I've been invited to talk at a dental conference in March. I'm nervous, partly because it's the first talk at a meeting I've ever given and partly because it's at a meeting full of dentists. I went a few years ago and gave a poster, and had a lot of fun picking up free samples from Crest and Listerine and all those tooth-y companies, but they spoke a language I didn't understand. Now I will be trying to speak that language (or speaking my own language and getting blank stares from the audience). Or maybe I should compromise and speak the universal language (in the US anyway), English. To make things worse, the title of the section I'm part of has nothing to do with anything I've ever had any knowledge of (Clinical Oral Microbiology). Fortunately the other people giving talks in my section seem to be in the same boat as me (I think they put all us foreigners together).
A guy in my lab gave me a refresher course in 12th grade math today. You know, the good stuff like finding the log of something or determining X when X is the power of 2 and the whole thing equals 10,000. I never had any need for that stuff until today and then WHOA it all came back to me like a jellyfish (that bit me on the ass on its way by). Fortunately this guy in my lab has a much better memory than me and got it all figured out right quick. Now I'm a GENIUS. You should all call me anytime you need to figure out X when X is the power of 2 and the whole thing equals 10,000. I'm not sure I can do much else but I got that one figured out. (it's around 14 by the way but I wouldn't expect you to know that).