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Post Archive
2020 (0)2010 (34)
December (2)

Winds of Change blow again
Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Musik Warz?
Friday, December 3, 2010
November (10)

Summary Statements
Tuesday, November 30, 2010

SfN The meH...REDUX - OMG FTW!
Thursday, November 18, 2010

SfN Banter: The Review
Tuesday, November 16, 2010

SfN Day 3 (yeah, late again)
Tuesday, November 16, 2010

They Love me in San Diego!
Monday, November 15, 2010

SfN Day 2 (also late)
Sunday, November 14, 2010

SfN Day 1 (late)
Sunday, November 14, 2010

Office Space
Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Boot Force
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Time for BANTER!
Monday, November 1, 2010
October (9)

My House
Sunday, October 31, 2010

SfN the Meh...WTF!?
Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Lola, or A Tale of Delightful Surprise
Tuesday, October 19, 2010

This one's for Odyssey
Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Meandering Scholar meanders once more
Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Donors Choose do they?
Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Hey, Ho, the Witch is Dead...
Monday, October 11, 2010

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I wonder...what if...
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
September (5)

Dear Barista...
Thursday, September 30, 2010

I hate sports
Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Grantsmanship - skill or gift?
Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Classic Sting?
Wednesday, September 15, 2010

What I know now? You're not that special.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
August (8)

Wait. You are not the boss.
Thursday, August 26, 2010

Did you find what you were looking for?
Monday, August 23, 2010

Smoke Break?
Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Crash, Bang,, click, boom
Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Injury Re-re-post
Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Don't tag me Bro!
Friday, August 6, 2010

Remember that time you called a Laureate a twat?
Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Here I am!
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Blogger Profile


I am scientist by training, inclination and temperament. However, this is a blog, not a lab. The title reflects my passion for hyperbole, so don't take me too seriously. I don't. I was a technician in a physiology lab, got my PhD in molecular genetics and neuroscience, was a postdoctoral fellow in biophysics and now am a Project Manager in a Clinical Science/Biomedical Informatics institute. I am a scientific jack-of-all-trades, and very happy because of it. I write about science that catches my eye, making the transition away from the lab bench, and the slightly odd and moist boundary where science culture meets the public. I am an Englishman by birth, an American by temperament and if I were you I wouldn't lend me money.

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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Views: 1501 | Comments: 29
Last by David Manly on Dec 11, 2010, 9:07am
To My Fellow LabSpaces Bloggers,

I assume it's obvious from the twitter discussion and general tension that it was me who emailed Brian regarding some of my concerns with LabSpaces. I assumed the email would be in confidence and would be the start of a dialogue, but in a sublimely, and typically, passive-aggressive manner he chose to actually post near verbatim sections of the letter for you all to see.

I wrote, "There are two main issues we face right now. Firstly, temporally at least, is the constantly increasing stable of bloggers. You stated clearly that you wanted the current bloggers to have some say in the recruitment of new "talent", and went so far as to share a spreadsheet with us. However, there have been more and more additions to the site and we haven't been consulted at all. I hope to keep this in confidence between us, but I don't think you're selecting the right people. Some of the bloggers really aren't very good writers and this is diluting the "talent" on the site. Moreover some of the blogs at LabSpaces are barely used anymore. We believe this isn't necessarily good for the LabSpaces reputation. We're also aware that you're still sending out invitations to bloggers, some of whom have declined your offer bef . . . More
Views: 282 | Comments: 5
Last by Tideliar on Dec 05, 2010, 2:26pm
Punk? Musik Warz? So Fucking What!

*This entry contains a YouTube video*

So fucking what!

Well I've been to Hastings
And I've been to Brighton
I've been to Eastbourne too
So what, so what

Well I've been here
And I've been there
And I've been every fucking where
So what, so what

So what, so what you boring little cunt
Well who cares, who cares what you do
Who cares, who cares about you
You, you, you

Well I've sucked sweets
And I've sucked rock
And I've even sucked an old man's cock
So what, so what

Well I've fucked a sheep
And I've fucked a goat
I've had my cock right down its throat
So what, so what
So what, so what you boring little cunt
Well who cares, who cares what you do
Who cares, who cares about you
You, you, you, you

Well I've drunk that
And I've drunk this
And I've spewed up on a pint of piss
So what, so what

And I've had scag
I've had speed
I've jacked up until I bleed
So what, so what
So what, so what you boring little cunt
Well who cares, who c . . . More
Views: 390 | Comments: 16
Last by Tideliar on Dec 02, 2010, 9:05am
This is exactly what you want to see on your R01 Summary Statement....

