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Why I studied biochemistry

February 21st, 2004 · No Comments

As the final installment to my series of why I didn’t become a doctor then why I didn’t become a hacker, I figured I should write about why I did do something in school: why I studied biochemistry.

Inspiration for this story also came from Jay McCarthy’s comment in a post last month:

This is why I am studying Italian and French. It’s ALL about girls.

Instead of languages, I studied science, earning a B.S. in Biochemistry from the chem department. Although I don’t remember the exact statistics, I do recall that there were many more men than women; I had perhaps only 3 or 4 female colleagues in my class of 20 or so biochemistry concentrators.

Spring of my junior year, I took Physical Chemistry. It was an upper level course with a small enrollment. Of the 12 students, I was the only woman.

The guy sitting next to me looked around the room and then up at the professor who was taking roll.

“Hey,” he said. “I know why I’m taking this class! To meet girls!”

I replied: “And I know why I’m taking this class!”

I didn’t put two and two together until I began thinking about this post, but I realized that one of the men in that class – not the joker – did ask me out later in the semester. It was significant for me since I can count all the guys who asked me out in college – or in my whole life for that matter – on one hand. I don’t think it had anything to do with the joke I cracked about why I was taking the class. But I guess I don’t know that for sure. Ted and I were Getting Serious at the time, so I turned down the date, turning down the opportunity I had to meet a guy through biochemistry studies.

No I didn’t meet Ted in class. That’s another story. For another post.

But perhaps Jay McCarthy’s studies in Italian and French will turn into other kinds of studies….ratios in Romance language classes I imagine are a bit better than p-chem class (the Romance language course I took had only one guy and umpteen girls) .


I had already drafted this piece when Abigail spontaneously said to me, talking about Wednesday’s Seattle webloggers meetup:

There were mostly boys at that meeting.

When I mentioned Abigail’s observation about “mostly boys at that meeting” to Ted at lunch today, Ted asked her:
“So what did you think about that?”
Abigail: “Boys?!!!”

I am beginning to wonder why she wants to blog…..

Tags: journal