Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hanging in There

Man, it's been a crazy week. And it's only just become Tuesday! Already it's been full of ups and downs.

Down: So, the anatomy tutors brilliantly scheduled their anatomy practice lab practical the same evening as we scheduled the LGBT opening social event. This means that practically no M1s will be attending. Grrr. The same thing happened last year, so we tried to avoid that situation this year. But the tutors decided to (conveniently) move the event. -_-

There was much swearing and cursing on my part (in my head anyhow) and on the part of my treasurer (verbally).

Up: Because we needed to generate M1 involvement for the LGBT group, I've decided to schedule an "ad hoc" general meeting if you will next week. Thankfully I was able to reserve a room at a decent time. Now I just have to hope someone, anyone, shows up.

At least APAMSA is a group I don't have to worry about. So many M1s showed up! And not only that, so many of them volunteered to be on the various committees!! Last year I remembered the then-M2s were practically pulling teeth trying to get our class to volunteer for stuff. This year, totally different situation. Also, there are about twice the number of M1s on committees as M2s. Crazy!!
Classes are going okay. Today, for the first time, I sat through immunology and was totally lost while still being awake. :-/ At least pathology is easy for now because the topic is largely review for me (inflammation, cancer, cancer genetics).

I need more sleep. Tomorrow and the day after are going to be LONG days, bleh.

Thus concludes this update. Still hanging in there!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rant: Frustrations

Blargh. Day 2 of classes and already I'm stressing out hardcore, but not over classes. Oh no, classes wouldn't stress me out quite as much as some of the people and drama around me.
1. I don't know why, but I've been really snappy and short at my roommate. Little things he does seem to set me off in a corner of my mind. He doesn't understand that my family is quite strapped financially this year, and he even suggested that my brother or I get a part-time job. But we're med students . . . there's precious little time for adequate decompressing, much less a job.

Also, he keeps stating how talking about psychiatry and medical ethics are worthless unless we're immediately faced with those dilemmas. I vehemently disagree, as I believe that understanding how people think and how to reason through even hypothetical ethical conundrums are useful. He argues that because we're reasonable people with common sense, that those qualities alone are generally sufficient. Well, if they were truly sufficient we wouldn't have a need for ethics committees. I could go on and on, but I don't want to sound like I'm foaming at the mouth.

I've decided that I can't discuss such matters with him. He never accepts anything I say as valid and tries to "light-heartedly" discount my points, and I just get frustrated. I'm putting my foot down: I'm not discussing this with him from now on.
2. There's tension between one of my friends, her roommate (my treasurer for one of the student groups I'm in), and me. Let's say my friend is M and her roommate is K.

So K sent both of us a rather bitchy email earlier telling us that she doesn't like how we've been talking about her to each other. M gets furious at this email. And I must admit, it did cast a dark cloud over my head for several hours.

I reply to K's email and tactfully apologize. She is pacified by this. Then M sends me a message on gchat asking me why I bothered apologizing. I replied that it was a tactical decision, not a personal one. I needed to be on good terms with K because we still need to work together, and if she's mad at me then things I've worked really hard on over the summer will fall apart. M isn't satisfied by this and is furious at K.

Then later I send an email to one of the deans, K, and M concerning a program that M told me about. Apparently, I had misinterpreted the reason that M brought the program to my attention in the first place, and she would've rathered that I hadn't sent the email before consulting her. Argh. Clearly, in my good intentions some grief has backlashed onto me.

Well, I had to apologize to M, of course, and explain that the intent wasn't to usurp her student group's program, but rather to bring it up as an example/model to develop an elective curriculum on. After my apologies and explanations, M seemed more or less pacified. She at least understands the good intent with which I sent that email.

Why are women so hard to deal with?!?! With guys, decisions tend to come quickly and easily with no feelings hurt (usually). With women, one must take into account their MOODS.
At least with small-ish issues, I can resolve things pretty quickly and have people forgive me fairly easily. It's the larger issues that tend to linger and dwell on my mind for way too long.

It's only the 2nd day of classes, and already I'm at wit's end standing dangerously near the precipice of sanity looking over the chasm of insanity.

Friday, August 20, 2010

NYC: In Pictures

This post will be long enough without my usual text, so I present (in pictures) my 2.5-day trip to NYC to visit a couple friends there one weekend.
Day 1 - Flushing

World's Fair grounds in Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Hotpot for dinner!

Flushing's Chinatown at night
Day 2 - NYC (Manhattan)

Times Square

M&M Factory

Columbus Circle

Central Park

Washington Square Park

(Cute) pianist and contortionist street performers

Tic & Tac - twin performers

(What's left of) Little Italy
Day 3 - Brooklyn

Green-Wood Cemetery - Statue of Minerva (looking at Statue of Liberty)

Green-Wood Cemetery - Leonard Bernstein's grave

Brooklyn Bridge

Ikea ferry + Statue of Liberty (viewed from Red Hook)

Red Hook street food vendor (where we got pupusas)

It was a whirlwind of 2.5 days, but it was well worth it. :-D

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Les Jours Tristes

I've found a new theme song! :-D
The title of the song translates to "The Sad Days" (according to my friend who took French) and it's from his album, L'Absente (2001), and the instrumental of this song was featured in the French movie, Amelie (great movie, go watch it if you haven't!).

I feel like the lyrics of this song perfectly fits my life right about now, considering all the recent events and dramas. Things have settled down a bit now, at least in my head. So that's good. There's a lot of things to update, but I've been having spotty internet at home due to a "feud" between my youngest brother and my dad. So I have to be umbilical cord-ed to the ethernet cord when I can manage.

