June 4, 2018

There is a new blog at that seeks to give voice to people in STEM disciplines and fields of work that have experienced sexual harassment.

Such as Jen:

The men in the lab would read the Victoria’s Secret catalog at lunch in the break room. I could only wear baggy sweatshirts and turtlenecks to lab because when I leaned over my bench, the men would try to look down my shirt. Then came the targeted verbal harassment of the most crude nature

or Sam:

I’ve been the victim of retaliation by my university and a member of the faculty who was ‘that guy’ – the ‘harmless’ one who ‘loved women’. The one who sexually harassed trainees and colleagues.

or Anne:

a scientist at a company I wanted to work for expressed interest in my research at a conference. … When I got to the restaurant, he was 100% drunk and not interested in talking about anything substantive but instead asked personal questions, making me so uncomfortable I couldn’t network with his colleagues. I left after only a few minutes, humiliated and angry that he misled about his intentions and that I missed the chance to network with people actually interested in my work

Go Read.

Blogrolling: Grant Slave

January 30, 2015

Check it out.

A new blog on drug toxicology has recently appeared and I think some of my Readers will want to bookmark The Dose Makes The Poison.

What is it about? Well, the Intro post indicates:

So, a long time ago in a land far, far away, a brilliant scientist named Paracelsus (who is considered by many a toxicologist throughout time, to be the ‘Father of Toxicology’) wrote:

“Alle Dinge sind Gift, und nichts ist ohn Gift; allein die Dosis macht, dass ein Ding kein Gift ist.”

Trudat! A few more posts have appeared already….

….TV Shows Aren’t The Real World

Even though it doesn’t really make sense, I still want this mass spec! The sample that was analyzed was gastric contents of a decedent. It identifies “chicken stock”, coffee, and cocoa!

Analogue or not an analogue: that is the question!

Currently, cases involving the determination of a controlled substance analogue involve dueling chemists, toxicologists and pharmacologist as there is no consensus in the scientific community regarding what exactly is a controlled substance analogue. Typically, the prosecuting attorneys will have consultation and testimony from the DEA chemists or toxicologists/pharmacologists while the defense will have consultation and testimony from chemists and toxicologists/pharmacologists from other entities. The decision boils down to opinion vs. opinion.

Blogrolling: SciRants

March 19, 2013

Check out this new blog by @boehninglab

I invite you to put the new blog of Professor J. David Jentsch on your list. At the unlikely activist you will find fare such as:

The mystery of addictions, Part 1: Why spend money on addiction research at all?

If they are remarkably lucky and have proper medical and psychological support, they may return to a healthy life and never use again. But for most, their freedom is only temporary, and they will relapse again days, weeks, months or even years later, returning them to their suffering and to their fateful spiral. You see, drugs kill. They are powerful toxins that can stop breathing or a heart. If they are injected, they can bring infectious diseases like hepatitis and HIV along with them. And because they intoxicate the mind, they lead to reckless driving and other behaviors that risk the lives of the addict and those around them.

Ignoring science, from the bench

Put differently, juveniles and teens have a brain fully capable of feeling powerful emotions (like anger), but their ability to resist those emotions and to behave in a socially appropriate manner (like to inhibit aggressive reactions) is not at adult levels. The 5 justices who struck down harsh penalties for child offenders recognized this; it was a crucial part of their logic in this, and the earlier death penalty, case.

But like a frightening number of people in our society, the other 4 justices viewed the science as either being wrong or irrelevant. Their own ethical or philosophical views about crime and punishment appeared to trump their interest in scientific principles and facts. In this regard, they are not unlike strident animal rights activists opposed to biomedical and behavioral research involving animals.

A solemn voice in support of medical researchers

In the fall of 2010, an animal rights extremist sent me razor blades and heinous threats to cut my throat in the mail. It became a national news story, again highlighting the abject cruelty of some in the anti-vivisection movement. During this time, I turned on my phone one evening to see that I had received a voice mail. Anticipating the worst – yet another cruel, rabid and profane threat from my opponents – I found something quite different. I have kept this communication private for long enough. Now, at the wishes of the caller, I am sharing it with the broader community to demonstrate that support for humane animal research is everywhere…. It comes not from greed or ignorance, but from love and a hope that no one should ever suffer the same loss as the caller.

VoiceofSupport (click on this link to listen to this .wav file)

Blogrolling: zwitterionique

September 22, 2011

Mostly because these cracked me up:

Happy New Year:

A while ago I decided that I wasn’t going to let my status of post-doc keep me from amassing a dark army of minions to do my scientific bidding, so I started advising UROP students.

