26 November 2010

Mystery experiment goes down the drain

Taking advantage of the long Thanksgiving weekend, I decided to do some cleaning in the lab. Among the numerous dusty containers of snail shells, vials of dried up slugs waiting to be rehydrated and other odds and ends that I should I have put away a long time ago was a sealed plastic container. Upon opening it I saw a large empty vial and a microscope slide with 2 cavities each with a cap over it.

The empty vial must have held water once to prevent whatever was in the cavities of the slide from drying. The caps, now bordered with mold, must have also been placed to protect the contents of the cavities.

I removed the caps and examined the slide under the dissecting scope. The left cavity had a drop of a gelatinous substance covered with a layer of mold. I poked thru the gelatin, but there was nothing else I could see. The right cavity held a black paste-like substance also covered with mold.

There were no labels, sample numbers or dates anywhere on or in the container. That was surprising, for I am usually careful about marking specimens or containers.

I had no choice but to wash the microscope slide clean and discard everything else. This must have been an unfinished study. It will remain so.


Anonymous said...

It is very strange, but I recognize that cap on the right. I can't remember what it comes from, but I had a real moment of "hey, I know that cap from somewhere"

xoggoth said...

Anon. Not a Ren and Stimpy fan by any chance? That's Ren on the right.



The cap on the left looks like the caps they put on water bottles. The one on the right was probably from something like that.