Significance: 1
Investigator(s): 2
Innovation: 1
Approach: 2
Environment: 1

Overall Impact:
This is an outstanding revised proposal addressing a treatment void for the important and prevalent [redacted public health concern]...

As much fun as this is seeing the "Strengths" list multiple bullets. And as good even as that, the "Weaknesses" for the most part blank or just identifying previously highlighted issues you raised in the text anyway.


Indeed, I cry "Fucking Win"*!

*Note - I was only a minor player of this, but had a good deal of input on editing and structuring certain sections. Therefore I am basking in reflected pride and the knowledge that at least a couple of my team and friends have jobs for the next four years.

. . . More
Views: 4548 | Comments: 42
Last by Comrade PhysioProf on Nov 23, 2010, 4:00pm
I promised to revisit the SfN Official Bloggers after the rather harsh reaming I dished out earlier. I promised to do it before the conference, but I got caught up rushing to finish two proposals my 'postdoc' had tried to write. I promised myself I'd do it on Sunday, halfway through the conference, but I got caught up trying to make silly videos with Dr. Becca.

At SfN10BANTER, I was rather justifiably taken to task by a couple of the official bloggers, and some of the unofficial ones, for not getting my shit done. This is the internets. This is serious business!

So, here we go with a Mostly End of Conference re-visit. Let's see how our nascent, and not so nascent bloggers have been doing! There are two very important caveats here Dear Reader. Caveat The First: Being an official blogger is an awesome responsibility because people WILL read you. I can churn out hundreds of words of pap and aside from the my Twitter feed and regular LabSpaces followers I have no idea who is reading me. Maybe no one. But that's OK, because I write for the fun of it. And to silence the voices...(Ahem..stay OT dude. Ed.)... But the official bloggers are now On the Internet. There are posters and billboards up at the conference center exhorting at . . . More
Views: 831 | Comments: 10
Last by Natalie on Nov 19, 2010, 8:03am
Day dawns, but slowly, the sunlight thick like treacle, dripping over the horizon, reluctantly and hesitantly illuminating the carnage. It's as if Nature Herself wants to turn a blind eye to the debauched remains scattered through the San Diego streets.

Needless-to-say the SfN10BANTER tweet-up was a storming success. To those who made it Thank You for being awesome and beautiful and making me laugh all night long. To those who didn't make it, you'd better be there next year or I'm having the Society cancel your membership.

I can't thank everybody individually, and indeed I didn't even get to meet some folks. There were faces in the crowd I recognised but couldn't get to. And of course that's a good thing. I hope everyone else left wanting more too.

Particular highlights was meeting some of the SfN Official Bloggers, and here must go Magick Special Props to QScience for being the first blogger on the spot. Aechase for not being nearly as Scottish sounding as he should be. DrugMonkey for using the word fuck, in context, 200 times in the space of ten minutes. NoahWG for the awesome ear hoops and Nature gossip. Mr Gunn was as cool in the flesh as he is on line (I knew he would be because we share a surprising number of friends IRL). MoCost for saving my soul wi . . . More
Views: 214 | Comments: 6
Last by Tideliar on Nov 18, 2010, 10:40am
Day four has opened with a whimper thanks to the Pittsburgh Steelers underwhelming defeat at home. The New England Patriots simply out played them. It sucked. Tom Brady, Patriots quaterback, was excellent at finding space and advancing his team down the field. The famous Steelers "Iron Curtain" (also called the Steel Curtain by some fans) simply couldn't contain the rush. The Steelers offence faired no better and our quarterback, the infamous Ben Roethlesberger spent a great deal of time on his back under a mountain of defensive linemen. To make matters worse, the other teams in our division (Cincinnati, Cleveland and Baltimore) all lost so we could should have taken a commanding lead of the division for the second half of the season. This defeat was made worse by coming on the back of a major Penn State defeat on Saturday. The Nittany Lions rolled over in the NCAA and let the Ohio State Buckeyes win the game in the fourth quarter.

Ah, the life of a Steelers fan is never easy.

What's that? Oh, right, science, yeah.