So, I have a Yahoo! email account. Nowadays when I see the log-in screen, they have various backgrounds including this one:
I must say, that's one attractive guy. :-P Alright, that's all. Hopefully I'll be able to update on some of the things that happened in the last 2-3 weeks.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Can't Outrun These Clouds

Can't Outrun These Clouds

Run, faster faster, no respite
no time to relax
no time to stop.

These clouds approach again,
but the umbra of their gloom
has already taken me.

Beat beat beat, my heart drums
as I can't outrun these clouds.
I thought I had escaped
I thought I could relax
I thought I could sleep.

The clouds linger
and follow me still
even as I leave,
even as I'm gone.

I am weary and nearly broken.
I have toiled under this gloom -
under these clouds
too long, way too long.

I long for the sun
I long for the clarity of sky
I long for a chance to stop
I long for escape -
to get away, far away,
from it all.

But these clouds haunt me
even while I'm away.
I just can't seem
to outrun these clouds.
Soon they will overtake me
again . . .

Should I give up?
Just let these clouds
engulf my sky?
I just . . .
can't outrun these clouds.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I Am Done With This

So in my last post, G, the girl who parks next to my spot, has continued to harass me. In fact, she has caused me to lose sleep over this incident. I probably didn't fall asleep last night until past 2am and woke up at around 6:30am. I have had enough. I am done with this. Here are more of our exchanges below:
Her reply:

You have parked poorly about 90% of the time when you parked next to me, giving me dangeously enough room for my small car. The night of the accident you knowingly did not give me enough room. You even stated "I was hoping you wouldn't arrive until after 6" which is a sorry exuse. I noticed my spot was tight, and I was very careful, and once the nose of the car and the SIDE VIEW MIRROR made it clear, I figured I had just enough room so I continued. And then the scratch happened. As you did not give me the curtisy of straightening out your car when you were parking, you are at least 50% resposible for the scratches, as you were the one illegally parked. Another important point: YOU COULD HAVE PARKED IN YOUR OWN PARKING SPOT!!!!!! You CHOICE not to, and you have to deal with the consequences of your actions.

I agree I was the one driving, so I think a very resonable compromise would be splitting the cost 50/50. That would mean both of us pay $198.

My answer:
Hi G,

I appreciate your response and I would like to address your concerns.

First, if you contend that I parked poorly about 90% of the time (which I disagree with), it should've been all the more pressing that you preemptively ask me to move my car. As I said before, I would've gladly complied. I should also state that the car parked to the left of my spot routinely parks very poorly and sometimes even a little into my spot, which was the sole reason for my parking that night. I would still like to point out that even that night I was always within the lines of my spot. Thus I don't see how I could've been illegally parked.

Second, you yourself said that you figured you had just enough room to continue, which contrasts against your claim that I "did not give [you] enough room." It was, unfortunately, an error in judgment that resulted in your scratch. Third, while it's true that I typically park in a spot farther away, there is no rule (that I'm aware of) that restricts me to one of the two spots allotted per apartment - as who parks where is between my roommate and I. And so, out of courtesy, I shall refrain from parking next to you in the future unless absolutely necessary.

In deference to my first point, if you would like me to notify the car that's parked to the left of my spot, such that you could work out an arrangement with him/her, let me know and I shall do so. I still do not believe it to be fair for me to pay for scratches that you incurred on your car.


Her reply:
You were definitely, without a doubt, over the line that day. And you frequently were parking ON the line before. I have a small car, so while it was inconvenient for me, I decided not to bother you until this incident. Further more, I have NEVER EVER had this problem with your roommate. He either knows how to park properly on his first attempt, or he is curteous enough to straighten out. And once again, as you were using two spots at the time, and you see that you are infringing on my spot (as you were, I did not actually measure but a conservitive guess would be at least 6 inches into my spot) then you should have used the other spot, as no one else was using it. Your car being partly in my spot is the reason why the rear passenger door scraped the pole. You even admitted at the time that you were partly in my spot, so I do not know why you are lying now. We have a difficult parking garage, and I was so used to you on the line that I assumed this would be another tight sqeeze, and was perhaps more confident in the size of my parking spot than I should have been. I am accepting part of the blame and that I am partly responsible. I talked with R the manager, and he agrees that you are partly responsible for my car getting scratched given the circumstances. Out of being a good responsible human being I would appreciate your taking responsibility for your actions and helping me pay for fixing my car.


My answer:

I've tried to be civil but I have only been met with accusations and insults. I do not appreciate you accusing me of lying. I did not change my story. Although I might have once expressed regret that I was close to/on the line, I have never said I was over it. I have consulted with many people, including a lawyer, and they all agree that I was not at fault and that I owe you nothing. I also talked to R earlier today and he contradicted the last message you sent me. I ask that from now on we both leave R out of all this as it's not his job to arbitrate. I understand that you are upset, but I am well within my rights and it was completely unreasonable for you to ask me to pay 100% or even 50% of the damages for an accident you caused. I am done with this. In the name of common decency, please let it rest.

I should add that my final reply was proofed by up to 5 friends and my friend's lawyer dad. For at least a few days, I shall ignore her. I've altered my Facebook settings to specifically prevent her from viewing certain content on my Facebook page as well as restrict/disable her ability to comment on my wall and such. Finally, I've altered my Facebook settings such that I won't even get notifications of messages being sent to me; thus, unless I specifically check Facebook, I won't know if she replies or not. She's pretty passive-aggressive and hasn't stopped by my apartment to confront me in person (other than the moment right after the incident), so I'm counting on that she won't.

I need to obtain a few more pictures of the "scene." While the pictures won't be as informative as they would've on the day of the incident, they may still prove helpful in the future. Thank God for comparative negligence laws being on my side (at least, they seem like they definitely would be in this situation).