What scientists do… in summer!


Let’s start the Frozen series with some summer fun for everyone. Here’s what Olaf (a snowman) thought about summer…

Have you ever wondered what scientists do in summer?

I’ve always loved the idea of summer… Really, I’m guessing you don’t have much experience with breaks, do you?

Nope, but I like to close my eyes and imagine all the potential productivity when summer does come.

There’s no classes… except that new course you wanted to develop for fall

There’s no students… except the half a dozen HHMI undergrads in the lab

No committees… except that one search that’s planning to beat the competition

PI’s will have time to work in the lab… except they don’t remember how to use the equipment.


A flask in my hand,

A burner flaming under ring-stand,

Squinting, yes, that could be a band,

So many experiments to do in summer!


The joy of preliminary data,

That will be written in grants later,

I hope they meet a generous rater,

But we won’t worry about it now, it’s summer!


Ecologists spend their summer days

Counting Anoles’ dewlap displays

Under the Caribbean rays*

From the cold room, the biochemist says:

I think I picked the wrong discipline for summer!


We can research whatever we please

Because there are no salaries**

Given by universities … in summer!


I hope this transformation gives resistant expressors

Because for reviewers, I’m a persistent addresser

Trying to be less of an #OverlyHonestMethods confessor

If I had my own grant, I be a __________ Happy Postdoc! This summer!***


Research posters, we will assemble

And they just might resemble

The abstracts submitted long ago

To justify a trip to Key Largo

Wait- that conference is really in Fargo… this summer!


Oh! at the meetings, the data will be new

And you’ll all be there too

Because that’s just what scientists do in summer!


// It’s summer, scientists. Enjoy it how you will. Feel free to add your own verses in the comments section below.



* Shout out to my friend Dr. Michele Johnson, WashU alum, now at Trinity University. Go visit her Lizards and Friends webpage for more than you ever wanted to know about lizards and their behavior.

**FYI- Does not apply to postdocs. I still get paid, but many other academic positions are only 9 month appointments.

***Give me a break, it was hard to think of rhymes for assistant professor.




3 thoughts on “What scientists do… in summer!

  1. Pingback: Frozen: A Plant Science Parody | New Under The Sun Blog

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