Don't be fooled by the subject title. This is going to a serious-ish post.
Today, I returned to guillotining rats and cracking their skulls open. It's been a while since I've guillotined a rat myself and it was incredibly disconcerting. It didn't help that this certain rat was not given the best treatment -- it was definitely alive and somewhat conscious while it's heart was being drained of blood, and it's liver and lung were being cut out; it was thrashing about in it's semi-alive state. Then, I get the joy of cutting it's head off only to have its eyes bug out as I sever his head from the rest of his body. It was not a pleasant image.
Then, I have to crack the skull and do other unpleasant things and the moral of this story is, it's hard to completely distance myself from the inhumanity of it all. I'm not a fan of rats. However, I think it's good to be grateful for their lives because they are contributing to the big picture.
I'm going to warn you right now. If you don't want to read about teeth and skull-cracking and brain-removing, skip ahead until you see this "@#$"...
As I was cracking the rat's skull open, I could feel its teeth jabbing into my finger. I had to cut its skin away from the skull and pull at the muscle and I was trying somewhat desperately not to gag at the idea that it's eye sockets were just about gone and its teeth were still jabbing my freaking finger.
Anyway, all in all, rats are rats. It's easy to feel bad for what we do to them (or so I think) but it's also surprisingly easy to dull one's senses to both the injustice and plain old creepyness of what I/we have to do.
Classes start tomorrow. And the new routine begins.