Twitter / atb20

Friday, February 24, 2006

admitting ineptitude

i generally think of myself as a relatively intelligent person, but that perception is being shaken this afternoon. i have been asked to proof a 40-page grant on placebo effects in the brain. never before has my head hurt so much. i am seeing these words like "anti-nociceptive systems" and "carfentinil binding," and my little brain seems to work up a sweat just to pronounce them. am i alone here? do other educated people quiver like this when they're taken out of their realm of expertise? i've found myself taking 5-minute breaks after reading each page of this stuff. (hence the frequent posting today.)
here's another question i have... is it okay to have loud conversations in the gym? i ask because yesterday my new issue of jane exhorted me to go work out. there i was, happy as a clam, reading about facial exfoliators i can't afford and grooving to lady day, and this bear of a woman charges toward the elliptical machine next to mine, deep in conversation with a diminuative, metrosexual type. thing is, she was talking in her outdoor voice. more specifically, her barroom voice -- the one used to talk over hoardes of drunken college kids and a blaring jukebox. and our building gym is a quiet place... it's six o'clock and the three of us in there are exhausted from a long day of listening to other people's crap. at first i thought perhaps she's just walking in with this guy and the conversation will stop once they both begin to work out... i was wrong. the guy she was talking to just stood there, listening to her yap, for a half an hour... i'm not sure what the other people were thinking, but my thoughts were, "who the f--- does this woman think she is?"; "if she didn't look like she could kick my ass, i would totally give her a dirty look"; and "who the hell is the random guy who's standing next to her just listening to her rant about her co-workers for a half an hour?" needless to say, i said none of these things, though next time i might just try that dirty look.

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