The closest to Normal (Illinois) that I've ever been.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Thawing doubt


What am I doing? Watching crickets mate. Are I happy about it? No, I think not. This current experiment has clearly not worked, and I am just accumulating data points to round out my sample size.

Also, the sub-80 freezer broke overnight, and although I spent a good deal of time making arrangements to get it fixed this morning, I have the vague feeling that my labmates are grousing about it on the other side of my closed office door. Perhaps if I cared more about pleasing people than getting my work done, I would have dropped everything to notify each of the 5 labs with samples in the freezer, find an alternative -80 freezer, evacuate their samples, and then stand in front of the freezer, wringing my hands until the service guy showed up and fixed it?

When I was a grad student, I would totally be standing there in the hallway. However, as a postdoc, I don't have relationships with the various people inconvenienced by the breakdown, and I don't want to become the "go-to" person for problems like this. Was I a "nicer" person as a grad student? Maybe. But my extended time as a grad student taught me that although everyone pressures you to "take one for the team," grad students who refuse to do all this crap succeed. Grad students who are competent at organizing and fixing things are thought of as a future lab tech for someone else, while grad students who do their research but are incapable of handling any practical issues are chucklingly considered future absent-minded professors. What the hell?

2 comments:

Kim! said...

Good for you, Susan.

Jessica and Adam said...

Yes, that is very true!