The Friday Incident. A perfect example of events balancing out one another.


On Thursday, my grad student survival guide was published in Science. Previously, another version was published in Science Careers – but it was neat to have an edit in the actual journal.


Skip to Friday afternoon. Classically a better time to be drinking beer than to be “sciencing”…but I was working in the lab on a key experiment. During a break, I checked my inbox and found a Science editor had emailed me an image:

Gaudet - Science most downloaded

Top downloaded article! So cool. (Just to be clear, obviously this is a “back-door” Science paper – not a primary research paper – but it is still pretty neat.) They even made an illustration for the article:

Navigating grad study seas
A grad student navigating rough seas.

I was riding the wave of awesomeness for a few minutes…when my structural frame (a critical piece of equipment) broke. Typical Friday afternoon science stuff. Or, the science gods telling you to leave for happy hour. Unfortunately, the experiment had to work that day, so I battled through the rest of Friday before going home for pizza. As usual, resilience wins the day.


The Friday Incident reinforced two previously-learned lessons:

  1. Complete intense science experiments before Friday afternoon, and
  2. Sometimes, science has a way of yin-ing your yang. But roll with the punches; it’s humbling and keeps you down to earth.


Lessons re-learned. Next Friday afternoon I’ll play it safe and stick to perusing Citetrack articles.

Science yin and yang: The Friday Incident
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