Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sitting, Waiting, Wishing...

You know that Jack Johnson song? This verse seems perversely apt...

I can't always be waiting waiting on worms
I can't always be playing playing your fool
I keep playing your part
But it's not my scene
Wont this plot not twist?
I've had enough mystery.
Keep building me up, then shooting me down
Well I'm already down
Just wait a minute
Just sitting waiting
Just wait a minute
Just sitting waiting

Except I took some artistic interpretation license there, interpreting the subject of his lament as worms, rather than some ex-girlfriend or whatever. He probably wasn't thinking about collecting deep-sea worms, but have you asked him? Neither have I, so i'm going with the worms.

Priorities are a fickle mistress at sea. One moment you're on top of the stack, next you're not even on the list. There's a lot of equipment to fit on the basket (platform on the front of Alvin) and dive priorities make or break your chances to get your particular sampling equipment on the sub. Additionally, ship-side analysis times can affect the dive schedule, and of course seniority is a big part of the game. The last collection of these worms was on Heather's dive on the 12th. That means i haven't had a chance to refill in a week now. A good portion of that was weather, but its starting to come up towards the end of the cruise (8 days left) and the equipment needed to large scale collections of worms (the slurp- it works just how you think it would) has been bumped for the next two dives. Thus, the earliest I'm likely to get started again on my projects will be the 20th.

While not fatal, this cuts pretty deep into the amount of work i could do. If we did a collection now, i could be set for a few days (with a new water bath hooked up to the bank stocks). However, if all the collections all come together at the end, i don't have enough spacing to process all of the samples. I'll probably be running experiments even a day or so after i get to port with the current schedule to try and catch up. From my point of view, it's an undesirable dive strategy. However, i keep reminding myself that there are 20+ scientists on this ship, with 30+ project priorities (its like the joke about rabbis and opinions). So i will continue sitting, waiting, wishing...

Apologies to Jack Johnson- He can redeem himself here.

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