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Are you wearing a lab coat?


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#1 hobglobin

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 05:32 AM

But why? ;)

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...except casandra's that belong to the funniest, most interesting and imaginative (or over-imaginative?) ones, I suppose.

#2 Maddie

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Posted 24 January 2011 - 09:40 AM

Mainly to (try to) spare my clothes from bleach damage althought I like the option about the safety inspector (definitively that one when it comes to googles) :P
Theory is when we know everything and nothing is working. Practice is when everything is working and nobody knows why. Here, we combine theory and practice. Nothing is working and nobody knows why.

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#3 pito

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 01:15 AM

I have said it before and I'll say it again: NOT wearing a lab coat is a sign of experience and influence..... and makes you really "cool". B)

All the new ones , students and those that still think its "cool" to wear one and feel more as a scientist wear one... The experienced, cool scientist doenst wear one :D

You should really think about it...
If you have students at the lab and they see someone one coming in without a lab coat, you can really see the students think: wow, no lab coat, he must be important and know it all...

Same with wearing one, but having some buttons not closed or something like that..

Its a little bit like "not being like someone else".. everyone wears one, so the ones without a lab coat.... are those that dare to not wear one and are not told by others to wear one...==> thus meaning they are their own boss, or have influence to decide if they wear one or not :D


(offource , those not wearing one when working with heavy, dangerous chemicals and setting themselfs in fire or something like that are just stupid and nothing like what I described above :D )

Edited by pito, 30 January 2011 - 01:15 AM.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#4 casandra

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 08:15 AM

I have said it before and I'll say it again: NOT wearing a lab coat is a sign of experience and influence..... and makes you really "cool". B)

All the new ones , students and those that still think its "cool" to wear one and feel more as a scientist wear one... The experienced, cool scientist doenst wear one :D

You should really think about it...
If you have students at the lab and they see someone one coming in without a lab coat, you can really see the students think: wow, no lab coat, he must be important and know it all...

Same with wearing one, but having some buttons not closed or something like that..

Its a little bit like "not being like someone else".. everyone wears one, so the ones without a lab coat.... are those that dare to not wear one and are not told by others to wear one...==> thus meaning they are their own boss, or have influence to decide if they wear one or not :D


(offource , those not wearing one when working with heavy, dangerous chemicals and setting themselfs in fire or something like that are just stupid and nothing like what I described above :D )

:P yeah, I remember this discussion, pito..."the rebel without a coat"....and this to look cool and apart from the herd...and you work in a microbiogy lab, eh? So you wear the same clothes all day- in the lab handling your bugs and chemicals and afterwards- when hanging out with friends or family somewhere else....perhaps we shld have a poll if this is the cool thing to do?
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#5 pito

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 10:45 AM


I have said it before and I'll say it again: NOT wearing a lab coat is a sign of experience and influence..... and makes you really "cool". B)

All the new ones , students and those that still think its "cool" to wear one and feel more as a scientist wear one... The experienced, cool scientist doenst wear one :D

You should really think about it...
If you have students at the lab and they see someone one coming in without a lab coat, you can really see the students think: wow, no lab coat, he must be important and know it all...

Same with wearing one, but having some buttons not closed or something like that..

Its a little bit like "not being like someone else".. everyone wears one, so the ones without a lab coat.... are those that dare to not wear one and are not told by others to wear one...==> thus meaning they are their own boss, or have influence to decide if they wear one or not :D


(offource , those not wearing one when working with heavy, dangerous chemicals and setting themselfs in fire or something like that are just stupid and nothing like what I described above :D )

:P yeah, I remember this discussion, pito..."the rebel without a coat"....and this to look cool and apart from the herd...and you work in a microbiogy lab, eh? So you wear the same clothes all day- in the lab handling your bugs and chemicals and afterwards- when hanging out with friends or family somewhere else....perhaps we shld have a poll if this is the cool thing to do?



The thing is that if you have the knowledge about the things you do.. you can easly not wear a labcoat..

