Insults 2.0: more, even nastier ways scientists skewer & roast each other over the coals

Yesterday I put out a post as a guide for scientists to insult each other.

Shish Ka Bob

More insults have been forthcoming from the blog readerships including some even nastier ones. Most are just downright mean, but some are sexist or racist. Sadly these comments are real. They skewer you and roast you over the coals, often at the same time.

Here we go…with scientist insults 2.0

1) Enjoys outreach. Outreach means out of the lab, right? Out of touch!

2) That’s great that he increased the diversity of the department. Ugly comment.

3) What a great mother she is to her kids! This is getting dirty. The implication? Dr. Y is a great parent so she must be neglecting her lab to achieve that end. That’s not a real scientist. These days I think we could flip it around and say “What a great dad he is!” with the same effect. Great dads = bad scientists. I don’t believe this, but many do.

4) At least s/he found some way to be productive. Ouch. This is related to #3 above and is said when someone has a kid.

5) She is so pretty! The implications are that this person was hired for their looks or is too pretty to be smart, etc. Very sexist and very destructive. I don’t know–is this coming around to bite males too in some way? He’s so handsome? Dresses sharply?

6) Great theorist. This is of course a supreme insult from an experimentalist meaning this scientist is all talk (thought) and no action.

7) Excels as an experimentalist. Great insult from a theorist. All action and no thought!

8 ) His wife is charming. You might hear this at dinner or after a seminar. Of course for a woman scientist, one might achieve the same end by saying something nice about her husband.

9) Not an atheist. I’m still working on coming up with a better, sneakier way to say this that could be worked into a grant critique or something…hmm, thoughts? Maybe something like “his faith carries him through the rough patches in science”. Burn.

10) A nice guy. Wow, that’s mean to say. Someone that nice, friendly to trainees, etc can’t be strong or tough enough to be a great scientist.

4 thoughts on “Insults 2.0: more, even nastier ways scientists skewer & roast each other over the coals

  1. The idea of #7 is that the person in question is good at doing experiments, but not so good at thinking, coming up with revolutionary ideas, etc. A professor should be the brains of the research program, right?

  2. I’m with Ash on #7. “knee-jerk” experimentalist on the other hand is pretty devastating.

  3. 9- Upto now he has been able to set his faith aside during reseach projects.

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