Thursday, January 12, 2006

First day at work

Tuesday was my first day working in Dr. Clarke's lab. It was exciting, and also very nerve-racking. First days are always the worst: you're scurrying about being generally useless but nevertheless attempting to make a good impression. I had no idea where anything was, or how to do anything for that matter. I started off easy, making solutions (everyone hates it, but at least all it requires is for me to mix various ingredients together... if I mess up, no one has to know), but today I began learning how to make and run gels. Tomorrow, my lab partner France will be ordering some mice for me, and on Friday I should be learning how to collect the oocytes and extract the proteins.
It would really help if any of my previous lab experiences were relevant to the tasks being set out for me, but, unfortunately, they aren't.
Thank goodness for my friend Heather: she's the one who told me about the job in the first place. She came in today and lead me through everything: showing me where things go, giving me protocols (something else that drives me nuts: everyone has "their own way" of doing things, which just leaves me confused), etc. I feel so stupid though, hopeful I'll learn something eventaully and stop being a nuissance.
My schedule is rather brutal. Extracting the oocytes, making and running the gels, and all that jazz are lengthy procedures. I should be in the lab from noon to 11PM, and from 6PM to 9AM, depending on the days. I get to chose what day I come in on, and how often, but considering my class schedule (9AM to 5PM on Tuesdays and Thursdays), and how much I want to get accomplished before the end of the semester, I don't really have that much of an option...
I'm beginning to freak out a little bit. Why do I always bite off more than I can swallow? It must be a family thing.

In other news, it's raining here. In mid-January. In Canada. Who says global warming doesn't exist? I'm reading Oryx and Crake at the moment, and the protagonist mentions how it hasn't snowed in his lifetime. What if, by the time I'm old and wrinkled, snow will really be obsolete?


Blogger Ammo said...

"6PM to 9AM." I hope you meant 6AM!!! Not that that's much better :)
Don't worry about snow becoming obsolete: we'll always have snow-making machines, and I'm sure they'll find a way to pollute the atmosphere to cool it down. We're very resourceful when it comes to polluting!

8:58 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, but what happens to our work-outs with this horrid schedule?
Clearly, we'll have to go on weekends! (Yeah, gym 7 times a week!)

10:14 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...and what do you mean "By the time I'm old and wrinkled" already are, geezer! (okay, that came out of nowhere...)

6:43 p.m.  
Blogger Victoria said...

Haha! Low blow, Ms. "I'm turning 19 for the 3rd time"

7:04 p.m.  
Blogger 007 in Africa said...

Hey there! Sounds like, with the class schedule and the lab work, you won't have time to be bored. And I agree with Ammo that it's a pretty heavy schedule whatever you end up choosing. Good luck! In other news, I just finished reading Oryx and Crake--what a great book! It kind of leaves you wanting more though.

11:48 a.m.  
Blogger Victoria said...

Oryx and Crake is so amazing. I'm finding myself thinking about so many points that have been brought up in that book... Like that whole lack of ressources Crake brings up... And yes, I meant 6 PM to 9 AM!

11:22 p.m.  

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