Monday, May 6, 2013

Piling up.

So we had a day of today because STEP is around the corner and classes are winding down. Of course, I'm like yeah. Let's get all those errands done that were piling up.

And can I just say...what the hell is wrong with me? While cleaning out my room I've been writing down every piece of backlogged paperwork, entry for the shopping list, and general errand that needs to be attacked. I've ran out of space.

Also, I think the imp that lived in our microwave, that migrated to the internet connection, has now finally made his rounds to the printer. I have been toggling firewalls, plugging and unplugging cords, and doing printer dances, but there is no go. It's very fortunate that only one thing seems to go weird at a time in our apartment. But there's SO much paperwork to be done! And campus printers are not going to be working at this time of year because graduation just happened for all the undergrads.

Doesn't matter. I'm knocking at least 10 things off this list by the end of the day. There's probably about 25.

I'm off!

Oh, and as a side note. Despite all the spam I got on OKCupid, it's done it's job. I think I'm steadily dating someone now? And of course he's a great guy, so all my commitment phobia is going nuts in the back of my head. Well, that's to be expected and dealt with.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

24 hours on OkCupid = It's dude message mad lib time!

So I signed up for Okcupid. And it is a SHARK TANK. The men have some rough competition in there.

At first I put myself as bisexual and hid my profile to only non-straights. Without a picture, I knew no one would want to look at it and it'd give me a bit of time to write a bit. Worked. Not a single visit. Then I changed it to straight and posted a photo. In 24 hours, there were about 100 messages.

Living sweet hell.

If I was to take only 1 minute quickly scanning their profile and giving them a polite rejection, that would be an hour and a half of my time. That's ridiculous. It's impossible to even reply back to them all, and let alone keep everyone straight.

To add to this, the inbox they give you only has room for 300 messages. Then it's full and no one else can message you unless they have a paid account. Then you get 5000 or something. This puts the pressure on to really just hack and slash indiscriminately. Every random "hey, ur hot" is another hair in the drain, building the clog.

And if any guy didn't realize what was going on in the ladies inboxes, I could see how they'd get jaded very quickly. Because the likely hood is that they're writing the same message that every one else is and these things no longer work when you are one in one hundred. It'd be pleasant in one on one conversation, but it's an overwhelming wave online. Which duh, riles up all the desires to clam up and hide in the receiver. There's no chance in hell she's going to respond to him unless he has a very eye catching photo, thumb nail size mind you. Nothing else is there to differentiate the guy in the message.

We could make mad libs.

(Greeting), you (verb) like a (positive adj) (noun for female). I think it would be (intensifier for an adj) (adjective to describe something positive) to get to know you. We should (verb) sometime.


(Exclamation)! (Noun for female), you are so (physical descriptor).

or for the minimalist,


or simplest yet,

(sound people make while eating food).

These of course, make fabulous combos too! Mix and match for your pleasure! Splice and break them apart! Reduce to text speak!

Needless to say, the messages are over kill. It's probably easier to just use the search function and go from there. :/

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Vehicular Archaeology

After putting cleaning my car off for several...I don't know what unit to use, I have finally found myself in a corner where I need to get it done because I am driving people in it to a wilderness medicine conference this weekend. And I'm going to make this quick, because of course there's 2 tests sandwiching a weekend that has a conference in the middle of it and a paper due sometime around then too. 


But I had to waste my time posting this archaeological dig because it is too good to pass up. And so you can know why I can't have nice things. 

Cleaned the car...found the following. 

  1. a huge bag of sea shells + drift wood
  2. water color post cards
  3. My camera!
  4. Oh and the camera bag! Completely separate from said camera of course. 
  5. 2 umbrellas
  6. 2 fist fulls of pencils and pens
  7. 1 plastic grocery bag worth of receipts, old grocery lists, directions, and other garbage. (But not food garbage. That's my line.)
  8. 2 metal water bottles
  9. an iron
  10. books on the following topics: Myers Briggs Personality Test, nutrition, cardiophysiology, handwriting analysis, jazz improvization, anatomy, and random psychology magazines that Mom put in my Christmas stocking last year. 
  11. a 16 oz mushroom box filled with raw garnets.
  12. 3 rolls of emergency toilet paper and one roll of paper towels 
  13. 2 jugs of emergency water
  14. band aids
  15. my camping backpack. Which is held together with duct tape and filled with insurance documents.
  16. The sound track for "The Mask". 
  17. 1 sunglasses bag filled with change. 
  18. 2 samples of dishwasher soap
  19. deodorant
  20. An unopened laboratory grade chemical shield gown. 
  21. An unopened carabiner, still in package. 
  22. and of course, tons of doodles that I have no plans for what so ever. But I'm keeping them anyway, until I look through them all.
The car is one step closer to clean! Which of's now all in my room instead.

But no time for that thought! I need to get the sand out and pass this clinical diagnosis test tomorrow. 


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Pressure washing.

Everywhere I go, I'm surrounded by beautiful, radiant women who hate their bodies. Combined with the natural perfectionist/obsessive under current that follows around a lot of med students, I'm worried about my friends. But as one person, there is little extra I can do in my position.

