The Sassy Scientist – Growing Pains

The Sassy Scientist – Growing Pains

Despite the emergence of some minor ailments, Antti is still going strong with his research. With a slight declination in his productivity levels whilst stubbornly grunting along, he feels he should (and perhaps could) do better. Annoyed, he growls:

Academia has cost me my 20/20 vision (and given me a sore ass). Who do I blame?

Dear Antti,

Blame me. I apologize unreservedly for prolonging your screen time ever so much. Yet maybe you shouldn’t be scouring the internet for titillating science tidbits in a wooden rocking chair after a long day’s work. Just before you go to sleep. Not that I never enjoy a good chuckle before I doze off to the land of countless sheep. Yet I do that whilst lying down already, thinking of this very blog. On this I can only say: Aamu on iltaa viisaampi. Anyways … I am not too big of an egomaniac (just barely, to be honest) to acknowledge the notion that I may not be entirely responsible for your physical discomforts. It’s probably got more to do with your actual daily routine and duties. And in the current times of off-campus proceedings, perhaps your fantastic, out-of-this-world, heavily-subsidized home office? Whilst the potential of that next subroutine seems limitless, one should also seek the potential of a proper 20+-inch screen. I mean, I like a 13-inch laptop as much as the next academic, yet bearing your full weight all over that semi-speckled screen whilst pulverising those yellow-to-orange-dusted excuses for keys may provide the explanation for your poise. Not to mention your character. And let’s not forget that declination. One of the ‘good’ things of letting your eyes dwell off that screen with the few dead pixels in the upper left corner, besides the relief those peepers are desperate for, is the realization that you can do a coffee run. All the way to the table just out of arm’s reach from your desk. Just three steps across that pile of knocked over papers. You know, those paradigm-shifting gems that you were just able to bundle out of the institution before you were banned. Indefinitely. Well, at least you thought they were gems at the time. Kiitos for that waste of time; a new clone for a couple of python libraries, and an updated thermodynamic database have just been released. And by the time you arrive at your coffee machine, a.k.a. the stove, I am certain you will also realise that you should have added that minus sign after all in that buried subroutine that every rotation matrix uses before the vector multiplication. The jolt of energy this realization has given you should be enough to unsore that ass right away.

Don’t mention it.

Yours truly,

The Sassy Scientist

PS: This post was written envisioning the words through some prime spectacles, upright on my own two feet. Who needs chairs?

I am currently employed at a first tier research institute where I am continuously working with the greatest minds to further our understanding of the solid Earth system. Whether it is mantle or lithosphere structure and dynamics, solid Earth rheology parameters, earthquake processes, integrating observations with model predictions or inversions: you have read a paper of mine. Even if you are working on a topic I haven’t mentioned here, I still know everything about it. Do you have any problems in your research career? I have already experienced them. Do you struggle with your work-life balance? Been there, done that. Nowadays, I have only one hobby: helping you out by answering the most poignant questions in geodynamics, research and life. I am waiting for you right here. Get inspired.

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