… and yet so far!

I recently heard this story on Morning Edition on NPR:

Scientist Douglas Prasher isolated a glowing jellyfish protein gene. When he lost his research funding, three other scientists built on that work. In October, it was announced that two U.S. and one Japanese scientists had won the Nobel Prize in chemistry.

The crazy this is, after Prasher lost his funding he ended up driving a courtesy van for a living.  But, perhaps even crazier, he says he’s happy doing it.  According to him, research is sort of a lonely enterprise.  However, driving a van gives him the opportunity to connect with people all day long and hear their stories.  Then again, maybe that’s just the story he has to keep telling himself to keep from losing his mind over being that close to winning a Nobel Prize!

There’s sort of a happy ending to this story:

The U.S. scientists who won the prize this week invited Prasher and his wife to Stockholm for the Nobel ceremony. They will thank him in their acceptance speeches and will pay for the trip.