Sunday, November 2, 2008

B is for

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Believe it or not, this isn't even a Halloween post! It's two days late anyway. But it is related to zombies, kind of. More importantly, zombie food: BRAINS!!!!

Ok, so that was a loose tie in. But brains are super cool, and last week, I got to play with them! That's right folks, the big day came. Brain day.

It's been a rough couple of weeks, and not just for totally lonely, down-in-the-dumps, please-stop-bitching-about-it little me. Our biochem class ended on Friday, which meant a big test, lots of studying, and lots of putting off anatomy. I don't think any of us were paying attention to which anatomy classes we were going to until the professor started lecturing. We've all been on auto pilot. As such, it came as a big surprise to all of us when Dr. Lindsey casually mentioned in lecture that we would be opening up our skulls that day. There we were, paying vague attention to the anterior neck, and BAM! Brain day.

So we all trooped up to lab after lecture, a little perkier than we had been earlier. We had taken off the skin of the face a few days before. Very strange, by the way. Our man was all lips and eyebrows--no more wispy gray hair or wrinkles. He looks really....cadavery.

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Anyway, we took the rest of the skin and hair off the top of the skull, and then it was bone saw time. That was rough! It's very awkward trying to maneuver a saw around someone's head when they can't flip over and get into a better position for you. Um. Well, you know what I mean.

We eventually were able to pop off the top of the skull (the calvaria), just like a little bowl (we're usuing it to keep our tools in now). The brain itself was a little harder to get out, because we had to be careful to cut all the right things in the right places. I was working with the scalpal while Brad held the brain out of my way, and once I snipped the brain stem, it kind of just...plopped out. It was very anticlimatic actually. Doesn't it seem that there should be a little more to taking a brain out of a skull? Fifteen minutes, and we were holding this lumpy thing in our hands. It felt like very firm jello, just a few pounds, kind of lumpy and pale and unremarkable. The center of so much activity, our body's computer, and it's sitting in a ziploc in our humidor right now. Lots of deep thoughts in this, but I'll save them for another night.

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And that was it! It wasn't even a very long lab. It was one of the more satisfying, although I ended up covered in bone dust and more than a little brain juice.

Anyway, I wanted to share that with y'all, because I think we're on to eyeballs and other fun stuff like that this week. Lots of good stories for you I hope. Have a lovely evening!

2 comments:

Sandford said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jaking said...

Hey,
Sorry to hear about all the loneliness! That's a bummer, but that's also why God invented kittens.

Yours is too cute by half, by the way, and belongs in some form of lolcat picture, perhaps with your cadaver? Something like "Zombie cat iz after ur brainz!"

I'll admit to being interested in the brain lab. What kind of dissection do you do with respect to the brain? Anything at all, or is there more serious examination going to happen? Or is that once you determine a specialty, like neuro-"insert fancy doctor word here." Tell me more, so that if I ever do run afoul of zombies, I'll know what to do!

~Jeff
PS-The "deleted post" was this one by me. I was on someone else's account without realizing it, because I'm "Brain-dead." Get it? You know you're laughing!