This morning was quiet for me, there were a couple of interesting mini-symposia and a some posters I looked at, but nothing too awe inspiring. I mentioned yesterday that my research interests have changed over the last couple of years. Traditionall . . . More
Views: 254 | Comments: 7
Last by Natalie on Nov 17, 2010, 11:13am

The Faithful knew I had arisen from my darkened, preternatural Chthonic slumber to visit upon San Diego a darkness and wrath heretofore unseen. They knew I had arisen and with me came the screaming eldritch madness of the dark and cold.

They appease me with a restaurant named for me. A restaurant wherein I can feast upon the lightly seasoned and freshly sauteed souls of the damned. They even made a FSM-esque logo for me to know this is Mine indeed.

Well, they tried anyway. If you must use the diminutive of my name, you should still know how to spell it. Tiddles, has two d's and an ell.

However, they tried. So only the souls of their families will be sent to PZ Myers for his inexorable feeding.

. . . More
Views: 372 | Comments: 2
Last by Tideliar on Nov 15, 2010, 12:16pm
Day 2 opened with my customary jet-lag induced panic attack. At 06:45 PST I woke up in a screaming panic KNOWING it was 3PM and I'd missed my poster. Finding out it was my body clock waking me up at 08:45 CST was great, until I woke up at 07:15 PST KNOWING it was 3PM and I'd missed my poster... this went on until my alarm finally sounded and I fell deeply, deeply asleep until 10:00.

Anyway my hotel is the one next to the conference hotel (sorry ladies, no room number for you, but I have a king size bed, a 50" flat screen TV, and a great view...). Conveniently the one and only Dr. Becca was attending a funding meeting in my hotel so we met and wandered down to the conference together for check in and coffee. Saturday is the day things *really* kick off here and it was getting busy by 10:30 when we found the first Starbucks, picked up badges and the 9" deep pile of conference agendae...agendas... whatever they're called. By 11am there were over 30,000 people on site (no counting staff etc.). It's a big conference!

The conference opened with the actress Glenn Close giving the . . . More
Views: 158 | Comments: 0
Go see Dr. Becca's Blog. There was flying, there was sleeping, there was more flying, there was hugging, there was taxis, there was Bloody Marys and then it gets hazy... She videotaped me.

Go watch.

After that there was some science, a bit more drinking, some food, more drink, and then sleep...

. . . More
Views: 927 | Comments: 25
Last by Kevin Z on Nov 18, 2010, 11:11pm
I never had an office as a grad student. Nor as a postdoc. At either of my postdoc institutions. Given the amount of writing we need to do in our careers, that obviously sucks. Trying to sit at my desk in the lab and write was a guaranteed fail, especially because for "serious" writing I strongly prefer silence or classical music as background noise (as long it isn't Pachelbel's Cannon in Dmaj). In fact in my last lab it was ridiculous. My PI refused to believe I was working if I wasn't in the lab so that meant lots of face time. And my "desk" was a lab bench at the same height as my electrophysiology rig, which meant I couldn't sit comfortably at my "space" and type because my feet didn't touch the floor. I'm six foot three. Think about that backache.

Now though, times are different. In exchange for selling my soul wearing a suit and tie to work I get certain...perks. One of which is a nice office...

Got my Clinical Research diploma and PhD in there. Photos of my Moroccan dream vacation on the wall (The Making of The Tideliar - a blog post for a different day). Nice comfy leather chair, big desks for all my clutter (32 acti . . . More
Views: 1762 | Comments: 36
Last by Tideliar on Nov 09, 2010, 6:18pm
Originally published at

It’s the time of year dreaded by most motorists – when your car has to be subjected to its annual road-worthiness test. Over here in the States things are done a little differently from the UK’s standard MOT. For starters, each state sets its own standards. This is very handy if, say, you’re my friend Rob, an impoverished Ph.D. student living in Pennsylvania, but hailing originally from West Virginia. Pennsylvania driving standards, though by no means strict, are positively draconian compared to those from neighboring West Virginia, a state the size of Ireland with the population of Birmingham. Therefore enterprising young academics like Rob simply kept their cars registered in West Virginia and, once a year, made a trip home to get the car inspection done. This often seemed to entail nothing more than someone adding yet more duct tape to the undercarriage in an effort to stop the transmission dropping out. Just ignore the plumes of foul-smelling and highly toxic fumes pouring from his exhaust pipe – there’s no way one state will impinge on the rights of another. No siree! Let’s just hope the . . . More
Views: 978 | Comments: 23
Last by Tideliar on Nov 05, 2010, 8:57am

Oh yes, this is happening. In just two weeks time, your b'loved (albeit less b'loved than me) Dr. Becca and I will be hosting a wee get-together during the Annual Society for Neuroscience Meeting in San Diego. It's a chance for us to meet all of you lovely people, and for you to meet each other, as well! We will drink, we will be merry, and we will most certainly banter.