I've lived those sorts of thoughts as well. I never had a full blown eating disorder, but I certainly had my fair share of disordered eating. And I too ignored everyone else's proclamations that there was nothing to change. When you have that sort of mind set, you look for ways to confirm it.

Truth is, there's no way of finding ease with your self through changing your body. The body isn't the problem; it is the mind. The beauty paradigm you store in your head. I was never able to change my own thoughts about myself until I stretched my thoughts about other people. And that's not easy. You have to put yourself in an environment where there's a supportive peer pressure telling you that something else is beautiful, and then you have to participate yourself. You know, become indoctrinated.

What we find beautiful is at least a half learned behavior. So you have to educate yourself.

I did this when I was in undergrad by joining a livejournal group where women posted pictures of themselves, often naked, and then we just showered each other with compliments. You found something, no matter what. You do that enough, and you really do start seeing beauty in other women. Eventually, even yourself.

And that's the thing, it is physically impossible to see your own beauty unless you see it in a very wide range of people. The pleasantries you give to your friends are not enough. You have to think these things without being prompted. Only if you let bodies be art, all of them, you'll be ok.

The crazy part is, you fall out of practice too. Eventually I grew tired of livejournal in general, and I stopped using the service, including the communities. I was quite fine for some time, but within a few years, I had gone back to my same old paradigm. Which of course, I never really realized how narrow it was until my own body changed by maybe 5-10 pounds. It was enough to put me over the edge back into self deprecation and the same communal dissatisfaction that we're all so familiar with.

I got sick a few weeks ago, lost a bunch of weight due to dehydration, and when I looked at my legs it was like this wash of relief over me. Like I started to recognize them again. Reflecting, I realized the thoughts themselves where what was sick. I mean, I had food poisoning. Vomiting bile, then blood. Couldn't get my appetite for a few days afterwards because I was constantly nauseous ..and I was...sorta happy? This is fucked.

And you look around at your classmates and they've all got a regimen. They're determined to become the doctor who walks the walk and looks like the pinnacle of health. Which is still airbrushed. Pressure washed.

So I've had to look inside myself a bit deeper and realize the range of beauty I see is narrower than it was four years ago. It is. I lost my artist's eye. And this is a shitty way to live. It's time to pull out some nude art. In fact, that's going to be my next couple of pieces after I get through this rough patch in school. Tests + volunteering + conference + papers due + projects + guilt over not studying for the STEP, blah blah. The drill.

Free time! Next week, you'll be mine. And we'll make something pretty. next week.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Going back tomorrow?

Man, when gunners gun, they gun for life. You want to hit the gym again, the very next day? and yes, it has to be exactly when the complex opens, not after class. That time is for review and preview. All of it. 

I really could learn a thing or two from his time management skills. Some people are so on top of their shit it's eerie. I on the other hand, am a horrible crammer. There is just much more to do in life. I also waste a lot of time on the internet. Sometimes I wonder if the world was more productive when there was no internet. Then I remember how much time I wasted in grad school photocopying one article that was only in print. So something has to even out. 

6 AM. 6 am. 

And this isn't social hour where you do the same exercises, spot each other, and take turns goading the other person on. Nope. This is get in, get straight to the plan, get out. Hell, if it's going to be that way, I'm doing my own thing too. I've done the follow and let the guys pick the exercises thing before. If they follow the stereotype, (and they usually do, because it's a stereotype for a reason) then there's always way too much arms and chest, legs and butt are largely ignored, and all the exercises work on a single muscle, with a single joint moving. Which single joint exercises are fine...but lets do them after the multijoints like squats and pull ups. Then we'll keep our form fresh for the most complicated stuff. 

Ultimately, it works out better that we go our separate ways. Because until I find a female work out buddy who actually wants to lift heavy iron, I'm never going to find someone who wants to hit the same areas with the same frequency in the way that I do. Men and women have very different goals if they're trying to build their physique. Masculine and feminine physiques have very different muscular emphasis.

So if we're going back again tomorrow, hmm. I usually rest at least a day in between, and know what to hit because by that time, something is itching to go and the other half is sore. But I'm not really feeling that right now because my DOMS usually peaks 48 hours later. So I think I need to actually come up with a plan for tomorrow. 

Let's see. Today I hit the following:

Hip Adductors and Abductors. 
Hip flexors and hamstrings. (I have to look up the machine name that I use for this set of four. It's pretty neat, but kinda obscure.)
Pull ups, Chin ups, + Dips. (Assissted. I'm taking off 84 pounds of weight right now.)
Seated Rows
Back extensions
Then I rolled out my legs on the foam. 

There's not much you can do in just an hour. And I largely focused on my hips (because I have an injury there), my back and shoulders (because I am anticipating an injury from swing + I hunch too much and that is causing me to fold in like a bull dog), and a bit of legs and butt (because I am vain). Basically my major physique goals are to correct my posture and have fun buns. 

So tomorrow would be a good day to hit legs a little more seriously outside of the squat rack. It's probably a good day for kettle bells and lots of balance on the bosu ball. I also want to start getting into plyometrics, but I've got to do it in baby steps. And if that doesn't fill enough time, I'm going to run. Sounds like a plan enough. 

