Thursday, June 30, 2016

Public Comments - Being Careful

It is an unfortunate day when the great country fell to people who are uneducated, resort to name calling and can't carry a decent conversation about politics without becoming rude, obnoxious, condescending, and worse.

After the Bush election with Gore, it seemed like the mud slinging didn't end with the candidates, it flung onto those who supported either one of them.

That is pretty pathetic and a very good indicator what is really wrong with this country.

Uneducated people, being misinformed by people with no other outlet than the internet, elected a President who connected with them only because he was "cool" and "educated" and yes, black.  He said the right things, did the cool things like sit at a basketball game with Jay Z (the cheater), drank beer like an every day guy.

The uneducated - in droves - voted for him and he will thankfully leave office in less than 7 months.

Obviously, I didn't vote for him either time.  In 2008, I simply did not vote as Palin is a sham which indicated McCain was not thinking straight.

This election has me pondering the same thing.

I don't mind discussing politics, and love hearing other people's point of view.  I can do so without name calling, insulting commentary, obnoxious and inflammatory remarks.  It's what education does for someone, it's what class is all about.

Yesterday, my twitter blew up because I typed #NoClinton and was called in private and in public an idiot, dolt, daft, stupid, flaming bitch, and many other things.

Really?  That's what this country has come to?  Because I simply say I won't vote for a candidate I'm all of that?  Really?

Apparently mud slinging now goes to common, everyday people.

That is not only pathetic but it is frightening.

I deleted all of my posts for I am a med school candidate and unfortunately, not that I said anything wrong or flaming or worse, I don't want to get hit with the seagull affect of others who are simply inflammatory.

It's a sad day in America.  We're not ever going to be great again, all we can do is stop the slide toward the slums.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Oh Robin -

Many years ago now, life was really handing me some brutally difficult times.  I have often said that 2010 was the 2nd worst year of my life only the to the year my son died.

Without belaboring the muck again there were flashlights moving between my house and the guest house (yes, I was pretty wealthy back then), I hid under my desk.  Playing World of Warcraft.  On my druid.

Trade chat is often times a wide open troll with those who are good keeping the conversation going into the abyss that is trolling and then there was one.

He was spectacular.  Witty, sharp tongued, almost nasty.  He started in on me.  While I hid under my desk.  I begged him to stop in private.  He and I started talking.  Those conversations lasted years.

He'd often told me he'd help, that he had some money, that'd he'd been successful in LA.

I didn't believe him because - you know - everyone is 6'6" and 220 lbs on the internet, right?

Well, shortly before Robin passed away, those conversations stopped.  I never knew it was him, never knew he played on our server.  Until, that is, after he passed.

I think the anonymity of players is why many celebrities play.  They can be who they are without anyone ever knowing.  As it was... with Robin.

Robin - I wish you knew... as you wanted me to be.


Miss you greatly my human priest friend.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Tonight. AMCAS Opened.

Tears came easily at 11:50 PM on June 7, 2016.

Tears of relief.  Tears of regret.  Tears.

Make no mistake, the path to medical school is hell AND I've loved every single, stinking, harsh, not-an-A moment.

I've loved note taking, pushing to learn new science, getting up at 4 AM to study before another exam after having been up until midnight the same day.

I've loved reading research articles to get ready for the MCAT.

I've loved learning new ways of looking at things (thanks physics!), (thanks biochem!).

But what I really loved?  Made my heart just leap?  Made me believe that just maybe?

Was clicking "Submit" and seeing this:

And then reaching for a kleenex.

30 years of regret just soaked into a tissue.

30 years of self-beratement and chastising gone into a kleenex

This path is not for the faint of heart no matter your age.  This path is a roller coaster of emotions, and mental gyrations - even outside of physics.  This path constantly makes one wonder if one should stop.  Or go.  This path... is like none other.  And I'm so proud of myself for having gotten this far.

Tonight, on day 1 of the 2017 application cycle, I'm officially:

A Medical School Applicant (2nd oldest ever, thank you very much!)

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Personal Statements - Tips & Tricks

While the post could be about everything that has been written everywhere else (tell a story to show how a shadowing opportunity affected you and inspired you to become a doctor; explain a bit about why you got such poor grades so long ago - required for non-trads carrying baggage from years, if not decades prior to now).

I'm avoiding that here.  That info is well versed on many forums, websites, blogs, reddit, SDN, among others.  I think even my twitter feed has the info tagged to retweet automatically.

What you should know is this:

1.  People who offer their time to edit your PS are doing so of their own free will and are not paid for it.  PLEASE don't monopolize that or demand.

For the past 2 months, I've been reading and editing PS's.  Most of them are pretty well written, one was superb.  I thought mine was pretty stellar and then I read that one.  All I could do was bow and salute.  Here's to you hopeful pilot - you got this!  Can't wait to high-five you next year when we BOTH start!

Overall, I've read close to 100 of these personal stories, letters, vignettes of lives.  It has been an amazing honor to do so.  Privileged that people - especially the hyper competitive lot that comprised 100% of premeds - trust me with their material.

Everyone of those who sent me their life story was polite, gracious and kind.

Then I got another one AFTER I posted that I was not taking any further PS's for review.  I simply do not have the time.  With a client that I work 50+ hours for, physics 2, and MCAT prep - I'm buried.  Sleep evades me most nights and often, I run on 5 - 6 hours at most.

PLEASE, if someone states they are NOT able to take any more PS's for review, don't waste their time asking.  It's another intrusion into their lives.

FOR THOSE OF YOU who were in first, and I offered to review subsequent editions, that doesn't apply to you.  It only applies to those who I've never spoken, written or responded to.

2.  My opinion is just that.  It was free.  You get what you pay for.  While yes, I was a nationally published editor at one point in my life, that doesn't mean that whatever I write is gospel.  It's simply my opinion.

So don't be offended, don't write me back with snotty remarks, don't PM me that you think I suck.  Pretty sure that advice goes for everyone who reviews PS's.  Just like you guys talk amongst yourself at who is a good editor, we editors do too.  Think about that.  :)

Each PS takes me about an hour to go through.  I take my time.  I rearrange sentence structure so the PS flows, change grammar and often times, substitute more suitable words.

There's an old saying: take what you like and leave the rest.  At the end of the day, I edit like I do to HELP YOU because the end game is the same for all of us: Med School admission.  Right?

Am I tough?  Yes.  Am I good?  Probably.  Am I perfect?  No.  (Hell no, actually!)

3.  Know that on average, the adcoms spend less than 30 second gleaning every little morsel they can from the PS.  It stinks that we spend hours if not days and months worrying about this little thing that describes "WHY MEDICINE" and they spend 30 seconds on it but do we care?

No.  Again, the end game is the next hoop in our journey to hopeful med school admission.

Finally, go nail this application cycle which opens in less than 3 days.

LETS GO! And good luck to all of you!