I wanted to be a firefighter when I grew up. However, I have the proud physique of a microbiologist, so that is what I became instead. Micro-organisms really are amazing (especially the ones that live on deep-sea volcanoes, which I study), and teaching micro classes is a blast. Life as a researcher/teacher can be stressful, so I balance it out with a somewhat ridiculous home life (I bagpipe, hike, and bicycle all over the place; I cook meals for my loved ones; I play with a whoopie cushion).
This blog will focus both on the science and teaching that I do, and the ‘human’ side of these endeavors–e.g., why is any of this meaningful? How does a scientist decompress when a paper is rejected, an experiment fails? How can I be the best mentor for my students?
How can I explain to a friend that his/her kids won’t get autism from being vaccinated without sounding like a condescending @sshole? How do I not take it personally when family members reject evolutionary theory or climate change evidence when they know I study both? How do I regain professorial cred after one of my students catches me screaming Blondie tunes in my car after a rough day?