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#phd student

I’m writing a literature review while staying at home, and while writing one section, I figured out from citations alone who was a student in whose lab, and who graduated and started their own lab, and whose students are now in that person’s lab, and that there’s a whole groupie for 16S rRNA methyltransferases. So you can see I’m doing fine staying at home 🙂

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My city’s shelter in place order started last Tuesday, but allowed scientific research that cannot be done remotely. So I went to lab last week, taking extra precautions such as washing my hands once I got to lab (my office is in the lab), disinfecting doorknobs, etc.

However… the cases in my city keep rising and we had our first death. I looked at the stats and a majority of the cases are people in their 20’s, like me. I stopped going to lab. I realized I’m risking my health and others health too, so I’m sheltering in place too. The thought that I could have the virus and cause someone in my building to get sick and possibly die terrified me (and it’s a high chance too! These professors aren’t young! And I see some coming in too).


Pie chart of cases by age in my county. Note almost 50% of cases are 20-30 year olds, who are probably still working.

I encourage others whose cities allow them to keep working in lab to do the same, and only going in for maintenance duties. I really think we young adults are the main vectors of the virus here.

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March 20

Today’s coffee cup (not yet replaced by a tea cup) is exactly as large as it looks and I love it. Yes, my desk is a mess. That’s just who I (and my probable adhd) am as a person.

Yesterday’s post never uploaded and threatened to freeze my computer. It was about pointing out that no one at Target wants bleached flour and that therapy over the phone is weird.

Today is reading the conclusion of the last chapter of Skemer’s Binding Words and then getting through another book. Maybe Montaillou.

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Day 2 of intentional social isolation.

Back to trying to work at my desk, which isn’t going well. Too many changes all at once, worried about friends and family. Learned last night my university pushed the end of spring break back again to next Monday and all defenses and oral exams will be held virtually. Not excited to have the oral half of comps on Zoom. It’s conjuring up a weird amount of dread.

On the bright side, I have discovered the Doom soundtracks and this is great reading music because there is no risk of falling asleep with it playing.

Current reading: John Bossy’s “The Mass as Social Institution” which could have been written in an intelligible way, thnx.

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Day 2: Home-office (day #50 (?) of productivity)


Alright, 2nd day of home-office. I really enjoy the comfort and warmth of my home. I must admit, I am not always 100% focused and sometimes I do procrastinate, and sometimes I catch myself watching youtube. But I wouldn’t say that I get more done at work. Not at all.

Please stay safe and healthy.

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