M203 Diary

Monday, August 22, 2005

Es, Ich, Uberich

What a hectic week it’s been. As if MS alone hasn’t been enough to push me of the edge, my ID tag decided to go missing. And we all know what happens when we don’t have that strap of blue around our necks that apparently sets us apart from the people who wanna blow up our great university, such as former students maybe.

On a good day, people who forget to bring their ID tags are shot in the liver several times, stripped naked, and crucified at the flagpole area for all to see. Otherwise, they get reported to the dean. Either or, its really no way to start a day. On a Monday yet. So I devised measures to avoid encountering such an unpleasant scenario.

The Plan

Norma Verticalis, Ground Floor

1 – Potential insertion points
2 – Possible objectives
3 – Sanctuary
4 – There’s no four (I’m superstitious)
5 – Tango Outpost
6 – Power Ranger Hideout
7 – Insufficient data on this facility

Blue Circle – Blue Power Ranger(s)
He got blown up in the first episode, and now there are more of them. A lot more. Wait a minute…

White Circle – White Power Ranger
The Architect. Hidden in a room with lots of monitors. Yeah, I know, I’m working off the wrong fictional comedy.

Orange Circle – T
Armed with Dress Code Infringement Forms.

Teal Circle – Babe
Friendly, like the pig.

Grey Circle – Protagonist Tracks
Guile and subtlety in motion.

As 1a and 1b are unviable entry points, 1c is designated as primary insertion. Past the first gate is a social diner. The second doors lead to the first hazard. Wait for a distraction (girls, naturally) and run like the hazy wind to the refugee center (3). Blend in for as long as necessary, and then exit slowly, heading away from the stationed watch. After turning the corner, sprint around tango outpost (5), hugging the walls and avoiding entrances that may lead to an ambush. Make way towards goal.

- End Plan -

I had to do it for three days straight. And that’s not even the half of it. After the fourth day, I began to tire of having to windwalk in everyday, and I’d have to do it for the next 3 months too. Because I had no news of my missing tag, I assumed it gone for good and decidedly paid for a new one. A couple of hours later, somebody returns it to me.


So I come in the next day (sneaky as usual) and go to the 1st floor Cashier’s Office (CO) in an attempt to get a refund. They told me to come back later. I did. Then they redirected me to the Ground Floor SAD, who then sent me up to the 2nd Floor AAD. From the AAD, I had to return to the CO, only for them to tell me I had to go to the SAD. Soon I found myself walking back to the CO to fill up a payment slip, but it didn’t end there; I had to go to the SAD to get it approved. And to top it all off, I was told at the SAD that only the people at the AAD can approve my application. Finally, I slinked down from the AAD to the CO for the last time to get my reward, which became increasingly devalued when you take all my needless effort into account.

The only good thing to come out of it all is that I actually recovered my ID tag. I’d probably have paid for a new one, if it could have avoided me all the hassle that came with losing the damn thing in the first place. I’ve learned my lesson:

1)If you lose your ID, cry. It’s so much easier.
2)If you FIND one, RETURN it soon, if not IMMEDIATELY.
3)I need visual at section 7. Info gathering is crucial.


Sunday, August 14, 2005

Behind These Hazy Skies

The deteriorating air quality this past week has limited outdoor activities to the bare minimum and the necessarily imperative. That’s really no surprise, seeing how it was dangerous enough to even breathe, let alone exercise, as exemplified by an API level rising in parallel with our uni tuition fees. Undaunted, a whole bunch of us went to play futsal recently anyway. Haven’t heard any bad news so far.

As it turns out, most people have either turned to indoor activity or inactivity outright. The latter, as it stands, is an absolute no-no for medical student. It’s bad enough we get close to no exercise, no thanks to our unforgiving schedule. A typical day looks something like this (Critical events highlighted in bold):

0601-1159 Study
1200-1230 Eat
1231-1232 Rest
1233-1730 Study
1731-1800 Exercise <- (subject to air quality)
1801-1802 Play
1803-2300 Study
0000-0600 Sleep

Remember that this is only a sample. What with us medical students being human and all, we might cheat a little. Maybe, if we were feeling cheeky, we would steal an additional minute from study to play. Maybe, if we were feeling extra naughty, we would steal two. Anything more, however, is probably eternal blasphemy and sin, which would result in us going to this apparently hot place when we die.

