Research scientists are the best at self-control

me:  It’s a good thing I’m not a research scientist or there’d be monkeys all over this place.

Victor:  What?

me:  Monkeys.  If I was a research scientist I’d steal all the research monkeys.

Victor:  Because you want to save them?

me:  No.  I just don’t want to waste a monkey testing makeup on him.  I’d be taking him home.  Teaching him tricks.

Victor:  Stop talking.

me:  Two words : Monkey Circus.


In non-related news, it’s time for the weekly wrap-up.  Let’s get started, shall we? 

What you missed in my shop (tentatively called “Eight pounds of uncut cocaine” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

What you missed on the internets:

This week on shit-I-didn’t-come-up-with-but-wish-I-did-because-it’s-kind-of-awesome:

This week’s wrap-up sponsored by the amazing Crack You Whip, which is awesome even though it looks like their title is a typo.  It’s not though.  It’s the perfect combination of comic strip and blog and you’ll love it if you agree that alligators are people too.  You should check it out.

120 thoughts on “Research scientists are the best at self-control

Read comments below or add one.

  1. Benedict C. is Sherlock in the newest Sherlock series from the BBC. I suggest you watch it, it is wonderful.

  2. In my former life I was a research scientist. I studied the parental care behavior of poisonous frogs. I was often temped to take home my research subjects, but there was something that stopped me. I don’t know that I would call it self control. I think it was more like fear that my cat might like my new brightly color play toys and find out the hard way about their toxins.

  3. You don’t know who Benedict is? Please watch Sherlock. Please. The first season is on Netflix. Please.

  4. Ah, a woman after my own heart. I’d probably have so many monkeys I would have to build them their own house in the backyard and then I’d get mad at them when I would have to clean up their house and they’d just destroy it as I went. Which sounds a lot like my mother during my childhood…

    Holy shit. I’m a monkey.

  5. Monkeys frighten me. SIgh.

    Also, Allie the Alligator has been fighting for alligator rights for YEARS (months) now!

  6. Definitely save the monkeys and take them home to play with… way to go! Crack You Whip is a genius blog – love seeing here listed here.

  7. Also, I would love to see Benedict Cumberbatch play Dr. Who.

  8. As an animal research scientist myself, I have to say I do have pretty good self control. That or the smelly sheep and huge cows I work with aren’t as appealing as monkeys.

  9. I personally think it would be really fun to put make up on a monkey. I’d be very careful to only use hypoallergenic cosmetics, and not to make them look like a tramp (unless, of course, that was the look they were going for).

  10. Oh, my God.

    If I put my finger in my ear and scratch, it DOES sound like PacMan!

    (I don’t know if I’m more amazed that it does, or that I tried.)

  11. Personally, I kinda like the idea of a monkey with lipstick. If the monkey stands next to me, I automatically look better and don’t have to try so hard. Don’t get me started on monkey hair and “grooming” products, however.

    Which reminds me, last time we took the kids to the Zoo, a cute monkey came right up to the window where we were watching him intently waiting for him to do something interesting, then he turned around and pressed his hairy bottom against the glass. Disrespectful, or photo op? You decide.

    As for your new sponsor, the delightful Tracie at Crack You Whip, she is my heroin. Oops, I mean heroine.


  12. I’m a reasearch scientist at a Primate center and yes, the monkeys are adorable. Especially in the spring. There are always a bunch of baby monkeys this time of year. A baby monkey circus would be awesome. If you could unlatch them from their Mamas.

  13. It’s all fun and games until the monkeys eat your face. Seriously, monkeys are kinda jerks. But a drag queen monkey circus would be hilarious.

  14. I used to work with monkeys (don’t ask) and I’d like to assure you that you would never want to take them home. Unless you hate your home. And your family. Then go for it.

