Creating New Knowledge

I was a research scientist for many years. I created new knowledge and published it in peer-reviewed journals. I discovered how enzymes you have likely never heard of select a proverbial needle out of the rather large haystack of a cell. In jargon, I studied the specificity of RNA-protein interactions. I worked with enzymes that modify RNA to turn it into a different RNA than what was encoded in the gene from which the RNA was derived. I studied proteins that create complexes called ribonucleoproteins that are recognized by a cell’s skeleton and then shuttled around the cell. I worked with proteins that bound to its partner RNA and then went on to tell a worm whether it would wear a pink hat or a blue hat. Specificity was my specialty in my years as a biochemist. I created new knowledge about how nature chooses what is going to interact. I create.

I was also a potter for 12 years, and hope to be again when my children are a little older. I took mud, placed it on a spinning wheel and made something that never existed before: you could drink from it, or put homeless flowers in it. More accurately, I loved to play with form and wasn’t terribly concerned about function. I loved to channel natural and fanciful shapes through my pottery. Many of my vases would never hold more than a flower or two. I created new objects to do things or just sit there like proud and buoyant armfuls of shaped mud. I create.

I write, as you can see, and some of the writings fall under the generous umbrella of poetry. There is something about reflecting on life in broad strokes that makes it come out as poetry. Not the rhyming “Roses are Red” type of poetry (although there have been some red roses), but prose-poetry with excitement over a fine metaphor. I create an ordering of words that is new and associations that are new. I create.

I love playing with clay and playing with words for a different reason than I love creating new knowledge. Right brain versus left brain. For as left-brained as I am, I am equally right-brained. I love to think about how a certain curve of a handle resonates with me in the same way that Dr Seuss and Tim Burton resonate with me. I love to think about the scent of a color. I also love the thrill of using pure logic to know how things work when the things are smaller than I could ever see.

Recently, I had the opportunity to create knowledge in a new way. The activity was sociological, but I quickly filed it in my brain under the heading “creating new knowledge”. I was surprised by how excited I was. I had not created new knowledge in a formal way since Sunboy was born. While I was riding this unexpected high, other enthusiastically jumped on me and the activity, crushing me with it. It died in the rubble, at least for me.

So I am left with the realization that Creating is more important to me than I had perhaps appreciated before. Both left-brained and right-brained creating. The question now is where to go with it, but knowing thyself is always the critical first step I am. I create.

3 thoughts on “Creating New Knowledge

  1. What was the activity and how were you crushed? I am interested in reading more about this if writing the details wouldn’t be to personal or painful for you.

  2. It was a small project, of no consequence except for my excitement over designing and executing it from start to finish as I used to do, as is my formal training. Too many cooks and the soup lost its flavor.

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