Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Shaking hands and Kissing Babies

Today is freshman orientation day for my division. The dean is going to give a welcome (10 min). A senior undergrad is going to give a talk. And this "program" is going to be bookended by the faculty meeting the parents. We are all going to wear name tags, and the Dean is going to introduce us (we have to stand when he introduces us). I hate nametags and standing for a long time, and my lastname is near the beginning of the alphabet. Why couldn't my last name be Zylo or something? I never know what to do while I'm standing. On a positive note, there will be food - probably cheese, maybe fruit.

Today is also the day that I'm having a very expensive piece of equipment installed and my lab (and myself) are getting trained on it. I'm very excited about this. I have waited a long time for the equipment - I placed the order for it in May (down-payment out of pocket - yes, my pocket).

I found out about the freshman orientation event on Monday. I planned the installation of the equipment three weeks ago. I am not moving the installation of the equipment. The progress of all of my grad students' research depends on this equipment.

The clothes I should be wearing to the freshman orientation event: "professorial". The clothes I should be wearing to get trained on the equipment: "grad student". Obviously, these are not the same. Professorial = nice slacks ie the kind you have to iron, button down shirt, some vague form of make-up, and my hair should look decent. Grad Student = jeans, shirt that I don't care about b/c I may/may not get it dirty, hair pulled up.

So, I had to split the difference = black khakis (in case I did get them dirty), white striped button down (hopefully it won't show dirt), and pulled up hair. I did wear minimal make-up. I hate make-up. It takes time to put on in the morning that I could spend sleeping.

The full profs don't worry about this kind of stuff b/c they don't install equipment. In fact, the other assistant profs don't have to deal with this either - they aren't installing equipment right now as they have already built their labs. And even if they were, they could just not attend the event. But, I'm the "female" of the department, so I have to come (and I have to look decent).

Maybe they will have cheese and wine...

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