aintbroke: (Default)
[personal profile] aintbroke
Oh, LIVEJOURNAL. Why am I so lousy at writing? I want you internet people out there to know that while I read my friends page almost every day, and I think about you significantly more often than you might expect, writing remains teeth-pullingly difficult. Medical school has in fact, not made me a different person. (I admit, I was kind of hoping I would one day wake up all adult, or not in violent hatred with writing, but evidently this just isn't going to happen.)

The news from medical school is now all: Genetics! CANCER!
I am really glad the world is full of different people with different interests, because some people in my class are excited about this. I find the whole field wicked boring, and we have a million and a half hours of lecture daily. Guys I am bad at lectures. I got though it, I guess, but the ending of that class really couldn't have come quick enough. I just, the whole topic is just so depressing. And probably it's because we study only in terms of what goes wrong (a lot) and what we can fix (not so much) and oh, man, just don't take drugs when you're pregnant. Or get overly warm. I mean, jeez.

I have distilled all the wisdom of the five week block into a few salient points: to whit- genetic abnormalities are crazy, and don't get cancer. Aaaaand done.

On the flip side, this break has been pretty fabulous. It is American Thanksgiving, which my mother and I celebrated by not eating ridiculous amounts of food, and instead geeking out about sewing projects. I haven't finished mine yet, but be prepared people, IT IS AWESOME. Also: I designed a tattoo, made a lot of marshmallows, played some board games, read some books, did not go black Friday shopping, and slept. Oh, there was a lot of sleeping.

Also: I worked a clinic. It turns out that what they say about stethoscopes is true- you wear one, and people start deferring to you in a way that is bordering on inappropriate. I was asked for my expertise and opinion on things like: what job to take, if a woman looked pregnant at what would have potentially been the third week of pregnancy, interpreting the results of a pap smear, if that heart murmur has changed quality somehow, what color crayon to finish a picture in, how to translate the word "heartburn" into Spanish, and other things that I am just, vastly unqualified to definitively answer. (Answers: Whichever one you like better. Lady, just pee in the dang cup and then we can talk. Well, it says "NORMAL" in really big letters across the top. Lemme go find you a real doctor. Blue, definitely blue. Acidez.)

I like this clinic, but I am not sure I like being treated like a doctor yet.

Date: 2010-11-29 04:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
writing remains teeth-pullingly difficult

Amen and hear hear. I feel the same way almost constantly. (Witness my almost total lack of LJ life. :-P

genetic abnormalities are crazy, and don't get cancer

Yeah, not getting cancer is a keen idea. I'm all for that.

I have to say that I'm intrigued by the genetics of cancer, but only in that incredibly abstract, it's-all-just-data-to-me kind of way. I would like to be able to contribute to oncology at an analytic level, but I'm not so good at the physical reality, people are really suffering level. (This is why I'm not an MD.)

what color crayon to finish a picture in

What was your professional opinion on this?

Date: 2010-11-29 10:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I just enjoy other peoples updates so much! I should not be so lame! Sometimes parts of my life would be interesting to other people! And then a month goes by.

My plan as of this moment is to just never get sick. Then everything will be fine! Ha ha! Dang.

No, really at it's heart academic genetics is awesome. I mean literally, AWE INSPIRING. Our genetic code creates PEOPLE. Write me THAT program in C+! It is massively complex, unbelievably well regulated, and for most people, most of the time it just works. From a clinical standpoint though. Like, we know that having three copies of chromosome 21 gives you Down's Syndrome. But the mechanism, the how does that work part? We're still in the dark. So the part I care about is the part that's still unknown. Bah.

what color crayon to finish a picture in

What was your professional opinion on this?

Oh, clearly blue.

Date: 2010-11-29 06:49 pm (UTC)
yarrowkat: (bull goddess)
From: [personal profile] yarrowkat
yay, you're here! you should just go ahead and plan now to come to our new year's party, so that we ever get to see you. :-)

randomly, i also worked on a tattoo design this weekend. it's been in my head a while, but now the first draft is on paper (and, as of five minutes ago, it's also in photoshop, where i can Do Things to it that a mere pen doesn't allow me....and then print it back out onto paper so i can Do Things to it that a mere program doesn't allow. :-P )

Date: 2010-11-29 10:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yay indeed! I have been avidly watching your Sunflower river posts- what y'all are building out there is just coming out incredible. And one of these days I will be there helping, by gum. I will actually be in Europe for New Years- I'm flying out to visit my sister. (I get limited vacation time, so I am making the most of it, or else!)

Photoshop, O heart of my heart. It is basically the most amazing program ever. Have you ever played with pressure sensitive tablets? I have an old, mini, Wacom tablet that gives me the best of pen-and-ink line control, with all the beauty of undo, redo, free transform and layers. I really love classical analog media, but... the CONVENIENCE. The ease! The undo function!

Date: 2010-11-29 11:14 pm (UTC)
yarrowkat: (bull goddess)
From: [personal profile] yarrowkat
you know, i bet i would do well with a tablet like that, if i ever stumbled across one for free; i very much doubt i could ever bring myself to purchase one. :) i love me some ink pens!

but oh, the seductiveness of the Undo button... *grin* and layers! my usual route is twofold: be careful making marks, so that i don't fuck them up, and be creative about incorporating fucked up lines into the new thing that i suddenly totally meant to do. :)

no new year's-- i can't compete with Europe! i'll have to figure out what else i can lure you down to. i don't suppose you have a secret lifelong ambition regarding wall-building skills? *grin*

Date: 2010-11-29 08:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I totally sympathize with difficulty writing, but it's so much fun when you DO write. I always feel like I'm getting a fresh perspective.

This is the clinic you went to for 3 hours and stayed for 12? How did that come about?

Date: 2010-11-29 10:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, Echo, this clinic- it is basically made of madness. It's a twice a month volunteer clinic in the "International District" that basically serves undocumented Spanish speakers. Most of the student volunteers speak Spanish, but almost none of our volunteer docs or dentists do. On the day I showed up, I was the only student volunteer, and the only bilingual person in the building. (Can you see where this is going?) I had signed on for four of the eight hours the clinic was open for, but we ended up with a bit of a backlog, what with a complete bottleneck at me.

I honestly felt like a cartoon character. Like, had you photographed me, I would have had a little tornado surrounding me.

Around two (when I was supposed to leave) they had tracked down another translator, but I totally couldn't leave someone else alone to fend with the ravening hordes, so I stayed. I am actually pretty impressed that we were only three hours off by the end- we just started flying though patients like there was no tomorrow.

I worked there again over the break, and it was totally mellow. Less patients, more translators. I never would have suspected it was the same place.


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