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About a decade ago, I observed that as the cell growth rate increases, mRNAs coding for ribosomal proteins are transcriptionally induced to varying degrees. This observation puzzled me as it defied my expectation that faster growing cells meet their demands for increased protein synthesis by simply inducing all ribosomal proteins to the same degree to make more ribosomes. These initial data were limited to mRNA levels and thus too indirect to make concrete conclusions about ribosomal structure and function. This commentary outlines my trajectory investigating this puzzle in search of more direct data.