Stacks on Stacks…Of Pipette Boxes

Whenever there's free time in the lab, students fill pipette boxes to the brim to keep busy, and to help the instructors.

Racking tips isn’t a chore or a game; it’s serious business.

First of all, you should never rack tips by yourself. Always have someone to compete with, because honestly, it’s pretty boring otherwise. Now that you’re not alone, this is where the fun begins.

To win, you obviously need some sort of strategy or a trick up your sleeves. The wheels in your mind are turning fast, almost rolling in the deep like Adele. You think: “Should I systematically rack the tips row by row, or do I just dump it on the box and hope it falls into the holes?” But then there’s the problem of reaching into the plastic bag to acquire your pipette tips. Should you use one hand to grab the tip from the bag, and the other to rack it? Or would it be better to place a handful on the pipette box lid? Or you ask yourself, “Would I look pro if I rack tips while without looking at the holes?” All this time, you’re also trying to kick your colleague’s butt (figuratively of course).

Asking these questions when approaching challenges is crucial in problem solving and building personal integrity. When confronting a task, you learn to identify key obstacles, think creatively, plan a course of action, and evaluate the consequences. Quality control is just as, if not more important than conquering the problem. Do you have expectations for yourself to meet, even for tasks as menial as racking pipette tips?

If you follow this life hack, you will end up with stacks of cash. Just kidding, maybe a glorious pyramid of pipette boxes, ready to be autoclaved.

(What do you think is the best strategy to filling up pipette boxes?)

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