  15. Hah, I have the bloggess on my blogroll on my psychology/science-based site, and now it comes up with the title of this post. People are gonna be clicking it thinking there’s been some real research on this. 😀

    PS. My self control in the lab extends only to refraining from doing shots of 70% ethanol… but only because I know it would kill me.

  16. OOoh, Benedict Cumberbatch, besides having the best name in the history of ever, is awesome on Sherlock. I think you would like it, given how you dived into Doctor Who.

    It’s fun to repeat Benedict Cumberbatch over and over again.

  17. I would also KILL to see Benedict Cumberbatch play the Doctor. You will love him, Jenny. You will want nothing more than for Benedict Cumberbatch to look down his nose and sneer at you. I wonder… if he would hold twine?

  18. Steven Moffatt, the current head writer for Doctor Who, is the man behind the most recent BBC adaptation of Sherlock. Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Sherlock Holmes. You should definitely check it out when you have some free time. There’s only six episodes (so far) and it’s really, really good!

  19. I am always a sucker for animals 🙂 I will gladly help with any monkey business if you should decide to move forward with this plan…I am sure we could train them to never leave the house without their lipgloss. Then we could test the products and teach them tricks. Win/win situation

  20. If I were a monkey, I’d much rather be in a monkey circus than be in a lab being tested on. Everyone knows those labs techs know nothing about proper makeup application.

  21. So, you take all those monkeys home, where they end up teaching Hailey to throw feces at visitors. Then, you have to go smooth things out at her school. Because, she missed the difference between “substitute teacher” and “visitor”. Also, you have an entire chapter for your next book!


  22. So I’m a for-real research scientist and as tempting as monkies are, we can do better. I’m currently trying to figure out how to make Jurrasic Park happen so I can have my own ride-able dinosaur in order to form an allience between dinosaurs and ninjas so we can win the war against pirates. I will make you your own dinosaur too. Plus, monkies throw poo…dinosaurs not so much.

  23. I recently became a research scientist and was heart-broken to find out that I wouldn’t be working with monkeys. Apparently we have yet to invent the nano-monkey. When I suggested my project could actually be inventing the nano-monkey I was asked to go back to my – monkeyless – lab.

  24. I would totally help you teach a monkey tricks. If I can teach my Doberman to “testify!” that she loves Jesus, and say “hello”, a monkey is probably a piece of cake, right?

  25. I love Benedict as the new Sherlock! The only way (I can think of) to make the new Sherlock show even better is to do a show with monkeys . . .

  26. We actually had a monkey research facility at our college here and people complained, but dressing them up would have been a great idea! Maybe things would have turned out differently!

    Hey I see my name!

  27. As long as the monkeys don’t start flinging poop I’d take one too. I already have a couple of kids that do that already.

  28. Monkey lab research is beyond cruel, seriously, look into what they do.

    But I would like to see Victor’s face if you brought home live animals for once.

    It’d be like a gangsta’s paradise.

    Except with monkeys.

  29. The otter one is hilarious. My dad used to own a duck decoy business called, “Otter Decoys.” Their slogan was, “Nothing on the Water Beats an Otter.” Otters are evidently lonely and sex-deprived.

  30. Yeah, if I were a research scientist I’d have monkeys at my house too. Good thing I’m just a pharmacist who wants to be a writer. 🙂

  31. OK, the monkey circus makes me giggle because the code phrase I use for that time of the month is “The circus is closed because the monkey has a bloody nose.”

  32. Just don’t mess with a yawning monkey. He might be bored, he might be tired. Either way… dangerous. No, really.

  33. I worked a contract at a place that raises research monkeys. Lots of baby monkeys which would totally make a fun circus. I would fear some Planet of the Apes junk going down at your place though.


  34. I say bring home all the monkeys and then show them your box of monkey hands. That and Copernicuc will keep them in line. Sort of like this old joke:

    A young man named John received a parrot as a gift. Theparrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird’s mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with the worst possible profanities. John tried and tried to change the bird’s attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to ‘clean up’ the bird’s vocabulary. Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back. John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even more rude. John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard
    for over a minute. Fearing that he’d hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer. The parrot calmly stepped out onto John’s outstretched arms and said “I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I’m sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior.”

