Tuesday, December 14, 2004

A personal Chanukah Miracle!

Alright, last Tuesday morning I found out that I was exempt from my Elementary Statistics final because my grade was already such that the professor felt I had proven my abilities. Yippee!!! It was a take home exam and the last two he handed out took between 5 and 10 hours to complete. I welcomed my new free time with open arms.

On Wednesday, I returned home from my Ethics class to find that my Abnormal Psychology class had been canceled. Yippee!! I was supposed to do the homework for it that evening, but since it was canceled, I've been able to put it off another 6 days. Isn't life fabulous?

These were my two personal holiday miracles. The third is that I'll be done the semester this week. I only have 2 classes left and then I'm off until January 13th. The actual miracle is that I somehow seemed to have survived. Then again, there are still two days left in the game... I guess anything could happen.

Time to go study... I'll crawl out of my hole soon, hopefully more educated and worldly (yeah right! ha!)

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

On my very last brain cell...

Well, it's that time of the year again: HOLIDAY SEASON. I always find it fascinating that I actually have enough steam to go Chanukkah and Christmas shopping (remember: I work and go to school full time). Then again, my current state of insanity pretty much numbs me to any pain I might otherwise feel if I weren't nearly brain dead. This is one of the two reasons I love the end of the semester. The other, of course, is the fact that I'll be done school in three weeks and won't have to start again until January.

With papers due, finals exams coming up, and a traditional holiday financial strain that causes me to need to work more hours than I'm capable of handling, I get to drift through the days in a complete fog. I do experience some rare lucid moments when I look back and realize that I've accomplished a lot and will accomplish a lot more, but this is quickly replaced with a feeling of panic at the thought of continuing for several more years. Thankfully, the panic doesn't last long; my brain begins to shut down, my eyes glaze over, and I morph from an intelligent 26 year old to weary, stupified grump with the IQ of a raisin. I bet it makes all of you want to leave your careers to go back to school, doesn't it?

In all honesty though, I'm still plugging along. I AM completely worn out but I'm sure I'll plow through somehow. My saving grace is that I have good grades, so even if I bomb everything for the next three weeks, I'll still be able to pull off B's, and maybe even some A's. If I don't bomb everything in the next three weeks, well, I'll keep the A's and A+'s that I have. Honestly, it's what is keeping my motivation up. After all, a 4.0 looks better than a 3.0 when applying to medical school. Besides, I've come this far, why let a little burn out bring me down now? (To all of my friends out there: this is an invitation to send encouraging "You can do it!" letters - just in case.)

Just thinking about all of the free time I'll soon have to play with makes me nearly drool with happiness. I guess I need to keep my eye on the prize: NO HOMEWORK FOR A MONTH! That said, I should probably get back to this god-awful school crap so I can throroughly enjoy my time off.

Be well everyone - Happy Holidays to all!

Ms. V

Thursday, November 25, 2004

It's been awhile, but...

Alright, I know it's been awhile, but it's only because I've been bogged down with school work. It sucks, but I'm an A+ student because of it. There are tons of things I wanted to post between my last message and this one, but I just don't have the time to do them all.

Instead, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I'm going to list the things I'm thankful for. I'm not exactly sure how it was started though. I know what the history books say, but the winners write the history and we were the "winners." Despite that fact, I still love it (even without the turkey!).

I'm thankful for:
- my family and friends (doesn't everyone have to list this one?)

- my husband and cats (they're included in my family but deserve extra thanks so I'll list them separately)

- my good grades. They're a result of my hard work (a lot of it) and will help me get into medical school, which will help me be a good Dr. This will also help me get my PhD after I get my MD so when I'm done dealing with patients and doing clinical work, I can retire and work on research.

- my musical talent. Even though I don't have time to play any of my instruments anymore, I still take pride in knowing that I can if I want to.

- John Ashcroft's resignation. It's about time, damn it! I'm not sure if Gonzales will be any better, but he seems slightly less radical than Ashcroft. Besides, Ashcroft was so awful that it can't get any worse, can it?

- G. W. Bush has only 4 more years left in office (Well, really it's 4 years and 2 months)

- Civil Unions in Vermont. I know it's not marriage and I believe that homosexual couples SHOULD be allowed to marry, but with the recent outlawing of gay marriage in 11 states and the fact that good ole' G.W. wants to put through a Constitutional amendment against it, a Civil Union is better than nothing (then again, if it has the same result as a marriage, why not just call it a marriage????)

