Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Wishes wishes


The second wish is for this to come to a successful end. We're already eating the sharks out of house and home and when we're not doing that we're making movies about them being ruthless killing machines (and getting their anatomy wrong = great whites don't have nostrils!) and make the world hate them - also known as Well Done, Steven Spielberg Moment #8 - so why use them for sports as well?!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Getting there, I really am

There are two big problems standing between me and starting to actually do some lab work in my research:

1. The hair-sample solvent is a substance that's just a tad too expensive for my professor. This problem aught to be easily solved since I've got the ingredients list and most of which are stuff you can get at a hardware or pharmaceutical store (except for methanol, my beloved headache-inducing methanol). There are a few bizarre components but all's well. I expect to have this problem solved quite easily as soon as I'll learn how to look chemicals up on the faculty's chemical storing.

2. In order to calibrate the spectrophotometer I'll be using to test pheomelanin dosages, I need a sample of melanin of a known concentration. Ah, tricky. See, I can order melanin from Sigma BUT I'm trying to prove myself resourceful and clever by finding not-so-expensive (I have a lot to prove to my research instructor and professor, what with me being a mere second-year newbie) so I'm thinking, if I find a way to extract melanin from sepia then all I need is find a squid, right?

Well, wish me luck on both goals. Then there's the issue of cutting the hair samples into teeny tiny bits which I have to do manually for over a thousand samples because we don't have a homogenizer the likes of which the two bloody nips who wrote the melanin article had....

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Welcome post

Hello and welcome to my (new-ish) blog!

My name's Meirav Rath and I am exactly what this blog title says; fumbling in life, though I think I'm getting the hang of it now.
I'm a Bachelor's degree student in Biology in the Tel Aviv university. My goal academically, and in life, is to become an animal behavior researcher, and specialize in behavioral ecology or sociobiology (though the latter is what most appeals me). Currently I'm starting my own little research project about pheomelanin as a possible marker for social status in rock hyraxes, one of my favorite animals. Here's a picture of a hyrax, in case you've never seen one.

My top most favorite animals, however, are cats like this little bugger, Sam, my new cat.
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I have another academic hobby and I use the word 'hobby' because it's an auto-didactic hobby; I love history and particularly the Second World War, the Holocaust, Ancient Rome, Lawrence of Arabia, Zionism and various other scattered bits of history fancies. Often you'll see here posts about the last history book I read and liked/disliked. In general You'll see a lot of book reviews here.

I also write, when I find the time to do it, and the Livejournal account where I post my fiction and will post more fiction, is on the link page.

That is all, my friends, welcome new readers and old readers alike!

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(that's me, BTW)