Tuesday, 19 April 2016

P is for... physiology

I'm a physiologist. Well, I was. Maybe you never stop being one. But what exactly is a physiologist?
I'll tell those of you who don't know, in a moment, but let me just share this with you first.

When I did my PhD at University College London, one of the pubs we all frequented was also the local of RADA - The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. One evening, I was being chatted up by one of the RADA luvvies who was a touch too full of himself to be honest. Eventually, once he stopped talking about himself, he asked me what I did.
"I'm a physiologist," I said.
"Uh? Oh. What's a physiologist?"
"We study fizzy things."
"Really!? Wow!"
"Mm. Last week we studied Pepsi. Next week we're doing 7-Up."
He looked completely blank.
"Really? I didn't know you could study that. What, like for a degree?"
At this point, one of the guys who'd come to the pub with me, fell about laughing. And then the luvvie left.

Physiologists don't study fizzy things, though it would have been fun if we did. We study how the body works. Which is enormously helpful when you change career and start needing to murder people in books.

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