Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Mission to Mold

We wage many battles in our day job as scientists. One enemy in particular remains undefeated: the second law of thermodynamics. Our lab's bacterial incubators are the front line against the Universe's relentless march of increasing entropy.

Incubators are really good at growing bacteria...and mold. Sometimes a flask is forgotten for several months, yielding mold where yeast or e. coli used to be, spawning a beast that threatens our very lives. Even a bath in pure bleach wasn't enough for this guy:

In another flask nearby, another mold creature had evolved:

We decided that extreme measures would be required to destroy them. But first, we needed an inspirational speech:

Sufficiently pumped up by Capt. Picard's defense of humanity, we donned our personal protective equipment:

Adding more bleach only made a foamy mess:

Undeterred, we brought out our next weapon: liquid nitrogen.

Despite the creatures' pleas for leniency, we poured their bleach-ravaged remains into a -196 degree C pool:

We waited for what seemed like hours, haunted by the screams of the mold as it succumbed to a frozen grave:

As the cloud settled, we were met with a reassuring sight: the exploded remnants of our moldy foe:

Humble as always, we took a moment to celebrate our victory. The carcass of the beast, smelling like a combination of plague-ridden foot and desiccated fly larvae, was unceremoniously dumped into the biohazard waste bin.

Having won this battle, the lab will remain safe for another day. As distinguished scholars, our epic battle immediately recalled that of Lt. Cdr. Worf, who gloriously fought in a Bat'leth competition on Forcas III:

The conditions were difficult, several contests were maimed, but we too were triumphant.

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