Saturday, July 30, 2011

Things I Learned/ Realized Yesterday

Give me the exact length of the longest eyelash, and get a free hug!

1. The life of a girl is VERY complicated. Sometimes, it's because of nature (e.g. menstruation); most of the time, it's because of society and culture. As little girls grow up to become ladies, they also learn to complicate their lives by choice - but subconsciously, it's out of fear that society would sanction them for failing to measure up to the law.

2. Eyebrow plucking is NOT FUN. If I were not a med student, it would be legal for me to hypothesize - and get away with it - that as the eyebrow progresses medially, it also acquires more and more nociceptors. Wait, that doesn't sound right. But my eyebrows are thinner and now have a definitive arch.

3. The lock of a bra is its most annoying part.

4. Rolling up a frilly dress and stuffing it inside a bra to create fake boobs actually gives one bigger-than-usual boobs. Bigger-than-usual in comparison to the prevalent cup size in the country or neighborhood or classroom.

5. Putting on make-up is like an exercise in coloring, like what we used to do in pre-school. You have to know the right shade of the right color, and you have to color only within the allotted area. Removing make-up is like giving your face a body scrub.

6. In general, men can perceive the presence of lipstick on a woman's luscious lips. Women would know if the lipstick's a fraction of a millimeter overboard.

7. Lastly - but this is not about girl-dom anymore - people who are top of the class aren't exactly nerds. (Well it does take some serious amount of studying to ace exams.) What dominates their personalities is their (sometimes egotistic) desire to be on top, to be right.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

No Classes = More Study Time

Identify the degree of herniation.

Classes are suspended today. They announced it last night. This is actually the first time in my entire stay in the University that the administration announced the suspension of classes the night before.

I'd like to believe that today, we officially become real medical students, 'we' being the 162 members of the Class of 2016 (and feel free to feel included if this is also your first year in med school). A day like this back in premed would have me watching some movie, perhaps sleeping. Now, 'classes suspended' means 'more time to study'.

'No classes' today means more time to study for Friday's big exam day: a morning lecture exam on the anatomy of the spine and the lower extremities, radiology of the extremities, gait analysis, and exercise physiology; and an afternoon laboratory exam (read: CADAVERS) that will be at least 162 stations - muscles, blood vessels, and nerves of the upper and lower extremities, gross anatomy of the human skeleton, histology of muscles and bones, and radiography of the extremities. 

I'm having a ball here. Stay safe, if you're threatened by the typhoon. And don't forget to bend your knees when picking something up from the floor, because not doing so increases the pressure in your intervertebral discs by about 400%.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Monday Evening Nerd Talk

 Identify the layers visible and body part origin.

You know how they say that we get what we deserve? I believe that now. It happens to be true most of the time. I'm talking academic performances here, so don't start on the stinking state of this nation.

They released the results of our exams in dermatology and the upper extremities today. I got 83/100 in the dermatology written exam and 98% in the orals (I love Thailand!). Our overall highest in the entire derma exam is 91.75%, and she's one of my bestest friends in school. I got 89.61%, which places me in the top 20 of the class or something. I'm just speculating here.

Anatomy was so much not-kinder. After years of clamor and hundreds, probably thousands, of failing grades, the department's finally decided to lower the passing mark from 70% to 60%. Our highest, codenamed 'Colgate" (like the toothpaste), got 119/140. I got 103, which places me at 43rd in class, or to be more exact (since there were many of us who got the same grade), the upper one-third. If you're wondering what my codename is, it's derived from something found in this post.

This was fun. Goodbye.  

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Three Exams Next Week and Here I Am

It's 10:20 PM. The past thirty minutes, I've been reading Patti LuPone's blog in her official website. The more I read, the more I fell in love with her - seriously, because I've never really been much of a Patti fan. What a very fascinating and honest woman! But you know what they say: You're either a Patti lover or a Patti hater. 

Mrs. Lovett blew a tuba.

I used to think I was somewhere in between - that is, apathetic. But who wouldn't fall in love with her after watching - er, listening - to the 'Gypsy incident', or all the "Mrs. Lovett" songs in the 2005 Sweeney Todd revival? (I still don't like her version of I Dreamed a Dream.)

But the way she writes in that blog: She does it with so much sincerity and passion. She really means what she writes and she's very clear with what she writes. The woman has a voice, a loud and noble one, and she has her principles as well - which, in this time and age, is a rarity in the world.

Now when I think of Patti, only one other Broadway star also comes to mind. No, not Elaine Paige (I really meant 'Braodway', not 'West End'). Behold: the goddess that is Bernadette Peters. I used to think it's either you're a Patti fan OR a Bernadette fan - never both, or you'd explode from all that talent to admire. Quick, someone give me a copy of the Follies revival album!
Bernadette Peters at 63. I knoooow.

It's been a week since my brother and I watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. My teenage years are thus officially over. I can't really say I grew up with Harry Potter. I watched the first film back in third grade (November 2001), entering the theater completely unaware of its awesomeness or its potential lifelong impact.

Remember how you felt while watching the spectacle that is LOTR: The Return of the King? That's how I felt with this one. In my opinion, the second best Potter film (after Goblet of Fire). Now time for the marathon.

I watched Reign of Fire (with Christian Bale) because of the dragons.

I'm officially six weeks into med school, and everything's just starting to sink in. We had our first anatomy exam last Tuesday (it was actually the anatomy, physiology, and histology of the upper extremities). On Monday, we will have a histology exam (lecture and microscopy exams on general cell structure, epithelium, and connective tissue), and on Friday, the grand anatomy-physiology-radiology exam of the lower extremities, plus the cadaver laboratory exam.

Now that I've mentioned it, I'm actually sort of feeling guilty that I'm doing this post instead of burying myself in books. Dammit.

 We won LadyMed last year. Photo by Victor Arcega.

Lastly, here in this blog, the first official announcement: I will be representing the Class of 2016 in LadyMed 2011. What is that? Follow the link.

Have a great Sunday and last week of July!