December 28th, 2007


I'm not too sure if this is the right community to be posting this in, but i have a couple of questions i thought you all may be able to help me with. Im currently doing a reaction involving indoles and diethylketomalanate with bismuth nitrate pentahydrate as the catalyst ( not sure if theyre all spelled correctly) . Basically, I have no idea how the Bismuth nitrate acts as a catalyst because... well, i don't really fully understand its structure and its reactivity. So, can anyone help me out? I tried asking my mentor to help me understand, but he has a horrible accent, and its very hard for me to follow what he's saying many times. Keep in mind, i'm only a second year undergraduate... so keep things as simple as possible, please!

Antigripe: Free Bread?

I was sitting at the desk in the lab building, copying out stuff in my lab book when I heard footsteps pattering in my direction.

I turned around to see the Department Head, holding a plate with a piece of bread on it, running through the office in the Mandatory Lab Slippers, going "Where? Where?"

I just sort of gaped at him and he stopped a couple of feet away, looked at me, and went,

"Where's the toaster?"

I stared. "I don't know!"

"They said the toaster was here!" He shuffled around one corner, went in a circle, confused, and then went "AH THERE IT IS" and went towards the sink before turning towards me again.

"How many minutes?!"

I kept staring. "I don't know!"

"Jessica-chan! Kochi kochi!" The secretaries were beckoning me over, and as I approached the desk I saw them and several other people eating pieces of fluffy white bread.

"Why do we have bread?" I asked, taking a bite out of a piece. "Uwa! Wow, that's good stuff!"

"It's a gift from our animal supply company," one of the coworkers explained. "It's bread made with a special kind of yeast that they grow."

The advisor muttered, "It's by the company that's also making our virus."

Flat look. "Oh. Well, that's good to know."

The Department Head suddenly appeared, running back with his plate. "HA-HAH, I MADE TOAST!"
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