Thursday, April 30, 2009

nerdiest thing ever a.k.a I'm really bored

I have been spending my mornings taking care of Nora, and sometimes it can get boring. Luckily, I can steal internet from the neighbors. Since perusing porn is not an option, I opted for you tube. And I stumbled on a mash-up of Star Wars and organic chemistry. While the wisdom dispensed by Obi-Wan would not be of much use to graduate students and postdocs, I guess these tips could be useful for people taking sophomore organic.

I also found some inspiration in academia on you tube. I aspire to be as hip as this guy, even if he isn't really teaching his students anything.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

reading. yay.

I accidentally porked myself, and ran out of 2-propanol this week. When we ran low I sent in a request from stock, who happened to be out, and then put in a drop-ship order from Aldrich which hasn't arrived yet.

I'm in the middle of crystallizing and recrystallizing a couple hundred grams of compound, so I really don't want to start screwing around with something else. To utilize the time since I went dry on Friday until tomorrow I've been catching up on some sweet sweet reading. My massive pile of journals has really taken a hit this week.

Bet you didn't realize there was a speaker back there, did you?

In my little fantasy world, this pile will go away soon, and I will then stay on top of the reading in a more consistent manner. Unfortunately the pragmatist in me realizes it is much more likely that I will be so incredibly sick of reading this shit that I will let it pile right back up again.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Congratulations Colorado

I would like to congratulate myself and my statemates here in Colorado for being so thin. Have a look at a map I stole from an article related to obesity drugs in a recent issue of C&E news.

And notice the only state that is blue (under 20% obesity) in the whole US in 2007. Forget obesity drugs, people need to get their fat asses outside.

Friday, April 17, 2009

awww ... that's so cute

The dreamy P. S. Baran just published yet another JACS paper!

One of the things that I find amusing about this particular publication is that they very proudly proclaim "Gram-Scale, Enantiospecific Total Syntheses of Kapakahines B (1) and F (2)", and the whole scheme represents six steps. They even re-comment [gram-scale] under four of the six steps so you can be sure as to which are done on this huge, huge scale.

The other wonderus addition in this landmark effort is his new custom arrows! Those plain old arrows for schemes in ChemDraw must not have been up to his standards. I bet in the coming months those of you in academia will be deluged by student presentations using these jewels, and other similar knock offs. Another wonderful fluff addition (like the utterly useless chemoselective) courtesy of TSRI.

Well I'm off to work up my reaction. I had took 86 g of impure material laying around from prior runs of step 2. I figured I'd push it through in hopes of having > 1 g at step 7.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Pet Peeves

Perhaps my biggest pet peeve is people ignoring traffic rules or more specifically people purposely violating traffic rules to be perceived as polite. An example of this that really gets my blood boiling is when someone is going straight or turning right but waves you through a left turn. Just go, then I can go. That's how it works.

Riding a bike makes this conundrum even worse. On my ride to work there are two 4-way stops, round trip = 4 4-way stops. In three cases I am going straight or turning left. I guess a lot of people don't understand the physics of how a bicycle works. It is much easier to resume the speed you were once traveling if you don't come to a complete stop. If another car arrives at the stop first, I start to slow down to give them time to continue through the intersection. But what typically happens is that they just SIT THERE and wait for me to come to a complete stop then wave me through. YOU ARE NOT HELPING ME ASSHOLE. Compounding this problem are the cyclists who ignore stop signs. HIT THEM.

That is all.

Friday, April 10, 2009

always use protection

I was unpacking the day's Aldrich order, and I was amused and irritated by the onion like layers packing materials. These two 100 mL bottles of DCE were packages thusly: box, packing foam, mylar (sealed), box, packing foam, can, padding, pp or pe bag (sealed), bottle. That's 9 sweet layers of protection of various, and redundant, types. The packed product was about 8 cubic feet to contain just over 12 cubic inches of chemical or approximately 99.9% filler. I feel so safe now!

Friday, April 3, 2009

you know you're a chemist when ...

I was walking to work from the Metro station and could hear a shitload of fire trucks and ambulances. All I could think was: "Please, please, please don't be my hood!".

Wednesday, April 1, 2009