“Hey! You’re a chemist! You could analyze that!”.
Yep, we could. But, we don’t want to. And it’s probably for a good reason.
A while ago, a stranger showed up in my office with a bag of dirt. It was brownish-red dirt with a few stray particles of shiny stuff. He was very interested in the shiny stuff and he was convinced this dirt would make him rich. A geologist would tell you the stuff is mica, which is completely worthless. Anyhow, the guy was very persistent and insisted I analyze the dirt and tell him everything that was in it. I asked him where the dirt was from. He said he didn’t want to tell me because it was from a top secret location.
So, I kid you not, I drafted him a memo on letterhead. It stated:
Analysis results of dirt sample from top secret location
99.9 % Dirt
0.1 % Shiny Stuff
Funny thing; he never asked me to do anything again.
Today, the TV news wants a piece of me. In my inbox today:
This is ***** **** at Channel 2 News.. hoping for help from a ******* Teacher and/or class on a story I am working on..
I have collected and am collecting more snow.. and I want to test what’s in it…. chemicals, etc….I think it would be interesting to know this..
Would like to have an expert at ******** do the testing at a lab….. They would get credit and could be the on camera sound for our story…….
Can you pitch this and see if there is any interest ?
P-S: I have snow on ice and am collecting more.. this is a story for February..
Well, how lucky is he? Our lab happens to be equipped with a FQJ-47 Snow-alyzer 2001!
It’s about 4 foot by 2 foot by 6 foot, blue, has a big rotating flashing police type light, a large plastic funnel on top and a LED readout on the front panel. Just funnel in some snow into the icey intake modulator. Then, it chugs away, making a “Willy Wonka” type sound for 6.2 seconds and “whammo!”, the LED screen reads “chemicals” or “no chemicals”. It’s that simple.
We were thinking about getting a FQJ-45 Snowalyzer 2000, but we spent the extra cash and sprung for the 2001. It also makes snowcones. It’s just been sittin’ in the corner of the lab for months, right next to the Alexander The Great-alyzer. Uh-huh…
I think I’ll call back and tell him to make sure he keeps the snow on ice. Otherwise it will melt and that would be catastrophic. Better yet, I should tell him if he takes it off the ice, it will spoil!
I’m just so glad I’m not a physician. I’d have a much harder time with impromtu requests for “Could you check my prostate?”