Friday, February 10, 2012

Albinoblackbear = Amalgamation; Books; I Am Part

Now that I have multiple - multiple! - hours of free time most/some days, I've actually been able to read books! I just finished In Stitches by Anthony Youn, MD. While it was a little explicit for my normal literary tastes, it was also very realistic - which is why I read it in the first place. It's an engaging tale written in a uniquely-styled first person narrative, telling the story of how Anthony Youn went through the whole premed, med school, residency selection process and ended up becoming one of the nation's most renowned plastic surgeons. It was particularly interesting to me because of my recent acceptance into Michigan State's College of Human Medicine, giving me an honest look at what I might be able to expect from an education at that school. Granted, some things have changed since Dr. Youn attended med school, but a lot of the course structure is the same today.

I won't go through everything I've read lately, but I will say that I love reading. I've mainly been splitting my time between medical biographies / narratives (Something for the Pain: Compassion and Burnout in the ER by Paul Austin, MD), fantasy (The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss - two books that are in my top five favorite fantasy books of all time; and Green Rider and First Rider's Call by Kristen Britain; ), and my blog list (located in the upper-left column of my blog). Speaking of which, one of my favorite bloggers, Albinoblackbear at Asystole is the Most Stable Rhythm, just recently put my blog up on her "Daily Blog Bread" list! How cool is that!? For those of you that don't know, she is basically the amalgamation formed from the smashing of me and my wife into the same female body. Seriously. I'm pretty sure we'd probably become instant best friends with her if we ever got to meet her. Doubt me? Let's break it down:

Albinoblackbear is a former RN (my wife's got two years left in her BSN RN program) who decided to go back to school as a nontraditional med student (AHEM!) in the pursuit of a career as a doctor. She loves traveling (currently doing her clinical years in Ireland; even though we are doing our studies in the US, my wife and I can't get enough of other countries, having been to something around 50+ countries between the two of us; we met when I taught her Spanish drill class, flirted some more while we co-taught an ESL class two years later, and got engaged soon thereafter) as well as all things athletic (she bikes like a crazy person and does a bunch of endurance stuff (I've lost count of the number and variety of events she's registered for at this point), while we bike for transportation and run for recreation). I could go on with more similarities, but you get the picture. It's an awesome blog that you should absolutely check out if you have the time, and exorcise something less important from your life to accommodate if you don't. The main difference between Me+MyWife and Albinoblackbear is that, on a medical blogging fame scale, she is Michael Jordan beside our Dickey Simpkins. Seriously. She's awesome. The only other truly significant difference between us and her is that she is originally from the Great White North - something for which I don't exactly envy her, given the apparent difficulty in getting into Canadian residencies.

In case you haven't noticed, I often write about things that have nothing to do with medicine, being a doctor, or learning about medicine and the process of becoming a doctor. I expect this will change next year once I'm actually in med school, but until then you'll have to bear with me as I keep writing about awesome stuff like this:

My younger brother's new blog is called I Am Part. Yes, this is the brother I talked about who blogged about his experience voluntarily living among the homeless for a few months in downtown Denver last summer. The original point with that was just to show love and care for people that have no one to love or care for them, hopefully raising awareness among the "homed" by keeping a blog about the whole experience. He does a good job of explaining it in his blog, but I'll give it a whirl here. I Am Part continues with that original theme, expanding it to show how each of our individual stories forms an integral part of humanity - a sentiment that should make us each care inherently about those around us. He even made a cool video outlining his experience, so check it out!

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