Monday, September 19, 2005

I'm a moron...

Don't you just hate it when you have a "surprise" unprepared, I'm-a-moron moment with the people who matter? Haven't had much sleep last night because I spent all night typing up a couple of problem sets due today. My lab work has been a pain in the ass -- I've got no results to speak of because I've got serious sterilization issues -- I basically had to throw away my entire collection of cell lines last week when fungus started growing in them. Beyond that, I've been learning techniques so had nothing to report in my notebook -- I was doing protocols for other experiments in order to learn methods while I was waiting for my own sterilization issues to sort themselves out. It was very annoying. I've seen the next step of my experiment done once, but haven't gotten to the point where I can actually progress because my cells had to be thrown away due to the aforementioned fungal growths. So, today I finally got my new cells stabilized and my PI asks me this morning if I have time to meet and "touch base" with her today. Sure, I think, I've got very little to report but I can show her my idea for where to go from here, having "designed" the experiment for tomorrow. Wrong. First of all, she chastised me because my lab notebook was so disorganized. I admit it -- I deserved it. But, in my own defense, had I not been meeting with her today, the first thing I was going to do was organize my lab notebook. But, instead, I go meet with her. And she immediately points out some flaws in my experimental design and asks me if I'm sure about some quantities of DNA I'm trying to use. I go.. "uhhhh" *flip pages, flip pages* .... "uhhhhh..... yes?" No. We went outside and asked the lab tech. I was so very wrong. I spent the rest of the meeting and right now being so terribly embarassed and wanting to go hide under every available desk-like surface for looking like such a fucking moron. God, I am such an idiot for not having prepped, for having nothing to show, for not having kept my notebook organized, and for basically just looking like a fool in front of this person I so highly respect. So, the master plan is to go home and work on my assignment due in a month and a half and get a good preliminary draft in by the end of the week. I need to dust off my sullied honour.


Blogger James said...

Ouch. Hell of a Monday morning, huh?

Well, show them that you are the best researcher there. Everyone has a bad day; that's why they make Dynasty Warriors 5. But make sure you get enough sleep to get this stuff done.

And really, you'll be fine. Just don't sweat it, fix it.

9/19/2005 05:49:00 PM  
Blogger nykol said...

You are not alone. It has been one hell of a week making the awkward social rounds and while maintaining one's dignity. But don't sweat it - at least not too much - it's the growing pains of grad school and there is bound to be more of the same - but less awkward and less painful.

I was wondering how you were doing! BTW - I agree, get some sleep. You'll be far more efficient running w/fuel.

9/19/2005 10:49:00 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

thanks guys. :) three hours later, i have a paragraph done of the assignment.... not bad considering i've never written anything like this before. (the assignment is to write a paper reporting the restuls of the experiment i'm going to perform -- as if it were a real scientific paper, even if it never sees the light of publishing) i cherish my four sentences, really i do!

9/20/2005 01:23:00 AM  
Blogger jose said...

Glad to hear you're feeling better. Having seen my sister go through the journal article process, I know it's a great feeling to be able to write any part of it. Congrats! It's a rough learning process and it sounds like your PI is making an honest effort to guide you. I'm sure she'll enjoy seeing you deliver beyond expectation.

9/20/2005 09:29:00 AM  

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