As I sat here today, wrestling with an intransigent Master’s thesis (the thesis is NOT mine, though the intransigence is), as well as the sheer existential gloom of being back at The Bunker (aka the Medical School Building) after the Xmas break…
…something made me laugh out loud.
And then again. And again.
The thing in question, already plugged a bunch of times in the blogosphere, is the brilliant twitter hashtag #overlyhonestmethods
I defy any scientist not to be reduced to tears of laughter by this one, a variant of the long ongoing conference beer-call / after a few pints routine where we translate the formal language of the Methods Section of our own and other peoples’ papers into… well, into why we REALLY did it like that… [See e.g. this version from the wonderful PhDComics]
A favourite so far:
– which I definitely recognise from loading cells with fluorescent dyes.
And another one which made me smile with recognition is:
– which I also recognise from my youth sitting in small dark airless rooms with microscopes and lots of heat-emitting amplifiers, recorders and computers*.
One of the people who has plugged #overlyhonestmethods, Derek Lowe of the excellent In the Pipeline science/pharma/chemistry blog, comments:
“I’m adding a few myself, not that I would ever do anything like these, though, you understand.”
And, er, yes. What he said.
Unless, of course, there is a higher truth, or purpose, involved. For instance:
Take that, reviewer no. 3. As we say in the biz.
*Of course, given the legendary ineffectiveness of University heating, in Winter the microscope room was usually the only place to get as toasty warm as 20oC.
Postscript: Via Drugmonkey, I learn that the originator of #overlyhonestmethods is apparently Drugmonkey’s fellow Scientopia blogger dr leigh, a neuroscientist who also writes a blog called Neurodynamics.
Good work, Dr Leigh.