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I'm such a geek. XD

So, I'm going to be reaching legal drinking age in a few days.

How am I planning to celebrate?

By donating blood, playing Pokémon for a few hours, and drinking a whole pot of loose-leaf green (or maybe oolong) tea.

Life is good. ^^

Yes, I'm a legal adult, playing Pokémon. You hush, I can play what I want to, it's my birthday. Well, in a few days. ;P

Weekly Scientific Fact

Aack! I almost forgot that today was Wednesday!

Well, here's the scientific fact of the week, at least. ^^;

The influenza viruses are RNA viruses. That is, they consist of a protein coat surrounding a bit of RNA. Viruses can contain single strands of DNA, single strands of RNA, or even double-stranded DNA or RNA.

Well, folks, I've finally gone and done it. I've become a true biology/medical geek.

I've bought an anatomy coloring book.

I'm not even taking Anatomy or Physiology yet.

And I'm enjoying working on it. XD

Not only that, but I come from a fairly medical family. I have relatives who are EMTs, nurses, pharmacists, physician's assistants... You name it. (I think I'm going to be the first one to try for a medical lab technician's license, though, so we're not in every part of the medical system. Yet.) I took the coloring book down to the living room to work on it, since I was sick of being cooped up in my room with the sinus infection I've been fighting all week.

As soon as I took it out and started working on it, my mother, a nurse, came over to look. We've been saying things like "Rostral rhymes with nostril!" and "Median, sagittal, coronal, transverse!" (complete with hand signs) to each other all afternoon.

I love my family. XD

Weekly Scientific Fact

And now for something completely different from the proteins and amino acids of the last two weeks -- explosions!

TNT stands for trinitrotoluene. Just in case you ever wanted to know.

(No references for this one, since I think I'm probably going to be put on some government watch list just because of my age group and the fact that I said the chemical name online. XD In lieu of that, though, I present to you a video that may be familiar to those of you who are familiar with the quote in my icon. Fire in the hole~~)

For froggytoes

Just dropping off a few icons for froggytoes, of her character Rem (thegraywhatsit). I'll have the rest up sometime tonight in this post, hopefully!

As with the other sets of icons I've done for others, froggytoes, I'll give you a couple of different crops of the same image, so you can pick the ones that you think look best. ^^

(Larger image if you want to make your own crops)

(Larger image... I'm a little disappointed with this one, because the hair looks so much better in the bigger picture. ^^;)

(Larger image. He ended up looking kind of confused...)

Weekly Scientific Fact

Keratin is a fibrous structural protein that makes up the majority of animal hair, fur, nails, horns, and hooves. Its strength comes from its structure; alpha-keratin is composed of two helical chains of amino acids which turn the same way (to the right), which are twined together in the opposite direction of their turns (to the left) to yield a superhelix.

Think of it like pieces of twine, woven together to give you rope. Twine by itself isn't that strong; you wouldn't try to hold up a heavy weight with twine. It would snap. When the twine is twisted in a certain way, though, it yields a rope that is stronger than either piece of twine by itself. Just think of all you can lift with rope that you can't with string! That's what the double-coiling of alpha-keratin's amino acid strands to give you a superhelix does for the strength of the protein. Nifty, huh?

Random Question of the Moment

Why do they call it chicken Parmesan when it's made with mozzarella cheese, anyway?

Just wondering.

Weekly Scientific Fact

The vast majority of the billions of proteins present in the world are made up of only 20 amino acids; alanine, glycine, valine, leucine, isoleucine, proline, cysteine, methionine, serine, threonine, phenylalanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, aspartate (aspartic acid), glutamate (glutamic acid), histidine, lysine, arginine, asparagine, and glutamine.

(I almost wrote the list from memory. I forgot cysteine. I had to look it up when I realized I only had 19 amino acids there. XD)

Weekly Scientific Fact

Owls can't turn their eyes. They can turn their heads an impressive 135 degrees in either direction, though.


As a side note, the morning drive takes on a whole new quality when you're listening to Resident Evil music. I didn't think it would do much of anything to my mood, and I liked one of the tracks from Resident Evil Zero, so I put it on. I need to mention that this was at six in the morning, when it's just barely turning light on the edge of the sky, this is deer season, and it's cloudy, cold, and wet. I have never had a spookier morning commute. XD

Weekly Scientific Fact

The molecular formula for sulfuric acid is H2SO4.

(Why do I bother saying this? Well, really, I just wanted to share this little anonymous ditty on lab safety one of my professors had on his door. XD)

("Ernie was a chemist,
Now Ernie is no more,
For what he thought was H2O
Was H2SO4.")

(A prime example of why you should never trust a clear liquid (or a white solid) in the lab unless you know for sure what it is!)