Thursday, 15 October 2009

coup de pylori

i had a serendipitous encounter today - as i drudged off to a microbiology lecture, which i had hoped was canceled, i found that, in not having it canceled, instead i was to receive a lecture by barry marshall! now, i know i've been going on about him for quite some time, and contrary to what you may believe, no, i'm not in love with the guy.

anyway, homophobia set aside, i was rather interested with what he had to say. him being a nobel laureate and all, i have to profess, i entered the lecture hall with the pre-set bias that he was going to be some dull, monotonous elitist, who would end up talking about his research etc.

well, i had the latter part right, but besides that, he was really very engaging. i'm not really going to talk about his lecture's contents, as you can probably just google him up (here's somewhere to start, if you're really that lazy). rather, i'd just like to comment on something i found interesting during the course of his lecture.

he's admitted that his slides were re-cycled stuff from previous years, with one or two new ones added to the end of the presentation, and the way he presented the slides was what caught my eye - basically, the general idea that he conveyed (added with, maybe, a bit of bias on my behalf) is that:
a) in the past lectures he would have 'bitched' about how people didn't accept his findings, and how he, in the end, shoved it in their faces when he was right.
b) however, now he's grown up a bit and isn't too angsty about it all, and would instead, like to talk about more relevant stuff
c) before, he would talk about his research (if i won the nobel prize, so would i!) but now he's talking about other people's stuff that builds on to, what may be the future of infectious diseases.

i can't go into details of why i feel this way, because i would have to describe some of his slides and the things he said, and that would take ages to type out. just take my word for it. all in all, though, i found the lecture very interesting. he's a pretty good speaker (to which, i eat my pre-conceptions and tip my hat), and the contents was really interesting. albeit being about helicobacter exclusively.

anyway, being in his presence was... something. can't really describe it, and i'm not really going to try to. you might be better off feeling it for yourself.

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