According to its website, Quality Social is a bar. With food. It's also conveniently located near the Convention Center and has a solid bourbon selection, the importance of which I trust at this point needs no explanation.

While not required, your RSVP is much appreciated. We have started a twitter list of attendees, so if you'd like to be on it and see who your future BFFs are, hop on The Twitter and produce a tweet--any tweet--that contains our special hashtag: #sfn10banter. If you're not yet on the twitter train, this is the perfect opportunity! Not only will you be able to keep abreast of any B.A.N.T.E.R. developments, but . . . More
Views: 372 | Comments: 12
Last by Tideliar on Nov 01, 2010, 10:15pm
We love our neighbourhood. They joke about us never having to worry about sobriety checkpoints because "there's too much money and many votes on the island". Makes life nice and easy. We're all rich. We're all white. Well, there are some Indians and Asians, but aside from their loud children they're usually nice people. I wish they'd keep their children quiet though.

We love it that every 10 days I have a Mexican who cleans my curbs. There's another Mexican who mows my yard. I think they're Mexican.

We love it that every Halloween the neighbours come visit. Our diverse and open minded neighbourhood is just a few blocks from one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Memphis, so we love it when They come for "Trick or Treating". We put up signs saying "Trick or Treat 5-7:30 ONLY". Just to help control things, obviously. No one needs to be up too late on a school night!

We love it when the neighbours come to Trick or Treat. They're all black so it's just funny when we make jokes about reflective jackets, or 'at least you see their teeth when you hit them'. We laugh. We're very accomodating. Very egalitarian.

We love it that by 9pm there are a half dozen police cars patrolling our neighbourhood. We woudln't want any children getting lost on the way home.
. . . More
Views: 4680 | Comments: 82
Last by Tideliar on Nov 08, 2010, 9:39am
Updated with less typos! And new correspondence! And a little less spleen...

Last year the Society for Neuroscience selected a few intrepid bloggers to be the blog-voices of the Annual Neuroscience conference. Yours truly was chosen but my plans derailed (almost literally) at the last minute and I wasn't able to go. I applied again this year, but offered to use my other blog...which then unfortunately lay dormant for several weeks after my application was submitted because I got locked out. So, needless-to-say your Most Belov'd Tideliar wasn't selected this year.

However, you know that Some Lies, and Fumbling Towards Tenure Track, by our own B'loved (albeit less so thanTideliar), Dr. Becca will be reporting intrepidly and steadily.

But what of this year's stable of SfN bloggers? Surely after last year's launch the Society will have grown and moved forward? DrugMonkey wrote some thoughts and suggestions in a nice post back when the call for bloggers went live. Well, follow the links below and see what you think. A couple of the blogs have been established for a while, but others...I am . . . More
Views: 663 | Comments: 27
Last by Tideliar on Oct 23, 2010, 11:20pm
I love my salon. Oh yes, dear Reader, I go to a salon. My stylist, Barbara, is a wonder and always takes her time, and I do not begrudge her the extra dollars she charges for the cut. I’ve changed hairstyles recently and today was my first cut with the new style already settled in place. Before the cut even began we had a chat about styling, and goals and length. Then she washed my hair (with scalp massage), then used mint oils to condition my hair. All par for the course at this wonderful and eclectic boutique. Barbara hasn’t been my stylist for the whole five years I’ve lived in Memphis, in fact our friendship is fairly recent. However, when I find a stylist I like and trust I am loyal to them.

One reason I love this place is the atmosphere. Of the stylist population, I estimate that 30% are male, the rest female. 100% are tattooed and styled and gorgeous. Of the 30% male stylists, rarely does one find a straight man. It would be an unfair and possibly discriminatory generalization to thus suggest all male stylists are gay, but these are the demographics of this salon.

This preamble is going somewhere, fear not.

