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Based at The University of Edinburgh, the ESRC Genomics Policy and Research Forum is part of the ESRC Genomics Network and pioneers new ways to promote and communicate social research on the contemporary life sciences.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Laboratory Conditions

Well...the last act of my residency (per se) is on Thursday Night at the Trav...and, having just played some blues harmonica loud enough to disturb some scholars...sorry...I can safely say that "Talent Night in the Fly Room" isn't what I expected it would be when we started rehearsal.

We started last Monday with roughly ninety pages of material...three hours worth or so...mostly quotations from the most important sources I've been looking at, all the way from TH Morgan to Erwin Schrodinger...to Max Delbruk...and a couple of songs and sketches, sure.

But under laboratory conditions text is tested to destruction...the reality test of having actors in the room with the ideas, and the anticipation of an audience being there alters the shape and feel of the work, and forces it towards reality...or at least, into the version of reality that we can share, we're down to what I hope is a tight little, right little show.

Something like the laboratory process of rehearsal is going to be the thrust of a more academic presentation I'll make at the Genomics Conference in London at the British Library in April: to wit, have I learned anything about the way the specifically dramatic arts...(as opposed to music or poetry) relate to scientific ideas and processes?

Well, maybe. In the meantime, the show is the thing. And here is the lyric to a little tango number I'll be doing:

If you want spider silk from goats
You tweak the genome
If you want diesel fuel from oats
Just use the genome
If you’re feeling all alone
There’s no one we can’t clone
From any chromosome
Just ask the genome.

We make brain cells from your armpit
And the genome
If you’re sick we’ll make you fit
We’ll use the genome
We’ll insert those nano-bots
And end up which god knows what
Don’t put up with what you’ve got
Call in the genome

Nothing comes from nothing
Not even genomes
All history is written
In our genomes
Material machines
Tell you what existence means
All your fears and all your dreams
Are in your genome

Miracles are every day
Just provided you can pay
Though the price might be obscene
Depending on your genes

All the birds and all the bees
Have all got genomes
Every virulent disease
Has got a genome
We’ve all got the same ancestor
Who was a such a wise investor
In the chemical congestor
Of the genome

1 comment:

  1. Here are links to the future of material science. A company call Kraig Biocraft will lead the way using transgenic silkworms to produce spider silk in commercial quantities for ultimately amazing designs.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of The United States of America January 17, 2012 Issue, Article Titled:
    Silkworms Transformed with Chimeric Silkworm/Spider Silk Genes Spin Composite Silk Fibers with Improved Mechanical Properties.

    Spider Silk Potential Unleashed:

    6 Spider-Silk Super Powers:

    Published by MIT

    Transgenic Worms Make Tough Fibers:

    Silk Spinning The Genetically Modified Way: