15 December 2004

I'm adding a link to a blog that recreates Pepys' Diary. I'm adding the link because I'd never heard of the guy and I lost a game of trivial pursuit last night because of it. Most famous diary in the English language?? I'm on a mission to find out what that's all about. Right after I finish my field biology take-home final and study for a 2.5 hour ethics final tomorrow.

13 December 2004

Oh miserable, dejected blogspace!

I've started a new job, a lab tech job, where I'll be processing plant and soil samples for a grad student looking at the biogeochemistry of restored wetlands. We spent the entire weekend processing litter bags, which involved washing algae and muck off of cattail reeds that have been decomposing in wetlands for four months. 90 bags processed, minimum 15 minutes per bag. I love tedious, monotonous tasks like that, I really do. Very meditative. Part of the mind focuses on the task at hand, and the rest wanders at will. And the completion of the task is satisfying to semi-OCD people like myself. Much akin to the pleasure of washing dishes. At the end of a few hours of work there are neat, tinfoil trays of carefully cleaned and seperated roots and leaves, little edges folded over to keep leaves from spilling out, little labels applied neatly, twice to prevent any mixups. A book full of carefully recorded data to analyze.

It was also great to get to know the grad student I'm working for. She has led an extraordinary life: spending most of her life abroad in over 75 countries. She also has great ideas and we had fun sharing stories and philosophies. She also happens to have once dated a co-worker of mine from Toolik, AK. Small, sciency world. He had told me once, before I'd ever met Kate, or ever dreamed I'd be working for her, that she was the most amazing woman he'd ever met. I wouldn't disagree with him.

My blog came up in one of our conversations, and I renewed my vows to be more diligent here, especially now that the semester is winding down.

This also reminds me of an idea I had about the similarities between my draw towards writing and science. Both feed an urge to create. Is that the essence of all academic-mindedness: a draw towards the creation of art, writing, ideas, and knowledge? Pursuing a career in science will demand no less creativity from, and will allow me the same opportunities to create as would a career in writing. And what is this draw towards creation anyway? More on that later.