Jul 12, 2010

Ways to make a good impression...

1. Come early
2. Don't leave until you're told to go. This may periodically involve staring at your attending an hour past leaving time like a dog waiting to be fed.
3. Ask questions at appropriate times
4. Don't write vitriolic, misspelled, profanity-laden hate mail to your entire department

Wait, what?

Yeah, so apparently some resident thought it'd be a swell idea to do number 4. Now, I grew up in a beautiful world where the internet was increasingly providing a veil of anonymity to flame warriors and Thundercats fanfiction authors, but how dumb can you possibly be? The resident pool within a department is not *that* large... you are in a group of people that has gotten to know you over years, including your mannerisms when you're at your worst (2 am post-scut) and your personal idioms, and if that isn't enough to protect you, blasting nearly everyone else in the department including your colleagues is probably going to narrow the suspect pool to the cat not mentioned in the letter. Not rocket science. Or brain surgery. Or garbage collection.

And yes, I realize the irony of pointing this out in a blog... but I've also been relatively cautious not to email said blog to any of my superiors with "RE: YOU SUK AND SO DOS EVERYONE YOU LUV" in the subject line. Plus I'm relatively sure most of my superiors already know exactly who I am and thus can avoid my application letters with impunity. I'm also hoping someone with a love of sarcasm and path-geeks will embrace me into his/her grasp and give me a job with the caveat that I'm not allowed to talk to others without a handler. Which I think is fair.

What else... ummm... I'm studying for that pesky exam that comes after Step 1 and before Step 3. I have 10 percent of the questions on UWorld left to do and am finally beating the clock by a fair margin while skimming the questions going "blah blah blah useless" and then reading the last line. I think after you do the first 1800 questions, you just stop caring, so I think I'm going to avoid my pre Step 1 anhedonia, but time will tell. The increased time on UWorld is also giving me an appreciated bit of quality time with my iTunes playlist so I'm discovering some new bands, by which I mean "bands that have been occupying my hard drive for half a decade".

I've been studying with a friend at various locales in the interim to try and mix it up. We had a conversation at an Asian fusion place (tres chic) about preventative screening measures because I'm useless at it, so we really know how to live it up. This is sort of a running theme from my "stercobilin in the line for the Finding Nemo ride" from a few years ago.

This is my last week of heme/onc, which I've really enjoyed despite having kind of a soul-crushing day that will make me more appreciative of being on the other side of the microscope.

I'm also learning that while I don't particularly care for Spongebob despite being a cartoon focused adult, he is absolutely hypnotizing to children. Like forget Lidocaine; the second they hear "He lives in a pineapple under the...", you are effectively dead to them.

I've also learned that I can be puked on without moving my hand or relaxing my grasp, which was a useful little piece of information about myself I had not previously been privileged with. Oh, the little bits of medical school that aren't in the brochure.

Summer got a little miserable so I've been basking in finally having an A/C and occasionally venturing out to hit concerts in Prospect Park or wander off to see True Blood in a place with both HBO and and cheap nachos. I drew the line at Twilight though. Shirtless werewolves? No thank you. Shirtless werewolves with extremely gratuitous violence? Shakespearean.

I also joined the Apple cult of iPhone because I'm a weak weak person and I'm too destructive to be affected by the network problems because everything I own already requires a case lest I spill stuff on it. Just ask my (miraculously still working) laptop, which survived the great Grenadian cornflake barrage of 2008.


Anonymous said...

It is me again - with the Uworld question. How do you get through the bank two time? I will be finishing in May 2011. Will I have enough time to complete the questions?
Thanks much for your patience.

Ishie said...

So when is the actual exam? If you get a subscription now (which is pricey), you can start to go over them, which I wish I'd done for Step 1 because it would have made the end cram less stressful.

For Step 1, I got through about 50 percent of the questions and only really went hard at it for about 3 weeks total because I started it too late. So depending on when you take it, that should leave you a good window.

I found UWorld goes faster the more questions you do. When I started studying for Step 2 on it, it would take me an hour to do 10 questions. Now, I can review 30-40 in the same time frame.

And though I'd recommend running through it twice, the main thing is to get the ideas from the reviews, so better to get through it once and really understand everything than race through it twice for the sake of finishing.

Good luck!

Amy said...

Hi Ishie,
This is Amitha again. How are you? Thank you so much for responding to my questions. It really helps to talk to someone who has gone to the same med school and has an idea of how things run down here.

So I am currently finishing up third term now and will be starting the dreaded 4rth term in about a month. I was thinking of buying a subscription to USMLE World and using the UWorld Path questions to study for Path. This way, I feel like I not only will expose myself to the type of questions Dr. Bush will give us but also will get a chance to really go through the QBank. Do you think this is a good idea?

Thanks a lot and love your blog!

Ishie said...

Probably wouldn't hurt, though prepare yourself for the USMLE World questions to be really really hard if you do them early. I tried out a week or so during pharm and got like a 16% and felt awful, but it worked out fine. Do a small test subscription and see how it's working and then hit it for longer if you feel like it's going to help you through the remainder.

Good luck and thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Ishie! Do you have any more tips for Path? People are starting to freak out here already...

arg said...

Which department was this said email from! Which Hospital? Please say it was TBHC

Ishie said...

I can neither confirm nor deny that. ;)