Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?

If you’re reading this right now, I’m not actually in Washington state anymore. I’m in San Diego!

It’s bittersweet. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to get outta Spokane for a little and explore a new city and talk to new people. I’ll miss my friends here, some productive working hours, and of course Cinnamon.

Fun fact: one Halloween I dressed up as Carmen Sandiego. By the way, I really miss playing the Carmen Sandiego games. I remember sitting at the computer with my Dad’s encyclopedia opened trying to figure out what place to visit next. I also remember getting really freakin’ frustrated because the hints weren’t at all common knowledge (so much so the encyclopedia rarely helped).

But I was really good at the Carmen Sandiego math game. No geography trivia. >_<

Anyways, after months of research and preparation, the time has finally come to make my national debut in science. It’s kinda funny when you think about it. You see, (most) of the people I know that really excel in their work are more of a “eat. sleep. science. repeat.” kinda person. I’m more of a “cook/bake. eat. sleep. science. play games. watch videos. clean.laundry. repeat.”

For example, I don’t like to work in silence.  I like to listen to things while I work for two reasons 1) It gives my mind something else to focus on and 2) Earbuds in = do not disturb.

I listen to Podcasts and Pandora in lab. When I’m at my computer I listen to Spotify (which satisfies my eccentric music taste). But because I’ve been spending a lot of time in front of my computer nowadays, I’ve been experimenting with other things to listen to while I write.

For now, I’ve settled with listening to Kitchen Nightmares. I know, it’s weird. Like, “why would you want to listen to Gordon Ramsay yell at someone else?” The show is predictable, but still entertaining. I notice though most restaurants he saves are family owned ones and most of them are Italian restaurants. Seems about right, does anyone REALLY know of a good authentic Italian restaurant that isn’t Olive Garden?

I also tried watching Ellen show clips, but I always find myself getting a little too emotional. I alllllmost cried when I watch/listened to this clip of this little girl singing to her mom.

After that I decided no more Ellen clips.

Besides that my grant is beginning to take shape. I’m at the part where more thinking is required. Like, “what happens if you get another result? what happens if it fails? what is the experimental design for the alternative experiment if the one you first proposed to do fails? why do you need 5 samples to represent a 52 million population?” The main question is basically, “Can you convince me to fund your project for the next 4-5 years?”

I tell what what, major props to whoever is NIH funded. I mean, you’re doing research there’s some novelty in. On the other hand, you need to justify what you’ll do will work which is easier when there is some method that has been published on. So it’s like, your idea better be new, but not too new. It’s a fine balance that I find myself currently working in.

So this is what I’ve learned this week: labs which are NIH funded are ran by people who can think years ahead in many directions and would probably make good salesmen with all the convincing they do.

I also learned this is hard. If an NIH funded person told me to do something or write in a certain way, I’d probably do it now. Obviously they figured out the system. I’ve been humbled now to listen to them.

So that’s it for now. I’ll be sure to talk about my trip later. Ttyl!

 

 

 

 

 

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