If you work for example with bacteria that are commenly found in the oceans and are not pathogens to humans.. then why wear the lab coat? Those bacteria wont hurt you.. And besides: if you work like you should, you shouldnt have bacteria on your clothes like that.. (they really dont jump out the dishes on your clothes...)
+ a lab coat is more to protect your clothes from chemicals.. not from bacteria really.. the bacteria wont jump on your or if they do: they'll be on your face too etc..
If you work with really dangerous stuff, a lab coat wont really do much.
Besides the LAF is there for a reason...


+ have you even wondered on how clean lab coats are?
I change my sweater or tshirt every day and put it in the wash
.. Those lab coats.. some of them use them day in day out... for months without washing them..

And just to show you how idiot a lot of people are: they weat a lab coat, after working in the laf they wash their hands with ethanol, soap... Go to the halls, take out their lab coat and go to eat or chat with others..
Do you see the mistake here.. They take off their coat.. with they clean hands... If the coat is dirty.. so are the hands.. and so is the rest...

And also dont forget: most lab coats are pretty "open" at the top... so you only protect the lower side of your torso ..
But anyway: it all depends with what you are working...
PS. any microbiologist or lab tech working with bacteria should know that he or she has more bacteria in his face, body and as long as you dont work with the "bad guys".. there is no point being scared of getting sick or whatever.

And offcourse I do weat my coat whenever I work with chemicals that are more dangerous..
But to be honest: when filling a bottle with demineralised water.. I dont see the point in wearing one :P

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#6 Adrian K

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 11:40 AM

Hi Pito,

I wish that my department provide me a full body protected "spaceman suit" for me.
I'm dealing with infections bacteria which suppose to work in BSL-3 lab in US, but we do it in BSL-2 here... with ordinary lab coat and without mask.
Seriously, I don't mind being laugh as a "space bunny"... i just want my life to be safe...

But then, nobody cares about our life as postgrad... and we were among those first to be blamed when there are any incidents...

Also, I wish I can upload some pictures of nurses wearing their "operation theater coats" to the cafe for lunch before doing their work. Now I really pray hard for those people who undergoes surgery... sigh...
Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person is like expecting the lion not to attack you because you are a vegetarian.

..."best of our knowledge, as far as we know this had never been reported before, though I can't possible read all the published journals on earth, but by perform thorough search in google, the keywords did not match any documents"...

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"It's all just DNA. Do it."---phage434

#7 pito

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 12:24 PM

Hi Pito,

I wish that my department provide me a full body protected "spaceman suit" for me.
I'm dealing with infections bacteria which suppose to work in BSL-3 lab in US, but we do it in BSL-2 here... with ordinary lab coat and without mask.
Seriously, I don't mind being laugh as a "space bunny"... i just want my life to be safe...

But then, nobody cares about our life as postgrad... and we were among those first to be blamed when there are any incidents...

Also, I wish I can upload some pictures of nurses wearing their "operation theater coats" to the cafe for lunch before doing their work. Now I really pray hard for those people who undergoes surgery... sigh...


Yeah well, thats just stupid and the head of your lab must be a real idiot.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#8 casandra

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 08:52 PM

The thing is that if you have the knowledge about the things you do.. you can easly not wear a labcoat..

If you work for example with bacteria that are commenly found in the oceans and are not pathogens to humans.. then why wear the lab coat? Those bacteria wont hurt you.. And besides: if you work like you should, you shouldnt have bacteria on your clothes like that.. (they really dont jump out the dishes on your clothes...)
+ a lab coat is more to protect your clothes from chemicals.. not from bacteria really.. the bacteria wont jump on your or if they do: they'll be on your face too etc..
If you work with really dangerous stuff, a lab coat wont really do much.
Besides the LAF is there for a reason...


+ have you even wondered on how clean lab coats are?
I change my sweater or tshirt every day and put it in the wash
.. Those lab coats.. some of them use them day in day out... for months without washing them..

