You know, people make sulfonamides all the time. . .we love sulfonamides in med-chem, right? So why can't I make a simple little sulfonamide off this heterocyclic system, eh? OK, right, there aren't any examples of these things in the literature - not last time I checked, anyway - so maybe there's a reason, but having no examples in the literature is the whole reason I'm trying to make 'em in the first place.
Right. . .send this one down for LC/MS anyway, maybe there's some of the right stuff in there and at least I'll know what it looks like. Yikes, that doesn't dissolve worth a hoot in straight methanol; if I send down a cloudy vial like that they're going to beat me with sticks. Maybe some acetonitrile. . .if this were really a sulfonamide, wouldn't it dissolve better in methanol, anyway? Ah, who am I kidding, these compounds do whatever they want to. If I ever write a book on heterocyclic chemistry, and God forbid, I'll divide them into two kinds of ring systems: friendly and hostile.
Yeah, that'll sell. I'd do better with that idea I had in grad school: "Quantum Mechanics: A Hand-Waving Approach". There's a real market for that one, and by now a hand-waving approach is exactly what I'd be capable of. Man, I remember that course - sitting there doing integrals for particle-in-a-box problems until midnight, and when I tried to go to sleep my brain was still integrating by parts. Couldn't turn it off. What a relief when I woke up and it had finally stopped - never had that happen again, and I've stayed away from quantum so as not to take any chances. What a mess that was - I'd forgotten so much calculus that I had to re-learn, and it had been what? Four years? It's only been twenty since then; I'm sure I'd be a real whiz.
Of course, it was while I was sitting there at my desk in that ancient lab, staring at those integrals that I looked up and saw a kilo jar of benzidine on the shelf right next to where I was sitting. Benzidine. . benzidine. . .that rang a bell, and then I realized, oh yeah, bladder cancer, benzidine's the one that gives you bladder cancer, and here I am camped next to a pony keg of the damn stuff. If I tried to order that through our system now a bunch of sirens would probably go off.
They should have gone off, anyway, when I ordered that new reagent from Big Jim's Discount Chemicals, or whoever it was, some outfit I've never heard of. Month and a half later, and it hasn't shown up. The inventory system keeps sending me e-mails, "Please Enter This Overdue Order". I should set up an auto-reply: "Please Put It In Your Ear". But if I did that, odds are that I'd end up sending it to everyone in the department somehow. . .hard to see the upside of that. And that reagent was going to be the thing to make these sulfonamides. . .aargh, sulfonamides. . . .