Wednesday, August 8, 2007

She blinded me with science...SCIENCE!!!

It is no secret to those who know me that I am a total science nerd. I am an OSU graduate, masters in Molecular Genetics, Ph.D candidate as well, but never finished. Because of my failure to complete the D (for those of you from academia, I am proudly an ABD...all but dissertation to those of you non-science folk), I have always related to the Grease song, "Beauty School Drop Out." I get it. I just change the words from Beauty School. to Ph.D. Frequently you can hear me singing this song under my breath, even thought I am proud of my decision to leave. My Masters has served me well, damn it. When Corporate America came calling, I listened, and not just for the paycheck. The money was not the issue, it was a lifestyle choice.

Anyway, back to the reason why I am posting. As you know I am in Orlando, FL and today there was a space shuttle launch. Here is the scoop:

The space shuttle Endeavour roared into orbit Wednesday carrying teacher-astronaut Barbara Morgan, who was finally fulfilling the dream of Christa McAuliffe and the rest of the fallen Challenger crew.
Endeavour and its crew of seven rose from the seaside pad at 6:36 p.m. ET, right on time, and pierced a solidly blue sky. They are expected to reach the international space station on Friday.

Wow! Being the nerd I am, I did everything in my power to see this launch, but failed. It killed me to be so close to this event; withing seeing distance, really. Luckily my husband, who is also in Orlandofor business, was able to see the launch. Live!!! I am so jealous. What an amazing thing to witness. I am determined to make it back down here for the next launch, so that I can be a part of it. I'm told by my husband that traffic was backed up for miles. Kudos to those who made the trip. This is a part of our history and I am disturbed to find that most people don't give a crap about it. Hopefully those of you in Cbus watching this event on television and thought about what an amazing feat this truly is/was. More interesting to know... Barbara Morgan was Christa McAuliffe's back up for the Challenger launch. What a brave women she was, all in the name of Science,curiosity. We should all admire her and her pursuit of knowledge, her willingness to jeapordize her life for her passion for science.

I know that many of you out there couldn't give a crap about science. But, hopefully you will find something out there that you believe in. Something that you are willing to sacrifice for. Something that will fill your heart with passion. Without passion, what have you really got?

One final comment before I crash. Just wanted to give a shout out to Dr. Jane Reece. Thank you for your passion for teaching Biology. Thank you for your hard work in putting your passion onto the pages of a text book. I recognize your hard work in taking on this task. It is because of you that I have a job and am proud of what I do for a living. More college students should have access to the information that you make availabe. More authors should be as accessable as you. This will be my mission if life, to spread the word. Knowledge is power. Thanks for being an inspiration to us all!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Orlando in the house!

Well, day two of my Orlando trip. It is a work related trip, but I am having an absolute blast. Have you ever been lucky enough to have people around you that get you? And I'm not talking about your day to day friends? I mean co-works, a company as a whole! I am a lucky girl to be involved with a publishing giant. It is truly a great thing when you are around people that inspire you to do more. People that inspire you to challenge the system. People that have your back, no matter what. I am the king (queen, rather) of the world!!! Thanks, Leo.

The resort that I am staying at has an award winning pastry chef. I am hopeful that I will get to try one of his creations. If I do, I'll be sure to post a picture. Wish me luck!

Just so you Columbus folk know, it is hotter than hell her (yes, not a typo, I mean 'her' borrowing from Nelly) in Orlando. The weather here makes Columbus look like a cool weather town. We hit 105 degrees F today. Very thankful that my day was full of indoor, airconditioned meeting!!! Hope you are all staying cool back home!!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Sugar, we're going down swinging

My greatest fear in life is flying. It has been ever since the first plane trip I took when I was a kid. Days before a scheduled flight, I find myself dreaming of flaming crashes and twisted metal. The night before, I generally don’t sleep for fear of the dreams that I know will come. I find my fear ironic as my dad is one of those people who love a bumpy flight. “The bumpier the better,” he always says. He could never understand my fear of flying. Neither can my husband.

Prior to getting on the plane, I look for signs. Signs that will tell me if my flight will be safe or a flight that will end in tragedy. For example, yesterday, after packing my bag, I was cleaning out my purse and wallet. As I went thru a wallet that I had not used since March, I found $24 in the coin purse. Surely a sign that my flight would go well! I shared my good news with my husband, but he looked at me and shook his head. Children are another sign that I look for. The more of them, the better. A plan full of children is less likely to go down in flames. Since Lost first premiered on TV, I have never watched it, not even for a minute. I even turned the channel when a commercial for it came on. The less I know about planes crashing, the better. My imagination is wild enough without bringing Hollywood into the equation.

I have been told over the years, by loved ones no less that I am a pain to fly with. I have even been ridiculed by their laughter at my in-flight antics (yes Poop that would be you). I admit I have grabbed a strangers arm during take off. Over the years I have gotten in the habit of warning the person sitting next to me that I am afraid to fly. Bless those who have been kind enough to talk me through the flight.

When I got on my flight to Orlando this morning, I found that I was sitting next to a man with a 7 year old child. I found out that today is said boy’s 7th birthday. Another sign, right? That’s what I thought too! The problem was that this child (and his sibling across the row) seemed to be excited about flying. I certainly did not want to let on to my fear. I did not want the parents of these children to have to explain the odd behavior of the woman in 14A. Would it be possible for me to fly as if I was a mature adult? Confident in the hands of the pilots. One who deep down realizes that it was safer to hop a plane than to drive? Well, so far so good. I have about 30 minutes left of my flight. I have not once moaned, cried out, grabbed anyone’s arm or desperately clung to the front of the seat in front of me preparing for a crash landing. Hopefully my new found confidence can get me through my return flight on Friday.