I arrived at the salon earlier than my appointed time and so availed myself of the literature provided for the clientele to peruse. . . . More
Views: 212 | Comments: 7
Last by Tideliar on Oct 20, 2010, 4:15pm
From the BBC Sports Desk

Second Test, Bangalore, day five: India 495 & 207-3 beat Australia 478 & 223 by seven wickets

"Debutant Cheteshwar Pujara struck a confident 72 as India eased to a seven-wicket win over Australia in Bangalore to complete a 2-0 series victory.

Set 207 to win, India lost Virender Sehwag early on but hit back with a 72 stand between Pujara and Murali Vijay.

Their dismissals gave the visitors hope but veterans Sachin Tendulkar (53) and Rahul Dravid (21) saw the hosts home.

The loss pushes Australia down to fifth in the Test rankings, one place below England going into next month's Ashes."

I promise to expand this post with content later, but for now, a simple, "Meh! Eh! Good show! Bloody good show! Eh! GAve the Oz a thrashing, what!" will suffice.

. . . More
Views: 875 | Comments: 40
Last by MitoScientist on Oct 24, 2010, 2:10pm
I've muttered and mentioned before that your belov'd Tideliar has a Pseudonym under which He lives a seemingly normal life. This 'meatpsace avatar' blogs for a different science network and I've debated about outing him and consolidating my/our blogging here. Well, it now looks like matters have been taken out of our hands.

The other Network have finally enraged my human alter-ego to such an extent he left certain messages on their administrative boards that it is likely he will be persona non grata for a while. This other Network belongs to a major publishing house and they started their online activities under the same Legacy system they'd been using in-house for years (as far as I can tell - information flow has been slow, sporadic and mixed at best). Now it's grown to encompass conversation forums and a blogging system as well as blogging aggregator it has become unwieldy and cumbersome. On top of that the selection process that made one feel like one was somehow "worthy" of blogging there is now gone and it seems every scientist and her dog is writing something for them under the liberal appellation of "blogging".

"Well, blogging ain't easy," as the song goes. I've been blogging for 6 years . . . More
Views: 394 | Comments: 12
Last by Cath@VWXYNot? on Oct 14, 2010, 1:37pm
Hey, bloggosphere, I know you know about this by now, and I know you're overwhelmed with us begging, wheedling scabbers bloggers, but this is cool right?

Donor's Choose is letting the Science Blogosphere drum up supplies for underserved teachers and their pupils. Seriously, I fucking cry everytime I log on to the damned website. It's heartbreaking to see how desperate some of these groups are. And heartbreaking it will be when i trackback everyone who looked at the page and didn't immediately click on the Tideliar's Donors Choose widget on the right hand side...go look, it's there, I checked. Right under my Twitter feed.

See it?


Now go do the right thing and donate. Find a science project you believe in and give some money to a good cause. Find one that is running out of time and donate to them. Find one near you and donate to them. Give $10 to 10 causes, or $365 to one and think, that's only $1/day to you.

But donate you will, because as other bloggers have offered positive reinforcement, so I offer their opposite. You don't donate after reading this, I'll find you. And I'll make you wish you'd just clicked the little link and given a couple of bucks to someone who really needed it instead of tipping the d00de at the coffee shop because h . . . More
Views: 717 | Comments: 14
Last by Tideliar on Oct 12, 2010, 11:09pm
Well, dear Reader, it appears as if the forces of good have once more defeated the forces of evil. David has again slain a metaphorical Goliath. Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring have...ah, OK, you get the picture.

Looks like the grant I have been feverishly slaving over these last 6 weeks is now out of my hands. Cast free to fly on the winds of change; like the babe Moses adrift in a... Enough already with the damn metaphors! Ed.

I reckon I have devoted around 500 hours of work on the bastard, buggering thing and it's been a lot of fun. And a lot of stress, not least of which was being told to reformat (i.e. substantially rewrite) the bloody thing in 7 hours one day last week. And the strangest thing of all is the the little bit I was directly responsible for ended up being two aims and maybe 5 pages long. Where on earth did all the effort go? All my words? Of course it isn't a simple, balanced "time in = words out" equation.

The first part is discussions between you and your collaborators, back and forth, about the Specific Aims, for without these you have nothing. They will get tweaked and twisted as the process rolls on, but you have to h . . . More
Views: 1119 | Comments: 4
Last by Tideliar on Oct 12, 2010, 6:46pm
Early Career Academics: Development, Socialisation and Agency

Contributions are invited for a special issue of the International Journal for Academic Development (IJAD) on the topic Early Career Academics: Development, Socialisation and Agency to be co-edited by Dr Kathryn A. Sutherland and Dr K. Lynn Taylor.

