Scientist by night too… Once in a while anyway

I should have posted this yesterday to keep up with my (so far impressive) punctuality at posting on this blog. Instead, I got drunk. So today you will be delighted to hear that 2 posts will grace this blog, of which this is the first.

This post is about an actual event I went to yesterday and not something I’m digging up from the past, go me for culture! Very educational as well, this post isn’t for everyone – it’s definitely not related to musicals I’m afraid, but in fact to science. Now I’m no longer in full time education (6 years in university study was enough for me!!) but do enjoy a public lecture from time to time. This one was held at the RSC – I imagine most people reading my blog and indeed Google know that as the Royal Shakespeare Company but this time I refer to the Royal Society of Chemistry. Typical that 2 things I enjoy have the same acronym but what can you do? Side point I do love an acronym, sounds so business-like!

This RSC is set in an equally beautiful place called Burlington House on Piccadilly, also home to (among other things) the Royal Academy of Art. I do so love this building, beautiful architecture and a gorgeous inner courtyard which is so picturesque on a summer afternoon to have a coffee in. See for yourself 😉


Anyway, nestled in a corner of this place is the RSC and this particular lecture was in my favourite room here, the Library. For those literary butterflies it is just as you would want it to be – bookshelves filled with dusty books and leather Chesterfields to recline in if you want to peruse a tome or two. If you’re a chemist looking to read up about the latest discoveries in the field that is. For all the non-chemists, admire the space but not the content 🙂
To get to the library you walk up a red velvet carpeted spiral staircase adorned with portraits of the past famous society presidents and along a landing that is peppered with the busts of even more famous scientists. Where else can you feel the eyes of Faraday and Boyle watching you as you go to hear about the latest groundbreaking discoveries, or at least as you go for a cup of tea, biscuit and listen to some interesting new technology? Whatever floats your boat of course, but once in a while I like to be intellectual.

This lecture was about diagnostic medicine that can be made performed at the scene of accident using portable devices and the challenges faced with this. For many people, I’m sure you’ve switched off already. But I do find medicine and diagnostics interesting (I started a PhD in it after all) and this funny old Dutch man delivered the lecture really well with some interesting content and a light-hearted manner. Obviously a high flyer in this industry, which is always impressive especially when that kind of person can speak to the non-experts in the audience as well as the specialists. Plus, the juxtaposition of his accent against the session chair’s upper middle class English was brilliant!

Word of the day – phlebotomy. Keeping it scientific! Next post, back to the theatre I promise 🙂