27 January 2011

Conspiracy theory

The universe conspires against me, because every time I come on to blog all of my ideas disappear.

I have no idea why, but I will come to an answer...and promptly forget it once I get my blog.

:) LJS

20 January 2011

Keep it private, dammit

There is just some stuff one just doesn't do in research.

Like lie. Or be sneaky about tweaking data. Or making shit up.

I try my hardest to be responsible in my research. I keep a lab notebook, I try to make sure credit is given where credit is due, if I removed a data point, I say so and why I did it. It's not just about maintaining a good reputation and making sure that you are above reproach, but it's also about being a good steward to the field of science.

My anal retentive attitude about my keeping own personal information private resonates with the perfectly logical and ethical standards of clinical research. Specifically about keeping private information out of the paws of people who have no damn business seeing it. Clinical researchers are expected to maintain patient privacy at all times, for damn good reasons. These rules are wonderful, I fully support them. Clinical researchers should hold themselves to these high ethical standards because people depend on us.

So imagine my delight and surprise to find that my husband's personal information was in a dental student's bookbag. Said bookbag was stolen. Who am I mad at? The neurologically-challenged student? Yes. He was pretty stupid. But I am even more mad at the backwards system in place. The system for allowing a student, probably untrained in HIPAA rules, to carry around patient information in clearly unprotected environments. Why is it necessary, in this day and age, to carry around papers with patient information. Get a fucking encrypted database.

This incident is especially irritating because of the high standards we have in place for clinical research. Why should students be allowed to carry around this information when there are rules, and systems, for maintaining patient confidentiality?

17 January 2011

My alias

I try to be fun "in real life" also. Bookface allowed me to share with the world my languages, and I thought I'd find something goofy to share. Why mess with the Bookface, you ask? Because, really, who the heck cares what languages I speak and why would I share that information anyway?

:) LJS

14 January 2011

Yielding electrons, quietly

I really do try to avoid talking about other people in the Den. You see the Den is small (it is a wee Den) and if I foul the air with ranting or bitching, then the stench hangs in the air for weeks like unwashed haggy armpits.

Also, I have better things to write about. Like that one time I visited a colony of Elvis clones and was able to negotiate a peace treaty between army ants and an impoverished village in Ghana.

That being said, I must admit that the only thing better than using earplugs to find sleep in a noisy hotel is not needing them at all when I'm at home.

My month of "not buying useless stuff" is going well. I'm not even cheating by making a list of things I'd like to buy, for a Feb 1 purchase. It is harder than I remembered, probably because I now have a car and can go out to buy things on a whim. But maybe that, too, is a lesson.

It wouldn't be a violation of my non-disclosure agreement to say that a colony of Elvis clones would explain alot of unusual things.

:) LJS

07 January 2011

Well, it had to eventually happen

We mark post # 300 here in the Den with the fanfare and accoutrement to which we are entitled!!

I wanted a big celebration. I was thinking of hiring the "Firefly" cast, asking Jack White to emcee, and having the reddit guys cast spontaneous drawings. But, the crew were not hip to the planned celebration. They revolted against the idea of Jack coming back. Then the "Firefly" guys got really really busy warding off Reavers. The crew thought I said "Felicity" anyway. And the reddit guys got all OCD about narwhals which rendered them useless. To avoid mutany, I'm taking the crew to a Star Trek convention where I'll regale many with my deft verbal adaptations of tlhlngan Hol dialects.

Hey, it was either that or try to recast the One Ring.

Holy crap! It's 2011. I've been thinking of an interesting way to approach the year, and my ponderings led me to think on ways to live out the ideal "In discipline, lies freedom".

12 months, 12 opportunities to recognize where I could stand a little more discipline. Wait, that's just a bit too much of ass kicking for me. So I whittled it down to 4 opportunities which I think will be tough yet really rewarding. There is already swearing involved.

One: Buy less shit.
Two: Look on the bright side of life
Three: Stop with the fucking caffeine already
Four: Enjoy running

So, I'll tackle these in repeating order throughout the year. I'll also (at no additional cost!) provide my insight, whining and utter contempt for narcissistic new years resolutions.

:) LJS