Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Sometimes I get sooo sick of the people at work. They are always makeing messes and they never clean them up. As the lowly undergrad it is left up to me to take care of the messes everyone else leaves. I change bench paper and wipe up spills and wash all their nasty smelling dishes. When one of the carboys is leaking some solution all over the floor, no one tells me or makes an attempt to stop the leak or even put an absorbant pad under the leaking spigot. I get left with puddles on the floor.

We have a room that is just plain nasty. We pour gels used for looking at DNA. It has all sorts of nasty chemicals in it. There are a bunch of baths for soaking the gels in and I am in charge of changing them. One of them is NaOH (sodium hydroxide). It's a nasty and strong basic solution. Last Thursday I spent most of the day cleaning that room and the baths containing NaOH. I even wiped up the dried NaOH on the floor by the bath. That meant I was crouching for about 20 minutes with a sponge in my hand while wearing a hot lab coat and latex gloves. Not the most comfortable position. I get to work on Monday and notice a trail of dried NaOH leading from the bath. I am a little upset. On Tuesday I notice a puddle in front of the bath. I try to be optimistic and tell myself it isn't more NaOH solution but rather water or something not so nasty. Today I go in there and notice the wet spot from yesterday has turned a nice shade of white, indicating NaOH solution was spilled and dried in that spot.

My boss knew I had cleaned it all up on Thursday and when she noticed the mess today, she was also upset. We know who made the mess and she is going to talk to the person. I then told her my plans to do some other stuff that is not really my responsibility to take care of, and she said she would help me. At least I know she appreciates what I am doing in the lab even if no one else seems to have a clue.

Now that I have taken two tests and read about Oedipus this week I should clean my room so I don't have to deal with the mess next week since I have another test as well as a presentation, paper and reading for Greek Civ and home work for biostats to worry about.

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