And just to show you how idiot a lot of people are: they weat a lab coat, after working in the laf they wash their hands with ethanol, soap... Go to the halls, take out their lab coat and go to eat or chat with others..
Do you see the mistake here.. They take off their coat.. with they clean hands... If the coat is dirty.. so are the hands.. and so is the rest...

And also dont forget: most lab coats are pretty "open" at the top... so you only protect the lower side of your torso ..
But anyway: it all depends with what you are working...
PS. any microbiologist or lab tech working with bacteria should know that he or she has more bacteria in his face, body and as long as you dont work with the "bad guys".. there is no point being scared of getting sick or whatever.

And offcourse I do weat my coat whenever I work with chemicals that are more dangerous..
But to be honest: when filling a bottle with demineralised water.. I dont see the point in wearing one :P


:) Aren't you digressing from your main reason for not wearing a labcoat which is to make you look cool because it exudes experience and influence? And now it's because it's unnecessary in most instances when you're certain you're not dealing with anything pathogenic or dangerous? I see your reasoning of course, but why do you think that most institutes/universities have health and environmental safety offices? Surely not just to do a spot check on us or to irritate us? And furthermore, we don't work in a vacuum. We may know exactly what we're doing and how to do it properly, but we could be sharing our benches and equipments with people who don’t. And then there are accidents....even the most experienced could have those.

Personally, I think that donning a coat or using PPE if it becomes part of our daily routine while working in the lab is a habit that we end up doing automatically. It makes life less complicated. Can you imagine: you enter your lab to fill up a bottle of deionised water so.. you don’t wear the lab coat but then you decide to prepare Tris-Cl buffers as well, so.. you put it on, afterwards you decide to fill up your pipette tip boxes- so off goes the lab coat again and then you have this brilliant idea of preparing acrylamide gels so you put it back on again etc etc etc…,a bit exaggerated, I know but you can get the meaning….

And if one sticks to the recommendations of the health and safety office….lab coats shld only be worn in the lab, they shld be cleaned properly and regularly and if they’re heavily contaminated they shld be disposed of as a biohazard. And non-compliance to these principles shouldn’t be used as a reason to condemn them or not to wear them.

And finally, if you’re training the new students, what should you tell them about the wearing of lab coats in the lab? Wear them only if...don't wear them if....? Or do what I tell you and not what I do because I have more knowledge and experience than you do?
"Oh what a beauteousness!"
- hobglobin, personal comment about my beauteous photo......

#9 Adrian K

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 09:03 PM

Yeah well, thats just stupid and the head of your lab must be a real idiot.


lolx, I would say is the idiotic system being practice...
let me borrow the lyrics from Bee Gees:"cause we living in a world of fools, breaking us down, when they all should let us be..."
Expecting the world to treat you fairly because you are a good person is like expecting the lion not to attack you because you are a vegetarian.

..."best of our knowledge, as far as we know this had never been reported before, though I can't possible read all the published journals on earth, but by perform thorough search in google, the keywords did not match any documents"...

"what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger"---Goddess Casandra reminds me to be strong

"It's all just DNA. Do it."---phage434

#10 Ameya P

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Posted 30 January 2011 - 10:34 PM

Yeah well, thats just stupid and the head of your lab must be a real idiot.


Pito,

I think you are contradicting your own statements. If you say that the more experienced people should have the right NOT to wear the lab coat, then let the more experienced decide whether work should be done under BSL 2 or BSL 3!!!

The only reason I see for calling some one a "real idiot" is arrogance!!!!

And if one sticks to the recommendations of the health and safety office….lab coats shld only be worn in the lab, they shld be cleaned properly and regularly and if they’re heavily contaminated they shld be disposed of as a biohazard. And non-compliance to these principles shouldn’t be used as a reason to condemn them or not to wear them.

And finally, if you’re training the new students, what should you tell them about the wearing of lab coats in the lab? Wear them only if...don't wear them if....? Or do what I tell you and not what I do because I have more knowledge and experience than you do?


