Field of Science

Random thoughts

When I was young I used to keep a diary. Or a journal, whatever. I used to write in it most nights, usually about twice a week. I think I kept it up for a while, with some sort of wistful idea that spacemen, or future generations of humans, would some day find it and use it for scientific purposes, and in doing so make my life slightly more useful.

And in the manner of most people who write journals when they're younger I took a look at them over the holiday last winter and collapsed into a fit of laughter and the rather embarrassing hope that aliens or future generations wouldn't find it, or if they did would decently burnt it very quickly. I read through, fascinated at the fact that I'd spent so many evenings carefully and methodically writing down the exact same thoughts night after night.

Each day went something like this:
  • Went to school today
  • Came back and did some work
  • I'm not working hard enough!
  • I need good results!
  • I don't really know if anyone likes me
  • An amazing new book/film/lord-of-the-rings-associated-product just came out!
  • I have so many story ideas in my head and no time to write them all...
Most of it was the fairly standard teenage mindset preoccupied with death, sex and the occasional foray into religion. At one point I even made up my own religion because I wanted to Believe in something but didn't like any of the mainstream ones. And inordinate amount of time was spent worrying about biology IGCSE's and (yes I did keep it up that long) A-levels.

All fairly standard, all fairly normal. Only one thing, in fact, was scary.

These are still the same sort of thoughts I'm thinking now.

Although with slightly less emphasis on Lord of the Rings.

It's scary and it's spooky just how little my internal monologue seems to have changed. There's less of the death and sex, true, and slightly more of the I'm-not-working-hard-enough but overall my deep internal monologue seems to have survived the experience of growing-up relatively unscathed. Deep down, I am the same sad nerdy little person I always was :(

On the plus side though I am working with tiny little plates! Petri-dishes five centimeters across. They look very small especially next to the giant petri-dishes which are 14 centimeters diameter and therefore awesome.


John Farrell said...

Good post. I have to say, sometime during my junior year in college, in a moment of clarity (or self destructiveness), I collected all my diaries, and burned them in the nice cast-iron wood stove in our house in the mountains.

I've never regretted it.

Anonymous said...

You know, none of the journals I tried to keep as a kid lasted more than a week or two. I actually opened one to find "disregard this; I was an idiot" written on it. But you're right. The thought process remains, and I still dream about research.