    John was stunned at the change in the bird’s attitude. As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a
    dramatic change in his behavior, the bird spoke-up, very softly, “Pardon me Sir, but may I ask what the turkey did?”

  35. You like Doctor Who, so I’d be surprised if you didn’t love the new BBC Sherlock- it’s modern-day set, and it has Martin Freeman as John Watson (the otter lookalike there plays Sherlock Holmes). It’s brilliant, and written by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, of Doctor Who fame (Mark Gatiss was Dr. Lazarus in season 3 of Doctor Who, and plays Mycroft Holmes, as well as writing some of the episodes).

  36. I think I would steal all the research rats. Then we could have a new reality show: Monkey Circus vs. Rat Circus. With celebrity judges like Matthew Broderick.

  37. You don’t know who Benedict Cumberbatch is??

    Oh, Jenny, find him—now! Watch the new BBC Sherlock season. You will love it, and you’ll be wondering how you ever lived without it!

  38. That is actually not a bad idea! I have had 3 monkeys in my lifetime. Never dressed them, though. Well, maybe once…

  39. A monkey circus could never be a bad idea, ever.

    And I love CRACK YOU WHIP! So glad to see her as the post sponsor. Between you and her, I am set for life on humor! You both cack me up!

  40. And as well as teaching it to do make-up you could teach it to throw things at Vicor when he gets that mocking tone (sorry Victor ) LoL

  41. everyone needs research monkeys, you could even lease them out to write tv shows, it’s a win win thing

  42. Oh Jenny! You love Doctor Who but don’t know who Benedict Cumberbatch is, that is a truly sorrowful thing. Sherlock is made by Stephen Moffat and Mark Gatiss, both of course hugely involved in DW – you will absolutely love it! He may not look like it in the otter side-by-side comparisons, but he is a total heartbreaker. Plus, Martin Freeman! My heart is racing just thinking about it!

  43. I want to hold a monkey so badly. It’s on my bucket list. I thought I’d be able to cross it off after my honeymoon but APPARENTLY Costa Rican monkeys are total bitches and run whenever I tried to scoop them up and make them sit on my lap and drink out of a bottle.

  44. 1) I am afraid of monkeys. Why is it that both you and Lauren Filing Jointly insist on mentioning monkeys? Do you want me to have to have a panic attack?

    2) I second, third, fourth and fifth the votes that you should immediately watch Benedict Cumberbatch in Sherlock Holmes and then imagine him as the 12th doctor.

  45. I didn’t used to be afraid of monkeys but after that whole “monkey ripped her face off” thing, I’m leaving them the hell alone.

  46. I love reading your conversations with Victor to The Husband. It makes me seem so normal. Thank you so much!
    P.S. eagerly awaiting the book and my bookplate. I should probably book time on my schedule for reading so people don’t bother me.

  47. And just to clarify, I am not the Eleanor who commented earlier :). I WISH I had the patience to become a research scientist. That would be awesome sauce too.

  48. Oh watch the new Sherlock!!!!!!! It is AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!! I <3 Benedict Cumberbatch and I think he could be convinced to hold twine

  49. Everyone has already told you to watch Sherlock, but really, you must watch Sherlock! It’s sooo good, and fills the gaps when Doctor Who isn’t on very nicely indeed.

    I’m not keen on the monkey thing, but if you’d said lemurs now…

  50. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Sherlock Holmes in a modern TV version of the classic character. He plays along side Martin Freeman, who is probably best known as the guy in the couple from Love Actually who worked as naked body doubles.

    They are both awesome and obviously members of the Unicorn Success Club.

  51. the best thing about pet monkeys is they clean up their own shit. usually by ingesting it, but still, that’s WAY better than a dog or cat.

