Why are we here?

wijsman at max.u.washington.edu wijsman at max.u.washington.edu
Sat Aug 21 18:04:09 EST 1993

To add to the list of who we are & what we do & other misc stuff:
I am an assoc. prof. with research interests in the area of
statistical genetics (in human genetics).  My Ph.D. training was in
pretty classical population genetics (non-human) but I have been
working with human data for more than a dozen years now.  I have a
joint position in the depts of biostatistics and medicine (div. of
medical genetics), which gets rather schizophrenic sometimes in going
back & forth between MDs & PhDs.  I am married & have 1 8-year old
son.  Between everything, I try to spend at least a few hours each
week playing some music in order to remain sane.   
I would have to say (in reference to at least some of the topics which
have been suggested in this group) that I definitely have no spare
time.  Everything in my life is done at the expense of something else.
I see posts often enough on this & other newsgroups to which I just
don't have time to reply.  Time management is a constant battle.  My
husband has always taken lots of responsibility for childcare
(especially) and house chores (especially cooking), but with 2 faculty
appointments plus the usual parent activities, we are always treading
water to stay afloat.  We farm out as much as is convenient - e.g., we
have someone in to clean the house on a weekly basis which takes care
of the worst of the housework, but you can't get rid of all the chores
that way.  I am also getting better at delegating work to
students/postdocs/staff, as well as in saying NO to requests for my
time at home or at work.  I will not take on projects at work for
"free". I have found that insisting on some support for the project
(staff salary, or other such support) has not hindered my
collaborations at all. I try to sit down periodically (every week or
so & then again longer intervals) to prioritize projects/tasks,
including trying to anticipate problems before they occur (so that
emergencies don't disrupt the normal flow of things).  High priority
items are given the most total time, low priority items get stuck in
between the cracks or dropped.  I always carry around with me a
manuscript or something else so that if I find myself in a boring
seminar I have something to work on.  Having reading or writing
available when you find yourself unexpectedly waiting for something
can get those tasks in unexpected time slots.  

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