مرحبا عليكم!

I study languages.

Saturday, February 28, 2009


Note to self: Crashing on the couch at 6 pm and waking up 1 am is not preferable.
All there is to do between 1 and 7 am is Facebook creep, read random news websites, research the Kool-Aid mascot, and listen to music. Not that I'm opposed to those activities, but they're all kind of pathetic, particularly when I know I should be sleeping.

On the bright side, I'm watching the world outside finally get lighter.
I can't decide if I want to watch Lost, try and fall asleep, or stay up and take myself out for breakfast. :-)

And hey, I honestly can't remember the last time I was up at 6:45 am.
4 am, sure, but 6:45? Never.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


After nearly two straight days of being awake, when I close my eyes, everything starts to tingle like it's fusing together, and I have to consciously jerk open my ocular muscles to break the overwhelming orange tension.

Today I woke up, was randomly interviewed for a psychology student's film (maybe I LOOK like I have problems), attended one lecture class, took an interminable Critical Theory exam (95!), and then spent the next six or seven hours hidden in the second-floor Map section of the library, burying myself in chemistry. In all honestly, I can't believe I focused for that long. During the process, I allowed myself two four-minute Facebook breaks, after which I fell right back into my thermochemical world. Luckily, it paid off; the 96 I received on the notoriously difficult multiple choice section was worth the sensory deprivation.

Monday, February 23, 2009


I don't think any of my facial expressions are real.

Consciously, I flash my eyes down, then up, and pull in the right corner of my mouth to indicate momentary guilt; simultaneous concentric contraction of my right corrugator supercilii and orbicularis oculi with a cocked head and narrowed eyes tell you I'm skeptical. A controlled, subtle left head turn with slightly raised right eyebrow means I find the fact that you think your work is credible enough for me to trust slightly amusing, and a slightly dropped jaw with wide eyes means I'm shocked.
I guess I've fine-tuned these skills in lecture classes, so I can communicate with a professor without being verbal, but I've reached the point where all of them are of my own creation and nothing feels real anymore. I haven't been overcome by emotion since the ninth grade, so since then I think I've observed and adapted a set of nonverbal gestures to give the false impression that I'm capable of feeling. I don't feel typical emotions much of the time, but I know I should, so I've created a mechanical facade to reflect what should be involuntary.


Sunday, February 22, 2009


I'm a glaringly unfinished surface:
unpolished marble, roughly hewn
uncharted territory and messy contours.
The shaping process is gradual, and I've only just begun,
but against your sharp edge I pale in comparison.
You are refined, cut with impossible precision--
capable of anything and everything.
My uneven sides catch and wobble as I reach my destination,
but you draw the most efficient path
and execute your immaculate route without one misplaced molecule.
I'm awed

and yet
we're okay.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Russian roulette.

I'm on the edge of disintegration--
I've lost control of all my structure and think I might just vaporize.
Unstable, my molecules collide in exaggerated microstates; chaotic, the bonds flicker out and back in with barely enough time for most to re-form before the next spotty outage.
This is new.
My sympathetic nervous system is spitting epinephrine, and the starry bursts make my eyelids twitch and my psyche flinch. Flashes of vivid color snap suddenly into periods of my stable greyscale, both illuminating and terrifying.

((fight or flight))
wait and see.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Reasons why Wednesday was better.

1. I woke up at eight o' clock on the dot without an alarm and found myself to be entirely functional. This is momentous; I went to bed at 3:30 am and usually can't get up to save my life.
2. I took a luxuriously long shower and straightened my hair.
3. I wore my new zebra shirt. :-)
4. I had delicious oatmeal with bananas for breakfast and still managed to be early for chemistry.
5. I got all the iClicker questions right.
6. I aced my parasitology quiz, even nailing the most obscure question.
7. I aced my psychological literary criticism quiz.
8. I had time to study for anatomy and did acceptably well on the CNS quiz.
9. I was asked on a date for Friday.
10. I am eating delicious soup.
11. I am no longer sick.
12. Lost is tonight. :-D

Reasons why Tuesday sucked.

