Monday, February 13, 2012

bio dork humor, & I'm gettin' in the FIELD!!

Howdy, gangstas.* An "I'm not dead!" post (w/real time update @#6):

1. Laugh and laugh again
Ran across this photo from 2 summers ago and it made me laugh. Again:

It's a bio pun.
I wrote "DNA" using DNA-laden pollen.
What I think is funny is that
I still think it's funny.

Easily amused. =)

2. If I'm cleaning the chicken coop, then it must be time for fieldwork

Just got a call (from the day job), and I will be HEADING OUT into the field very soon! $weet!

Apparently those little birdies are thinking about romance, rendering us biologist types useful so we can ensure construction/other ground disturbance doesn't take any of the little darlings out.

It doesn't take a lot to dramatically reduce the impacts of construction (or your basic ground disturbance) upon wildlife and wildlife habitat.

So, that's exciting. Gonna be paid to be outside, tromping around. Nice!

But, before I'm in the field, I need to
  • wrestle this LAST (oh-so-resistant) paper into shape to be done w/my fatty editing project,
  • clean the chicken coop 'so the hens are happy whilst I'm away, then

3. Bio Dork crisis! My FAVORITE field clothes are gone. =(
    bb & coworkers. Can you tell all-leather boots are kinda important??

    The perfect set. 

    This is a tragedy I've been holding inside
    ("Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way"**)
    save for occasionally mumbling about it to my husband,
    who is usually in the next room and doesn't hear.

    If you've done fieldwork at all regularly, you get this--
    am I right, fieldies? (pray share your feeling in comments)

    I probably left them in a hotel somewhere whilst on assignment.

    Like back in the pre-MP3 days, I used to always lose my favorite tunes
    'cause I'd bring them everywhere with me.
    The crappy stuff NEVER got lost;
    just sat at home, growing ever-more dusty & annoying.
    Same with field clothes.

    Anyhow, the perfect set included:
    • my lovely $$$ all leather Vasque boots
    • my favorite fleece (9 mile-long skinny sleeves (recall I'm female and 6' 1") in a vibrating chartreuse hue that made me v. happy)
    • and some magic material socks ($martwool, no doubt).
    A moment of silence....

    4. Chartreuse aside

    Factoid from Wiki: "Chartreuse in nature... Birds: Lovebirds are colored various bright tones of chartreuse..."

    Photo by David (

    aw... and terribly cute! =)

    5. I-am-not-a-freak shopping

    But, my loss also means I "must" find and shop at an REI.
    While I am NOT a shopper, I DO love a good REI.
    One of the only stores where I feel pretty normal and relaxed.

    They have stuff I need (and want).
    They are unphased at the mention of mud and freezing,
    hiking (entirely) off trail in the rain, mud, wind, and amid-rattlesnakes.

    'sno big. they get it.

    Sort of like graduate school.
    When I found myself in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment,
    I realized that for the first time in my life,
    I was around people who were like me.

    Super into the planet and conservation and learning,
    way enthusiastic and driven,
    and SO excited to be there.

    It was heaven.


    6. Time travel--whoosh!

    Full disclosure, THIS part of this post is written TODAY, Monday Feb 13th, AFTER my fieldwork.

    Did 2 days of fieldwork sans camera,
    knowing I had more fieldwork the next week, so I'd bring my camera THEN,
    once I'd gotten up to speed w/coworkers.

    THEN they hired 2 new people & I was reassigned to the office to edit.


    So, VERY SORRY, readers, precious little to SHOW re: fieldwork.

    Do have 1 or 2 from last partial day in field (Saturday) that I'll share next.
    And I still have 2 old nests (abandoned from last year, our task to remove)
    that I'll photograph, share, and try to figure out who made them.

    And I picked up owl pellets & various bones, so when I retrieve them,
    I'll share that, as well.

    Anyhow, I'm back home (for now), alive, and its' SNOWING!!!
    Right now the sun is peeking through, brightening snowflakes,
    and rendering the foraging deer ever-more glamorous. =)

    Yup, life's rough.

    And you? How've you been?


    *Wrote this last week, before I left. Am now back. For now.
    *from Pink Floyd's (somewhat painfully genius) song "Time." bb is, in part, English ethnically and (so a Scotsman tells me, more than a little bit) culturally.


    1. One of our local (south San Francisco Bay) REI's is great (Saratoga), but the one close to my office is small and boutique-like and seems to only carry women's clothes for those of ballerina proportions and sensibilities (you would go hiking in THAT?). I have a hard time finding sturdy work pants that fit a real woman (=hips) although a visit to Cabelas during my occasional visits to midwestern family stocks me up for about a year. Where do you find suitable field clothes for a big gal? I can usually find good Merrill boots at REI and Sierra Trading Post often has SmartWool socks on sale. Good luck on your editing.

    2. ooh, STP is a great idea re: smartwool sales, thanks. =) Prana pants tend to fit me pretty well, so I buy them when they're v. on sale. However, it IS a challenge getting pants to fit: I'm v. tall and w/hips and thighs and small waist, so men's pants don't work super well. I've seen a giant Cabelas when driving through the midwest: I should stop there, next time, & check it out. =)

      Good luck to YOU re: shopping! =)

    3. THEN they hired 2 new people & I was reassigned to the office to edit.

      What? WHAT????? That's so unfair.

      My field gear has all disappeared too. When I replace it, I'll have to buy proper workwear rather than flannel shirts, which were always the field gear of choice. Seems they've got out

    4. ugh. shopping. long live flannel shirts, T's, jeans & hiking boots!


    Cool people write inside rectangles....