አካብዴ tendencies 2

My cover has been blown.

My sis and bro have always maintained to the rest of the fam: “አሁን እሱ ነው የዋህ, ምንም የማያውቅ?! እንዲህ ሲቅለሰለስ ሰው መስሏችኋል? የሱን ጉድ ‘ምናውቀው እኛ ነን!” Of course, sometimes they make it sound like I am Keyser Söze or something. But I will have to admit: I’m not that innocent. ኦ ቤይበን ቤይበን

It’s only been a little over a year since I’ve embarked upon an open door policy-like Deng Xiaoping-in school; have become more outgoing. And I owe that in part to time and to the new crop of people coming in. Still, መቅለስለስ had remained the modus operandi in the presence of the boss. I have observed how relaxed relationships between PIs and students here could get, and let me go out on a limb and say that it would make people slightly uncomfortable if I were to do something like this:


And yet, I have tried to do my best impression of የጨዋ ተማሪ (although I presume he would rather I were a ምርታማ ተማሪ) and to avoid getting too chummy.

Then in a single week he walks in on me horsing around: doing a b-boy stance, a bad British accent, whistling to a song and singing along to Wakeup Call. What will he think of me? Will he think that I am starting to get more chill and complacent because of that paper? Ours is a life where, more often than not, the promise and the happiness is that of paper, after all. Not to be confused with that other kind of paper. Will he think that I need a wakeup call, since it’s just only the beginning? ወዘተ ወዘተ…

Or maybe he didn’t even notice anything (or if he did, he just didn’t care) and I am stressing over nothing, as is my wont.

Exhibit B

Another day, another place. During a presentation on lab safety, they show us a picture of a gas cylinder and ask what was missing. Someone answers “a chain”, to keep it from falling on some poor grad student’s feet, that is. I comment to the person who was sitting next to me “just like a rapper”. Cuz what’s a rapper without no chain, right? I am not sure if the person got the reference.

Then I go home, and in the middle of shower I start going over the events of the day and overanalyzing. A couple of people from my committee were sitting in front of us during the presentation. What if they had overheard my comments, heard “wrapper” in stead of  “rapper” (what with the exotic accent), and they thought that I was anthropophallomorphizing the cylinder (not even an apt simile) and I was insinuating that it was missing a condom (I won’t even try to explain), what will they think of me, ወዘተ ወዘተ…

እግዜር ይርዳኝ



(dry, medium-bodied) grad school humor

Accuracy Precision Friday


Battle of the bands. In a perfect world.

battle of the bands

When that hot beat drops in the lab

Crips and bloods

bloods and crips

How time flies! That time of the year has come around again, when we would get that dopest of free foods. In a perfect example of “give them an inch, they would take a mile”, this time we have also decided to investigate if the cool t-shirts that we had seen stacked up were up for grabs as well. I would be remiss if I didn’t state here that I have been harboring positive thoughts 😉 towards the girl who is womaning the table where the t-shirts be at. Wouldn’t hurt to check out both girl and t-sh…

We would soon learn that they are part of a fundraiser and cost 15 dollars. I’m all for the advancement of science and shit but 15 dollars!? Now we’re all sheepish and shit. Now we’re looking for ways to save face. I tell her the t-shirts are probably going to be too big for me. Lame! She pulls out a smaller size. Think! I activate the Gurage within, ask her “Do you see (‘envision’ would have been a better choice here 🙂 ) the prices going down anytime soon?” መቼም በልቧ “ይሄ ደግሞ የማነው ቆንቋና?!” ሳትለኝ አትቀርም:: አንድ ጊዜ የካልሲ ዋጋ ቀንስልኝ ስለው ሙድ እንደያዘብኝ ባለቡቲክ:: ግን የካልሲ ዋጋ መከራከር ነውር ነው እንዴ 😕

But I guess it is not good look to try to haggle at fundraisers.



They just won’t let you get your resveratrol on

So, I’m checking out at the store. Cashier asks me how old I was, because I was carrying wine. I say “old enough”. I was trying to be charming. But I guess she took offense. She asks for an ID: “if you had just told me your age…” She sees that my learner’s permit has expired (hey, don’t judge me! ምንም በቤቢ ፊያት ጊዜ ተለማምዶ እስካሁን መንጃ ፍቃድ ያልያዘ ሰው እኔ ብቻ ሳልሆን ባልቀርም, … my excuse: same as Eve’s verse on You Got Me “With all my classes I don’t have the time for life’s thrills”). She calls the manager. He goes “in the great state of so and so we don’t sell… that’s how the Founding Fathers intended it to be…”

They remove the bottle of wine from my stuff. አይኖቼ ተከተሉት…


I couldn’t even be flattered that she deemed it necessary to ascertain my age.

Then I come home to find out that Bill Maher is off tonight.

ቶታል ዲዛስተር አይ ቴል ያ!

On top of that, I can’t stop myself from going “really?!” (there may be a smirk there) whenever one of my students says they have found something to be difficult. Please, don’t you go ahead and be proud of me like ልጃችን ተስተምሮ ፈረንጅን “ሪሊ?!!” ማለት ዠመረ!! I am still clueless as shit. And that’s not good TA behavior. ለነገሩ many are the times when I would just throw whatever English word or phrase that I find lying around close by, just in the spirit of communication. Just because I say it, doesn’t mean that’s what I wanted to say.

በፓስፖርቴ መጠጥ እንዳልገዛ ደግሞ እማማ ኢትዮጵያን ማዋረድ ይሆናል:: It’s not good look.

ምን ይሻላል? Now I’m just sitting, blogging when I am supposed to be sipping. ዓርብ ያለወይን ግቡን ይመታ ይሆን?


Rant: 1, 2, 3, go! ይብላኝ ላንቺና ለድርጅቱ እንጂ እኔማ መንገድ አላጣም:: ምን አይነቷ ጠማማ ናት በናታችሁ?! “I’m dealing with these fucking experiments, hearing ‘no, no, no’ all day long, then I come home and you won’t let me get my jam on up in here?!”



ነጻ ምግብ, ቆሻሻ ልብስ, …



The joys of free food from ማኔጅመንት ኢንስቲትዩት (ባህር ዳር) to የመፒ ስልጠናዎች (ጥቁር አንበሳ) to the neuroscience conference. This time we even were too busy doing our thing to attend the thing. የምግብ ሰዓት ሲደርስ ግን አይናችንን በጨው አጥበን ሄድን:: ነጻ ምግብ እንዳለ ጥቆማ ያደረሰን ወዳጃችን ሽንቱ ይለምልም! 🙂


When one realizes that one kind of dressed like shit

taxGood mail to come home to

20160910_225937This has to be ፈረሰኛ , right?




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