Saturday, June 13, 2009

Science Scouts, now with more badges!

The Order of the Science Scouts of Exemplary Repute and Above Average Physique

The last time this one went around the blogohedron, I didn't blog, so, while I could have claimed quite a few badges, I couldn't brag about 'em. Now is my chance. They have added a few new badges and there are hints that the real thing may be available for purchase to adorn your lab coat. How cool would that be? so, here are the badges I have qualified for so far in life:

Talks about science badge. Required for all members. Yes, I talk about science, whether you want to hear about it or not. Neither rolling your eyes at me, nor that vacant look protect you from my talking science!

Blogs about science. Couldn't usta claim this one, but I guess I can now, eh?

Aw, heck, who doesn't qualify for the arts and crafts badge. I've made electron micrographs (scanning and transmission), light micrographs, plenty of photography, ceramics (I even built a few kilns), and some sumi-e (heck, I made the paintbrushes myself, too). Does that count?

Yes, I did grow up to be a marine biologist, but...

I kinda fu**ing hate dolphins. "Ooh, look at us, we're dolphins, cavorting merrily! Aren't we just super-cool charismatic megafauna? Don't you wish that you could study us like everybody asks if you do when you tell them you're a marine biologist?" I hate them so much. Why do they always wear that damnable smirk?

The "Don't quite know where I fit in" badge. Oceanographer, microbiologist, do I study corals? Well, yes. I am and do.

Any modern microbiologist worth his salt qualifies for the cloner badge.

The works with acid badge? You bet!

The works with too much radioactivity and still has no discernible superpowers badge? Well, I started out in a sediment dating lab working with 209Po, then in the micro lab with 14C and tritiated Lucine. Weak emitters, all. Maybe that's why I haven't been able to detect my superpowers?

The quack stomping badge. Not too much on the blog, but I have convinced my sis that "alt. med." is bunk and I'm working on Dad. And that leads us to:

The "I can sometimes be a real prick when it comes to science" badge. Yeah, well I ain't sorry.

The freezing stuff for the sake of scientific curiosity badges. Freezer (I), dry ice (II) and liquid Nitrogen (III).

The Experienced with electrical shock badges, level II: the shocking of a human and level III the shocking of oneself. Same event, too. See, my lab partner thought the capacitor was totally discharged, so tossed it to me. He made contact with both poles as he threw it and I made contact as I caught it. That hurt a bit, but the scar has faded. Electricity + sweaty hands + stupidity = pain.

Speaking of stupidity and pain: the "I've set fire to stuff" set. Set fire to stuff for general scientific curiosity (I), while aware of the combustion principles (II), and set fire to self while conducting experiments (IV). Cooking and drinking accidents do not count for the level IV badge, but I think setting fire to the ethanol used to sterilize instruments, panicking, knocking over the flaming beaker which set fire to the BSLII hood and then catching the flaming beaker as it rolled out of the hood, spilling flaming ethanol on my arm probably counts. The hood was fine, thanks, and yes, the arm hair grew back.

Because of, or perhaps in spite of the previous experiences with open flames, I earn the "Fond of highly exothermic reactions" (the chem prof blew up the fume hood with thermite in high school, so cool! Lifelong love, there.) and the "Comfortable around open flames" badges.

"Works with small and potentially dangerous organisms." Duh, microbiologist, remember?

The "I've eaten what I study" badge may be a little bit of a stretch, but I'm gonna take it. I've used microbes to make some delicious things, in fact, I'm making yogurt as I type this, I have some Acetobacter cultures making vinegar on the counter, and I have the supplies for the next batch of beer (future Microbes in the Kitchen posts, I promise).

I know what a tadpole is. Got a few in the pond, actually.

My training has made me able to fix household appliances. Especially if there is plumbing PVC involved, or anything with pumps.

I will gladly kick a sexual harasser in the nuts, if necessary.

I have used a telescope for general scientific curiosity.

I'm maybe a little too fond of invertebrates.

My job is such that I often have to wash my hands before I use the bathroom.

My science has kept me away from my bed for a night (I) and for over a week (II). Cruises, gotta love 'em.

I could probably qualify for a few others, like the MacGyver badge, but those would be a bit of a stretch (more so than the eating what I study badge), so I'll leave it at that. How about y'all?


James said...

You forgot one:’m-actually-also-a-pirate-badge/



Lab Boy said...

Ah, crap! How did I forget the pirate badge? I think global warming may have gotten worse with that omission! My noodly master will not be pleased, but I think I may yet mollify him. With the holy Parmesan.

May you be touched by his noodly appendage!

Lab Boy said...

Oh, and "Yarrggghhh!"

Ann-Aël said...

J'aime bien tes commentaires, en français, mais j'avoue que je n'ai pas bien compris les deux derniers... Ceci-dit, c'est sympa aussi de rien comprendre !

Lab Boy said...

Peut-etre il vaut mieux si je parle anglais? Il y a presque 10 ans que J'ai parleé en Français, et sur l'ordinatuer? Jamais. Je peut demander une biére, mais maintenant, c'est a peut pres tout.

How about we continue this in English, then? You certainly understand more English than I do French. It's been too long, and I never really learned to write in French. I can read and mostly understand, but it looks like I cannot make myself understood in written French. So, while I read and get more used to it, I shall respond in English, as long as you continue to respond in French, so I'll have more to read. Sound like a good deal? (Also, I could use a French spell checker for Firefox. That may help enormously.)