  52. Benedict says that when he was at school, they called him ‘Bendy-dick Cum-on-my-baps’.

  53. I’m going to let that not knowing Sherlock thing slide because I love you.
    I bet at least one of the fun medical things you’ve got going on would qualify you for a service monkey. I tried to applied based on my family’s inability to put things in the trash can, laundry basket, or change out toilet paper, but we were declined. Apparently “lazy” is not recognized as a disability.
    I bet you could train a monkey to hold twine.

  54. I would have the same temptation. I have always wanted a pet monkey and even included it on my Bucket List. I hear they are a lot of work, but I still want one. I would teach him to go grocery shopping and wash my car.

  55. Jenny, after that “I don’t know who that is” comment, I’m here to warn you you are going to get a bazillion comments saying that you should watch the BBC’s Sherlock because it is brilliant.

    Also I am here to tell you that they are completely right and you totally would love it I think. I know you enjoyed Doctor Who, and really, Sherlock is much like the Doctor, except without the time traveling BUT with more crime solving bits and brainy badassery. So. Yes 🙂

  56. I’m just here to try and get people to read my completely messed up blog. Honesty has to count for something, right?

  57. I want a lifetime membership to the Monkey Circus, but only if I get free guest passes once a year and a 20% of everything in the gift shop coupon.

  58. Jenny, I love reading your stuff and I think you are so amazing in more ways than one… BUT HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH?!? WATCH SHERLOCK, its BBC’s modern interpretation of Sherlock Holmes and its AAAAMAZIIIIING (imagine I said that in a sing-song voice). Go order it on Netflix now. Your readers command you.

    We (still) love you!

  59. And now for something random: Have you read, “A Pig Parade is a Terrible Idea”? If you haven’t, you need to.

  60. I have to ditto the whole BBC Sherlock thing. You will LOVE it. My favorite thing I read about Benedict Cumberbatch: “Benedict Cumberbatch is not a man. He is a situation that is happening to me & my friends.”
    Yep. Sounds about right!

  61. Before children I was a research scientist but I worked with algae. Not quite as cute as monkeys so I can’t say I have all that great self control. I do, however, have guilt issues. It always pained me a little to pour a flask of my test subjects down the drain…
    Oh and in case you were wondering, I was not subjecting my algae to eyeliner or blush, I was just stressing them out so they got fat and produced fatty acids (read as *alternative fuel*.) 🙂 There is some joke about skinny vs overweight algae in here somewhere but I am too lazy to find it.

  62. I often wonder how people find those “animals looking like a certain celebrities” pictures because those animals DO look like those people. Is Google image search so incredibly advanced now? I am scared of putting my own picture online and then do a search. I may never recover once I see the answer…

  63. I am a recovering research scientist, a biochemist, so only molecules for me. Grad school is the definition of a monkey circus.

  64. We went to Lake Chelan in Washington and toured the wineries between Chelan and Manson.

    On the way back we saw Beyonce’s twin brother (the metal chicken, not the singer)!/photo.php?fbid=307842189282493&set=a.233679683365411.56853.100001701424910&type=1&theater

    The interesting thing was they also had flying pigs. Which I thought you might really need to have to keep Beyonce company, but I couldn’t afford it. So here’s a picture instead.!/photo.php?fbid=307842425949136&set=a.233679683365411.56853.100001701424910&type=1&theater

  65. Oddly enough when I saw ‘Monkey Circus’ I thought Miley Cyrus…not that she’s a monkey or anything…just my mind being crazy

  66. Before he passed away one of my best friends was terrified of monkeys, so I made sure he was constantly assaulted with their images, cause I’m that good a friend!
    On the Benedict Cumberbatch front, he is indeed brilliant in Sherlock, and I would love to see him Doctor Who, but as the Doctors arch nemesis- The Master! He has the superiority thing that the Master does down pat already! John Simm, who plays the current mad Master could totally regenerate into Cumberbatch and it would be so made of win!

