Saturday, January 16, 2010

Rodents Of Unusual Size? I don't think they exist.

As part of my job at the lab, I work with tissue. Organs. Tumors. Horse fetuses. Sometimes brains with the eyeballs still attached. And sometimes? Legs. Take last night, for instance. My coworker was complaining about how many histos she'd had to do the night before. It being my turn last night, I patted her on the shoulder and said, "Cheer up. The night is young. Maybe somebody'll bring in a leg."

Sure enough, I was slaving away at my station when D, our crazy Romanian driver, walked over and said, "Ketty, look at dees!" and started waving a two foot leg around like a baseball bat. I turned to my coworker and said, "See? Things are looking up already."

Curious as to what sort of creature used to be attached the leg, I scurried over to take a peek at the req form, and was surprised (and delighted) to see the species listed as "rat."

"Holy shit," I thought. "R.O.U.S.'s do exist!"

My hands crept over to the leg and started squeezing it gently, like a long, slightly rigid and in no way sterile roll of Charmin. Then I started reading the patient history and saw that the species was listed as "rat," but it was actually a wallaby named Wally. For those of you who don't know what a wallaby is: I suggest you eat a bowl of hair, because you are a dummy.

They're like tiny kangaroos. See?

Look! An albino cave Hoek Wallaby!

S'up, bitchezzzz?


And I'm done for pictures. Googling just brings up shots of wallabies getting eaten by snakes, strung up by hunters or run over by cars.

Ok, gad. Wait. Ok. If you put "adorable" before "wallaby," it spits these out:

(I actually used to do this with ducklings.)

The end.

Sometimes, when I'm stuffing a leg into the box for shipping, I feel like Goldie Hawn in Overboard. You know, that scene where she's trying to cook a whole chicken in a pot, and she can't get the legs to cooperate? Like that.

I haven't eaten meat in 19 years (dairy in 15), so I find it amusing how often the jars of tissue in the lab resemble what my co-workers eat for lunch. My sister and I once discussed the difference between the two (dead tissue for eating and dead tissue for dissecting), and I think the conclusion was "cause of death." As in: there is no difference, except that the stuff in the jars is fixed in formulin so that a smart person can cut it up and find out what went wrong with the animal. The stuff between the hamburger buns is the same as the stuff in the jars. So when people make the "ew" face when someone mentions tofu, my eyes involuntarily roll skyward. Yeah. Bean curd is way more disgusting that the rotting flesh of a dead animal.

Ok, I've got to hit the hay. Lots to do before shipping Mom off to Florida tomorrow.

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