The Post-Call Walk of Shame

When I’ve had a really rough night on call, the only way I can get myself home in one piece is to play the music in my car really, REALLY loudly. I can get a bit raucous. Yesterday as I was driving home after one such call, P!nk’s Walk of Shame came on my shuffle.

You can see why I giggled like crazy:

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Cadaverish Tales

tumblr_n94hlvcFOs1tpw2ero1_1280It’s been a long time since med school dissection, and I must say I never really enjoyed it. I appreciated it, sure; but just like I rarely enjoy surgery, I rarely enjoyed dissection. It’s something that just WAS.

I had a lot of thoughts about our cadavers though. I wished we had a dedication ceremony, as many med schools abroad have. Our professor’s reasoning was “there are too many religions to accommodate”, but I thought that was a silly excuse because whoever said that a dedication ceremony had to be religious at all?

When we teamed up for dissection groups, we were told to ensure there was a male in each group to help with some of the “tougher” work. Of course, some of us disagreed with such old-fashioned suggestions and teamed up in all-girl group anyways. Continue reading “Cadaverish Tales”

“The Spinal is Working”

A woman lies on the operating table. The medical officer and the intern are draping the patient while the scrub nurse readies her instrument tables.

An awkward smell surrounds us out of nowhere.

The nurse says, “The spinal is working,” to indicate that the patient “did it”. Poor patient hardly has the opportunity to defend herself.

I hear that phrase so often – “the-spinal-is-working” – that I become convinced it is synonymous with, “I farted, but let’s blame it on the patient who is doped up and too excited to meet her baby to notice.”

I guess we could totally blame it on the infant, too.

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Three Months of Adulting: Flashback to my First Call

Today I’ve been working for three months. It’s almost hard to believe. My first rotation is almost over, and my next rotation will be anaesthesiology (they just won’t let up, will they?).

My first call of Internship was on a Sunday. I was so nervous that I had an upset tummy that morning (but not upset enough to call in sick). It was terrifying and exhilarating. I had a big breakfast – perks of living at home!

I wasn’t even halfway to hospital when my phone rang. We don’t have pagers, we just have speed-dials so we are reached directly via cell phone. I thought maybe the medical officer was calling to shout at me for being late, but I was not actually late YET.

More like 24-hour float, but anyways. Click image for source.

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I am a closet-soppy [Book Review]

SOPPY is Philippa Rice’s collection of comics and illustrations based on real-life moments with her boyfriend. From grocery shopping to silly arguments and snuggling in front of the television, SOPPY captures the universal experience of sharing a life together, and celebrates the beauty of finding romance all around us.

I don’t know how I guessed that I would like this book/graphic novel/comic. I had never heard of Philippa Rice before (sorry) and nobody that knows me would describe me as a romantic. I have quite a cold exterior.

You can’t truly call Soppy a graphic novel. It really is more a collection of comics, of small skits of a young couple’s life together. The red-black-white colour scheme works so well for me, and I love the way that Philippa and Luke are portrayed, from their messy studies to the way she cocoons herself in a blanket (I do that too) and even their clothing and socks! Continue reading “I am a closet-soppy [Book Review]”

Pity the T-Rex

My friends and I have an unhealthy obsession with T-Rex. It all started when one of the guys said, completely randomly, that dinosaurs became extinct because Rex had a tummy-itch and couldn’t reach to scratch it. (You had to be there.) There are so many funny T-rex pictures, and since then I’ve found Hugh Murphy’s awesome Tumblr, T-Rex Trying. It’s hilarious and sad and you should check it out.

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Ten Things I’d Like To Say To Capetonian Drivers

Due to my lack of foresight (or bravery), I haven’t had my driver’s license for very long, and I would never claim to be a fantastic driver. But I can drive, and I abide by the road rules (usually…) and I do have a bit of road rage. As in, I like shouting into the empty void while driving. [I don’t hoot. I don’t want to get shot at or anything.]

Most of the driving I’ve done has been in Cape Town*, and MAN, do these drivers annoy me sometimes! I feel like I need to install an LED-message bar on my bumper so that I can choose any of a select few messages to convey to fellow drivers. Heh.

1. Y’ALL NEED TO USE MORE PUBLIC TRANSPORT

Have you driven in Cape Town proper recently? So much traffic, so many cars, so little damn parking. (I’m sure the air pollution isn’t so great either.) Trains may not always be reliable, but there’s the MyCiti system now. C’mon people: it’s affordable and fast and awesome.

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Three Things You Can’t Do With A Broken Middle Finger

1. Write neat patient notes (my OT-sister says that means my pencil grip isn’t great. But it is functional. When I have a functioning hand.)

2. Draw blood on a neonate (because of the crab-grip required. Those little premies can be quite powerful when you bring a needle their way.)

3. Carry a heavy textbook with one hand. Then try to catch it. Ouch.

One thing you can (still) do with a broken middle finger: tell people where to get off.

xray r mid finger Continue reading “Three Things You Can’t Do With A Broken Middle Finger”

Things I Have Done When Over-Tired

There’s been a lot of talk about working hours on this blog recently, as well as the risk that tired doctors pose to themselves and patients. That got me thinking about silly things I have done without thinking when I was exhausted. These all happened either at the end of a long call, or when I was post-call.

Continue reading “Things I Have Done When Over-Tired”