I think casandra is right. (Although, I lost the point she was trying to make with wear the lab coat, dont wear the lab coat para :P )

Lab coats must be mandatory. H&S policies must be followed (Sometimes they go overboard, but thats usually a response to someone's stupidity [read arrogance if you want]). Its simple with lab coats, wear them when you are working.... leave them when you leave the lab!

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#11 casandra

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 09:04 PM

Hi gt_ameya,

This has become my new temple now :).....


The only reason I see for calling some one a "real idiot" is arrogance!!!!


not necessarily.....you are relatively new to this forum (a belated welcome to the forum, btw) so you're just getting to know most of the active members here and pito is usually frank and not inhibited to speak his mind (sometimes he can be funny too :))but he knows what he's talking about. And I can understand why some people who are forced or feel forced to wear lab gowns would rebel against it. With enough knowledge, skill and experience, why shldn't they have the right to decide for themselves?

And in Adrian's case, if his department head knowingly risks the life and health of students and staff, then I'd call him even worse- a criminal. But then, we really don't know how the system over there works so we can't be this judgmental.

I think casandra is right. (Although, I lost the point she was trying to make with wear the lab coat, dont wear the lab coat para :P )


Some confusion may result and that's my point exactly...:)...and you're not the first one to get lost either.... take it easy dude...
"Oh what a beauteousness!"
- hobglobin, personal comment about my beauteous photo......

#12 Ameya P

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 01:00 AM

Probably I was being too judgmental. Pito is just speaking his mind out....

But still, NOT wearing a lab coat to show you are cool/experienced is wrong. Fine, you are very confident of your sterile techniques and you are spill-proof, but others in the lab might not be. One must exercise caution in labs.

Also (after re-reading Pito's and Adrian's posts) wearing a lab coat to the canteen to show you work in the lab is being STUPID!!! You might as well wear SUPERMAN costume to attract attention...

But for me, wearing a lab coat is like wearing a seat belt. Would you stop wearing the seat belt because you have driven for 10-15 years????

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#13 pito

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 01:24 AM



The thing is that if you have the knowledge about the things you do.. you can easly not wear a labcoat..

If you work for example with bacteria that are commenly found in the oceans and are not pathogens to humans.. then why wear the lab coat? Those bacteria wont hurt you.. And besides: if you work like you should, you shouldnt have bacteria on your clothes like that.. (they really dont jump out the dishes on your clothes...)
+ a lab coat is more to protect your clothes from chemicals.. not from bacteria really.. the bacteria wont jump on your or if they do: they'll be on your face too etc..
If you work with really dangerous stuff, a lab coat wont really do much.
Besides the LAF is there for a reason...


+ have you even wondered on how clean lab coats are?
I change my sweater or tshirt every day and put it in the wash
.. Those lab coats.. some of them use them day in day out... for months without washing them..

And just to show you how idiot a lot of people are: they weat a lab coat, after working in the laf they wash their hands with ethanol, soap... Go to the halls, take out their lab coat and go to eat or chat with others..
Do you see the mistake here.. They take off their coat.. with they clean hands... If the coat is dirty.. so are the hands.. and so is the rest...

And also dont forget: most lab coats are pretty "open" at the top... so you only protect the lower side of your torso ..
But anyway: it all depends with what you are working...
PS. any microbiologist or lab tech working with bacteria should know that he or she has more bacteria in his face, body and as long as you dont work with the "bad guys".. there is no point being scared of getting sick or whatever.

And offcourse I do weat my coat whenever I work with chemicals that are more dangerous..
But to be honest: when filling a bottle with demineralised water.. I dont see the point in wearing one :P


:) Aren't you digressing from your main reason for not wearing a labcoat which is to make you look cool because it exudes experience and influence? And now it's because it's unnecessary in most instances when you're certain you're not dealing with anything pathogenic or dangerous? I see your reasoning of course, but why do you think that most institutes/universities have health and environmental safety offices? Surely not just to do a spot check on us or to irritate us? And furthermore, we don't work in a vacuum. We may know exactly what we're doing and how to do it properly, but we could be sharing our benches and equipments with people who don’t. And then there are accidents....even the most experienced could have those.

