Various Lies

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I fart in your general direction!

You silly English knights! Which, unless,you've seen The Holy Grail and can pronounce it in John Cleese's loodicruuus Eeenglish Aaacent! isn't as funny as it should be.

I just saw the Summary Statements from the NIH grant we submitted back in January. Oh fucking Jeebus on a pogo stick did "they" not like it. They fucking hated it. Everything about it. I think the highest numeral I saw for any of the criteria (approach, innovation etc.) was a 3 (out of 9, but not 1 or 2 = don't fucking bother. most of ours were in the 5-8 range). Strengths...one reviewer (we had three) said "None that I can see".

Ouch.

I'm kicking myself a little bit for not fighting harder to get it postponed, but at the end of the day I only have so much clout here.

I tell you what. Given the level of engagement round here recently, there is no way on God's Green Earth I am doing the two proposed for the next round of submissions (October). There is too little drive, too little writing, too little help, too little...of anything. I've written grants before, and I've been a scientist (albeit a lowly one) for over a decade. I know what needs to go into this, and I'm not seeing at tenth of what we need. There is way too much, "oh I had an idea, go write me an R01 on that."

After reading this review, my "suggestion" to my Overlings will be to avoid having your name mentioned around Bethesda until you can be sure of submitting something fucking gold-plated. 24 karat, diamond encrusted, bejeweled and bewitched by good fairies.

I now have a massive headache and I'm going for a beer.

7 comments:

Professor in Training said...

That totally sucks. I did get the title even before reading your post though (major Python fan!).

The bean-mom said...

Tideliar,

I've seen this at my place of employment as well. My PI initially had the crazy idea of submitting an RO1 in just one month (didn't happen). Then wanted to try again for the next round, even though key confirmatory experiments were missing from the preliminary data and none of the aims were well thought out. With intervention from other PIs, we managed to convince him to postpone it... and by the next round his postdoc had gotten some gorgeous new data, we'd had time to think things through, and it was a proposal that I was not embarassed to submit.

Now he's trying again to force an RO1 when the data and ideas are not there... It is, as you say, "oh I had an idea, go write me an RO1 on that."

I think this comes of people who have not actually written RO1s (or at least successful ones)

tideliar said...

FWIW the beers are/been loverly

PiT: glad you knew the python ref. I thought about traffic...

Mom: you hit the nail on the head. I'm thinking I need to stop being so proud and ask for help from R01s here. Rely on the allies I've got and maybe we can all learn from this...

Genomic Repairman said...

Go grab some booze and drink it off and then come back and regroup. And to asshat reviewer, "If you can't say anything nice, shut the fuck up!"

Cath@VWXYNot? said...

I don't have much clout with this kind of thing either - it seems that it's not up to me to say "I think we should postpone this until the next round"! Maybe this experience will make people listen to you next time... (silver linings and all that)

tideliar said...

GR: It was a good night. A good, late night...

Cath: I spoke with one of our senior faculty today and she agrees with me. She pointed out that there are other, perhaps more appropriate, funding agencies (why did I just type antigens?) for our work. We're gonna sit down with the Vice Chancellor next week... wish me luck...

Cath@VWXYNot? said...

Good luck!