If the index decides to stay up like a priapismic erection, we’re screwed. Because then we wouldn’t get any exercise. In such situations, there can be only one result:

Sequelae of Chronic Inactivity

This is a woman pregnant with dodecuplets, due in a month

This could be you

That’s why, for once, I’m happy to see the skies darken. And it did so today. Normally associated with a gloomy temperament, rainy weather is actually quite underrated. At least until recently it has been, given our hazardous exposure to toasted tree debris from the near West. Truth is, we don’t need help polluting the air; we already do it pretty well on our own. Hopefully, the pelting waters will wash away the filth that blankets the sky and drown the stench of burnt air that comes with it.

Rain also inspires.

I call it “Hazy”. It represents something I pray I’ll never have to see, smell or suffocate from ever again. Ever.

Fun fact: Dodec is twelve


PMS Rates in RM

I figured that some people may find this useful. :)

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

But if you have your mind on certain universities, do calculate the prices again ok? I may have typed a wrong digit here and there.. don't come scold me ya. :P And all conversion rates are from here.


Monday, August 08, 2005

Doctor's Logic

When the hospital Board of Directors asked a panel of doctors to vote on adding a new wing to their hospital, the Allergists voted to scratch it and the Dermatologists advised no rash moves.

The Gastroenterologists had a gut feeling about it, but the Neurologists thought the administration had a lot of nerve, and the Obstetricians stated they were all labouring under a misconception.

The Ophthalmologists considered the idea short-sighted; the Pathologists yelled, "Over my dead body," while the Paediatricians said, "Grow up!"

The Psychiatrists thought the whole idea was madness, the Surgeons decided to wash their hands of the whole thing, and the Radiologists could see right through it.

The Internists thought it was a bitter pill to swallow; the Plastic surgeons said, "This puts a whole new face on the matter".

The Podiatrists thought it was a step forward, but the Urologists felt the scheme wouldn't hold water.

The Anaesthesiologists thought the whole idea was a gas, and the Cardiologists didn't have the heart to say no.

And in the end, the Proctologists left the decision up to some asshole.


"Do You Comply?"


It’s really not what you probably think it is.

Shame on you, it’s a neck-tie! Whilst being the core measure of formality in most civilized territories, it has also become the center of much controversy and annoyance recently. More emphasis on annoyance actually.

Not that I think it’s the worst of all evils and stuff like that. I happen to obey the dress code. And I understand how important it is to look more like a doctor than most doctors themselves. After all, my whole university life has been dedicated to role-playing a health professional. It’s like cosplay. Colorful and exciting. And meaningless.

What I really wonder is, why a tie? What does it do? Everything else seems to have an explainable purpose. You’ve got the shirts that cover the upper body, the pants (or skirt) that handle the lower body, and the undergarments that deal with all manner of unsightly protrusions. A tie has no observable function. Let’s also bear in mind that the people who invented them didn’t live in a tropical country.

Regardless, it is part of the dress code. With its enforcement now in full flight, the past week has been somewhat entertaining to the keen observer:


Scenario #1: Pengawas Perpustakaan vs The Radical Medical Student

TRMS enters the library wearing jeans. PP no likey. TRMS don’t give a crap. PP threatens to take down his ID number! Scary…

Scenario #2: Pengawas Perpustakaan vs The Library God

TLG basks within his very own domain. Without a tie. PP no likey. TLG wears the tie, but in his resentment it looked more like he was tying a noose and he ran out of rope.

Scenario #3: Blue Power Ranger vs The Only Person Who Can Get Away With It

BPR stops TOPWCGAWI because she “doesn’t comply” with *gasp* the dress code! Oh no! Clad in a blouse and khakis and missing her mighty morphin’ ID tag, TOPWCGAWI is fortunately able to navigate through BPR’s clutches with the guile that only TOPWCGAWI can get away with! Yes! But only until the next episode. I can’t wait!


Actually there were more of similar incidents during the week, but I don’t have time to relate them all. While the matter is generating a lot of buzz, I stand on neutral ground. Truth is, I have more important things to worry about. Like my attempt to not fail musculoskeletal outright. And there’s my rotation posting portfolio, too. When I’m done with that, I might have more to say.

It’s good to have my priorities straightened out. Though I’m actually thinking of putting the KKB thingy right up front, because I can’t wait to tell the Family Medicine Department how my GP was visited by the likes of Butros-Butros Gali and Rikimaru the Stealth Assassin.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

The Last 5 Months

Semester 5 just started and from the way things are going, I doubt it's going to be anywhere near "easy". It is also the last 5 months we're spending together and apart from studies, we've got IMU Cup and Convo Mag to worry about.

Guys, I don't know how we're going to manage all that, but I do believe that if we stick together as we work towards a common goal, things will turn out well.

Good luck, everyone. :)