  67. Me: The Bloggess has 4682 comments on her last post.
    Husband: If I run for President, I’ll pick her for Vice President! (We just finished watching “Game Change”)
    Me: She would hide in the bathroom!
    Husband: Yeah but she’d blog from the bathroom and we’d win because she is so popular.

    Just thought you’d enjoy this, Jenny.

  68. Oh let me beat a dead horse here, but you really should watch BBC’s Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch–what a great name!). There are times his accent, and his condescension, make him sound like Allan Rickman. The worst thing about the series is that there are so far only 6 of them, each 90 minutes longthough. Now I have to wait till next January to see more.

    Martin Freeman, who plays Dr. Watson, has remarkable on-screen chemistry with Cumberbatch. The two together make the show and characters come really alive. I’m looking forward to seeing Freeman as Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit.

    But, forget the monkeys, watch Sherlock instead, the BBC version (not that there’s a U.S. version…yet…but U.S. attempts at copying BBC series often ends in dismal disappointing failures).

  69. I’d want the monkey’s job of trying out new makeup. I’d like to keep everything I tried though. Unless it made my face swell up. Then never mind.

  70. I wouldn’t want monkeys. All I can think of is how much havoc they’ll wreak on my house…

    I think I love you the most for accidentally saying Mr. Pants in the video. I do that too and it kills me a million times over, every time 😐 You do it and laugh. =) #win

  71. For more on Benedict Cumberbatch, watch ‘Sherlock’ (BBC). You will not be disappointed.

  72. I would like to see a monkey circus, but only if it was a mix of monkey breeds. Like, I don’t want to see a circus full of only howler monkeys. Not only will my ears start bleeding, but that shit will get old. I wanna see all kinds of monkeys performing all kinds of tricks because I’m Monkey Racial Sensitive.

    The End

  73. I accidentally reversed the speaking parties in this post when I first read it so that Victor was the one wanting to teach tricks to research monkeys. I was about to say “Victor isn’t as normal as he likes everyone to think he is.” Then I realized it was Jenny wanting to teach tricks to research monkeys. All is right in the world once more.

  74. My last Facebook update involved me whisper-yelling “MONKEY BUTLER! MONKEY BUTLER! MONKEY BUTLER!” at my husband. So, you are totally not the only one.

  75. Is it that it’s a waste of a good monkey to test makeup on it, or a waste of good makeup to put it on a monkey? I’m confused. 🙂

  76. Benedict Cumberbatch plays Sherlock Holmes on BBC’s modern twist on tales, called “Sherlock”. Check it out, you’ll like it. Also, the guy who played on Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy plays Watson. It’s awesome and witty and clever and completely addicting (like 90% of the shows on BBC).

  77. I am a research scientist. And I am totally tempted sometimes. They are SO. MUCH. FUN. 🙂

  78. i am a research scientist, too. I am TERRIBLE at self-control. i have never experimented with monkeys, HOWEVER just the other day i did rearrange the poetry word magnets on my lab bench to say “experiment with monkey synthesis”. i thought of you, and smiled. …and you hadnt even written this yet!

  79. I’m a research scientist, but I don’t get to work with monkeys. My subjects are human, and I don’t need any more of those around the house.

  80. You will know who Benedict Cumberbatch is once you’ve watched “Sherlock” as he plays Sherlock. And you will then scour YouTube and iTunes and Amazon for everything he’s been in because he’s GENIUS and cute in an ugly kind of way. He also speaks like the British aristocracy, which he kind of is or at least went to school with them, something like that. Anyway, I’m addicted to that accent. Laurence Fox, the second guy to play the assistant detective in Foyle’s War, Hugh Laurie–THAT accent. Delicious.

  81. like my boyfriend says ‘it’s too cold to keep the monkey in the truck’

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