Just a minute to squeeze this in..., Uncategorized

Stereotype

Event 1: The other day the friend of a friend asked me with disbelief, “Are you a scientist?” He started at me with eyes so big I thought they would pop out of the sockets like in a Tom and Jerry cartoon.

His disbelief stemmed from the fact that we had just had a gala time dancing and singing on top of our voices.

Of course, scientists aren’t supposed to have fun in life!!! They are supposed to be buried under books and experiments!

Event 2: A co-passenger on the flight and I got talking about our love for movies and I was probably over-enthusiastic, courtesy my love for cinema. And then the conversation veered to what I do for a living and I said I am a scientist. “Are you serious?”, he asked with a mock smile.

Of course, scientists aren’t supposed to watch movies. They are supposed to analyze data!

Event 3: My schoolmate and I got chatting on the very popular Whatsapp! One of the most obvious questions popped up in our conversation – “So what are you upto these days?”. I told her that I am heading for my PhD to Edinburgh later this year. In my heart I was jumping with joy. This whole PhD thing has just sunk in and I still smile a lot (and go crazy with pride in my heart) when I tell someone I have been accepted at the University. And the usual replies are – Congratulations; Oh my God, that’s great; Wow, Edinburgh is an amazing place, have fun; Woohoo, when were you going to tell me girl?, etc. What does this friend of mine say instead? “How much do you scientists have to study?”

Of course, scientists only study all the time. They don’t take breaks, don’t celebrate, don’t go out drinking – NOTHING!

A few other stereotypical questions/statements that have come my way over the years…

“Oh you are a scientist…will you eventually work for NASA and go to space?”

“Hey with your eyes, I thought you’d be a model!”

“What do you think about these Sci-Fi movies? You must hate them!”

“Where are your glasses?”

“Your dressing sense is amazing for a scientist!”

Some other random questions that I am very often asked, even my members of my extended family.

“Hey your cousin sister suffers from PCOD. Do you know of any cure for it?”

“I feel slightly nauseated and am running a fever…what could it be?”

Give me a break!!!

Let me clarify a few things. Firstly, I am a scientist, not a medic!!! If you are running a fever or suffer from PCOD, go visit a doctor!! Secondly, not all scientists work for NASA. I am a biologist, for God’s sake (that doesn’t mean I can’t work for NASA but I’m saying it’s highly unlikely I end up there).

No, we do not study all the time, we have as much fun in life as you guys do. We just need to complete at least our PhDs to be taken seriously by our peers (but along with my PhD I am also looking forward to being in a new city, exploring that part of the world, meeting new people, learning their culture, etc). We watch movies like any common audience does and we like Sci-Fi movies just as much (not everyone analyzes details of everything!) – X-Men is my favourite (don’t even dare say a thing against Wolverine!). A scientist need not look shabby all the time and have an eye-sight so poor that he needs to use huge glasses (Einstein has set a really bad example, hasn’t he?)! I am an average person with a passion for biology who loves to dress up, who cares about what she wears and how she looks and loves her tinted lip balms!

And no, I’m too short to be a model!!!

These are just a few stereotypes associated with my profession. Have you ever been asked stupid weird questions about yours?

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40 thoughts on “Stereotype”

  1. Well, basically no one ever understood mine back when I worked. There was the years I worked as a stripper — and my husband loved to introduce me as such — it used to be a job in printing.

    I am sooooo not a scientist, I’m more into anecdotal than data, but I do think biology is fascinating (and I never, ever took it even in HS!).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha…Thank you for pausing and reading Judy! Always nice to have you here.
      Biology is my interest but it need not be yours for us to make conversations πŸ˜€ that’s what I’m talking about it, ain’t I? πŸ˜‰
      And a stripper…haha! Yes, now that could have had several preconceptions you must have had to deal with! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great thoughts. But you already knew that; you’re a scientist and in line for a PhD in Edinburgh no less. You’re right on about stereotyping. We have been socialized, culturized in dualism and in literalism; stereotyping is a direct result. Change of attitude and world vision would result in a beginning attitude of “We are all Earthlings” (unity) and then only find differences. I once had a friend who used to cry, “Don’t lay your shoulds on me” I’ve thought a lot about that over the years….. Thanks for bringing them up once more. l

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for stopping by… Lovely to have you here after quite a while! And yes I am now used to the stereotype but it still is amusing and made for a good post, I suppose πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. This was interesting! I am an Environmental Sciences student and people keep asking me things about plants. I then tell them ‘environment is not just about plants’.I explain, my field involves ‘everything’. We study biology, chemistry,hydrology, geology, EIA, law etc. And then people are like ‘woah, this has so much diversity in it’. I feel like ‘mission accomplished’.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I was a teacher. That alone should answer your question, but it won’t. Why do you care? That’s the question. I care because I love. I love because you have potential. You have potential because someone, somewhere cared about you. Not a foolish question at all.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s very strange! I don’t know what the issue is, but maybe my posts would appear in the reader tab for you? Also, to make things easier… Just in case the issue can’t be sorted out at all, I usually post once in three days… πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for spending your valuable time reading my work, it means a lot to me! Have a lovely day πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for the wonderful comment J! I’m so lucky to have met you here and blessed to know you are enjoying the articles here. Will head over to yours soon. Have a lovely day πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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