1. I am sick.
2. I had to be at school until midnight anyway.
3. I had to take a test.
4. I received an embarrassingly dismal test score and had to convince myself that no professional school will care if I fail BoM.
5. I'm not actually failing BoM.
6. The anatomy quiz tricked me. I got two wrong even though it was open book.
7. I have three quizzes tomorrow.
8. I have to ace all those quizzes.
9. I have a chemistry test on Friday for which I have to memorize four full pages of formulas and protocols.
10. I have to give a PowerPoint presentation on Gnathostoma spinigerum on Friday to a class that doesn't know I'm four years younger than they are. I am scared to answer their questions.
11. I have to give a PowerPoint presentation on DNA isolation, spectrophotometry, PCR, restriction enzyme digests, and gel electrophoresis on Friday to my research lab colleagues.
12. Only one of those presentations is finished, and I haven't even had time to open my chemistry book.
13. I have to organize my lab kids for this week so I can have recent UV transillumination photos for my research presentation.
14. I honestly have no idea how I am going to get those photos before Friday.
15. I will probably still be sick tomorrow.
16. Tomorrow I have class from 10 am to 7 pm with just one 1-hr break.
17. Tomorrow has the potential to be worse than today.


Monday, February 16, 2009


Resting, I close my eyes and place my hands over my hips. My fingers brush the rough contours of my matched anterior iliac spines as they flare out on either side. Diving cleanly into my lower abdomen, their sound, unassuming structure brings me peace, and I can exhale.
I will not fall apart.
I am stable.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Somewhere in this place there is a tiny speck dwarfed by snow-peaks and glass walls, dissolved in millions and millions that look just the same.
And there is another tiny speck just across the edge of the world dwarfed by green trees and rain clouds, drenched in millions and millions that look just the same.
And something is right because there is an awareness.

Monday, February 9, 2009


People are breakable. I know because I ripped one.
I sat in a cadaver lab tonight and slid my metal probe across fascia, muttering just-audible Latin prefixes, and suddenly, it caught. A tiny rip sped from the center of my instrument to the deeper tissues--no bigger than a fingernail, but I felt it, and so did he.
I grabbed the bottle of preservative spray in an effort to undo my mistake
and all of a sudden
he was claylike, crunchy,
and I was helpless.

It was too much.


Three words:

I've rediscovered Reinvent the Wheel from the Four Winds EP and can't stop listening.

"There were many talents you possessed
That I wished myself to have
But the way your eyes would gloss over
Well, I never envied that
And I doubt you'll ever come back now
From wherever it is you are
Because you never understood
What we loved you for..."


In other news:
Ascaris lumbricoides.
My continuing search for an unpretentious religion professor.
William Faulkner + deconstruction = . . .
Trichuris trichiura and pathology pics of rectal prolapse that make me dry heave.
Tensor fasciae latae and the anatomist that calls me Phlebotomist.
Redox titrations and calcium bicarbonate.
Calling out my lab kids on a dilution I termed "ridiculous."
Calling them my lab kids even though one is married and has a child.
Marshmallows and orange peels, magnetic poetry and Salem.
DNA vaccine protection delivered in attenuated Salmonella typhimurium against murile Toxoplasma gondii infection.

Y'know. The usual. Life proceeds.

Friday, February 6, 2009


So my most recent chem test was full of fail; there were only twenty insanely complex and tricky multiple choice questions, each worth 4 pts (wtf??), so I missed three and got an 84(ish). I felt really good about my free response section, though, so that should bring me up to a high B+ (which is still seriously uncool; it may ruin my chances of pulling an A in this class because tests are weighted so highly). Whatever; I honestly wouldn't mind getting an A-, especially when I'm taking a packed schedule plus two senior classes. I think other people might mind, though, which makes me sad. It sucks when other people live vicariously through your 4.0. Luckily, my parents are entirely opposite; they always tell me to take less classes, get a few Bs, and enjoy myself a little more. But whenever I feel like I haven't performed perfectly on something, I question my entire life plan, so of course I freaked out a little bit about not being able to get into a good med school and all...yeah.

