Sorry to get so violent with that last comic, folks. I wanted to demonstrate the true, raw drama of molecular biology in all of its ugliness, so there you have it.

Speaking of violent, I just returned from a ski trip in Vermont where I tumbled down several mountain slopes. Judging by my performance, I would say I’m a notch or two below beginners level. However, in my excitement for the adventure, I forgot that I didn’t really know how to ski and skipped the lessons to hit the slopes with my experienced friends. I managed to avoid falling on the first couple of short green runs, which fed my unwarranted confidence.

Then we went higher.

My doubts started to emerge as we gazed over the precipice amid the grey, snowy clouds. My friends intended on taking the intermediate blue route, but my sense of self-preservation finally kicked in and I went for the green slope, agreeing to meet up with them at the bottom.┬áIn a way this was a good plan because no one I knew saw me embarrass myself trying to get down that mountain. I could not avoid falling at every steep, scary curve no matter how large I made the “pizza” wedge with my skis.

Why do they have to put cliffs on the slopes??? I thought with scorn as I gathered my skis and poles that landed several feet uphill from my body.

At last I skied full on into a wall of ice that marked the end of my ridiculous struggle down the mountain. I met up with my friends at the ski lodge who were very amused at my story. Somehow, it didn’t dissuade them from convincing me to take one last run, this time down the very top of the mountain.

“Like they say at the School of Social Work: ‘lean toward the uncomfortable,'” I thought as I began to pizza-wedge myself down.