Personally, I think that donning a coat or using PPE if it becomes part of our daily routine while working in the lab is a habit that we end up doing automatically. It makes life less complicated. Can you imagine: you enter your lab to fill up a bottle of deionised water so.. you don’t wear the lab coat but then you decide to prepare Tris-Cl buffers as well, so.. you put it on, afterwards you decide to fill up your pipette tip boxes- so off goes the lab coat again and then you have this brilliant idea of preparing acrylamide gels so you put it back on again etc etc etc…,a bit exaggerated, I know but you can get the meaning….

And if one sticks to the recommendations of the health and safety office….lab coats shld only be worn in the lab, they shld be cleaned properly and regularly and if they’re heavily contaminated they shld be disposed of as a biohazard. And non-compliance to these principles shouldn’t be used as a reason to condemn them or not to wear them.

And finally, if you’re training the new students, what should you tell them about the wearing of lab coats in the lab? Wear them only if...don't wear them if....? Or do what I tell you and not what I do because I have more knowledge and experience than you do?


You are offcourse right and I am smart enough to know what is possible and what isnt.

Btw,at the moment its even becoming a running gag here that when there are people coming, some of us dont wear a lab coat "to look cool".
And the joke started a few weeks ago.
A professor was in the lab without his coat since he was only explaining something to someone and while doing that, a group of students passed by and one of them asked the boss of the lab (who was guiding the students) why that person wasnt wearing a coat. The boss told the student that he was a professor .. and had to decide it himself. And wich the kid replied: oh, then you arent really the boss, because you cant tell him what to do or not :P
The look on the boss his face :D

But offcourse you are right and none of us is so stupid to do things that are dangerous without a coat.
And about the putting the coat on and out etc... I know perfectly what I'll be doing that day and thus dont need to take the coat on and out every time.. Thats also a reason why I dont wear the coat: somedays I spend a lot of time at a desk in the office and I only need to go in to the lab to check some samples, write it down, go back to the desk, check some other samples an hour later.. etc.. if I had to get my coat each time when I need to check something or need to go and explain something to someone else.. I would be nuts after a day and would be putting my coat on and off in my sleep I think :lol:

PS. when students are in the lab as part of their training, I always wear my coat.. (the joke is that when they see me or another person (who really never wears a coat) wears a coat that their must be students in the lab :D )

Edited by pito, 01 February 2011 - 01:39 AM.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#14 pito

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 01:38 AM

Probably I was being too judgmental. Pito is just speaking his mind out....

But still, NOT wearing a lab coat to show you are cool/experienced is wrong. Fine, you are very confident of your sterile techniques and you are spill-proof, but others in the lab might not be. One must exercise caution in labs.

Also (after re-reading Pito's and Adrian's posts) wearing a lab coat to the canteen to show you work in the lab is being STUPID!!! You might as well wear SUPERMAN costume to attract attention...

But for me, wearing a lab coat is like wearing a seat belt. Would you stop wearing the seat belt because you have driven for 10-15 years????


You are offcourse right.

But the not wearing a lab coat to look "cool" or experienced is not something we started doing for that.. its just something that grew as a joke with the labstaff.
Everyone here knows what they can do and not.

And the seat belt thing: its a different thing.

