Smurf’s adorable pronunciation inspired this comic
Alas, I speak not of the fun kind, the province of randy college youth…
Nay… My tale goes far back, all the way to the last millenium… And it is a dark one.
Every year, come October, the pearly
gates windows for NSF unsolicited proposals swing open. As if in a trance, thousands of pilgrim scientists gather to worship at the feet of the unfeeling behemoth. In a month of pure agony, their bodies and souls are possessed by the tyrant, yet they remember little. Their consciousness barely punctuates the thick caffeine haze, wherein hearts race and thoughts scatter… Come November, the pilgrims wake up with a vague feeling of shame and regret, chafed, hopelessly trying to remember what it was that left that foul taste in their mouths.
In the spring, some of them bear the fruit of the unholy alliance. They care for it lovingly during its three-year-long life… And what a precious gift it is. So small, so feeble, so rare… But what an honor to be bestowed such a gift, and to be free, if but for a little while, of the unquenchable thirst that overtakes every fall…
For when you see a disheveled scientist carrying a cup of coffee, know that F*cktober is upon us. No one is safe. Best to procure some lubricant.
Another day, another NSF grant rejection.
Scores were E, V, V, V (E=excellent, V=very good). I haven’t seen the report yet, they probably won’t show up till next week.
The scores are only a little better than last year, although I thought the proposal itself was MUCH better than last year.
(Update: Did get the reviews, really very positive. Still no dice.)
Oh, well. Off to lick wounds and edit a student’s paper.
To that end, some levity.
(Middle Boy says he came up with these on his own, but he might be fibbing.)
Joke 1: Germanium, nickel, uranium, and sulfur worked together on a science project. It was GeNiUS!
Joke 2: I was going to work on my science homework, but then I thought, “NaH…”
(He drew a box around each symbol, like in the periodic table, with Na saying sodium and H saying hydrogen).
By the way, Middle Boy is 9. The Nerd Force is strong with the young one!
$hit my students recently wrote in drafts of technical manuscripts:
Point 1 is no secret
One of the first orders of business was to determine…
This is surely the handiwork of [a physical phenomenon, i.e., something decidedly without hands or the ability to come up with evil plots]
It is possible to judge… using the squint test, squinting at thousands of plots is tiring on the eyes…
and my favorite
[B]y embracing the leapfrog nature [of an explicit algorithm for solving partial differential equations]…
Clearly, this (rough, pen only) drawing had to happen:
* This joke is for everyone who’s ever loved (or hated) the quantization of total angular momentum, J. The z-component of total angular momentum is denoted by Jz.
For a given j (the quantum number that characterizes the magnitude of total angular momentum as J=ℏ√j(j+1) ), Jz can have 2j+1 different values.
* In case you don’t really follow pop-culture, the joke refers to Jay-Z’s song “99 Problems,” which has the infamous chorus line: “I got 99 problems but a bi*ch ain’t one”.
Apropos nothing, here are some webcomics I enjoy. These are all humorous, but I am also a sucker for beautiful art, so some of the selection reveals that. (I have also contributed to a couple of Kickstarter campaigns and artists’ Patreons. )
PhD Comics (obviously)
Cyanide and Happiness (not for the easily offended; DO NOT look at the comments, or you’ll lose all faith in humanity)
Loonarbaboon (wonderful insights from life with kids)
Wilde Life (gorgeous art; the comment section is full of nice folks who enjoy puns and rhyming)
Zombie Roomie (I want to draw like this when I grow up)
The next few are smutty, but pretty tame (but here are some smelling salts, just in case) and feature beautiful art.