SCIENTIFIC...in a superstitious world I got into medical research because it seemed to be an activity I would feel useful for having done. It is a job that when you give it as an answer to "What do you do for a living?" gets a "That's wonderful!" It has had its moments; but it raises ethics questions with even fewer answers than the work produces. As a culture the world of science probably gets more signs of respect than the others in my experience. Partly because it is an occupation concerned with posing questions, it has always made me question its pursuit as vocation. My first job in science was at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco where I got a full dose of emergency room and operating room theatrics as well as cutting edge (pun intended) research on animals as well as human volunteers, many of whom where other experimenters. I underwent some of the same procedures after I had some heart attacks but when I was working at the Research Institute I thought I'd choose to die before I'd let them do that to me. Carter Collins brought me into the field and after a couple years at UCSF we got our own grant through the most important backer of my career, Arthur Jampolsky. It was during the years at Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute that I had all the experiences that followed my Hip/High era. Science is our attempt to codify the first kind of truth - what is true whether declared so or not. Scientists are not like umpires, decreeing what is and what is not. Instead they presume that there is in fact a first kind of truth. Although a purpose is to explain what has been observed, the main use we make of it is to predict. The ability to use a "truth" to correctly identify what comes next is the criterion for scientific truth. Descriptions of science are mostly just stories. Often what is said about a field has little relation to the experience. The philosophical definitions are idealizations of historical figures in which clay feet and warts vanish under a patina of idealism, much like previous presidents escape the barbs they endured in their own time. Real world "science" as opposed to the "search for truth" model is as linked to fashion as any endeavor. Who gets the backing is often based on being qualified in completely inappropriate ways by having certain letters after one's name, etc. The funding of projects is decided by people not particularly qualified, and not at all objective. Waste is frequently the order of the day. Pride of authorship is very prevalent; the jealousies and rages usually associated with prima donnas abound in the laboratory. A typical scenario is that one gets a grant for work already mostly finished. One's students or lab assistants complete the project as the principal investigator proceeds to seek other grants. When the time period nears its end there is a flurry of purchases so as not to appear to have asked for too much money. Most of the grants go to established institutions, although much innovative research is done by people outside these places. Science is taught in the way history is - a linear sequence involving famous personalities. Frequently the true pioneers are discovered long after their ridicule and death. The myth of the disappearance of individual innovation and the emergence of teams of scientists who will henceforth handle discovery institutionalizes science; but just as jazz is the product of outcasts bitten by the muse, so science emerges from special minds, often working alone outside the halls of academia. With the emergence of many-to-many communication, we have the opportunity for networks of scientists without the burden of a bureaucracy hung up on degrees and certification. "Publish of Perish" will take on new meaning and "Peer Review" will be an open event, not the province of people whose privilege is based on exclusivity, instead on the merit of their ideas. In duels, hostilities, and war there are rules that make clear what is impermissible. This is frequently considered a "mystery" in some supernatural sense. In the view of many scientists there is no supernatural any more than there is a "subnatural" and whatever IS is natural - and there is nothing that is not.