Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Okay, now I have tools!

But I don't have any idea how to use them. This awesome piece of computing equipment comes with software that should let me make this blog WAY way way mondo better...

The only problem is that I don't know how to get the stuff on this computer up to blogger. And until my husband gets up and running, I'm kinda blogger dependent. Being that it's free and all. If I could buy a clue at Kmart, I'm sure that this wouldn't be a problem. Even though my hubbie has shown me how to write stuff in various web-creation programs (the one written by Macromedia, most notably) none of it ever sticks.

Hence, the need for a clue at Kmart. Altho I'm po' so I might have to go to the dollar store and get the discount version. I feel like I've gotten access to a supercomputer and I'm trying to get the answer to 2 + 2. Not that I could solve that anyway, but still. Afterall, those imaginary numbers are out to get me.

(They're after me! The ride behind me in large white vans carrying flyswatters. Flyswatters, I tell ya!)

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Happiness and Computing

So we sold my car. Very sad... but also quite good. I had a 2002 WRX. It looked something like this -

But mine had more dents and less miles. Her name was the Folley, 'cause I bought her when I really really really should have been conserving my cashflow.

Ripshit fast, and able to carry $800 of Ikea furniture home in one trip. How cool is that? Alas, she needed to go to a new home, so we listed her on Autotrader and she sold in less than a week.

She went to a good home... I think. He's a student in College Station, TX and his Dad's a cop. If I find out that he wraps her around a tree while drunk, I'm gonna find him and open up a can of whupass! Then again, I'll probably have to get in line behind Daddy dearest, but that's fine with me.

Anyway, with all of our new moolah, we'll actually be able to afford the final steps of making me a doctor. There are fees inside of fees, people! If I had known (I guess they told me about this cash hemorrhage... ONCE... when I was an INTERN and couldn't see past the next call night, let alone three YEARS into the future) I would have been saving pennies for a while now.

But I didn't. 'Cause I'm dumb. Hence, the selling of the car. But even the State of Texas and the American Academy of Pediatrics won't be able to spend the entire sale cost of the Scoob. Yippee!

So guess what I got. Just guess. You get three tries...

Okay, no, that's not it.
Hint: It weighs about 5.6 lbs and is Energy Star compliant.

No, but you're getting closer.
Hint: It comes in a sexy black box.

Hint: It has a 2.16 GHz Intel Core Duo processor.

That's right, I scored a totally sweet MacBook Pro! And 'cause I live with a computer super-God, he insisted that I trick the sucker out. Maxed out the RAM, the good graphics card, the second largest hard drive, the three year protection plan... Super Duper Sweet! The damn thing even has a remote. WTF? Why does a computer need a remote? I don't know, and I don't care! It's just freaking cool.

Next on the list with our cash... garage door opener. Not nearly as sexy. But useful.

Meanwhile, I'm gonna keep playing with my new toy. Ciao!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Here was the plan this morning:

- dress in the cute new *white* short skirt I bought yesterday
- get the hair cut and highlighted
- find a Windows computer (grr - Macs rule! And the USMLE does NOT because their practice CD isn't Mac compatible) and do my stupid practice questions.

What happened:

- changed into scrubs
- went to clinic (oops - I'd forgotten about that!)
- Aunt Flo came to town (wouldn't that have been freaking grand in a short white summer skirt, hmm?)
- found a Windows machine and did my stoopid test questions.

Hopefully the rest of the week will go more smoothly.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Dinner goodness

Those of you who know me, know that I'm a little bit of a gourmand. I like my food and wine - and I hate hate hate putting anything in my mouth that doesn't taste good. What's the point? So in defense of my wallet I've learned to cook. And I don't suck. Last night I made a lovely Boursin-stuffed chicken breast with garlic mashers and a side salad.

But sometimes, the fancy-schmancy food needs to take a seat. 'Cause we all need some good ole American-style grease. So tonight -

hot dogs
Kraft mac 'n' sleeze (the kind with the gooey Velveeta packet instead of the powder)
salad with ranch dressing

Awww yeah.

