Science, they say, is all about ‘experimenting’. Well, thank my lucky stars that the colleges don’t think so, or I would be failing. Somehow, experimenting is not my cup of tea, and things tend to go horribly wrong when I experiment with stuff. I am extremely careful, and I try not to experiment at all (who cares what happens to potassium carbonate when you add concentrated sulphuric acid to it?), but if I am forced to…well, my teacher has to bear the consequences.
My greatest achievement is that I managed to survive without breaking a test tube last year. That is pretty difficult to manage…usually; I end up with something very different from what is considered ‘normal’. For example, the day when my chem. Experiment when horribly wrong, and only my test tube turned motty-green, emitting a horrible, green coloured gas, with my teacher screaming, “Not the test for Ist group acid Radicals, my girl, try with Hydrogen Sulphide!” Everyone else’s had the required “Curdy white precipitate”, and people were closing their noses…well, you get the picture.
The worst and the most boring of all practicals is physics….I almost never get the values right. It’s gives a dose of frustration, really…it makes me tear my hair out. It’s wonderful that Hemavathi, my classmate is by my side, saying, “That’s not right,” “That’s not how you should do it!” Well, the circuit connections go wrong when I try, and I can’t time the number of oscillations of the pendulum (we calculated the acceleration due to gravity on earth to be 11.8 when it has to be 9.8 meters per second) The so called ‘Scientific temperament’, blah..blah…blah…it lacking. Hmm…I wonder how Thomas Alva Edison experimented with nearly a hundred substituents of carbon for the bulb, before he got it right. If I were him, the world would still be dark at night.
Coming to Bio…my favorite. I was a good artist in school and there is nearly no experimenting, so it’s fun. I can sit for long hours, sketching the cross-section of the liver’s hepatic cells until I reach perfection. But there are yucky parts too…Cockroach dissection! I nearly vomited when they did that. They pair up 2 people, and I never even touched the cockroach, let alone dissect it! My friend Thunga was perfectly happy doing it, and I totally freaked out when I observed that the ‘unconscious’ or the ‘dead’ cockroach (It’s hard to make out with cockroaches, actually) was either regaining consciousness, or coming back to life while she was dissecting it. Somebody actually scared me we would have to dissect a toad this year, until I learnt that there were joking.
Well, that’s practicals for you. In my next blog, I wish to continue on what went wrong in practicals, and how I coped with it.