6 AM

The rest of the day could be shot, I could do nothing more productive at all, and I'd be ok with it just because I managed to get to the gym already.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Stirring Ant Hills.

I agreed to go to the gym tomorrow, at 6 AM before classes. Let's be real, today's morning routine consisted of waking up 10 minutes before I had to leave, and putting on a dress because I couldn't be bothered to match tops to bottoms. Couldn't be bothered with pants, period. ...Actually, class started a hour later than usual so today I got things done. THIS IS NOT THE NORM. I still wore the dress though.

So first I agree to run way farther than I ever thought possible, and now I'm going along with completely rewriting my sleeping schedule. Hey, motivation isn't easy to come by, so I might as well ride this out.

Besides, interesting things tend to happen more frequently when I go out of my comfort zone. Probably has something to do with novelty.

It may seem sort of dumb puppy to get my butt up to work out with a guy who's track record is to beeline straight for the cardio and plug in lectures on audio. That aside, I've got actual reasons here.

1. I actually like lifting, but I hate going by myself. Once I'm there, I work hard on my own and I don't need the motivation, but I have to GET there in the first place. Finding a gym partner is difficult even if you're going on their time. I'm not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. Also, I don't back out on promises made to live human beings, so I must go. I know how I work, and I'm fine with cornering myself to get the results I want out of my behavior. This is the perfect motivational wave. I'm gonna ride it.

2. There are changes I need to make in my body. I've lost 10 pounds over the course of the last year (mainly through getting sick and then never gaining it back), and I'm pretty certain that a fair amount of that was muscle. And! I've been putting more hours swing dancing and some of the less good leads have a tendency to yank you around a bit. So I'd like to bolster my shoulder with a bit more meat so it doesn't get injured.

3. Despite the fact that I am unlikely to have any sort of extended contact or conversation with my wandering train traveler, there was something he said that I'm taking with me. He was raised Taoist and I asked him what that meant, because I had never had it explained well to me. Truthfully, I still haven't. But he said something about going with what the world is telling you to do. Which I liked. Kinda makes me think of my grandfather's words "Opportunity knocks, but she won't break the door down."

And it's true, since spring break I have been working hard to push myself out of my box. Because the world is telling me right now that I need to build a new social circle, stirring up every ant hill looking for the good opportunities that'll bite.* So I've been signing up for things, helping out classmate's pet projects by painting for them, and learning to dance. Hell, I've even started working on myself, making strides to organize and clean my space and updating my image in steps. The car is next. I want to set my life up to be open to letting people in.

The world is not telling me to wake up at 6 AM and go to the gym. The world's telling me to get the hell out of the house. The world's telling me to engage and explore. The world's telling me that any time I've ever made personal growth, I've been damn uncomfortable. And that is when my game is best. So go.

With that being said, it's past 9:30; I'm going to bed.


*Yes, stirring ant hills. This actually describes the way I interact with the world quite accurately, and at least half the reason I like hanging out with this guy. He is a stiff upper lip, Ravenclaw, surgery gunner who happens to have a rare, beautiful smile. And I love irritating him to get at it. And in the usual circumstances I can't, I just love to be irritating.**

**Welcome to ENFP courtship.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Internet, you're going to give me a complex.

I need to stay away from the internet. Especially when it comes to any opinions on dating advice past college, gender roles, or any analysis of my generation. Because the combination of those three (plus a healthy dose of craigslist personal ad gawking) is going to give me a complex.

I might already have a bit of one.*

Here's the thing. There are a crap ton of articles out there on how difficult it is to meet someone, even just make a friend, after college. I mean, college is the perfect time to meet people. You're surrounded by like minded people on an even playing field with tons of free time. And hey, since every one is going through so many changes in life, your social circles are rapidly contracting and expanding, which means the ball is rolling. Even if you're not very socially inclined yourself, there's always gonna be at least a couple of lonely extroverts who are motivated to put a group together, and you could coast on that alone. Or together...that's a bad pun.

Anyway, I get it. But if I read one more doom and gloom article about how once I get out of medical school, I'm going to get into a residency across the country, have to start over from scratch, and making friends is going to be an impossibility so welcome to being lonely for life...I'm gonna go nuts.

There are also a ton of articles on how hard it is for older ladies in the dating game. Because what does age and experience bring that could ever even out the fact that she is aging? I mean, why would a man not go for the hot young thing? Clearly that is the number one thing a woman can offer in a relationship, to the point of exclusion of anything below the surface. Really, it's the comments to dating articles that get the worst here. Some people are trolling, but really I think the vast majority are just stretching their opinions in a place where they wont get dirty looks for them.

While it'd be exaggerated to say this in real life, it's not terribly exaggerated to say that this is the mood of the internet. I mean come on there's even statistics to back it up.

Finally, I'm sick of reading articles that our generation is too lazy, too destroyed by the economy, too dependent on technology to socialize, or too whatever to be able to survive and turn into successful adults. It's cool. We've got this. The world is changing, and...we're too young to know any better.You may not be able to give us the same kind of advice that would have been useful for you at our age, and that's ok. Because, 1. We probably wouldn't listen to it anyway and 2. we will simply adapt to whatever the world throws at us. We're kinda in that stage of our life where adapting is simply existing and vise versa.

