23 September 2016

Day of the Monkey


It’s a word that has both a negative and positive meaning when you say it of a person. And if I had to use one word to describe the pseudonymous blogger Drugmonkey, that’s the one.

Drugmonkey is sharp.

One friend said to me, “Drugmonkey is mean.” He is quick to unleash cutting remarks. He has called a lot of people he disagrees with “wackalooons,” and that’s when he’s feeling polite. He’s impatient and profane. I can probably make his blood boil by mentioning “pit bulls,” “professional editors with English degrees,” and “numbered references” in the same sentence. He’s got opinions, and sometimes it feels like he will never admit he was wrong or change his mind in the slightest. He can be infuriating. It’s not fun being on the receiving end when he thinks you’re wrong.

Drugmonkey is sharp.

He is smart. Nobody has written more about National Institutes of Health funding, or developing careers in biomedicine and – more importantly – nobody has written about it with more insight and intelligence. And he has consistently taken agencies to task on issues like racism and sexism, and asked why they are not doing better on long standing problems in ensuring more diversity. He wants to make sure senior scientists don’t pull the ladder up behind them. He cares about other people, not just himself, and wields his razor sharp and lightning fast writing skills to advocate for them, and for fair treatment.

That makes him one of the good ones.

He’s started a lot of conversations, and made a lot of people think. You can see evidence for it in the comments in his blog. (Justin Kiggins says he reads Drugmonkey’s blog for the comments.)

I have only been in a room with Drugmonkey once, at Madhatter’s in Washington DC, at one of Dr. Becca’s BANTER meet-ups during Society for Neuroscience. We didn’t have a chat to converse at length in person. But it doesn’t matter, because online conversations are real conversations. Thank you, Drugmonkey, for the many conversations we have had. I am not sure I have ever changed your mind, but you have changed mine. I have learned a lot from you, and I grateful for it.

And thanks to whoever came up with the idea of Drugmonkey day!

External links

Drugmonkey on Twitter
Drugmonkey blog
Another Drugonkey blog
Unofficial Drugmonkey Day
An oldish dog learning new tricks #drugmonkeyday
Thank you Drugmonkey
appreciation #drugmonkeyday
Thanks Drugmonkey!
Did You Miss It? Big Research Investing and A Decade of DrugmonkeyBlog
Yesterday was #drugmonkeyday!

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