Thursday, February 26, 2009

Happy Birthday To Me

I think everyone should have some cake in celebration of the day, so here's what you should make:


Bring to a boil
* ½ lb butter
* 4 T cocoa
* 1 C water
Mix separately
* 2 eggs
* 2 C sugar
* 1 tsp vanilla
* ½ tsp salt
* 1 tsp soda
* ½ C buttermilk
* both above mixtures
* 2 C flour

Pour into a greased jelly roll pan (11 X 17)
Bake 375 for 20 min.

Make ICING just before cake is done

* 1 cube butter
* 3 T cocoa
* 6 T milk
* 3 1/2 C powdered sugar (1 lbs)
Beat and add
* 1 tsp vanilla

Sprinkle miniature marshmallows over hot cake
Pour hot icing over marshmallows.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

100 Books

Apparently I like these survey style things I keep seeing on facebook, so you, dear reader, get to suffer through knowing my survey taking habits.

1) Look at the list and put an 'x' after those you have read.
2) Add a '+' to the ones you LOVE.
3) Star (*) those you plan on reading.
4) Tally your total at the bottom.
5) Add an 'M' if you saw the movie
6) Add a '-' if you've started it

(XM) 1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
(XM+) 2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
(-) 3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
(XM+)4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
(XM) 5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
(XM) 6. The Bible (M being The 10 Commandments ;)
(X) 7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
() 8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
(XM+) 9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
() 10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
X-7 M-6 *-0 --1 +-3

(XM) 11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
() 12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
() 13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
(XM) 14. Complete Works of Shakespeare (I'm sure there's more movies than I've seen, but I've seen a ton)
() 15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
(XM+) 16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien (really really bad movie)
() 17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
() 18. Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
() 19. The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
() 20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
X-10 M-9 *-0 --1 +-4

() 21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
(XM) 22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
() 23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
(*) 24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
(XM+) 25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
() 26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
() 27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
(XM) 28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
(XM) 29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
(*) 30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
X-14 M-13 *-1 --1 +-5

() 31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
() 32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
(XM+) 33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
() 34. Emma - Jane Austen
() 35. Persuasion - Jane Austen
(XM+) 36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis (don't know who did this list and didn't see this as part of #33)
(*) 37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hossein
() 38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
() 39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
() 40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
X-16 M-15 *-2 --1 +-7

(X) 41. Animal Farm - George Orwell
(XM+) 42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
() 43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
() 44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
() 45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
(M) 46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
() 47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
() 48. The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
() 49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
() 50. Atonement - Ian McEwan
X-18 M-17 *-2 --1 +-8

() 51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
(XM) 52. Dune - Frank Herbert
() 53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
(X) 54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
() 55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
() 56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
() 57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
() 58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
() 59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
() 60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
X-20 M-18 *-2 --1 +-8

(XM) 61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
(M) 62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
() 63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
() 64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
(M) 65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
() 66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac
() 67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
() 68. Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
() 69. Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
(X) 70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
X-22 M-21 *-2 --1 +-8

() 71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
() 72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
(XM) 73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
() 74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
() 75. Ulysses - James Joyce
(*) 76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
() 77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
() 78. Germinal - Emile Zola
() 79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
() 80. Possession - AS Byatt
X-23 M-22 *-3 --1 +-8

(XM+) 81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
() 82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
() 83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
() 84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
() 85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
() 86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
(XM+) 87. Charlotte’s Web - EB White
() 88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
(X+) 89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
() 90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
X-26 M-24 *-3 --1 +-11

() 91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
() 92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery (In French, no less)
() 93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
() 94. Watership Down - Richard Adams
() 95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
() 96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
(M) 97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
(XM) 98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare (again with the duplication)
(XM+) 99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
(XM+) 100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
X-29 M-28 *-3 --1 +-13

Read 29
Started 1
Movie 28
Future Reads 3
And even though there is one I've started, I'm not seeing really ever finishing that one. I guess this just confirms I like to read off of non-'classic' shelves.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

25 Random Things

Yep, I gave in.

1. I hate all salad dressing.
2. I have been seriously proposed to twice.
3. I have had glasses since the age of 2.
4. Purple is my favorite color.
5. I think barely cooked is the only way to eat beef.
6. I have been to Canada several times, but never to Mexico.
7. When I'm driving on road trips, I like to do things like figure out the next time the miles on the odometer and the sum of the digits will both be divisible by the number of digits and where (geographically) I could get to by the time that happens. Yep I'm nerdy.
8. I once stayed awake for 76 straight hours.
9. I am an Eagle Scout.
10. I once tied for 3rd place in a photography contest.
11. I can play the piano and guitar.
12. My favorite song is Just Wait by Blues Traveler and has been for 10+ years.
13. Thirteen is my lucky number.
14. I think the death penalty is under utilized.
15. I have over 100 cousins.
16. Despite participation in many other mind altering activities, I've never had a single drink with alcohol.
17. I have sewn my own clothes.
18. My favorite indulgence is cookie dough ice cream, followed very shortly by all night LAN parties.
19. One of my life goals is to beat my dad at Trivial Pursuit, the original version.
20. I have stolen a girl from a best friend.
21. I have cried over the outcome of a sporting event.
22. I am an organ donor.
23. My favorite book is Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli.
24. I am named after my dad and my great-grandpa.
25. My favorite movie is August Rush.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