I know, I KNOW that the generation before us got the same crap. Oh! The debauchery of those under 30! Will they ever get their heads out of the oven and their shoes on the right feet? Please. Your generation was just as bad. In fact, it's likely you never stopped glorifying your escapades or  even stopped having them. Good.

Still, I take the three of these articles together and I can paint a fabulous watercolor of misery with my own future tears. I am well on my way to being knee high in debt that I am powerless to control, friendless, and past my expiration date as a woman. Fun. Looking forward to the future.



*But even though I can roll my eyes at being powerless or friendless, this expiration date thing really bothers me. Deep inside, I know not every one gets a happy ending. Meh. Everyone needs something to be a little insecure about. It makes us human.

How's that for a first 5k?

Oh, I am going to be sore tomorrow. See, I don't run. I've never run more than two miles in my life and the last time that happened was years ago. But an attractive guy offered to let me run with him soo....yes. I'm kinda stupid that way. 5 miles of running and listening to you talk about random glomerular diseases? Let's go.

Did I say I have a bit of a thing for the class gunner? It's been doomed from the start.

I made it at least the first 3 and a half miles before the blisters made themselves known and I had to slow down. Which hey! That's farther than I've ever ran in my life! Or eh, jogged at least. I don't go very fast. But hey! 3 and a half miles! Apparently I've got an extra reserve of 2.5 miles if I'm sufficiently distracted. If I can't impress the guys out there, at least I can impress myself. Go me.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Yep, same format. Another five things on my mind.

1. First pharmacology test on Friday. I'm freaking out a bit.
2. So the train ride back from NY(this is a week ago), I sat next to a really fun guy who was traveling down to GA to start the Appalachian trail. Well, I didn't sit next to him, because when a train/bus/movie theater is full of empty seats it's awkward to just plop your butt down; I sat behind him. And then I told the attendant I'd take the same dinner reservations. That led to a conversation, which led to him moving his seat when the car began to fill with passengers, which led to us walking to the dinning car together and the waitress (who was a very no nonsense conductor of her car, filing everyone into the limited seats) told me that I would have to sit with my "husband" if I didn't want to sit next to another passenger, because the table was going to be filled with four people, this is community dining, that's the way it is. Did I say she was very no nonsense?

We thought this was hilarious and played along as though this was our honeymoon. Somewhere along the line that joking around turned into that we were on our first date instead, he gave me a soft kiss, and we slept on each other's shoulders. In the morning, we parted ways at our stops and that was it.

It was AWESOME. Yeah, I didn't know that 24 train romance was on my bucket list, but I'm crossing that one off. Anyway, we're playing a game over facebook that I haven't played in a while. Which leads me to point three.
3. I have a I like to call Muse. Basically, whenever I want to make art but I'm having a block, I used to get friends to give me words, normal or nonsense, and I'd make a picture. It all goes back to having assignments in art class where I spent as much time as I could trying to break the constraints of the assignment. At a certain point, I realized that my ability to 'think outside of the box' was very much tethered to there being a box in the first place. Otherwise, I just go blank. So the muse word is the box, and suddenly it is very easy for me to make art. I want to post the art somewhere, and since I'm not sharing it on facebook, I might as well put it up here yes?

His feet are cut off as well as a little man for scale. But that is life with scanners and non letterhead paper. And holy crap is that arm bugging me. Needs more shadowing on the forearm to make it look like it's bent, or it needs to be longer. Really needs to be longer because I contracted the tricep  so it's extended.
4. Please note that when I talk about my own art, I rip it to shreds because I'm not particularly attached to it and these things take maybe one night for lines and one night for colors. It is very rare for me to spend anything more than 24 hours on something, before I'm distracted by other crap in life. I fully accept critiques to my work, but it's hard to get them from the average Joe because they always compare it to what they could create. You learn to scrutinize your own work with nothing more than a shoulder shrug. So fer goodness sake, this is not self deprecation or for compliment fishing. I'm quite good at that too, but that's not my game here. ;p

But um, yeah. Other than that completely bizzare, seemingly unwarranted explanation, if you've ever got questions on how I make the stuff, comments, or critiques. I'd love it. Heck you can even give me a muse word, and I'll have fun with it if I've got the time. That's a promise.
5. I need to stop making obnoxious comments in my evidenced based medicine class. The problem is that no one shows up because the lectures are either extremely confusing or complete child's play and there's no middle ground. When a lecture is complete child's play, lecturers tend to lag because they're used to us being totally confused. I will say anything to keep a lecture going and I can't STAND awkward silences. But with so few people showing up, and fewer still who are willing to say something, those awkward silences start to bear down on you and you get a little loopy. Especially if the professor is walking through some class interactive question that is multiple choice yet all the answers are clearly throw aways.

Paraphrased Example Question: Your resident and your attending are in an argument about what is the most up to date treatment and they're citing conflicting randomized control trials. Do you...

