Time-Wasting Tips for the Overworked Grad Student

Graduate Division

Got a long incubation time to kill? Waiting for your cells to spin? Bored in between classes? In class?  

Why not spend some time watching untrained actors manhandle pipettes, as a way to remind yourself that “while you may feel like a monkey can do your job, it would at least have to be a somewhat trained monkey, since these people can’t even use a pipette properly.”

That’s Not How You Pipette is a new tumblr that catalogs the mishandling of scientific pipettes by actors all over the world.

They’ve got a good smattering of popular TV show examples (Sherlock, Breaking Bad, and Fringe are some recent examples) along with movies and some apparently stock scientific imagery.

Remember Sigourney Weaver’s odd “index finger” plunging in Avatar? No? That’s weird?

Anyway. Despite the questionable spelling of “pipette” (Pipette? Pipet? Does anyone really know?), this blog does a great job of showing some good examples of how to pipette properly (including some great pipette/food inspiration) along with some Hollywood examples of how not to.

Moving small amounts of liquid into tubes with other small amounts of liquid has never been so exciting! To check out the blog, go to thatsnothowyoupipette.tumblr.com; and if you have any good examples, let them know.

Check next week for another grad-student approved distraction — suggestions are welcome.