- our blockbuster unlimited rental card. It's fabulous.

- my car. It's 8 years old and still running strong. Best yet, I don't have any car payments. Yippee!

I think that's it. What are you thankful for?

Ms. V

Monday, November 08, 2004

Clearing up any confusion....

Alright, it seems that a few people (ok, when I say "few", I really mean "several") have gotten the impression that I created this blog to talk only about politics. While I can do this for hours (happily, most of the time), it is not my only purpose in this space. Yes, you'll see occasional thoughts about our government but that doesn't mean that it's ALL you'll see.

To my conservative friends: I may be about as liberal as they come, but I still love you. I promise. I don't, however, like our President. I never have and never will. That is my opinion so be prepared to see it. Often.

To my liberal friends: Yes, I know, you're as po'd as I am about the "errors" in the voting machines and the fact that G. W. somehow made it into the Whitehouse for a second term. Rest assured, it'll be over in 4 years, 2 months, and a little over a week (who's counting?).

I have tons of other crap that I want to post but I just don't have time to tonight. I am a pre-med student, afterall. This means that I won't be able to sleep for the next 12 years or so. I'm going to be buried in work.

I'm off to stick my nose back into my statistics book. Have a great night everyone! There's more exciting stuff to come.

~Ms. V

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

'Tis a sad, sad day for America


OK, gang. This was a totally different post but after I had a day away from the computer and all of the political news, I re-read it and decided it was a bit too harsh. I'm now completely changing what was originally up here just to say that I'm sad that bush will be the President for another few years.

I'm going to go eat some comfort food now....

~Ms. V

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Kerry! Kerry! He's our man! If he can't do it, no one can!

OK gang, I did my duty as an American citizen and cast my ballot today. Kerry/Edwards, all the way.

If things go according to an odd coincidental tradition that has to do with the Washington Redskin's game played this past Sunday, Kerry will move into the White House this January. For those of you unfamiliar with this story, you can check it out
here. On one hand, I'm superstitious enough to believe that it'll get Kerry elected. On the other hand, I'm pessimistic enough to believe that this will be the first election since 1936 that it doesn't hold true. In other words, I'm crossing my fingers but not holding my breath.

While we're on the topic of politics, I thought I'd air some of my pet peeves (mostly about the people who are so uninformed that they have no idea we even have a Congress).

1) For those of you out there who think that Arnold (Conan the Barbarian turned Governor of California) will run for President someday, well, I have some sad news for you: HE CAN'T. Yes, I'm serious. Yes, it's true. If you'll recall, Arnie was born in Austria. So were his parents and grandparents. This means that he is NOT, I repeat NOT a natural born citizen. There's a difference between U.S. Citizen and Natural Born U.S. Citizen. To become a U.S. citizen, you can move here from another country, study a lot, take an exam and poof! You're American. (OK, it's not that simple, but that's just the short version). To be a natural born citizen, either you or your parents must have been born in the United States. This might even apply to grandparents, though I can't remember for sure. In either case, Arnold doesn't fit the bill, so he can't be President. Incidentally, the other two criteria required of any potentional Presidential candidate are: s/he must be 35 years old and s/he must be living in the country on the day of the election.

2) George W. Bush's impeachment is LONG overdue. I won't get into why I believe this because my fingers would get sore typing all the reasons.

3) I once had a conversation with a friend who tried to tell me that the Vice President could not be impeached because it's not an elected position. Well, he was wrong. The office of the Vice President of the United States of America IS, indeed, an elected position. That's why, when the Presidential candidate chooses the VP candidate, they are called running mates. They RUN for office together. If you still don't believe that we elect the Vice President as well as the President, check your ballot today. Both names are on there so you are actually choosing them both.

4) It still shocks me when people ask such silly questions like "How many electoral votes does my state have?" or, better yet "How come every state has a different number?" You'd think that after having beaten this issue to death in the 2000 election, the only people who didn't know it would have to live under a rock. Apparently they've come crawling out. Now, despite the fact that I learned this stuff in 8th grade and you should have too, I will take this opportunity to inform you. I still reserve the right to think you're a num-skull, however.

- Here's how it works: Every state has 2 and only 2 seats in the Senate. No more, no less.

- The number of seats in the House is based on population. EVERY state gets at least one, no matter how small they are. This means that states like New York and California get a lot more seats in the House of Representatives than states like Vermont do (We only get Bernie, assuming he's re-elected, which he will be).