Then I realized my resume can probably withstand a few bad grades; I'll have a semester in Jerusalem, at least one summer research internship, lab research for a solid three years (and hopefully my name on a paper?), TA-ing, constant volunteer work, a steady job in the medical field (thank you, physical therapy), phlebotomy and medical assisting certification, and hopefully a few clinical internships, on top of a liberal arts minor and maybe some essay contests or something. That's the plan, anyhow.

EDIT: Haha, awesome; the average on the chem test I killed was 62%. I sense a curve!
UPDATE: The key was wrong. I got a 93. XD

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


staring out the window at 5 am
staring at the lab wall at 7 pm

deconstruction >> structuralism
lost my anatomy lab manual
with cadaver juice on my fingers.
two proximal exams scare me
ln(k1/k2) = -Ea/RT(1/t2-1/t1)
concominant immunity and schistosoma mansoni
flexor digitorum profundus
extensor carpi ulnaris
teres minor
crunchy granola bar and jamba juice,
de facto vegetarianism.
quizzes: two perfect, one not so much, one postponed.

listeria monocytogenes, gamma interferon, interleukin 18.
heart of darkness and death in venice.
jessica and sleep.
= no relationship; the events are statistically independent.

tutoring a married man
reading my personal essay to an audience
self-conscious about my voice.
"god put you on this earth to write"
"teach me PCR"
binary opposites?

organizing lab kids.

the soleus muscle

if you can't tell
things are a little bit
blurry around the edges.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Rogue chemist.

So I just finished playing Rogue Chemist in my research lab; I made an intricate cell lysis buffer solution I've never mixed all by myself, and the process was entertainingly intense. I had two flasks going simultaneously with magnetic stir bars, and my measuring equipment and official/ominous-looking reagents were spread out all over the place. I managed to locate every reagent I needed in the required concentration and state except KCl and MgCl2, which were in powder and crystal, respectively. From there, I had to break out the old TI-89 to calculate, weigh, and mix my own molar solutions. I worked with a base that bubbled beautifully when added to solution, making my stir bar's swirling vortex that much more fun.

Let me tell you, playing Chemist is SO MUCH FUN when it isn't mandatory and there's no six-page writeup...WHOA, OMG, vertigo attack. This is crazy. I'd better go get a drink, and maybe some simple carbohydrates.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


I like being in charge.

As head of my lab team, I've been teaching chemically technical genotyping protocols to a new group of underlings. Sometimes I wonder if they find it strange that they must answer to me, a freshman girl four years younger--because I do make them answer to me. I am the final word in all decisions, the executive administrator for our project. I call the shots--anything from who is doing which procedure when to which results are meaningful and which are sloppy or inconclusive. I ask the questions, I explain the theory behind my procedures, and I like it.

As a blonde freshman girl in upper-level science, I have to outwardly establish myself before anyone ever gives me credibility. By appearance, a boy with dark-rimmed glasses and a nice shirt can be assumed to be smart, but in my pastel dresses I must ask the most esoteric question, do the most complicated math, or use the most technical vocabulary so others understand that I know what I'm doing. I can't even perform at a basic A-level and expect respect; I have to impress before I'm assigned intelligence points. Luckily, this game is my specialty as of late; because I am never given credit, I am used to publicly earning it, and in so doing I extract the respect of those who always end up asking me for help, regardless of my age.

Unfair? Absolutely.
Impossible? No way.


I've recently become aware of how blindingly efficient I am at passing judgment on others.

Subconsciously, from the moment I meet someone, something in me quickly and comprehensively assesses what it deems the "quality" of their appearance, words, intelligence level and sense of self, turning it into some type of Relative Worth Quotient from which my conscious self bases all future interactions. It's almost embarrassing.

Sure, I know everyone does this, whether they're aware they do or not, but I'm ashamed to say that I exploit it. I detect others' weak places and counter them with my own strengths so I appear flawless in comparison, strangling another's idea with a string of logic I concoct just to make them vulnerable.

It's pathetic in the basest sense of the word.