Training Environment:

Some people are jealous, some wonder aloud if our PI realizes that I’m running my own lab out of my bay and accuse me of taking on PI-like traits (not knowing where things are on my own bench or not remembering whether I’ve told a student to do something or clearly remembering a result from eight months ago, but not what they showed me yesterday or sending cryptic experimental ideas at odd hours of the night).

UROP Students are not Stupid:

They are inexperienced – and you are providing training and experience – but they are not dumb and will not stay to assist you in taking over the world if they don’t see what they are going to get out of the deal. Even though the benefits of working for me are blindingly obvious, I make sure that I remind my minions often of how their servitude is beneficial to them.

Blogrolling: Bashir

December 13, 2010

Huh. I’ve seen the name on comments out and about on the science-y blogs but never really noticed there was a blog and clicked through.


I don’t know if you will like it or not, Dear Reader. I’ve lost touch with my audience since the move to Scientopia. Not sure why.

Anyway, I like this one. Go read.

It’s frightening to know how easily it could have gone otherwise

Take my current job as a postdoc for example: I got the position by accident. My now PI wasn’t even on my radar because he doesn’t really do anything relevant to my research area. I sent him an email because he was associate chair of the department and thus in charge (administratively) of a training grant in the department. I sent him a “What do I have to do to get a spot on this grant?” email. He wrote back “We’re pretty much full, so nothing. FYI I just got a grant from Big Institute in your research area so I need a postdoc. Now.”

why does the south lag?

Above is a map I quickly made of the “top 50″ departments in Bashirology

Distances Traveled

Why on earth would two full time teachers, with three small children (at the time), travel (by car) that far to take a few classes?

Because it was the nearest school that would take Negros.

On langauge

This person had a few interesting stories regarding dialect and academia. Particularly one researcher who apparently could not code switch out of AAVE at all. As you might imagine she had trouble landing a job.

Update: an older version of the Bashir blog.

Ran across this one via a link dropped at the Comrade PhysioProf blog. I think you will enjoy Grumpy rumblings of the untenured, penned by nicole&maggie. A little selection of goodness to whet your appetite…

Personally, I Blame the Patriarchy (part 1 of many): Things we Hate (aka, ewwwww).

Is anyone else tired of having her consciousness raised to a dizzying height? How come I’m always the one pointing out the sexism all around me? I’m getting tired of waving the flag. Can’t I go back to my pre-radical-grad-school level of only mild awareness?

And while we’re on the topic of things that make me mad about publishing, there has rightly been much outcry on the internet about publishers’ whitewashing of book covers; in other words, portraying characters who are clearly described as non-white in the book by using white models on the cover.

Hacking my work habits

One thing I took away from this chapter was the idea of treating yourself as a research subject and trying different things, recording the results to see what is most effective in getting the desired behavior (in this case, writing) from yourself. I am giving myself more permission to do whatever works this year, even if it seems weird. In a memoir I recently read, a creative writer talks about how he finally managed to work out a routine that produced excellent results every time — but it was really complex. It involved turning out all the lights, jogging in circles, lying on the floor, etc. His behavior, explained out of context, seems… well… maybe a bit insane. But the thing is, I understood how he had gotten there. I don’t want to have to go that far, but I’m giving myself more permission to engage in whatever rituals or behaviors will produce results (publications).

Blue Children: Or why I am no longer on any natural parenting forums

I may really not trust doctors, sorrowing in the lack of decent statistics training for the majority, but I do know how to use PubMed and I have more trust in the peer-reviewed scientific method than I have for claims of random crackpots on the internet.

Are all academic bloggers nuts?

Man… there are a LOT of anger issues out there. Really makes me second guess all the calls for allowing professors to have guns on campus. (What’s that, that’s not an issue on your campus?) And the language… why do academics need to swear so much?

Is it a selection or a treatment effect? Should I get out now, or is it too late?

crossposting from DrugMonkey on….

A brand new science blogging collective has launched itself today. I encourage you to stroll on over to and take a look-see. You may even want to save a bookmark or two.

The vision statement reads as follows:

Scientopia is a collective of people who write about science because they love to do so. It is a community, held together by mutual respect and operated by consensus, in which people can write, educate, discuss, and learn about science and the process of doing science. In this we explore the interplay between scientific issues and other parts of our lives with the shared goal of making science more accessible.

