I am gearing up for the five months of experimental hell starting any week now. In an ideal world, things would be more or less still set up from last summer, but my world has never been ideal. Therefore, I have to reset up everything--which involves hours and hours of back-breaking manual labor as I clean tanks and perform magical wonders with PVC piping. The past couple of days, I have been cleaning salt, dirt, and algae encrusted water baths that hold about 8 tanks each. In the middle of our wet lab, there is a large trough where water can drain. The floor slopes on each side of this trough such that water drains towards it. In last years set-up the drain in these water baths were over these troughs and because the floor was slightly sloped, the baths could drain completely. This year however, the baths have been complete moved and flipped such that the drains are no longer in the middle but on opposite ends of the room. Not only can water from the baths not drain straight into the trough, but the floor also slopes away from the drain which physically impedes complete drainage.
So, here I am scrubbing away at the tanks and having no way to remove the dirty water completely from the baths. What to do? I tried lifting the baths…..to heavy. I tried pushing the water towards the drain with various objects…….took too long for small results. But today, I was brilliant. I was practical. I showed that I am the epitome of common sense! I mopped up the dirty, scummy water with those large industrial rag mops that are super absorbent. It worked brilliantly. And I was thinking to myself…..this is why it is important not to place too much emphasis on GRE scores. Because honestly, it is a truth universally acknowledged that people with brilliant GRE scores have no common sense. No one with fantastic GRE scores would have ever thought of using a mop. How do I know that? Because for one reason, they would never have had to work the all the crappy jobs that I had to work while waiting to get accepted into graduate school. And only in crappy jobs do you discover the absorptive powers of industrial mops.
So for all those marine programs basing their decisions on GRE scores, all I have to say to you is BOLLOCKS! Because in a career in which one depends solely the magical properties of duck tape and PVC piping, one needs to have the ingenuity and streets smarts of MacGyver….someone like me. Word!