comedy of errors

August 27, 2004

today, on my way home from a lab meeting-type affair where i got to hear about what i will probably be working on during my first lab rotation, i got really, really lost. a drive which would have taken any cognitively normal person 5 minutes took me about 30, and that was only with a lot of angry speeding towards the end. i suppose it could have been worse; i kept thinking that if i got pulled over and given a speeding ticket, it would have been an painfully appropriate ending to the whole sad experience.

see, it all started because there was this accident. thankfully, i was not a participant in this accident, but some sort of collision must have occurred right at the intersection of carver road and roxboro several minutes before i got there, because when i arrived there were lots of police cars and a big tow truck and an overwhelming number of flashing lights. due to this commotion, i couldn’t go straight on carver like i had planned, but was instead waved to the left.

so i went left, blissfully unaware that this fateful turn was the beginning of a chain of events which would delay my arrival home for half an hour. the left turn brought me onto roxboro road, and i logically figured that i could just turn right on the next street and then get back onto carver by turning right again. but somehow, since i guess the streets aren’t quite as grid-like as i had counted on, this didn’t work. unexpectedly, i ended up on the highway, and this would have been fine except that i was on it coming from the opposite direction than i am used to, causing me to miss the exit that leads directly to my street. yes, i drove right on by, realizing what i was doing wrong just a moment too late, when i began cursing out loud in my car with a refrain of, “why, why, WHY am i so stupid?”

this would have been plenty, but it wasn’t the end. i continued on this highway, a road with which i am infinitely familiar (it traces the path between my old apartment and josh’s (now ‘our’) house) and decided to be all creative and take the durham freeway exit back to swift avenue and then from there to our house. but i got all confused and took 147 NORTH instead of SOUTH and ended up on 85, but going the wrong directon. i’m not sure what happened after that, but in the end, i wound up having to turn around at an exit 5 miles south of our exit in order to finally get back on track.

i was so mad. at me. at my horrible spatially-inept neurons and at my terrible, terrible decisions, made one after another after another. to be fair, in the end it didn’t really matter, because i can now accomodate these sorts of events in my life without having to sacrifice much (ie, sleep, studying, etc). the only thing lost was my pride. but it still sucked.

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as i mentioned, i got to hear more about what i’m going to be working on for the next couple of months, starting on sept. 7. in summary, it involves beta cells (pancreatic insulin-secreting cells for all 3 non-medical people who read this) in culture; my project will involve defining some of the transcription factors which cause these cells to be less sensitive to glucose. or something like that. i’m nervous, because i don’t know how to do anything in lab other than demasculinize and torture rats and measure the cortisol levels in their blood. but more on that later.

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