First post of the year – your artist was quite busy feeling confused as a recently appointed academic lately. We start the year with a bit of wisdom from Szpylbert’s last summer intern: quizzed why engineering students always wear suits to interviews (and in academia almost no one wears a suit), the intern said: “If you are wrong and wearing a suit then at least you look competent, all engineering students know that”. This had your cartoonist thinking. Perhaps this was also the trade secret of all those bankers and politicians. Time to buy a suit.
Introducing Ferdinand the lab rat – who regrets not having become a scientist at a prestigious research institution.
Unfortunately, Ferdinand didn’t study hard enough in school (especially maths). But every cloud has a silver lining: if his experiments go well, he may be promoted to Senior Lab Rat some day.
In academic research there is a division line between people who secretly think they are geniuses and people who know they aren’t. Come to think of it, that probably applies everywhere on the intellectual spectrum. All the way from Mensa down to the people deciding car parking policies in your artist’s local council.
This is your artist, working in his day (and night) job as a researcher at a university. He sits behind his piles of paper and books, trying to write some quality work. If he manages something great, it will be read by a handful of other people just like him and end up in their piles of paper – and maybe also in their books.