Friday, May 19, 2006

USMLE step 3 and buffet food

Let's tackle the second part of my title first. I discovered something new today... I don't like Dimassi's Mediterranean Grill. Not one little bit. I shouldn't have been suprised since I generally don't like buffets/cafeterias/appetizer bar thingies anywhoo. Just read the article connected to the link. How many places actually have their employees "[k]eep all surface areas clean. Employees should quickly clean up any spills. Staffers should be made aware of the dangers of spreading germs through wiping cloths. Studies have shown that wiping cloths can contain enough foodborne microorganisms to make people sick. To prevent this from happening, store wiping cloths in sanitizing solution at the proper concentration at all times." Have you ever seen a cafeteria employee hit the sanitation bucket between every wipe? I'm sure that reputable chains try to teach that to their people, but come on! It just never happens. I didn't see anything wrong at Dimassi's, but I just don't trust the whole idea of a public buffet in general. And then there was the food.

It was passable. I could eat it.

But not much more.

I won't be going back - at least not for the food. I won't protest too much if someone I like drags me back (hi Keith!)... but otherwise hell no. For the same amount of money there is MUCH better food to be had. Oh well.

Now on to the step. It is the third of three United States Medical Licensing Examinations and holy crap will I be glad when its over. It has all of this (shudder) adult medicine on it.

YUCK! Smelly adults (nevermind that I'm a smelly adult.) All this icky stuff I haven't had to think about. Dementia. Diabetic foot ulcers. Schizophrenia. Freaking colon cancer!

This is the last time I ever have to study the adult pathophys... or is it? Oh yeah, I want to do pedi ER. That means one month of adult ER. Oh powers that be, if you exist, please help me through that month... and help my patients while you're at it!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Stolen from Dave!

1) What's in the glove box of your car?

Owner's manual, spare brush. That's about it.

2) Favorite classes in college (or high school):

Anything taught by Anita Tien or David Haines.

3) Shampoo brand:

Pantene for red heads. I really like Aveda, but it's too much money.

4) Favorite piece of furniture you own:

A stainless steel table from Ace Mart Restaurant Supply Company. I really really love that table!

5) Idea of a really good first date:

Uhhh... one with my husband?

6) Favorite fruit:


7) Pick a passage from a favorite book:

"Why should i give two tugs of a dead dogs cock?" - Spider Jeruselem, Transmetropolitain.

8) What would you eat for dinner if it were your last night on earth?

Local: benjy's - what would depend on the special. I like their crawdad flapjack appetizer. US: Blue Room, Boston, MA. One of their lamb shanks. For sure. International: rissotto in Italy. Oh, oh yeaaaaaah.

9) Free Will or Destiny?

Free will.

10) What would you sing at karaoke?

Apparently, I sing Vanilla Ice. Don't ask.

11) Sweater or Sweatshirt?

Sweater. Preferably cashmere. But not likely.

12) Paris, NYC, Tokyo, or Rio de Janeiro?

Paris. Lovely town, great food, people who appreciate wine. My kinda place.

13) What do you wear to bed usually?

Nothin' Clothes are evil when sleeping.

14) If you dyed your hair, what colour would you dye it?


15) If you went back to school, what would you study?

Less freaking chemistry. More history and possibly Spanish.

16) Gum or mints?

Gum - it's all about the water brash. Water brash is the saliva that you make and then swallow by chewing gum. The great freaking thing about water brash is that it is alkaline... which helps with my heartburn. Yay!

17) Recurring nightmares?

None. At least not any more. Which is nice.

18) Age & location of first kiss?

Sixth grade in Nancy's back yard. Yes, truth or dare was involved.

19) Describe your favourite pair of shoes:

A pair of Steve Madden black cowboy boots that I bought in Boston for fifty bucks. Aww yeah. They have these great pointed toes.

20) What movie/tv character do you feel like you relate to most?

Sometimes I feel like Meg from Family Guy, and sometimes I feel like that bitchy ER chief (the one with the red hair and the cane) from the show, eh, ER.

21) First CD purchase:

Bon Jovi, Slippery When Wet. 80's hairband goodness. So yummy.

22) First concert:

Huey Lewis and the News. No idea what year, but I know that my dad had to drive me.

23) Do you like camping?

Yes, but I haven't been in years. Who knows if I would like it now that I'm all adult and stuff.

24) If you were doomed to be mauled to death by an animal, what animal would you prefer that to be?

