I had written these back in March 2012, about my lab partner at the time when I was taking a microbiology class.
Dialogue from Monday’s lab (Mar 5)
We were testing the effectiveness of soaps and hand washing on removing bacteria. Part of the activity involved scrubbing the fingers with a brush and detergent for two minutes, and then again for four minutes. My partner was scrubbing his hand while I timed him.
Him: I wonder if Mr. Clean has an enemy
Another student: His enemy are germs.
Him: I mean, like a person, like a Mr. Dirty. He has hair, and a mustache
Me: He has a lumberjack beard
Him: and a flannel shirt
A different student: That’s the Brawny Man™!
* * *
On Monday (3/19) I overheard a conversation between my lab partner and the professor. He asked her about the unknown reports and she said that that everybody who correctly identified their unknown usually gets all fifty points. Then he tells her, “If you feel awkward giving me a perfect score, because you’re not used to me getting such a high score, then you can take off some points.” She laughed (and so did I).
* * *
Many people dropped the class this quarter, which the instructor claimed was unusual. The table in front of ours used to have five people, but four dropped so the remaining student joined another group that had lost a member. That made the table empty. We moved up to copy something from the board. The instructor noticed that we moved. “Only to copy that,” we explained. When she remarked about how the whole table dropped, my lab partner said, “this table is cursed.”
He went on to say how those people had been blocking our view, so at the beginning of the quarter all the people who are planning to drop should sit in the front, and later the people behind them can see. Then he remarked about how he almost dropped the class, to which I said, “Then I would have been able to see.”
* * *
He told me he sold most of his Ritalin, at inflated prices. One time he didn’t have any more but a guy wanted more, so he sold him ibuprofen, for $20 a pill, claiming it was Ritalin in a different form. The next time that guy saw him, he gushed about how well he was able to focus and wanted to buy more.
* * *
He mentioned that one guy at work either got fired or quit. His name was Sid. They already got a replacement, and his name is Sud. We both thought that Sud was a hilarious name. Then he joked that it must have been easy to do his paperwork; just change the ‘i’ to a ‘u’.
* * *
Our group was given an unknown on a plate. It was labeled with a ‘B’ in permanent marker. We were instructed to write down which unknown we had. He held the plate sideways and said “mountain.”
* * *
One time between class and lab I was discussing with him an article that I recently read about how women don’t like beards. However, I do like neatly-trimmed beards. He said, “So you won’t eliminate me because of my beard?” I was confused that he was asking me that, since he has a girlfriend (whom he later married and they now have a baby). I said I wouldn’t, so he asked “So you do like my beard?” When I confirmed that I like his beard, his reply was that I would eliminate him because of something else.
* * *
On the last day of lecture I noticed he actually printed out the lecture slides to take notes on. After class he bragged to me that he actually printed them out this time, for the last lecture, adding that it was the second time this whole quarter that he printed them. The first time he did, it was the wrong chapter. I commented that this time there was no uncertainty about which chapter it was (that we’d be covering in class). He laughed. Then I added, “now if you still printed the wrong chapter….”
* * *
He liked to say “your face!” in response to questions, or sometimes randomly. For example, when our group was cramming for the lab final, I brought up the different forms of lichens: fruticose, foliose, and crustose. After that he said, “Your face is crustose.” I found it a bit annoying, but as with the other times, I shrugged it off.
Later he wanted to make sure he remembered something correctly, so he said, “0 to 20 °C is psychrophiles, 20 to 45 °C is mesophiles, and 45 to 65 °C is thermophiles.” Then he checked the lab manual and corrected himself, “50 to 65 °C is thermophiles.” Since I was puzzled as to why the temperature range of 45 to 50 was left uncovered, I asked, “What’s between 45 and 50?”
Him: “Hm, I don’t know… What is between 45 and 50?”
Me (trying hard not to laugh): “Your face.”
We both laughed.
* * *
He would say “heads or tails?” and toss a pen.
* * *
The professor was passing out the final exam, and when she got to our table, he told her, “Quick! Before it all falls out.”
Maybe it doesn’t seem funny to read these things, and it’s a lot funnier when the actual guy is saying them. Many of the things were what he did and not what he said. For example, he liked drawing faces on his latex glove. One time while he was drawing I said, “You’re giving it an open mouth?” Surprised, he asked how did I know. “That’s because your mouth is open.”