A. This is a hierarchy issue, so just do what ever the attending says.
B. Use the attending's paper because it has a bigger sample size.
C. Use the resident's paper because it is newer.
D. Pick whichever paper was published in the better journal.

and the teacher will be like, " class....who wants to pick A?.... I don't see any hands?"

....and It's all I can take because I'm already loopy from sitting in the same spot for the last four hours and I have to cut this crap.

"Tempting, but NO." what the fuck did I just say? why the fuck?

Yet the guy chuckles and goes back to the long drawn out massacre of this question. And before you know it I am actually begging him to just skip to answer E and he acts like he is shocked. "Look, it's the only answer that allows me to READ and make the decision for myself. I'm not going to make some random decision based on an arbitrary factor that has very little to do with the overall quality of the paper!"

And he's so bewildered, he actually mumbles around on a topic and sort of chastises me for NOT using the argument that I just made? I just have to repeat myself. Then yay, we're all on the same page, we can move onto the next slide.

I just have to kill it. Kill, kill that awkward silence. My classmates have told me that they love me for telling it like it is, and I haven't gotten any real flak from it. I mean, I'm never cruel or sniggering with these comments. But there's a fine line that changes with the sensitivity of the listener, and I am just waiting for it to get me into trouble.

And really, this isn't just that one class, although EBM is particularly bad for setting me off. We had some dinner thing and they got the dean to get up and talk. He's a good ol' boy with a happy, upstanding attitude, which is a bit conservative and politically correct to the point of being slightly stale. In other words, he makes an excellent Dean and face for the school. Wonderful person. But not very approachable for questions, because he reminds you of an interviewer. Too nice. You're not sure if you can trust him not to judge you if you're not being...professional. I'm not sure if he actually wants to be talked to that way. Because he's got this thing where he acts sort of like a Dad who is trying to be cool to his teenager kids, and the kids aren't buying it.

So at the end of his talk, he asks if anyone has any questions...and there is silence. And then he asks again. And then some other faculty member does the cheesy, incredulous butt kissing talk of "Really? No questions for the Dean? This is a once in a life time opportunity folks!" and it gets to the point where I think he's actually a little hurt that no one is saying anything. Sad Dad.

But not for long. Because the silence is killing me inside and I'm going loopy again. Like going hulk, except you say asinine things and tear through social graces instead of buildings and stuff.

"No questions for the Dean?"


"No questions at all?"


I'm gonna kill myself.

"No ques..."

Bam! I'm raising my hand. Hanging my phantom noose, yeesh.

"What's your favorite color?"

Burst of laughter from the entire room and my brain is immediately racked with the post-outburst insecurities. OH GOD. Why did I say that? No one cares, it's harmless. But what if they do?

Yep. Well that could have been a post in itself. These are the things I think about.

Thanks for indulging.
-Kick Kick.

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Top five, 3/15.

1. I am in the thick of operation expand the social circle. It's been a month since my relationship ended, which has effectively blunted the last of my friendships from undergrad. The medical school class has well settled into groups at this point, so I'm on the prowl. Yes, even going back to main campus. My roommate has convinced me to start going back to swing. You know, this was the other way around at the beginning of the year. Funny how that works.

2. Swing dancing! Yep, my cardio is down. I remember being able to do a lot more bouncing around in the past before getting that tightening in the chest. Still, I think it'll be easy to get back. It's dancing. One of the few exercises that you push yourself right through being winded without some emotional struggle against demotivation. I mean, dancing. It's fun. I like feeling all the different styles the leads develop. A man really carries a lot of personality in the way that he dances.

3. Went over a practice patient encounter for adolescent pediatrics. Our girl was awesome and incredibly open. At 16, that would have not been me. Nope.

4. The fourth years matched today. And even though you may not know more than one of them, it is a big deal. The lower classes got a lecture hall reserved and streamed it live. People were making popcorn. And when someone matches, there's collective "awwws" and cheers throughout the audience. Everyone is huddled up, completely absorbed as a child watching Disney. You just look at these happy people, opening envelopes, and it's completely surreal that one day this will be you.

5. I am going to drown in pharmacology this weekend. Bathe in it.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Top Five!

Since I never seem to have any time to type, and the busy days are always when I want to write the most, I'm going to start doing Top Fives for the day. Because I store and store stories, waiting for the time when I'm going to be able to sit down and write for a couple of hours into the night. But those nights are gone with undergrad. And if I keep waiting, I'm going going to store stories until they crumble into dusty heaps in the back of my mind. It's better to just get down something, even it's vague. 

I think I can commit myself to writing more, writing less. And I'm going to keep on doing this until I finally get the chance to make something happen. 

So! Top Five for 3/14!

1. Went into the new born nursery to learn how to test baby reflexes today. Spent the rest of the day wanting to talk about how cute babies are and the fact that they startle reflex at everything like it's the biggest deal ever. Because at a day old, it probably is the biggest deal ever. I will never again judge parents for constantly wanting to talk about every random thing their baby does. I was only with them an hour, and I did exactly the same thing. And I'm not a parent.

2. I got so mad going through the electronic medical records training, that I gave myself diarrhea. Shit you not. 5 hours of my life that I'm not getting back.

