Thursday, September 27, 2007

don't count chickens

Some wise person somewhere some time in the past had made a very good piece of advice: "don't count your chickens before they're hatched". It's one timeless piece of advice right? It can be applied anywhere, anytime and you don't even need to change anything. Just say that and you appear sophisticated or at the very least remotely well-versed in English idioms. A scenario first.

Student (busy setting up suction filter equipment at the start of the experiment)

Kindly instructor who happened to be well-versed in the English language:
Why are you setting up suction filter? You haven't dissolve 4g of 4-methylaniline in 200 ml of water and concentrated hydrochloric acid, warm and stir the mixture using a hotplate stirrer to assist the dissolution process yet.

Wouldn't it be faster if you just say "you haven't done steps 1 through to 4 yet, why are you setting up equipments for step 5"?

Kindly instructor who happened to be well-versed in the English language:
Don't be pedantic and that is beside my point. My point is you don't know if you're gonna have any yield to start filtering. Don't count your chickens before they're hatched.

OK, OK, I know what you're thinking, that scenario is awfully staged and no one talks like that and that instructor sounds like he's got the whole second year medchem prac book memorised word by word (which is impossible). My point with the above scenario is to introduce you to the wonderful English phrase: "don't count your chickens before they're hatched". Why is that I wonder, why isn't it "don't count your children before they're born" or "don't count your sperms before they're ejaculated ejected"? Why chickens? Anyhow, the point of all the above ramblings is that I got myself into a situation, not a serious one but one nonetheless, which brought that saying into my mind.

I have 2 ipods, I like to consider them one and a quarter of an ipod rather than 2 ipods. One is new, which I bought 3 weeks before they released the new line of ipod and which I'm still pissed about. One is only a quarter of its former self due to 3 years of almost everyday use. I was thinking about bringing it into one of those ipod repair centres last week, I got a quote for a battery change and it's a hundred bucks to change the battery. That's almost a third of a new 80 gig ipod already, no way I'm gonna pay that. So the only other option is to buy replacement battery off eBay and do it myself.

The first part is easy. I ordered one 2 days ago, and went look around for guides on how to do it on the net. I found a bunch of guides, looked through them and got myself so excited about changing the battery that I went ahead to open my ipod up that day, without the new battery. Here are some pictures I took after open my ipod with a few pieces of metal lying around on my desk.

The screwdrivers didn't help at all with removing the metal case because:
a. they're tiny and they're supposed to be for those tiny screws
b. they're dodgy Chinese fake screwdrivers.
I used the 2 pieces of metal on the top left-ish of the picture to open it. If you're wondering what they are, they're some thing I got when I bought my cork board and they've been lying around on my desk. Seriously, I'm resourceful. Open an ipod up using cork board hanger, that's rated right up there with Jason Bourne's feats of stabbing secret agents with ballpoint pens and suffocate people with towel.

I needed the dodgy Chinese screwdrivers and metal bookmark to remove the battery. As of this moment the ipod is looking like the above picture and is lying in a drawer out of sight waiting for the battery, that should be arriving tomorrow or on Monday. It still works fine without a battery and with its internal organ on display like that once it's plugged in a power source so I think I haven't wrecked anything.

So the moral of the story, well, there isn't one but there will be if the battery I ordered is the wrong one, is that you should not open your ipod before you've received the replacement battery. See, I do have a point with that lame "don't count your chickens" dialogue.

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