The Next Big Science: A Formaldehyde-Resistant Strapless

, , , , | Working | October 20, 2017

(I work for my university, prepping equipment and chemicals for the undergraduate lab classes. Since I’m working with a lot of chemical stains, I usually show up to work wearing lab coats and my rattiest T-shirts. However, I’m also a research student, and we’re required to dress up when we present our work at the biannual symposium. As such, I’m wearing a nice dress today instead of my usual cut-offs and T-shirt, and apparently some people weren’t expecting it.)

Lab Manager: “Excuse me, miss, you can’t be in… Holy s***, [My Name]! I didn’t recognize you! Why the hell are you wearing a dress?!”

Me: “It’s symposium day; I have to dress up to present my work.”

Lab Manager: “Christ, that’s today? Well, good luck! You do look nice; I just don’t think I’ve ever seen you in a skirt. It’s weird.”

(Later, in the research lab…)

Principal Investigator: “Holy cow, [My Name]. You look great! Why don’t you dress like that every day?”

Me: “Because most days, I’m hauling formaldehyde-soaked dissection specimens or scrubbing test tubes out with bleach, and I like this dress!”

Principal Investigator: *laughing* “Fair enough. So, ready for your presentation?”

(My presentation did actually go very well, but I continued getting spit-take reactions throughout the day. Since then, I’ve made it a point to dress up one or two days a semester when I’m not working; the double-takes are just too much fun!)

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