3. Completely out of context quote of the day: "Well, to some people, love is more important than know, when they don't have life experience." #Med-school-is-just-like-high-school-but-with-better-gossip.

4. I need to invest in a better alarm than my phone. Now I'm behind another lecture. This weekend is for working.

5. Mr.Manic Pixie I met on the train sent me an email back from the Appalachian trail. squee. XD

Wednesday, March 13, 2013



I want to write. I have stories and thoughts. Of manic pixie dream boys and travel and dancing.

BUT I CAN'T. Because for the last couple of days it's been an onslaught of one pile of paperwork after another to set myself up for the wards in the next few months. Then there's a personal project for an overseas clinic project that has been completely tangled in bureaucratic red tape. I just wish I could grab a machete and start bush wacking. Then there's training modules for the electronic medical record system. And class. And STEP studying.

I want to write. I want to do it while it's still fresh. But fuck. Work has to get done first. Yep.

We'll get through this. It's more than survivable. But why do the busy ones always have to be the times you want to write the most?

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Beauty and the dog show

Spring break is wrapping up well. I am looking forward to coming back to the friends of my sweet little college town. Some bad ass salad would be nice as well. Road food really turns on the bloat. I might consider another paleo 30 day challenge to get myself back into fighting shape. Or at least a "screw you wheat, we really don't get along like I'd like."

But I really couldn't ask for a better spring break. It's been a true visit to childhood nostalgia  I blazed through a marathon of Madoka Magica with my best friend of elementary school. I played table top games with my sister and ate at her favorite restaurants. And finally, I'm in New York with my middle school best friend looking at art galleries, making jewelry, and generally just letting her dress me up before going out. And since she's in the fashion business, she gets really into it. 

It's given me a few new ideas. This spring break is sort of turning out to be a reset for me. Will I keep up with straightening my hair and makeup? I'm recognize that there's this vague sense that the profession would be more pleased with me. Straight hair = professional. Curly hair = hot mess and frizz. Make up = lively looking = professional. Natural face = tired. 

Truthfully, I feel like crafting the professional, put together, alpha lady look is like entering into a dog show. And I'm a dog who hasn't been trained for it. You can groom me and preen me. Hell, I can even walk the circles and keep my mouth shut for a bit. But you put a taco in front of me and it is squirting straight out the back end and I'm giving the guys good bye bro hugs instead of air kisses. Or I'm commenting that the paint colors in this picture remind me of watered down bile from the autopsy I went to some weeks back, so I think I like it the best. 

I guess I was never blessed with a lady filter. But I did manage to wear 3 inch heels that are a size too small for me as my primary shoes for the last two days with nary a whimper. This dog grooms well. Particularly if you put her in wedges. 

Some of this I will synthesize into my play. The greatest appeal of beauty is play for me right now. Oh, there was a time when I studied it like a science, for the purpose of appearing appropriate for interviews. But, muh. That's more of the damn dog show I'm talking about. Heh, but I'd be lying if I claimed I wasn't tempted to enter. I've got a small list of products I'm going to do price checks on when I get back home.

Regardless, this Spring break has been good to me. I feel like I'm starting fresh in a way. Tomorrow is going to be the start of another long train ride. I'll put down more thoughts then.

Be well.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Alright. Bolt bus tickets are bought. One more thing down on the list.

Stream of thought: Gotta pack.

I'm jotting some thoughts down here to make it easier to pack. March 1st sneaks up on you pretty quick when Feb is so stumpy.

Tickets. Got the train tickets, still need to buy a Bolt Bus ticket to go between Boston and NY. And I can't forget to print that whole mess up! Printing. And maps. I'm gonna need maps too.

Updating the ISIC card to keep the train tickets cheaper. Gotta pick that up on Friday, but the application was taken care of today.

Packing. OK. So.

I've got to fit a week worth of clothes into a carry on. Trains between NY and Boston didn't allow checked baggage and I have a layover. The weather is in the 40s, and I'm assuming a little bit wet. Which seems like...I'm going to need a bit more jackets than I'm used to. We'll make it fit.

I had a hiking back pack, but I forgot one key element. That thing was only able to make it through my last trip on broken dreams and duct tape. And when it was done, I'm pretty sure that I tossed it. There's a chance it may be rolling around in the back of the trunk. Still, despite the condition it is in my head, I'm still tempted to use it if I find it. After applying another layer of duct tape of course. Otherwise I'll be using a much smaller bag + a regular book bag.

My strategy is to layer as many clothes as I can possibly get on myself until I transform into a baked potato. This is to leave more space for the non clothes items, mainly my laptop, a folder filled with all my traveling paperwork, and of course, my first aid review book for the STEP. Gotta do something on the long ride. Normally I harass fellow passengers on flights, so I imagine that it's not necessarily going to be much different on a train. Still, you never know who you're going to be next too, and chances are that they're less willing to to talk to you than you think.* Being young and cute helps, but I'm not sure I carry that quite so well anymore.

Alright, what the hell do I really need to pack. Thinking. Break it down by activity.

