immediate fukken pain if it happened with me. I let them go so far, but I will fuckken step on that shit if they get too big for their boots. Navy brat upbringing maybe.


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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@CPP, uh I mean Tideliar! Seriously, a grad student I can (sort of) understand trying to get away with this kind of behaviour, but a postdoc, wow, that's brave! There are plenty of other postdocs out there gagging for a job I'm sure, what a jackass!

@ Gerty-Z Sorry for the digression.  I'm only just in my 20's about to cross on over to the other side in a couple of months! But, point taken!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Odyssey started the donkey talk in his latest nipple shirt video. It was an homage to Odyssey's brilliance!


Tideliar
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JanedeLartigue said:

@CPP, uh I mean Tideliar! Seriously, a grad student I can (sort of) understand trying to get away with this kind of behaviour, but a postdoc, wow, that's brave! There are plenty of other postdocs out there gagging for a job I'm sure, what a jackass!

@ Gerty-Z Sorry for the digression.  I'm only just in my 20's about to cross on over to the other side in a couple of months! But, point taken!

LMAO, thanks, I thinke...

And remember, thanks to the awesomeness of teh m3di4, 30 is the new 20, so you have another 10 years of carefree existence left! Like, I'm 25 again! It's awesome!


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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On the flip-side, when should a PI fire someone?

We had an undergrad who was part of a fraternity...do you see where I'm going with this?  Someone in his frat house heard something about getting drunk by soaking your arms in ethanol and dared him to do it.  Late one night in a grant-writing frenzy my advisor returned to the lab to see this idiot had fallen asleep with his forearms soaking in 100% eythl-alcohol!

He continued to work there until he graduated!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Please tell me you're making that story up! He really tried that?


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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More to the point, he continued to work there until he graduated?


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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JanedeLartigue said:

More to the point, he continued to work there until he graduated?

DUDE!  ON MY LIFE!!!!  HE WORKED THEIR UNTIL HE GRADUATED!!!!   LOLOLOLOLOL


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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But then this becomes a PI problem...they need to step in and say "forget this, you're done".  But my PI didnt have a backbone...


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Either the PI had a serious sense of humour or he opened such a can of whoopass that he never put a foot out of line again!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Did anyone take him seriously after that incident??


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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Something I would like to add to the authors list though is answering a cell phone or texting during an interview!!!  DUDE!  My niece does that one (I'm embarrassed to say).  I had to tell her "dude? is a text from your friend about lunch that important that it can't wait till we finish our conversation?  I promise, its okay if they wait 5 min before you get back to them while I explain to you the concept from your Biochemistry class (of which I am a DOCTOR of) that you are presently failing!"  WTF?


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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JanedeLartigue said:

Either the PI had a serious sense of humour or he opened such a can of whoopass that he never put a foot out of line again!

Dude - none of the above.  Knowing that makes that story even sadder.


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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Just as bad is the annoying vibrating noise when they don't answer the text. It just goes and goes. Just turn the phone off!!


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Definitely, turn it off.  I may not be the most important person in your life, but I want to at least feel like I am!


Tideliar
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Nikkilina said:

Just as bad is the annoying vibrating noise when they don't answer the text. It just goes and goes. Just turn the phone off!!

I was Grand ROunds recently and all the baby medics had their beepers going. The presenter finally lost his shit and made a big stink about respect. "If you're on call switch your beeper to vibrate and sit near the door, if you're not on call then have some damned respect and turn the damn thing off. It's disruptive and rude!"

Awesome = 50+ red faced babydocs switching their beepers off.


Odyssey
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Nikkilina said:

Odyssey started the donkey talk in his latest nipple shirt video. It was an homage to Odyssey's brilliance!

*blush* Awwww, gee thanks.

 

On the other hand, I'm not responsible for bringing the donkey over here...


Odyssey
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Why am I doing this again? said:

We had an undergrad who was part of a fraternity...do you see where I'm going with this?  Someone in his frat house heard something about getting drunk by soaking your arms in ethanol and dared him to do it.  Late one night in a grant-writing frenzy my advisor returned to the lab to see this idiot had fallen asleep with his forearms soaking in 100% eythl-alcohol!

I'd have given him a gentle shove and sent him outside to have a smoke before he was fully awake...

 


labtech2149
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burning the lab down would also not get you hired


JanedeLartigue
UC Davis
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Tideliar said:

Nikkilina said:

Just as bad is the annoying vibrating noise when they don't answer the text. It just goes and goes. Just turn the phone off!!

I was Grand ROunds recently and all the baby medics had their beepers going. The presenter finally lost his shit and made a big stink about respect. "If you're on call switch your beeper to vibrate and sit near the door, if you're not on call then have some damned respect and turn the damn thing off. It's disruptive and rude!"

Awesome = 50+ red faced babydocs switching their beepers off.

Ha ha! This brings back memories of undergrad lectures, back in the day when mobiles were first popular, people had really stupid tinny ringtones and there was no such thing as a vibrate setting.  We used to get yelled at by profs if our phones went off in lectures (understandably), so it became a bit of a game, see if you could embarrass your friends by calling their phone before they had switched it off!


Nikkilina
Washington University School of Medicine
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You're making yourself sound old again, Jane!


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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Janede did you ever do that hum thing with your class and the teacher couldnt find out who was making the noise...that is hilarious!

 


Will
UC Davis
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I love the hum game.  That sounds like fun.  Although now that I would be on the other end of that, probably very annoying.


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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it would freak them out if you started to hum with them!  then start the tune Mary Had a Little Lamb...the class would think you were awesome!


Will
UC Davis
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Haha!  That would be funny.  Thanks for the heads up I will do that if it ever comes up!


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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If it does, you have GOT to let us know how it goes!


Will
UC Davis
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Good point labtech although in that category we can include showing up with a weapon and demanding the job, or any other equally violent act!


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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Odyssey said:

Why am I doing this again? said:

We had an undergrad who was part of a fraternity...do you see where I'm going with this?  Someone in his frat house heard something about getting drunk by soaking your arms in ethanol and dared him to do it.  Late one night in a grant-writing frenzy my advisor returned to the lab to see this idiot had fallen asleep with his forearms soaking in 100% eythl-alcohol!

I'd have given him a gentle shove and sent him outside to have a smoke before he was fully awake...

 

Good one odyssey!


Why am I doing this again?
Washington University
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There is a great balance here about effort from minion and leadership from PI


Tideliar
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Not bad idea for a LabSpaces Serial blog post thing..

Good idea WaIdta ( cool username bTW)

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