Thursday, July 07, 2011

Day 2: Run 2

Only did 3.5 mi yesterday. It's awfully hot and sticky here so I decided to wait until it cooled down to run. About 9pm I headed out. The bugs got the best of me and I turned around a little early. Although the air felt great, I was a little fed up with, well feeding on gnats.

I understand that in the whole circle of life thing, mosquito's and flies and gnats are food for birds, frogs, fish. And, for the most part, I like birds, frogs, and fish.


But frankly, those critters aren't doing their fair share of the circle bit as they are well outnumbered by little things that bite and clog up noses and fly straight into the back of the throat. Those buggers have got an uncanny ability to make a suicide run right into the uvula. Ick.

I'm not sure how far I'll run tonight. I think I'll try for 4 mi, but I didn't get much sleep last night so I'm pretty tired. Spent most of the night reading a book about Henrietta Lacks. She's the lady from whom the HeLa cell line came from. It's pretty wretched what happened to her family after her untimely death and the shock of finding out two decades later her cells had been taken and cultured for all kinds of experiments.

They weren't scientists. They didn't understand exactly what was happening, and it was pretty frightening for them. It makes me wonder how the lay-person sees the scientific community. I mean, I take it for granted and throw terms like 'clone' and 'DNA sequencing' all the time. But those terms could be pretty scary for someone who imagines a world where people are cloned for spare parts (The Island) or engineered to be the perfect person and not allowed to officially exist otherwise (Gattica).

I've seen the movies, I mean Ewan McGregor and Ethan Hawke are hot. The plots are pretty silly, but fun drama and action. I don't take them seriously. I know that we're not cloning people in the lab. I know that having an entire human genome sequenced is a far cry from understanding the entire code. I know that stem cells aren't going to grant immortality or the cure to every ailment, but they may just make a bladder or maybe one day a heart valve eliminating maybe just a little pressure on finding organ donors. I'm not afraid of the lab, I'm at home in the lab.

But those stories, those words, even the chemical smells I'm somewhat fond of could scare the living daylights out of someone utterly unfamiliar with the world I live in. Really, I never thought about it that way before. Sorry if I scared you guys, we're really not Frankensteins, you know. We're just doing a job that seems to find its way into the most terrifying of your imaginations.

Anyway, this was a great book, I recommend it. You can find information on the book and Henrietta Lacks at this site:

4 mi tonight and looking cloudy out...maybe a nice rain to chase away the bugs?


Post a Comment

<< Home