15 April 2010

Skeezy old man

My friend and I were sitting outside enjoying some frozen yogurt after a sushi dinner when we were approached by an elderly gentleman. Well, my friend was approached... he interrupted our conversation and completely ignored me while having the following conversation with my friend:

Old man: Excuse the interruption but you look familiar. Are you on the volleyball team?
My friend: No I'm not.
Old man: I'm retired so I have the time to keep up with the sports, you know. Are you a student here?
My friend: Yes.
Old man: What do you have... two years left?
My friend: Yes.
Old man: What are you studying?
My friend: I'm actually a graduate student.
Old man: In what?
My friend: Medicine.
Old man: That's a long and difficult road. What do you think of this healthcare bill Obama just passed? Do you think it will be good or bad for doctors?
My friend: My friend and I were just discussing that. We agree it will be bad.
Old man: Yes, you won't make the big bucks anymore. Probably doesn't make it worthwhile. Maybe you'll change fields now. Medicine is a long road.
My friend: I think I'll stick with it.
Old man: [gives his name, sticks out his hand to shake hers]
My friend: [gives her first name only]
Old man: [first name] what?
My friend: [gives her last name]
Old man: [mispronounces her last name], is that English or German?
My friend: German. I was actually in the middle of a conversation with my friend so if you'll excuse us...
Old man: Do you have a boyfriend?
My friend: Sir, I ...
Old man: Well now I was hoping to ask if you would like to get together for lunch some time so we could get better acquainted in a proper manner?
My friend: I don't think so...
Old man: Well if you don't ask, you'll never know. Take it as a compliment and have a nice evening.

Ok, so despite the veneer of politeness it was a decidedly skeezy conversation of the part of this AARP member. Let's not forget that when he approached her, he thought she was an undergrad with two years to go... that would make her 20, max. He looked an easy 70. Did he really think he was getting a yes? Delusions of Hefner much?

08 April 2010

Who knew?

The reservoir for leprosy in the USA is armadillos.

Scorpion stings can cause acute pancreatitis.

pls Reply: none

A grad student sent out an email request today asking other grad students to take a short survey for her biostat final project. She sent it to all the grad students at UofM. One person, who took her survey, was appalled by the gender choices: male or female. Appalled enough to spam the entire list of grad students with a paragraph on social justice and acceptance.

That was a poor choice. Even poorer decision making was displayed by the 20 other people that then continued the discussion CCing ALL the grad student list-servs. The discussion expanded somewhat and the most recent email contained not just statements on social justice, but on manners, the phylogeny of the mango tree and the racial classifications on the US Census.

We've passed 40 emails and they still trickling in.... seriously people, don't you have something BETTER to do? Like, write your thesis?

07 April 2010

Another fun fact...

Once upon a time in France, children born with cretinism were thought to be so mentally retarded that they were incapable of sinning. Thus the name cretinism, meaning Christlike.

Cretinism, for those not studying for the USMLEs, is endemic fetal hypothyroidism.

05 April 2010

Alphabet Soup

Flash of brilliance: Immunology should be taught Sesame Street style.

This episode is brought to you by the letter C...

Big Bird: Hey Elmo, what are you doing with those big letters?
Elmo: I'm building the classic pathway of the complement cascade!
Big Bird: Gee Elmo, that sounds hard. Can I help?
Elmo: Sure! Why don't you hold these IgGs and C1s for me?

Elmo hangs IgGs and C1 on big bird like ornaments on a christmas tree.

Elmo: With the power of IgG/C1 you can split the C2 and C4!

Big Bird karate chops a C2, the halves come apart as C2a and C2b. He then chops a C4, creating a C4a and C4b.

Elmo: Yay! Hey, these two stick together!

Elmo stick the C2a and C4b together like magnets. A C3 floats onto the screen.

Big Bird: What's that?
Elmo: I can take care of it with this!

Elmo uses the C2a4b like a sword and slices the C2 into C3a and C3b, but the C3b sticks to the sword. C5 floats onto the screen...

Elmo: More of them! There are almost as many proteins in complement as there are in coagulation!

Elmo slices at the C5 with his C2a4b3b, splitting it into C5a and C5b. After a moment, cookie monster walks in sniffing the air...

Cookie Monster: Me smell... me smell C5a! Mmmm... cookie monster like C5a... nom nom nom

Elmo: Cookie Monster, what's that on your tummy?
Cookie Monster: Those are my lobar nuclei! Me hungry... me want to phagocytose!

Big Bird: This was fun Elmo! Next time we should try the alternate pathway!

02 April 2010


I was looking up information on intelligence tests (they constitute testable material on USMLE step 1) and I found a page about high IQ societies and their entrance requirements. Apparently many of them will accept high scores on the GRE or the LSAT, but not the MCAT. I'm not nearly as surprised that the GMAT doesn't count...