Tag Archives: just for fun

Molecular Biology is like baking because…

If you are a sufficiently regular reader that you have ever googled me directly to get here, you will know that I am not the only baking biologist on the internet. In my haste and excitement to found my blog I neglected to realise that there is another baking biologist over on blogspot. Luckily, she mainly bakes, and I mainly biologise, so there isn’t too much cross over. Then there’s Sugar Scientist  and Domestic Diva MD and of course Dr Isis, Domestic Goddess.  It seems that baking is quite the past time for scientists in general and biologists in particular.

We have a running joke in the lab that there should be a list of questions that we ask to interview candidates before accepting them as members. It’s really a long list of things my PI dislikes about us (in a Grumpy Old Man way, rather than a genuinely-frustrated by way). The current list stipulates that new members of the lab:

– Must not have coloured hair (in the past 12 months alone mine has been purple, scarlet, royal blue and turquoise).
– Must not own cats
– Must not knit
– Must not have or use a mobile phone, especially in the lab
– Must be strongly opposed to the construction of pylons
– Must not read fiction
– Must attend the lab day out (my PI’s favourite day of the year is when none of us come in and he can have the lab completely to himself)

And the most recent addition to the list (thankfully, added after numerous successes not failures) is that new members of the lab must demonstrate their accomplishments as a baker. Because, ultimately, molecular biology and baking are very similar to one another in pretty much every respect other than scale.

Don’t believe me? Well let me explain…

What to buy my geeky girlfriend?

It’s always a bit interesting looking at the various search terms people have used to navigate to your blog. The vast majority of mine at the moment are on a theme of “Science: It’s a Girl Thing” but today somebody arrived at me by searching for ‘Things to get your science nerdy girlfriend”. I’m not sure why that would end up on my blog, but it made me smile, so today’s lunchtime scribbling is my current Wish List (OtherHalf, take note).

The first thing on every nerdy girl’s wish list should be awesome nerdy t-shirts. Just today I have been showing off a not-especially nerdy but no less awesome from Threadless. They’re based in the states, so you do have to pay international shipping, but this is just a good reason to buy 12 T-shirts at a time. (And with the exchange rate, they’re often only around £12 each. Bargain).

Right now I am quite tempted by this one to go with my awesome (also Threadless) dinosaur hoody.




I also am the proud owner of this one from Cafe Press. (I’m not a microbiologist, but my best friend is often confused by what it is that I actually do!)


Despite not being a microbiologist, I still think that the plush pathogens that Giant Microbes sell are pretty awesome:



Apparently every girl likes jewellery, and I have been coveting this DNA helix necklace since my housemate bought it for our medic friend who is taking finals at the moment.




I’m also a massive book worm, and when I’m not devouring fantasy I read a fair amount of pop science. Matt Ridley, Ben Goldacre, Mark Lynas and Nick Lane are some of my favourites




I shall think of some more later…

Dress to impress

Today, I wore a dress to work in the lab.

Maybe I was feeling slightly unhinged. Maybe I was inspired by the Science: It’s a Girl Thing video. (Maybe I am moving house on Friday and have packed 95% of my clothes, but not this dress because I thought it might be sunny at the weekend, and then I woke up late this morning and grabbed the nearest clothes).

Whatever the reason, today I learned a valuable lesson. If you dress inappropriately to work in the lab, the lab equipment will eat your clothes. 

(Note also the choice of unfashionable but practical footwear. I’m not completely stupid!)

Memo to self: no matter whether you’re just setting up PCR all day and it covers all of your skin, wearing a dress in the lab is never a great plan. Le sigh.

Shit Scientists Say

I think just about everyone in the world has seen ‘shit girls say’ and all of the associated parodies by now. This made me chuckle:

(I also like that really this is Shit Biologists Say)