[FUN] Dumbest lab experience?

Paul S. Brookes. brookes at uab.edu
Fri Dec 15 09:24:33 EST 2000

A few gems from our lab....

Filling the distilled water wash bottle with ethanol, then wondering why 
our mitochondria are uncoupled following a "water" wash out of the 
respiration chamber.

Setting the circulating water bath that feeds our perspex oxygen electrode 
chambers to 70 degrees.  The lids got stuck, as the different parts 
expanded at different rates.

"Un-packing" a wet western blot to find that the blue paper the 
nitrocellulose comes in is still attached to the nitrocellulose.

When told to "use that plastic rod thingy" to remove a magnetic stirring 
bar, using the hanging loop on the non-magnetic end to try and fish for the 

Being asked the question "what would happen if you drank liquid nitrogen" 
by a grad student, and replying "do you want to find out?"

Trying to extract a protein from a gel that has already been fixed and 
stained in acetic acid/methanol/coomassie.

Questioning a grad student about the use of a Gilson pipet that was 
dripping from the tip, and getting the reply,  "its OK so long as you're 
quick in getting it from one tube to the other".

And of course - exposing an ECL western blot and wondering why a sheet of 
soggy packing cardboard from the box of film comes out of the developer.

Dr. Paul S. Brookes.            (brookes at uab.edu)
UAB Department of Pathology,   G004 Volker Hall
1670 University Blvd., Birmingham AL 35294 USA
Tel (001) 205 934 1915     Fax (001) 205 934 1775

The quality of e-mails can go down as well as up
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