A low-frequency tone filled the air blanketing all natural sounds from audibility. Our soldier resolved that the pervasive drone of heavy-machinery was only a minute concern compared to the inexpressible stench exhausting his sense of smell. He stood alert, but ultimately exhausted and scared. Forsaken on a task that few before him had managed to complete, he looked outwardly for inspiration….for help…for rescue…when, to his relief, through a cloud of smoke he could make out a shadowy figure. It bore goggles and a gun. It was cloaked in a white jacket and appeared to be carrying something – emergency food, perhaps? As the fog dissipated, the figure emerged not carrying food, but rather a bucket of dry ice. He reached for some 25mL pipettes and mounted them on his gun. Turning to our soldier, he asked “when are you done with the ultra-centrifuge?”
We often equate heroism with acts of valor and bravery on the battlefield. Saving lives is almost always a prerequisite. The proverbial scientific battlefield, on the other hand, is far less sexy and its heroes are far less idolized. Through innovation in health sciences, we have extended the average life expectancy by roughly 50 years in the last 200 years or so. Compare this to a meager 10 year increase over the previous 200,000 years. Such a transformation has meant uncovering means to fight fatal illnesses and diseases whilst providing reliable health care to the masses. So who exactly are these scientists that often go unsung in discussions of heroism? Well, there’s Albert Einstein…Nikola Tesla…Alexander Fleming…Rosalind Franklin…and countless more. But people consistently forget one name….you!
Don’t forget why you are here and what your purpose is. We often get lost in the abyss of bench-side research and lose touch with all the turbulence outside our window. The world is spinning 1000mph and problems inundate us at every moment. Poverty…illness…disparity…it doesn’t end! So stay strong and cure the world! One day, you WILL make the world a better place! Until then, the relentless pursuit of the dream itself is what makes you a hero. So hats off to you, Mr. Måns, there really is a hero within all of us. Thanks and heja Sverige!