27 and a PhD

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Story and song meme

Welcome to my blog!

Hello there, awesome reader. My name is Dr. 27. I'm older than that now, but I'm staying faithful to the origins of the blog.

This blog started 2 months before completing my PhD in a pretty southern university back in 2009. It was a way to practice my writing and take a break from all things thesis. My PhD is in a branch of structural biology where I studied some rather impressive stuff.

After completing the degree, I packed my life of 6 years in 3 days and moved to Canada to do a postdoc in a completely different field. Two years later, and after attending a lot of seminars, workshops and doing some much-needed soul-searching, I ended up getting out and looking for an alternative path to academia and industry.

The blog chronicles my mishaps, ideas, musings and tips on entering, staying and finishing grad school. It also talks about some (or a lot) of personal stuff. For a while, the blog became a place to talk about the frustrations of not knowing what to do after PhD. I wanted to explore alternatives to the traditional paths of research (academia, industry and goverment) whilst going back to my field of training (if at all possible). Eventually a job materialized. Follow my quest as I navigate the waters of being a staff scientist at a core facility.


February 2010
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I was tagged by the awesome MomRomp. She’s my new fave blogger and she was tagged in a meme about the story of your fave song, the one that no matter where you are will have you pause, transport back in time and take you to a happy place, if only for 3 or 4 minutes … awww bliss.

Since here at 27 and a PhD (more like, 28 in the process of 29 BUT with a PhD) it’s not all about serious stuff like grad school, jobs, postdoc’ing, etc, we’re going to be chill, casual, and talk a little about a song that transports me to my happy place, even in the most awful days.

The song is “Breathless” by an Irish group called The Corrs. Back when I was in college (late 90’s early 2000’s) I was watching the news, when all of a sudden a very melodic voice comes up and a really catchy song is playing. I look, and it’s a foursome of lovely irish gals and a guy. Turns out they’re siblings and they’re promoting their new album.

A few days after I caught myself humming the little bit of the tune I could remember, and since I wasn’t internet savvy at the time (I’m not much still, but I try to do my best), it didn’t occur to me to look them up on the web. Gladly, grad-school induced Alzheimer’s hadn’t set in yet, so I went to a generic record shop a few days after and got 2 CD’s from the group, the current one (In Blue) and a previous one. I was SO taken by their music, their lyrics, their power to influence my emotions and change my mood.

I was hooked. The song, Breathless is lovely, and is about falling in love and leaving the other person breathless by flirting and catching their attention. Is such a happy, lovely song. I was converted instantly.

Years later I fell in love and had my heart broken to that tune. And I thought I’d hate it forever. I couldn’t listen to it for a while. But as time passed I fell in love with it again, and again, and again. And now, every time I hear it I’m immediately transported to my happy place, of college years, of being carefree and not thinking about tomorrow, just today, now. My current BF loves it to, and although he’s not a fan of the group, he likes to listen to the song with me because he knows how happy it makes me, he hums the music and watches me make a bit of a fool when I think I can sing, hehe.

What’s your story and song ?



  1. momromp says:

    I’m very familiar with the grad school Alzheimers. It’s an epidemic. Nice post.

  2. Alexandra says:

    I love the Corrs too.
    They’re so sweet!
    My fave song right now is Winter by Joshua Radin. It’s kind of sad, but I just love it so much, it makes my heart flutter.

  3. 28 and a PhD says:

    Awww, thanks for visiting you too. I’m going to check out Joshua Radin. I know what you mean about sad music, sometimes it’s weirdly comforting.

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