Dolphins. As long as they were singing, "So long and thanks for all the fish" from the Hitchhiker's Guide.

25) Do you/would you own a gun?

Hell no. Especially not a handgun. Maybe if I lived in Maine and knew how to shoot, dress and cook deer meat I would get a shotgun. But handguns are only used to kill people, which I just can't agree with.

26) What religion would you like to know more about:

None of them, really. At least not in the 'I think I want to join this religion' kinda way. I'm curious about other people's beliefs... but I'm not looking to change my personal belief system.

27) Favourite food as a kid:

Filet mignon. Seriously.

28) How many languages do you speak?

One sorta well - that would be English. I used to be fluent in German, but that's gone. I can do a reasonable history and physical exam in Spanish, but let me tell ya, my grammer isn't so great.

29) If you were a natural disaster, would you be a tornado, hurricane, or earthquake?


30) If you could make one state in the US just go away, which state would that be?

Possibly South Dakota, but maybe my current state... Texas.

31) How many prescriptions do you take?

I'm supposed to be taking three, but I'm currently only on two. Oh well.

32) Lake or Ocean?

Ocean. For sure. I like them boats on that there ocean... but I'm not a beach. I'm a snow person. Oh well, my love for the ocean will go unfulfilled.

33) What is the worst lie you've ever told to get out of work, (and don't say you've never lied to get out of work, because that my friend is a lie and you know it)?

Food poisoning. Yeah, right.

34) Do you carry a backpack, a satchel or "man bag", tote bag, brief case, or a backpack on wheels?

Backpack. And no, I don't have a man bag 'cause I'm not a man. At least last time I checked.

35) Have you ever been arrested/cited for anything other than traffic violations?


36) Would you ever move for/with a significant other?

Yes - it might happen in the next two years as a matter of fact. Well, I won't be moving to find my man, but 'cause he kinda wants to go back east. Yup.

37) What was the weirdest thing you had to dissect for biology?

Well, I dissected a human in med school. Does that count?

38) Would you ever consider spending some time at a nudist colony?

Probably not. I'm waaaaaaaaaay too pale.

39) Best thing you can cook?

Either my mushroom risotto, or my lasagne. My husband says risotto or lasagne or my shepherd's pie.

40) If you were going to donate 1000 dollars to a charity, what would that be?

Red Cross or Hope and Healing in Memphis. The folks there do really good work.

I tag Eileen!


I love my mother, but I also hate hate hate her. She gets confused. Really confused. Yesterday was a good day, and everything seemed to be crusing along just fine for our upcoming trip to Cali. Today she had everything backwards. And she hadn't done the one thing I had asked her to do in order to make sure I could get our reservations today.

So now I have hotel reservations for the four days in the middle of our trip, no plane tickets, no hotel reservations in San Francisco and a mother who is convinced that I asked her to spend $1000 per room per night for four nights.

Which I hadn't done. The first thing she wanted me to do today was cancel the four night reservation that I had. I said no.


But it took a damn long while until I figured out why she had wanted me to cancel the reservations. She doesn't seem to remember how much she liked really nice accomidations on trips with my Dad, and she certainly has NO IDEA how much those rooms cost per night. Not that I knock budget travel - I don't. Shit, you all should see the hotel rooms I used in Guatemala - and I was happy about it! But I know what my mother likes, even when she won't admit it. Her favorite hotel in the world is in freaking Hong Kong - overlooking the harbor, rooftop pool, and we had a two room suite. Her favorite hotel in Boston is the Elliot Hotel (which starts at $315 a night!) and her favorite in NYC is the Parker Meridian, which starts at $295!

Yargh. The hotel Dad, Mom and I stayed in while we 'did Rome' was $474 a night. She even admits she really liked that place, especially the breakfast brunch! Why why why won't she spend the money to have that kind of quality experience? I KNOW she likes it. I know she can afford it. I could totally plan a Cali vacation much more cheaply than I plan to make this one. But it wouldn't make her happy. She wouldn't like the kinds of compromises I would make. Hell, she probably wouldn't like the activities I would plan. She's used to the best on vacation - and a trip on my budget wouldn't give her that.