When I'm in Atlanta, visiting a friend for a day will be super low key. Same with seeing my sister in Boston. We're going to play table top games and cook food. Minimal threshold of dress: I'm warm enough. When I go to NY, I will be hanging out with an old friend who is a fashion designer and she wants to go out to party. Minimum threshold: much higher. Maybe I can wash things at my sister's. I also know my friend will lend me clothes, but there's no way I'm fitting into her miniature size shoes.

3 pants. 7 tops. Big jacket, little jacket. Clubbing dress. Vibrams, boots. Heels? I don't even own pumps. Whatevs, figure it out. Tights. Bras. Make up. Toiletries. ...

Bleh, I'm over thinking this. I'm just going to take 3 pairs of pants and then create 7 outfits around them, throwing a dress in for good measure. Then I'll cover myself in jackets and the heaviest boots I own, lumpy space princess style. Left over space gets filled with books, computer, make up, and travel paper work. That's exactly what I just said anyway isn't it? Heh, yeesh.

Hey, I didn't promise you an exciting post. Just stream of thought word vomit about packing.

I hope this all goes well. It's surprising to me at how last minute, yet coming together this whole experience is. I've been able to find a friend in each city I have a lay over. I remembered to get my loans in just in time for them to be dispersed today. Money should show up tomorrow. I'm getting my ISIC card renewed and it will be ready JUST IN TIME, on Friday. This has all been pulled together in the matter of a week (except for the loans), and I am shocked. It just so happened that a class mate was carpooling to the same city I'm going to go out of. Got the dates screwed up but was able to change the ticket on the phone. This is crazy how smoothly this is all working out.

I can think of ways that this could screw up. I have contingency plans for each of them. But we'll come to them when they happen.

I'm going to get on a train the day after tomorrow and trek across the country. And it's all because I said I wanted to. Me. woah.

If you couldn't tell, I'm just a bundle of nerves and excitement. :)



*As an off note, I used to always wear college T-shirts whenever I traveled by myself. I go to a big state university where people get obsessed about football. It's a conversation opener, and you're very likely to find someone walking around who is in your conference when you're traveling. It allows you to temporarily pick up a posse so you don't feel alone.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"Ladies don't travel alone." The first of much bull I'm done with.

You know, there's always a part of you that wants to go crazy once you get out a long term relationship. Live dangerously.

Of course, that's not to say that your standard rational side will allow any such nonsense. Which like any other average med student, I've got the square trait in spades.

I already dug that grave, nailed that coffin, and effectively put myself on lock down by boldly claiming to my roommate that I was giving up men for lent. I'm not even Christian  But my roommate is. Between her watch, my honest word, and my three shot HPV vaccine series massive lag time to immunity, I think I'll have myself covered from making gloriously bad decisions for a while.

We can only hope.

In the mean time, I'll compromise with my compulsions for crazy. This spring break I'm getting the hell out of the house, and I'm traveling. Yeah...that's a week from now. And no, I definitely can't afford plane tickets for that. But I can afford train tickets. So my plan is to see how many old friends I can reconnect with. I've never traveled alone, and it kinda seems silly why. I didn't want people to worry about me. Like I had a responsibility to keep them from worrying about me. Or maybe there would be too much resistance. "Wait, you're going where? To meet who? But you're X years old, a young woman..."

So I could never bring myself to travel when I was young, and certainly not while I was seeing someone. Certainly not appropriate for a young southern lady to travel by herself, but why would you leave your boyfriend by himself at home when you spent so much time from him in school in the first place?

I want to make it known that no one ever flat out told me that I wasn't allowed to do something. Hell, no one's ever bothered to call me a young, southern lady either. These ideals aren't spoken so much as they are felt. It comes in the form of your parents yelling at you for forgetting your phone because "you could have been dead in a ditch somewhere". I comes in forewarning whispers about "creepers" and "crazies" when you tell someone you write to a pen pal you met online. It comes in the force never ending lapping waves at your feet, reminding you that you are a woman in a big nasty world that preys upon little pretties.

Buh. I'm tired of it. Particularly the part where you feel like you need to ask for permission to do anything that is not pre-approved, but who do you ask?

Which is the bright side of being 26 now. Sure, you feel old when you're in a college town and 23 officially puts you at oldest dude/tte in the club. But hitting 26 gives you a certain freedom. The freedom to say "I'm too old for this kid shit." Then that's that, and it's over.

So, no. I really don't think that I'm doing anything daring by planning a trip to travel alone. But I am surprised that this is the first time I'm going through with it. Which I'm actually really excited about. And well, funny enough, I'm only willing to do it now that I'm single. I'm sure I could go all psychotherapist on why my brain was inspired now of all times, but I think it's a good bet I should get some sleep.

Be well,
-Kick Kick

Friday, February 22, 2013

Fresh start

I haven't posted in a while. The long story short is that due to some weird circumstances a lot of communication issues started rearing their head in my relationship. True to stereotype, it fell apart. When push came to shove, med school won out. I'll just leave it at that. He's a damn good person, otherwise I wouldn't have dated him for over three years. We were simply less compatible than we thought.

So with that on the side, I've been dedicating the rest of my free time to keeping afloat in class. Hence the not writing. Today was a blur of four exams, and there's a straggler that's coming up tomorrow in a class focused around statistics and evaluating the scientific literature. Evidence based medicine is the buzz word.

