The quest for knowledge is noble. You must be tactful, passionate, and dedicated. Few would doubt that Michael Smith (a PhD student at Cornell University) exhibits all of these characteristics to a higher level than most.
Inspired after a bee flew up his shorts, and delivered a surprisingly less-than-painful sting to the scrotum; Smith found himself wondering how bee-sting pain was perceived at different body locations. While most would have stopped at 'wondering', Smith designed a scientific experiment to answer his question, and subsequently answered it. How? By designing and carrying-out a scientific experiment on the perception of bee sting pain at different body locations. All of this was done using himself as the sole subject, receiving roughly 200 bee stings in the name of science. Ow!
“By the time I got round to the third round, I thought: I really don’t want to do my nose again,” he says. “I had originally had the eye on the list, but when I talked to [my advisor Tom Seeley], he was concerned that I might go blind. I wanted to keep my eyes.”