Early career academics are a significant, but ill-defined and under-researched population within higher education. In this special issue of IJAD, we wish to provide a forum for new thinking about the development of academic staff/faculty in the early stages of their careers. Contributions may focus on any aspect of the early career academic experience but we are particularly looking for papers that investigate the socialisation, agency, support and development of early career academics as teachers, researchers, scholars, academic citizens and/or professionals.

For the purposes of this special issue of IJAD we are focussing on academic staff/faculty within the first five years or so of their first academic appointment. Our focus will not be on doctoral students. However, manuscripts that interrogate the experience of being an early career academic who is also completing postgraduate . . . More
Views: 371 | Comments: 10
Last by Tideliar on Oct 07, 2010, 9:37am
In this second instance of our LabSpaces theme blogging we are instructed to ponder one of the great unknowns. A known unknown full of unknown unknowns, for the Rumsfeldians amongst you. What would I be doing if I wasn't doing what I do now?

I vividly remember, sitting in the bar of Jury's restaurant in Dupont Circle, in Washington, D.C., in 2003. I was having a beer with Jenn, the singer of my band. We were just trying to get to know each other better; she felt I'd spent enough time bonding with my guitarist, Matt. Jenn asked me a rather profound question, "What makes you different at 28 than you were when you were our age?" Jenn and Matt were both 23. I pondered this for a moment, and said, "I know now that I know less than what I thought I did when I was 23."

Most of that self-realisation is in the form of learning to appreciate the inexplicable variation in life, or to put it differently, the way you can never begin to guess what curve balls life will throw when you're at bat.

If, 20 years ago, you had told the fifteen year old me that in 10 years, in the year 2000, I would be looking back at life, with earrings and ponytail,  and I had ended up studying biology, met a girl, fallen in love, moved to the US to go to graduate school, and gotten . . . More
Views: 865 | Comments: 25
Last by Prabodh Kandala on Oct 02, 2010, 12:01pm
Dear dude who works in the cool new coffee shop in my neighbourhood,

About twice a year, on average, I sell my soul to the Feds and work like a madman to keep myself and my dozen or so staff in a job. Usually this whole soul-selling business means I am sleep deprived and just wee, little, tiny, bit grumpy. I know you know me because I've been to your cool little coffee shop a bunch of times, but you likely haven't seen me like this because your little shop hasn't been open since the last round of NIH submissions (when I was exactly like I am now).

However, something you *do* know is that I always tip for service. If I'm getting a "to go" order I might leave some change in the tip jar, if I'm "dining in" (as we might jokingly call it), I leave 20%. Everytime.

Today I didn't play the game right and left the cash in your tip jar while your back was turned. Then you saw the empty tip-line of my credit card reciept and assumed the worst...but, dear boy, the worst you should have assumed is that I had either left cash (which is better for you, FYI), or that I was just in a rush, or having an off day or something...but you didn't did you? You gave me attitude, and cold coffee, and somehow managed to fuck up bagel and the ever-living-fuck do you screw . . . More
Views: 437 | Comments: 10
Last by Cath@VWXYNot? on Sep 30, 2010, 3:19pm

Fuck you Fantasy Football. Seriously.

Anyone for a game of darts? . . . More
Views: 1975 | Comments: 32
Last by Tideliar on Sep 23, 2010, 8:59am
Most of my readers know I have an alter-ego in real life who blogs (albeit sporadically) at a different Blog Network. I'm debating about combining them - coming out if you will, but that's a different post for a different day.

Something that is constant between both my Tideliar and [REDACTED] personalities is that I love to tell stories. I love to teach, and offer instruction when I can. The subject of my pedagogy is the increasingly wide swathe of territory that life scientists inhabit after they finish grad school and when they finally settle into some kind of career. Today's post is a little pedagogical I think, but you'll have to help me find the meaning, and the advice in here.

We're going to rant talk about grants and grantsmanship. I'm going to tell a tale of writing. If you want to understand the rules of writing NIH grants you must read and digest DrugMonkey, and if your tastes run to the National Science Foundation, then you shall want to visit Prof-like Substance and our own belov'd Odyssey. Read their posts on the subject and, import . . . More
Views: 342 | Comments: 5
Last by microbiologist xx on Sep 25, 2010, 3:37pm
Literally...a screen shot from my iTunes player this morning at 2:30am - -recorded for posterity to prove to myself I'm not hallucinating....