Of course when you're cramming for pathology, radiology, oncology, and clinical diagnosis the day just figure that stats can be figured out the night before. So some students and I met up randomly to start teaching the material to each other and that's what we've been at for the last five hours. It actually went really well, considering how puzzled we all were previously.

And I have to say this, tonight was a night where I felt incredibly proud to be a part of these people. It's probably the first time I've felt proud to be a part of medicine. I wasn't even proud when I originally got accepted to medical school in the past, just relieved. I have some theories why, mainly that a lot of the people I knew really resented physicians regardless of whatever prestige they associated with them. Or there's the constant talk of pathological competitiveness, neuroticism, and just plain old self absorption you hear infecting the entire gestation of the physician from pre-med to attending. I bought into that fear before I got into medicine, and I've been carrying the guilt of being associated with those opinions ever since. Not tonight.

I'm surrounded by the hardest working people I know. We build each other. I just felt a great sense of calm working through this material that I wouldn't have felt if I was working through it on my own. The communication was easy, free flowing, non judging. Everyone was going to get to where they needed to be, the common goal. I profoundly respect my classmates.

And really, that's what I needed to respect the field. So, I'd like to clarify. I'm not proud to be getting a job. I'm not proud I was picked by admissions. I'm not proud of the "profession". Fuck all of that. It really doesn't move me.

I am proud that I know good people. Respect an unflappable truth.  The oil in your feathers. It doesn't really matter what anti-doctor, anti-medical system, anti-faith-in-humanity comments get thrown at you. You respect the people around you. Sheets of stinging rain roll smoothly off what only shared experience brings. You can't bring me down with what builds me up. I know better.

While I was smiling quietly to myself, this realization has been a long, slow process. I think it's made  me more willing to be a patient because I'm finally willing to trust my provider. I also feel a little more stable on my feet, which I'm going to need now that I'm out of a relationship which I put so much of myself into. Truthfully, dating again sort of terrifies me because it's been so long. And I'm in no rush. Which is good, because my track record is to hop into new relationships too quickly, never being single, and in a sense, never really figuring out exactly where my identity settles when I don't have an outside source of influence.

I am dusting myself off, in a slow, methodical fashion. Yesterday I went in to get an HPV vaccine and got my standard well woman's exam while I was at it. Offices need to stock themselves with blankets, because those paper smocks are SO DAMN FRIGID. Nothing like being naked and cold to make you feel dehumanized at worst and as "one with the freezie pops" at best. My NP asked me if I'd like STD testing as well, and I figured, sure why the hell not. Seems like a honest way to enter the dating field again. And then I was told that the billing is different on a new system and this would now cost me a few hundred dollars.'s health department time!

Luckily there's no rush. I'll get that appointment set after the exam tomorrow and the following one on Monday. Some weeks are just a little more smooshed in than others. Life, right?

That's all I can reasonably write for now. Hope life is going well on your end too. Wherever you might be.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Start STEPing

Yep. I'm back. The semester starts again. Over winter break I was an absolute vegetable. A glorious vegetable who had reverted back into a child like state of playing games and eating holiday sweets. I regret nothing. I really was burnt out.

Of course now that I have a couple of days of classes under my belt, I need to get cracking. And more importantly, I need to start rolling out the plan for the step test. Because that's in June.

Yeah. I know. It starts.

For the uninitiated, the STEP exams are our boards. I don't know what the heck it stands for. We get three total, the first two are taken in middle school, and the last one is taken in residency. STEP 1 is the one that people stress about the most by far, because welll... 1.we're at that point in our lives, and 2. the scores you get determine what individual residencies you can apply to. The step is so important, that to get a non competitive score means to discount certain specialties all together. For example, you must score about the 75th percentile or higher to be looking at plastic surgery residency. They're most competitive, so they can afford to be choosy.

The step 1 is taken at the end of second year after all of your basic science courses are out of the way. Then third year you go onto the wards. So before you've experienced what specialties are out there, you already know which ones wont even sniff at you.

So what's a student to do? Well, as long as you don't want to discount anything you haven't tired yet, you study your ass off and shoot for that top 25%. And being med students, it feels like everyone is either a gunner shooting for that top 25%, or a survivalist shooting for the average score of people who shoot for top 25%. Um...if that makes any sense.

So I hatched a plan to a buddy of mine today. We make this into a competition. Not for score. I never set goals for numbers. Weight, scores, money, it's meaningless. You always set goals for the practice and actions it takes to get you to where you want to be. So we're competing in study time.

Here's the rules.

1 block = 25 minutes of study time + 5 minutes of break. If you choose to use your break for more studying, that's you're problem. I chose this number because of the pomodoro technique.

Every block you finish studying materials specifically for the STEP, i.e. not class notes, the other person owes you a dollar.

That's it. If we study consistently and well, then we'll be even and no one owes anything. But given that the hours can add up quickly, it's easy to get caught behind if you slack. After six months, this could easily turn into hundreds of dollars if you left yourself that unprepared. In less than 24 hours, I'm lagging 8 dollars already. oh my.

This could either be one of the worst or best decisions I've ever made in my life. We shall see.