Yargh. Damn it! I'll get this bad boy squared away if it kills me. 'Cause I love her.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Yay - I got tagged

I AM: a wife, a doctor, a daughter, an avid reader and a big time procrastinator.

I WANT: whirled peas. Actually, I want my dad back. Barring that, a plasma screen or LCD flatpanel TV would be nice.

I WISH: my mother didn't have short term memory issues / episodes of delirium.

I HATE: stupid people. Example - there was a case of rabies diagnosed in our PICU recently. Now, when exposed to droplets from a rabies patient, you need to get the rabies vaccine. 'Cause rabies is 100% fatal. We don't got no meds to treat that sumbitch! So getting the vaccine is important, right? So when the doc who needed the vaccine was told that he couldn't get it that Friday (and the employee health office wasn't open on Saturday) 'cause the tech had to go to freaking LensCrafters (!) I was a little upset on his behalf. That is just blatant negligent supidity. And carelessness. Oh - and incompetence too!

I MISS: Boston. I wish it wasn't so darn expensive up there.

I FEAR: that I'll disappoint my husband or fail a patient. I fear I won't pass the pedi boards.

I HEAR: Alton Brown on Iron Chef America. It's battle goat cheese. Bobby Flay just screwed something up and is starting a dish over. Bad omen.

I WONDER: if I can find a copy of the Element 'I pinch' commercial somewhere on the internet. I LOVE that ad.

I REGRET: not voting in the last primary. I can't complain if I didn't vote.

I AM NOT: daintly or tactful. This is sometimes a problem.

I DANCE: like a goth.

I SING: poorly, but very enthusiastically.

I CRY: at commercials. Sad, but true. (Just ask the husband - he's seen it!)

I AM NOT ALWAYS: nice. But that isn't news to anyone.

I MADE: chicken stock today. I love my pressure cooker.

I WRITE: admission notes, progress notes, ER notes, pediatric mock codes and this blog. I used to write well, but now what I write usually resembles alphabet soup.

I CONFUSE: TTP with ITP - it's a medical thing. I also confuse Francis with Keith. Oops.

I NEED: money. But who doesn't?

I SHOULD: study more.

I START: a new job in August. Yikes.

I FINISH: fiction (particularly romance novels) very very quickly.

I TAG: Nobody - 'cause everyone I know who blogs has either done this or doesn't do these lists. (Hi Dave!) I would tag my husband, but he doesn't blog. Yet (he says).

Friday, May 05, 2006

Apparently, I'm a bad girl.

So I stole a Dante's Inferno quiz from Eileen's blog... she landed in the 2nd level of hell. I didn't do quite as well -

The Dante's Inferno Test has banished you to the Seventh Level of Hell!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:
Purgatory (Repenting Believers)Very Low
Level 1 - Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers)Very Low
Level 2 (Lustful)Very High
Level 3 (Gluttonous)High
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious)Low
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy)High
Level 6 - The City of Dis (Heretics)Very High
Level 7 (Violent)Extreme
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers)Very High
Level 9 - Cocytus (Treacherous)Moderate

Take the Dante's Divine Comedy Inferno Test

Monday, May 01, 2006

Post 100! How about that?

Wow. I started this thing nearly a year ago, and I'm somewhat amazed that I'm still going strong. I like my blog, I like writing and I want to keep on going.


So - without much futher ado - more Guatemala!

Welcome to Livingston! I've posted about this before, but now I have pictures. Nifty. The kiddo in front is a little Garifuna boy paddling in the water, blowing bubbles, and taunting his friends in his native dialect. Some things are universal.

There wasn't much interesting in Livingston to photograph, although I tried. The best I could come up with is a picture of what I think are drying racks between two waterfront houses. I didn't catch the chickens in this shot, but trust me, they were there!

Some of the more interesting stuff was on the boatride between Rio Dulce and Livingston. The canyon of graffiti was one such site. I managed to snag a picture of the oldest graffiti on the wall. Go me!

And finally, Rio Dulce itself. A squat, run down and typically Guatemalan port of call popular with the yatching set. I don't think that these were the multimillionaire yatchers... I don't think those guys every leave the 'proper' part of the Carribean, or perhaps the Med. These guys were the college drop-out, I-started-my-own-business-and-got-lucky kinda guys. But nice nonetheless.