One of the most difficult things I have to deal with while living in the UK is how to handle my sports. I’m an avid NFL, NHL and MLB fan (not much of an NBA fan…somehow I find it challenging to go from watching tough NHL players block 90 mph shots and check each other hard into the boards to watching NBA players whine about how some other guy didn’t let them get to the basket…but maybe that’s just me…). The problem is that we are 5-8 hours ahead of you folks in the US, and the large majority of sporting events take place during “prime time”. This puts me in the difficult position of choosing between staying up uber-late to catch my team play and be tired the next day in teh lab (and make typos in my blog posts), or not follow some of the most exciting sports of the year just to nab some more zzz’s….Well, I think you can expect some more tpos of the next several weeks (hopefully longer!). But I do plan on putting in some work on manuscripts from my previous lab between periods.
So one of my favorite sport traditions is the playoff beard of the NHL playoffs (which just started!). For those of you not familiar, NHL players do not shave once the playoffs begin (well sometimes they do some ridiculous facial hair curating…). They only shave if their team is knocked out of the playoffs. It’s a bit of a superstition, good luck kinda’ thing. So by the time the Stanley Cup finals roll around, you have a bunch of scruffy looking, mostly bearded, hockey players scooting around on the ice (except for those youngin’ players). I’ve always participated in my own way by not shaving until my team was knocked out.
So this got me thinking, what would the academic equivalent of a playoff beard be? Perhaps one doesn’t shave until they get tenure (seems a bit extreme). Or perhaps it’s not shaving until one’s PI says “so, where’s all that data you promised me?”. This second option would have the added benefit that you would look like you’ve been working like mad since you haven’t even had time to shave!
Well, I promise my next post won’t be sports related…or at least if it is it’ll be related to British sports (I have been getting into a bit of football/soccer lately!).