Caffeine and Alcohol, the only two substances a chem major needs.

Caffeine and Alcohol, the only two substances a chem major needs.

In this edition of A Night In The Life, a staff writer captures what it is like to be treading the thin line between tortured chemistry TA and borderline alcoholic.

10:43 pm
I’ve finally finished checking all those ridiculous limiting reacting equations… Who knew that undergrads actually had to know things? Back in my day, we just recited the periodic table until the professor gave up. Oh well.

11:05 pm
Is it too late to go to a bar? I haven’t had a free night like this in a while, and recitation isn’t until noon tomorrow. Might as well!

11:18 pm
Broadway seems like it should be busier… What day is it again?

11:19 pm
… Oh, it’s a Tuesday. Whatever, I’ll just get the #club going #up on a Tuesday.

11:24 pm
Is it possible to order vodka in larger quantities than just shots?

11:30 pm
Oh god, is that one of my students? Wait, no, it can’t be… Yep, definitely one of my students. Shit. Please don’t see me.

11:40 pm
Dammit, they definitely saw me. Oh well. I’m an adult; I have responsibilities and a job. Well, does being a TA count as a job? Yes, it totally does, what am I thinking? I’m allowed — no, entitled to get tipsy on a Tuesday.

11:45 pm
Shit, they’re coming over. Can I leave?? Maybe they just want to say a quick hello. Yeah, that’s it, they just want to say hi.

11:47 pm
Sure, I can totally answer a stupid question about ionic bonds on my one night off… Couldn’t this have waited for recitation tomorrow? Oh well, no big deal. Wait, stop, don’t text the class that I’m here!!

12:04 am
… Are you even old enough to get into bars? I refuse to let you people fuck up my one free night. Is it illegal to drink with my students? I need more alcohol.

12:20 am
It’s past midnight. I’d really been planning to be in my pajamas back at home by now, watching reruns of Bill Nye for laughs, but now there are more students from gen chem arriving. Aren’t you freshmen? Leave me alone, please, oh god…

12:35 am
No, I won’t bump your grade up a point, and I don’t care that it’s the difference between your A- and an A. Oh, you’re a premed? Yeah, I still don’t care, so you can deal with your A- and suck it up.

12:50 am
Just leave me alone, for the love of Darwin! We’re in a bar, and you don’t have anything better to do than talk to your TA? That’s sad. Stop asking me things, you’re going to– well, you’ve gone and spilled beer on the lab report. Why did you even bring your lab report to a bar? I’m not grading this.

1:07 am
You know, my being a TA really isn’t so bad! No, that’s not true, this is absolutely terrible, but at least my students have to suck up to me. Now, go buy me drinks!

Two Holy Substances via Shutterstock.