Found out today that yet another postdoc friend is quitting academia for an industry job.
I'm still in shock. This person is really good, and seemed genuinely interested in science, not super negative about long hours or low pay, and not any more ambivalent about academia in general than I am...?
But I'm also gleeful.
Another one bites the dust! More jobs for me! Yippeee!
And I keep thinking,
Man, they're dropping like flies!
So I'm still processing, I guess, how I feel about this.
Hooray for dead flies?
I also got a reagent from somebody else's lab for an experiment... but it probably won't work.
How do I know it won't work? Because along with the reagent, I got a 15 minute disclaimer about how the protocol for using it doesn't make any sense and how it's not reliable, but that's how they do it, even though sometimes it doesn't work, and then they just do it over again.
I mean, you could say about almost any experiment or reagent that sometimes it doesn't work, and then you just do it over again. But when you emphasize how unreliable it is? Are you kidding me? This is not a good sign.
So, great, thanks! Good thing it's published and that paper is why you got your faculty position, you stupid *$%@!
In other news, another reagent I got from a different lab is also turning out to be complete crap, also has been published and is also the reason another #*%! got a job.
Lucky me, I now have to do a bunch of extra experiments, which will probably never get published, just to prove to my PI that these reagents are crap! Absolute crap!
But it's not as if, when confronted with these data, these *$%& will say, "Oh my god, you're absolutely right! How could we have been so foolish! We should retract that paper right now! How embarrassing!"
No, that won't happen.
And it's not as if confronting them with these data would make them respect me more. In all likelihood, it would only help to further torpedo my career, since they would get mad, get defensive, attack me, hold a grudge, and proceed to tell all their friends to reject every paper and grant I might submit from now until eternity.
[aside: Can you further torpedo something like a career when it's already really sucky? Sometimes it's hard to tell whether you've really hit bottom. I saw a t-shirt the other day that said "Career suicide" all over it.]
In other news, lately I'm so annoyed, I find myself adopting a kind of Dolores Umbridge voice when I'm talking to myself in the lab.
You know, you do it too, when you're alone and juggling lots of samples, you say, "Okay, now what was I looking for?" and any number of other things like that, directed at the pipettes and the tubes. I'm right, right?
Well lately my pipette voice has become freakishly perky, because I'm literally that annoyed, ALL THE TIME.
But hey, maybe it's a good thing. I suspect most people wouldn't know I'm in a permanent state of sarcasm, and would instead be impressed that I've learned to adopt a more Positive Attitude!