Saturday, 5 November 2011

If anything can go wrong... the Freezer will (adapted from Murphy's Laws)

I decided to create a brand new label to this blog where I can post a few light events that occur to me or members of my crew whilst completing this PhD in Molecular Microbiology. It works not only as something nice to share with the audience of this blog, but also as a therapeutic introspection where things that are usually taken very seriously by every single one of us can be accepted lightly, yet responsibly. In this day and time where pressure collides against our humour day in and day out, it is difficult to remain sane when dumb stupid random things happen to us in an uncalled for fashion. PhD - Pretty Humorous Disaster, is not only for sharing with you guys the unexpected things that take place during 4 years of my life as a PhD student (that has just started) but for you guys to give it a go to and share your ludicrous moments too. Use it as I will, as a purge, to cleanse the negativity and the burden of the random surprises that we don't want to happen, use it in a community manner as a passport to laughter rather than a judgement. Then, in 4 years time read it again and everything will seem a lot lighter than it does today, I promise you and I promise myself.

So here it goes!

On the 04th of November, when the day at work was nearly done, I saw my mate Josie struggling with an ice pick trying to brake through the ice blocks of an old freezer that contained samples from 1995. In 1995 I was bloody 16! A gentleman sees a lady in danger or affliction and must come forward, and that's what I did! I put my gym membership to work and broke those blocks for her in a much faster and effective pace. Everything was going so well, I felt like bonding with my guys, the supervisor was there proud of my work, and there I was revealing old eppendorfs after old eppendorfs, boxes and boxes of biological material, buffers and the like. Dressed in my lab coat, goggles protecting my eyes, ice pick hitting the watery rocks. I felt gooood, I felt part of them. But unaware of the mighty powers of Murphy's Laws, my supervisor came to me and warned me to just be very careful and avoid cutting through the tube with CFC in it because  that had happened to him in the past, you know, cutting a tube and releasing the cooling aerosol to the atmosphere. And I took that as my uttermost mission. My supervisor trusted me the long postponed mission of removing those ice blocks and clean that old freezer. I was doing so well, and at last the very last ice block was there, staring at me like an arch-rival,  the last enemy between myself and the glory of success and accomplishment; I was part of the team and I was really proud.

And suddenly that leaking sound happened, that horrendous ffffsssssssssssssssssssssssssssss that just took my light away. A tiny crack on the tube lasting forever (it was like 2 seconds but it felt like 2 minutes) to only end up with my supervisor saying - Well, that's it, there is nothing we can do with it any more.

James, a very funny Post-doc "cutting" through the ice of the moment replyed generously to light up the moment - You just killed around 5 penguins in the North Pole.

So, this proves that your good intentions and your team spirit sometimes might be undermined by the bloody Murphy's Laws that shouldn't even exist at all. Another thing is that you can tell your kids to go play ball outside in the front garden, and you know they shouldn't kick the ball too hard to avoid breaking a window or something. If you just shut it and say nothing, they will play and have lots of fun; the moment you tell them to be careful with the car window, just walk to the phone and call Autoglass Repair because it's gonna happen!

See you soon, guys... same place, same mood... The Toxicologist Today!

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