The Sassy Scientist – Where’s That Tree? I Need Another Didgeridoo!

The Sassy Scientist – Where’s That Tree? I Need Another Didgeridoo!

Mathieu is putting the final touches on his presentation for next week’s crazy science rumble also known as the EGU GA. A hybrid meeting of sorts nonetheless. Scrolling through the schedule, he exasperates:

How do you make the most of yet another, sorta-kinda hybrid meeting?

Dear Mathieu,

Well…. you don’t. You just go through he motions like any other “fun new experience”. Imagine signing up to a meeting where it is decided after you went through with the abstract submission and registration that ALL presentations are now simply 5 minute orals. ROFL!! It’s not like anyone wants to discuss their work under the comfortable blanket of a poster or screen presentation with multiple interested parties asking a myriad of questions and giving constructive suggestions. It’s not like anyone wants to give a presentation where the time constraints are wide enough that also non-niche-experts can understand the talk because there is time to give relevant background information. It’s not like anyone wants to get comments right after the presentation but rather seeks to scroll two months later on a webpage. That’s just common sense.

The first time the digital version ‘happened’, I described the experience as a didgeridoo. Mainly because such a meeting is a new and exciting (yet elusively far-originating) format, but particularly hard to handle correctly. Unfortunately, I do not expect things to be any different. Why not try even another new format? It’s bound to go smoothly, right? It’s not like there will be major Zoom-issues like last time. No. The organisation will have things covered. What can go wrong with mandatory 5 min oral presentations that are live-streamed around the world. With questions from far away and right there from the lecture rooms. It’s gonna be an epically well-rounded, well-connected, well-understandable, and well-visualised meeting. One that will stay in our collective minds as the moment that changed scientific meetings. I’m sure of that. That’s why I’m going to go out into the bush, and carve myself a whole new didgeridoo. Just to mark this momentous occasion. Will you join me?

Yours truly,

The Sassy Scientist

PS: This post was written in quiet despair, yet unequivocally hopeful that the upcoming EGU GA will not end as trainwrecked as the previous ones.

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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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