Seriously. I love ya, but WTF?
. . . More
Views: 2325 | Comments: 38
Last by Patrick on Mar 08, 2013, 1:43am
This month's group-bloggin theme has the catchy title of "What I wish I knew then...I know now", or something equally as grammatically painful. I've thought long and hard(ish) about this because I don't want to overlap with the brilliant Grad School Carnival being hosted elsewhere. Also, I figured that if you ask a dozen or two scientists what they wish they'd known "back in the day", you would get a dozen or so answers all saying "grad school is not the be-all and end-all of your life", or something along those lines. Needing to stand out due to my enormous ego I'm hoping this post is slightly different.

So, what do I know now that I wish I'd known back then? In no particular order, but based solely on the current US, academic, life-sciences environment...

1. You're not that special, so get over yourself as soon as possible. There are many tens of thousands of graduate students. You are not unique so stop thinking the world revolves around you.

I have been working in academia for around 13 years now, not counting my undergraduate daze. I've been a technician, a graduate student, a postdoc, unemployed, a postdoc again, and now an administrator. Something I have always been struck by is the arrogance of the vast numbers of junior level (think entry level) . . . More
Views: 840 | Comments: 27
Last by Tideliar on Aug 31, 2010, 6:55pm
A friend of mine has a bit of a quandary right now. He has an 'untrainable' staff member. It's quite strange and I thought that I'd see what the blogosphere thought. Obviously I've changed some facts here and blatantly haven't asked his permission to do this.

My friend, let's call him Malcolm, is in the second year of the TT at a small State University in the US (small university, not state. Then again, I suppose the state is quite small compared to some, so maybe it works either way...Sorry..this oddly long digression is now getting recursive...(I wonder how many times I'll go off topic while writing this (this comment, not this post))).

Anyway, Dr. Malc was fortunate enough to walk into his gig with a sweet project and some nice prelim data so he secured funding very quickly. For those who are about to stop reading out spite and jealousy, he doesn't work in basic sciences, so don't worry he's not stealing y'alls thunder. Malc needs someone to do the basic science side of his project while he focuses on the clinical aspects of the research so he hired a postdoc. This person was hired as a Research Associate because it's a nicer package - benefits, decent health insurance etc.

Very generous, I . . . More
Views: 1096 | Comments: 15
Last by Dr. O on Aug 23, 2010, 10:28pm
I was browsing wedding bands on Amazon, as you do, to find out how much i might be able to sell my old one for. I am a cold hearted and SRSLY broke young scientist!

Picture 5

Look to the bottom right...

Picture 5 crop

You got some hot & sexy Turkish music, a guide to frenzied sex and some...cables...I can think of three reasons you might want cables too. Either this is just coincidental comedy gold because some was browsing as randomly as me, or a couple of virgins are in for a surprise on their wedding night...

"But it said in the book you have to put your leg here, while I...." . . . More
Views: 1658 | Comments: 19
Last by Nico on Oct 04, 2010, 5:57am
Our esteemed Overlord has hijacked my train of thought today with this little entry on our News Page:

"Smokers trying to give up -- don't stop thinking about cigarettes!!!"

I added the exclamation points. They need to be there.

It is now 14:45 Central Standard Time***, which means I have not smoked a cigarette in 5.41 days. That's 129 hours and 45 mins. That's 7785 minutes, or 467,100 seconds, or...

OK, you get the picture I'm sure. Almost everyone nowadays knows a smoker who has tried to quit and sadly, very few know an ex-smoker who quit successfully (not counting the final, terminal phase of smoking cessation). I worked for many years in neuropharmacology labs and my former Department Chair is a Pioneer in nicotine addiction research so I've been to plenty of seminars on nicotine addiction*. I'm trying to remember the figure for smoking recidivism and I recall it having a cumulative rate of 95%. That's right, only 1 in 20 attempts to quit smoking are successful. I'm looking for a reference right now, and funnily enough putting "smoking recidivism" into Google Scholar brings are a mass of papers from . . . More
Views: 391 | Comments: 10
Last by Tideliar on Aug 26, 2010, 6:00pm
I work on the fourth floor of your main administrative building. It is an 'I" shaped building, with the tines housing senior offices and the body containing the cubes for the drones.

Naturally, I have a corner office.

