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Serious Postdoc Weirdness

There’s no denying that life as a postdoc can be stressful. The pay is relatively low, the hours are long, the long-term prospects often aren’t great, and sometimes bosses–and colleagues–can be real jerks.

But the events described in this story, from a staff writer at the San Francisco Chronicle (Hat tip: The Chronicle of Higher Education News Blog) are just too weird.

A postdoctoral researcher in the UCSF urology department has been
charged with attempted murder after allegedly admitting that he twice
tried to poison a colleague by putting laboratory chemicals in her
drinking water, authorities said Tuesday.

The chemicals used by Benchun Liu, 38–a "buffering solution used to control acid"–discolored the water. The disoloration was noticed by the alleged victim, Mei Cao, who drank the water anyway. The accused then confessed to the victim that he had tried to kill her, and was arrested Monday. He is being held in the county jail without bail. Liu told police that he had been "stressed out."