- The number of electoral votes is equal to the total number of seats in Congress. Congress includes both the Senate and the House of Representatives. This means that you need to add the number of seats your state has in the House (varies by population), to the number of seats your state has in the Senate (always 2 - no more, no less, remember). For example, Vermont has 1 spot in the house and 2 in the Senate. This means that we get a total of 3 electoral votes (think back to 1st grade... 2+1=3). This also explains why New York and California get so many more.

As a bonus, I'll explain further how the electoral votes are divided. In 48 out of the 50 states, ALL electoral votes go to the winner of the popular vote for that particular state. For example, If 51% of the people in Vermont vote for Kerry, 35% of the people vote for Bush, and 14% of the people vote for Nader, that means that John Kerry will get all 3 of our electoral votes. It is not divided up in any way. However, there are 2 states (possibly 3 depending on the outcome of Colorado's vote on this subject) that will divide up their electoral votes to more closely represent the voice of the people. If I remember correctly, they are divided by district (I may be wrong, so don't quote me on it). For example: If Kerry gets 51% of the vote in 75% of Maine, and Bush gets 51% of the vote in the remaining 25% of Maine, then Kerry will get 3 electoral votes from Maine and Bush will get 1. Confused yet? I know I probably didn't do a very good job of explaining it, but you really should have known this stuff already anyway. ;)

I will leave you now with today's little bit of wisdom.... "Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference." Not only did I hear it on the radio on my way to class, it was also written on the wall of the gym in which I voted.

*DISCLAIMER: I did not mean for any of this particular entry to be insulting, so please don't take it personally if it happened to have applied to you. :)

Now get off your arse and go vote!

~Ms. V

Monday, November 01, 2004

"It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!"

OK, I've finally gotten around to setting up a blog so that all of the people who already know how gosh darn cool I am can keep up with my oh-so-fabulous lifestyle. I can't promise that I'll post everyday and I especially can't promise that I'll actually be funny. I will, however, make several lame and shameless attempts. I'll also only use first initials when referring to other people to respect and protect their privacy. There are some real whackjobs out there.

My thoughts this evening are Halloween oriented (duh!) and I happened to hear one of the best lines ever said in any cartoon special.... "There are 3 things I've learned never to discuss with people... religion, politics, and The Great Pumpkin." -Linus in 'It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!' By the way, how come The Great Pumpkin never did show up? Linus' pumpkin patch sure as hell seemed sincere to me. If that's the way The Great Pumpkin is going to be, then I don't want him coming to my pumpkin patch. I'm going to erase all of the sincerity from it so it's not even a consideration on his list next year. So there.

As with most things, one thought led to another and I eventually landed on memories of past Halloweens. Here are my top two most memorable experiences: Halloween, 2000. It was my first Halloween with my then boyfriend, now husband and we were handing out candy to the few (6 maybe) kids who showed up at his place. The last one was some punk teenager dressed in black. Playing into the snottishness that possesses most kids that age (myself included when the time was right), I smirked and asked what he was supposed to be. His response? "A black hole." Deadpan. My response? "Great, tell that to the ER doc when you're wheeled in after being hit by a car." Deadpan. I knew at that moment that I had gotten old. Not old enough to prevent myself from smirking at the originality later on that evening, however. (OK, I still get a small grin on my face when I think about it)

The second memory was of an old woman (probably senile) in the neighborhood where I grew up. It was our first Halloween there and I went out trick or treating with my best friend, D. Thank GOODNESS! While we were trolling about, D casually said "We don't go there, the lady hands out raw noodles." My 6 year old mind was in complete disbelief until I returned home to my mother and 4 year old sister. Alas! They were not privy to such vital information and poor E (sister) got stuck with a couple of raw noodles. Lucky for her, she actually liked them (4 year olds will eat anything).

Time to wrap things up for tonight but I'll leave you with one final piece of trivia (Charlie Brown, of course, to suit the mood). It turns out ole' Chuck's dad was a barber by trade, that's why Charlie had no hair. :) Yes, I'm serious. Yes, it's true.

Now, let's all keep our chin up for the election on Tuesday. According to tonight's Redskins game, Kerry should win. I'm not holding my breath but I AM crossing my fingers. Go Kerry/Edwards! I'm pullin' (and votin') for you guys!

~Ms. V