Saturday, November 21, 2009

Ellen is Blazy

Ak! I knew it had been a long time since I last posted but a month?!? My deepest apologies. I really didn't mean to be away from you for so long but you see, I've been feeling really blazy lately. Blazy, is a word that popped into my head the other day when I was trying to get out of a (relatively unimportant) obligation the other day and had to choose between explaining that I was too busy (true) or admitting that I was also feeling far to lazy to to leave my house (also true). Thus, blazy.

So why have I been so blazy of late? Let me break it down for you. The business comes in large part from the pressure I put on myself when I made a time line for graduating next August. It's good to have deadlines, and I'm not behind yet, but I could be. The timeline looks something like this:
November - Finish preliminary analyses to identify candidate genes. Begin genotyping.

December - Complete genotyping (may include going to New Mexico)
January - Analysis of association with skin pigmentation
February - STR genotyping
March - Analysis of age of mutations
April - Final Analyses
Mary - Dissertation writing
June - Defense!
July - Corrections
August - Graduation

On the advice of everyone who knows me, I have added in some flex time because I always think I can get more done in a set period of time than I actually can. Reassuringly, my really amazing department chair recently told me that she has the same problem and that someone once did a study (she new who and when, I promptly forgot) indicating that people on average think it will take then a little less than half the time it actually will to complete a task. So on her advice, I took how long I thought I needed and multiplied it by a factor of 2.2.

The lazy part came from the end of daylight savings time (well, that is what I'm choosing to blame it on). Once upon a time, before I lived in central PA, I loved this whole "fall back" thing. An extra hour of sleep? I'm there. But now, the end of daylight savings time means that the sun sets before 5pm. That's right. Today, the sun set at 4:49pm and since we live in a valley it ceased to be visible around 4:30. I realize that the sun is setting earlier all across the country, but since the winter cloud cover has also rolled in it means that, on top of 9 hours of daylight each day, we won't see the sun unobstructed again until sometime in March. And, as it turns out, I'm solar powered.

So all of this is a long way of saying I have lots of excuses, but no good reason for being gone so long. I'll try to better, I promise.


  1. Brilliant! At first I thought it meant being lazy about blogging because of the academic load...sort of like "blegging"... you know the sites that want you to give 5 bucks via paypal for whatever cause du jour they have (blogging+begging). I like this new word even better! I'll use it at work.

  2. Wow... STR genotypig in February. Like in the CSI shows? Pretty awesome.

  3. Yes indeed. Just like CSI (but slower since this is real life).


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