In case you've not yet made the switch over to Lab Spaces, here's what I wrote earlier today:
If this post's title has you all "Wha?", have a listen here. Yeah, I'm referencing Lady Gaga, you want to make something of it?
Famous Collaborator Dude/probable future PI (if you've been following along on blogspot) is awesome. He's totally brilliant, and has been incredibly generous with his lab resources and time. He's also really good at emailing me back immediately when I have a question, which is nice, although sometimes he gets back to me so fast (and so without punctuation and capital letters) I wonder if he actually read the thing that I sent to him for comments?
There is one thing, though--I can't read him!
Normally, picking up on social cues is my forté-- in person and even in writing--and it's gotten me far. And by "far" I mean "free stuff," sometimes. I didn't realize how much I rely on it to guide my interpersonal behavior, though, until I met him. He's impenetrable! And it's making me feel like I'm freaking Rainman or something. Not a good feeling.
I think I'm finding all of this especially unnerving because I'm the new kid, you know? I want to join his lab for real, and so I want to make him happy and do good work to prove my worth. But I can't tell if I'm making him happy! I just finished a manuscript on which he's last author, and he had almost no comments. Is this good or bad? I don't know!!! Some of you are PIs, right? Would you allow one of your trainees to submit a paper with your name on it that you weren't thoroughly pleased with?
I can sense that my thoughts are devolving into those of a neurotic teenager who isn't sure if the guy who sits behind her in geometry is into her. I feel it's only appropriate, then, that I send Famous Collaborator Dude this note:
The Plight of the Post-Doc