On my floor the Office of Research and the Office of Academic Affairs share an uneasy relationship. Both Vice-Chancellors are one end of the hall and various Assistant and Associate Vice-Chancellors are scattered at each end. Well, like most places we're going through some restructuring...some staffing changes. Sad, but true, and resulting in empty offices. So, the VC Academic Affairs decided we would re-structure to make better use of the space.

Now try and follow this if you can...

One Assistant Vice-Chancellor is moving to a large office off of the main corridor, the Associate Vice Chancellor is moving in the smaller space vacated by the Assistant Vice Chancellor*, and another Assistant Vice-Chancellor (my boss) is moving from one end of the hall to the other into the space vacated by the aforementioned Associate Vice-Chancellor. In the Assistant Vice-Chancellor's (my boss) now vacant office a few high-ranking drones (my peers in Academic Affairs, essentially) are moving so as to create a more cohesive unit, next door to the Vice Chanc . . . More
Views: 1472 | Comments: 16
Last by Professor in Training on Aug 10, 2010, 10:16pm
This post is a redux of a post from my other blog, the newer Some Lies. It's still there with a couple of years of posts I may or not get round to migrating one day. Anyway, this was first published in April 2006 on the first edition of Some Lies (now long sealed up and buried under Yucca Mountain). I’ve neatened it up, and added a couple at the end. The re-post is for two reason. One, is poor Dr. OverLord has broken himself doing something arcane and fearsome to the servers of LabSpaces, and this might make him smile through his concussion. The other that slightly the sickening realization I’m at the end of 3 of the cycle…so it is coming soon...

What is It? What cycle am I speaking of…oh, Dear Reader, read on…

April, 2006
…So last night after band practice, me and my good mate and bassist William “The Beast”-“Lefty” Wallace (a man whose nickname is now almost as prodigious as his bass-work), were having a chat down the pub. Somehow the conversation steered to broken bones. We were likely talking about all the blokes we’ve beaten up and all the birds we’ve shagged. Cos, as rock stars that’s what we do. Or at least, we tell outrageous and grandiose lies about it . . . More
Views: 661 | Comments: 10
Last by Tideliar on Aug 09, 2010, 12:28pm
Dr. Becca in her infinite wisdom has chosen to tag me with a blog meme.

And if you've just arrived on the internet that sentence makes no sense whatsoever.

It's an odd little tag though, because normally these things come like 20-fucking-questions and try and to expose your soul for all to see. Kind of like the office retreat ice breaker that goes horribly wrong...


"OK, everyone settle down. I know we're all excited to see some new faces after our successful merger with First Bank of Bartlett." The atmosphere in the room was burdened by a few heartless cheers. The staff were wishing he'd just sit down and let them get on with their lunch. They'd driven across the state to this wilderness retreat for an enforced three day "meet-and-greet-and-motivate" workshop. No one wanted to be there, but everyone had attended. Jobs had been lost in the merger and only the hopelessly naive or freshly graduated thought the attirtion was over. Nervous faces turned to the figure standing near the trestle tables as he spoke once more.

"We've got a great weekend of games and team building planned, but because we are a new group, to all intents and purp . . . More
Views: 550 | Comments: 8
Last by Anonymous Coward on Aug 05, 2010, 10:09am
Dude. Fuck. Sigh.

So, this isn't my only blog. I have another "official" blog on another Network. Some Lies was resurrected to be a place for me to stretch my legs and talk about things not on the Official Agenda of the other blog network. I happened to write a post lately that I thought was good enough to Carbon Copy to the other blog. And it is getting a lot of attention.

I have wasted hours today arguing with homeopaths about the nature of their reality, and I kind of called this one Nobel Laureate a bit of twat. I mean, I didn't really use those words, but I kind of intimated it. I thought he was troll. And now the strident voicebox of Homeopathy itself, Dana Ullman, has joined the fray. I am trying to keep my temper when talking to them because it is only fair to the other readers of my blog.

But Ullman was rather rude...OK, I baited him, but it's my fucking blog.

And now the Laureate is giving me lectures on physics.


I am tempted to out myself, and get some 'net rage going here. A friend of mine is won't to say when FWDAOTI...

"Get the fuck off my internet" . . . More
Views: 380 | Comments: 9
Last by Tideliar on Aug 04, 2010, 10:17pm
Or will be soon. Gimme a chance I've just warned the Blog Spot blog. New post coming soon... . . . More