As a community, we strive to be welcoming of anyone with an interest in science and its place in our world, regardless of any feature, whether extrinsic or intrinsic, which may act or have historically acted as a barrier to full participation in science or discourses about science.

Hippie statements aside, I think you will find that Scientopia has some interesting voices lined up for your reading pleasure. So go take a look.

Notes for the day

July 21, 2010

More or less still on strike over at Scienceblogs even though PZ says things are moving along nicely.

Abel Pharmboy packed up Terra Sigillata and moved to a new wordpress blog

Johns Wilkins and Lynch are still grinding their axes of disgruntlement. A year later? Dudes, get a grip.

Yesterday’s illumination about Innovium as the VC firm behind was certainly instructive. I doubt that it has any real impact on my decision making with respect to the home of the DrugMonkey blog but it does put some things into perspective.

PhysioProf did a book review? whut?

Ed Yong had his genes screened by 23andme and dishes up an excellent report on the process and interpretive issues.

It is a young blog but there are extenuating circumstances. I think you will enjoy Take it to the Bridge authored by commenter namnezia.

The station at the end of tenure track

In practice though, even if you are tenured, you still need to fund your research, and a two-year wild goose chase with no positive outcome will result in no publications and make it harder and harder to renew your funding. So any advantages tenure gives you are counteracted by the need to stay funded.


so then you go down there and have to maneuver this large shop vac through the clutter of old baby paraphernalia which is all over the basement, and as you are vacuuming up the water you realize you are only wearing your socks and they are wet and the extension cord for the vacuum is sitting in a puddle, and you realize you have not thought this through before starting because you are exhausted after putting the kids to bed who were acting like they had eight espressos

Takin it to the bridge:

Being a big fan of James Brown, in the middle of the song “Like a Sex Machine”, as it is reaching one of its many crescendos, the rhythm steadies and he banters with the band – “Are you ready to take it to the bridge?”, meaning the bridge of the song, “Can we take it to the bridge? Take it to the bridge…ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR…”, and the the band bursts into this funky guitar riff which just makes you want to pee in your pants with joy.

Word, word and word.

welcome to the author side of the blogosphere namnezia.

Fun with Wordle

December 12, 2008

Blogrolling: Oi

January 17, 2008

I’ve found myself utterly useless at the Blogrolling thing. I have one, and it does list many frequent reads. But I also read quite a number more blogs with relevance to the blogging here. I’ll try a little catching up. Some of these will be old favorites for many readers, perhaps you’ll see at least one new one though.

It may take me a bit to get these on the actual Blogroll. But in the meantime DearReader if you have a blog in mind that I just gotta see, drop a comment.

I Love Science, Really by mrs. whatsit

A scientist’s life by Lou

Dave Moulton’s Bike Blog by, um, yeah Dave Moulton

Bitch, Ph.D. by, well, bitchphd

cannablog byMichael

Dr. Shellie by Dr. Shellie

Am I a woman scientist by  Am I a woman scientist

A Somewhat Old, But Capacious Handbag by MissPrism

and of course

Absinthe. I note she’s back with both sock monkeys and the Potter Pals. Dude.  The DM loves him some sock monkeys. And the whole DM fam has a version of the ticking clock a capella. Waitaminit, she’s really back

Many people complained when I descoped my blog. I had reasons for doing that back in August, but I also have some empathy for people who linked to my old posts. So, I’ve brought the blog back from the ashes (after a lot of work). I’ve also turned comments back on. I’ll still delete comments from jerks though. Hopefully the four month hiatus from blogging means that I’ve fallen off the radar screen of assholes who have nothing better to do with their time than search for feminist blogs to leave hate comments on.

This is so good. Go over there and welcome her back, would ya?

Most of you are familiar with the highly informative postings and comments of co-blogger PhysioProf. Indeed some of you may be familiar with the good PPs comments on ScienceBlogs and elsewhere that are very frequently blog-worthy in their own right.

You may not know, however, that the PhysioProf has a secret life on the Internets. Oh yes. As a ranter.

And now you can find post-length rants at the new blog home of ….


I want to note that the Borg (ScienceBlogs™) has picked up ScienceWoman’s blog “On being a scientist and a woman“, previously here.  Not that she needs any more advertising from me!

However, it is worth pointing out that she will apparently be talking topics near and dear to YHN including lessons learned and other careerism in science issues, grant/career strategies, etc. And that was all in the first week!

Go read.