The problem with wearing a lab coat like wearing a seat belt (automatism, without thinking) is that you contaminate the whole place if you dont know when to take the coat off or on.. And this is the thing a lot of people seem to forget. THey know when to put it on (or just put it on everytime) but they forget to take it off when needed...
The same goes with wearing gloves.. people just put them on because someone told them they should.. result is that they wear them and never take them off and mess up everything.. they handle they gel, ethbromide, they open the camerabox while still wearing the gloves.. or they work on the bench, wearing gloves, their hands are save, but forget to clean their hands with ethanol after doing it and start doing something else with the same gloves.. their are even some labs that took away the gloves in the places were you need to work under the hood, just to make sure people would think about cleaning, disinfecting their hands after working in the hood...
Or another example that happened: a student was needed to work with some acids , and needed to use the hood in the chmical lab, so he wouldnt get sick of the fumes. He turned the hood on, switched the lights one.. I passed by him and saw him working and asked him why he didnt turn on the hood.. he said to me he did...
I looked at him and asked him if he used the hood before.. he said yes.. I asked him if he heard something when working at it or felt something.. he looked at me, not knowing what to say and offcourse then he released he didnt hear the suction of the hood... The hood was on, but not working.. He taught he was save.. No he wasnt ...
Again: an instructor can tell you to put the hood on.. but he should have said: put the hood on and be sure its on.. listen.. feel... Just switching it (putting coat on) isnt everything....
Automatisms are good, but not always..

BTW do you really think its needed to wear a lab coat for example when pouring plates? Or when you are simply preparing ground samples in the basement?
(we have another lab, close by where NOBODY wears a lab coat.. you know what they do there? They prepare soil samples and other dirty stuff for the second lab.. they dont use chemicals, nor dangerous product or whatever.. they simply wear dirty clothes thats all.. do you think they need to wear coates because they are working a lab? (its officially a lab..)
You refer to working sterile.. do you really think you are working sterile when wearing a lab coat??? Or that you would not contamined yourself because you are wearing a lab coat?
A coat has only one reason then and thats not to make your clothes dirty... thats it.. some people seem to forget this.
(and offcourse it helps a bit not contaminating your body).
But the most important thing is to think when and why you need a lab ceat , not to wear a coat all day long and think you are protected..I have seen dumb asses using acids while wearin a coat (to "protect themselfs") while not wearing proctective goggles... I mean :blink:
Also, at the lab where I work, its forbidden for students to work with the bunsenburner and ethanol when wearing a lab coat with long sleeves when doing in vitro culture.. They either have to take it out or roll up the sleeves.. You know why?

A coat isnt protecting you from biohazard... Its not a full body suit or whatever.
When I need to put some fresh oil in some machines or whatever (dirty job) I wear a "dirty sweater" because its easier to work with this sweater and jeans then wearing some long labcoat that in my way when I have to bent down or something... Some people prefer the long coat or some body suit , I dont...
I even had one technician (who does most of the dirty work) who saw me doing it and offered me a suit to keep my clothes clean..
When I refused and explained its easier not to wear such coat he looked at me and I could see him thinking 'eum this does seem easier'.
The next day I passed by him and saw him working in a dirty sweater and pants... he never used a coat again :D
For some reason he "taught" he was forced to wear that stupid old long coat that hindered him because someone gave it to him on his first day to keep his clothes clean....




PS. gt_ameya, we are at the "lab jokes" forum here.. not in the more serious forum where you for example talk about labrpocedures and labsafty or whatever... you need to understand the whole concept of what I mean or read between the lines to know that there is a difference in being stupid and not wearing a lab coat at all or knowing when to wear one and when not.

Edited by pito, 01 February 2011 - 02:28 AM.

If you don't know it, then ask it! Better to ask and look foolish to some than not ask and stay stupid.


#15 Ameya P

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Excellent

Posted 01 February 2011 - 10:30 PM

I see your point with not taking proper care when working with acids/ not knowing when to take off the lab coat. The basic point is that you take safety precautions when it is necessary and sometimes where it is mandatory (even if it seems lame). And no amount of experience/ coolness should give you the right to draft new rules for yourself.

Realizing that it is a jokes forum and we are not a H&S committee deciding whether we should/ should not use LAB coats from here on, I think we should put this discussion to rest. We are grown ups and we understand the necessity of safety precautions.

BTW, Hobglobin, thanks for the picture, I think I will put it up in my lab.... :)

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