When I was in college I had a work study job in a biomedical research lab.
I know. I knowwwwww.
When I first applied for the job it was administrative. My interview with my very scary boss literally went like this:
ScaryBoss: I see you have some administrative assistant experience.
Me: Yes, I do.
ScaryBoss: I assume you know the alphabet?
(sweating over if this is a trick question, is there a….biology alphabet?!?)
Me: Yes, I do know the alphabet.
ScaryBoss: Ok then. Come in on Thursday.
And thus began my three year stint of working in a Bio lab for a crazy mad scientist. When I write my illustrious memoir: Quirky And Sometimes Sad Stories about an Average Middle Class White Girl
(its a working title) my experience in the lab is going to have to be a whole chapter, at least! But for the purposes of this post I need only tell you this:
I was paid 8 measly dollars an hour. I usually wasn’t needed to work more than 7 hours a week so I was barely making enough money for the job to even be worth it
(it actually was never worth it, it only took me 3 miserable years to figure that out.) I was also extremely proficient at most of the tasks assigned to me. Toward the end of my bio lab assistant career I was doing actual Biology which obviously took time but right at the beginning I was doing mostly data entry.
And I can type, really really fast. I’m also the bomb-diggity at filing. So more often than not I would finish 2 to 3 hours before I was supposed to. I would go to my supervisor and say I was finished and she’d be like “Ok you can go home then!” which in a way was nice because I could never wait to leave the looney bin that was the lab, but it wasn’t good for my paycheck.
So I started taking bathroom breaks. Or should I say “bathroom breaks.”
Once an hour I would leave the lab for 15 minute stretches trying to kill the time. I was always afraid of getting caught so I would actually go physically sit in the bathroom. I would always go sit in the middle stall and play Tetris on my free with a rebate Verizon cellphone. Often my cellphone would freeze just as I was about to beat my high score. It was frustrating but the tactic totally worked in helping me stretch my hours and nobody ever inquired about my epically long and frequent bathroom trips. Though thinking about it that’s probably an awkward conversation for anyone, even socially challenged research scientists.
“So, I notice you seem to be going to the bathroom often…for long periods of time…..how are your bowels?”
Today as I was sitting on the toilet….multitasking, and by multitasking I mean pooping but also playing Hanging With Friends on my Iphone when I had a realization.
Those three years probably would have been the best three years of my life if I had had my Iphone. I could have been sitting in that damn bathroom on facebook. FACEBOOK!
I may just have to demand a do-over when my brother finally finishes constructing that damn time machine for my birthday.