It IS A Tumor

Or was, or whatever. I had this lump on my back, where the neck and shoulder meet, for ages, and I'd asked a doc or two about it. The answer was always, if it isn't growing and isn't bothering you, don't bother it. OK, I can handle that. It never bothered me until this year during all the med school interviews, when I found it to be extremely tender and getting bigger. So I go in to the doc and he tells me all about lipoma, and tells me he can get rid of this thing since its bothersome. Great. He has me schedule an hour appointment for something he says he doesn't think will take longer than 30 minutes or so.

And we arrive at mistake number one. What with the doc making no big fuss and me having had this thing for years, I think its a complete non-issue. Ask any woman in my life their thoughts on that. I think my girlfriend was contemplating homicide when she didn't find out I was having the thing removed, let alone that I had a tumor, until about 18 hours before the scheduled appointment. I didn't tell my mom about getting the thing removed until well after the said event... also dumb.

So I show up to my appointment, with moral support, and think I'm going to go back to work once I'm done. HA! Two hours later, the stitching me back together gets started. Turns out there was not quite two golf balls worth of material hanging out under my skin (and I should have gotten a picture with my phone, but hey, we already covered me and dumb). So if you didn't go to the lipoma link yet, its a fatty tumor. In my case, it had large amount of connective tissue not only attached to it, but interwoven into it. Not really a huge deal, but you know how to get a splinter out, you push at the base of a splinter to get it to start poking its head back out the hole, well the doc couldn't get the thing to poke out of the incision much at all cause it was being held in too tightly. So then she (the initial doc and the op doc are in fact different people) tried grabbing on to it to pull it a little way out, or at least expose the first line of connective tissue for cutting. The tumor was broken up enough by all the connective tissue that every time she tried to grab the thing, tiny pieces would break off from the main mass. Well, it all just amounted to taking a long time to get enough stuff cut away that the primary mass could finally be pulled out. Then there was the encasing that had to be cut away. Then stitching.

Stitching me closed was a bit of an adventure, as in, the doc broken needles trying to stick them through me. I have no idea how this happens, but apparently, I'm tough, like a really bad steak. So eventually, they do get some needles to do what they want and I'm closed up and head home. End of story... I wish. I get a call a few hours later that the needle count is off. Its a weird thing to hear. The doc says that they think one probably got dropped on the floor or something, but since they didn't account for all the needles, they want me to come in for an x-ray. Sure enough, one of the broken needles has a decent portion of it left in my back. So that sucks, but I figure they just cut the stitches pull thing out and re-stitch. Wrong again. They cut the stitches and they can't see the needle at all. They took a little metal pellet and tape it to my back and take more x-rays and use that marker to narrow down exactly where this thing should be. Eventually, to tell exactly how deep it is, they actually stuck the pellet in the hole for relative depth. That all sounds like it shouldn't take that long. Wrong again. Three hours.

So I had felt kinda beat up Tuesday night, once the anesthesia wore off yesterday, I've been feeling more like I got hit in the neck by a semi. If anyone reading this doesn't know me well enough to have guessed this already, I'm not suing the doc. He did offer me compensation for my antibiotics, appointment co-pay, and my time away from work, which I will accept. Long story short, its not a tumor any more, its a big hole.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Med School Questions Other People Thought Of

OK, so first, I am not leaving for Missouri tomorrow. With classes starting in August, I figure the first of August is probably the earliest possible departure, but I probably won't know for sure until when I'm leaving until April or May.

Entertainment in this part of Missouri is hunting, camping, fishing... there is an 8 screen movie theater, a Wal-Mart, and Truman State University in town, but frankly, its the kind of town where focusing on studying really won't be too hard.

A couple things that made A.T. Still University the best option in my mind. First, its the oldest D.O. school, A.T. Still being the founder of osteopathic medicine. Locationally, I had preferred going to AZ, but they are a very new school, doing some very new things with their training. I liked what their philosophy is and think it will become more prevalent, but I decided I would rather go somewhere more established, feeling this gives me better opportunities to get into whatever specialty I eventually choose. LMU DCOM is the other school I got accepted to; it is a new school, and in travel time is a bit further from 'home' than Kirksville. I flatly did not like Nova Southeastern. I'm sure its great for some, but I'm not one of them. The University of Toledo would be a good fit for me, except that I have been thoroughly converted to the osteopathic philosophy.

And lastly, for those who don't understand what osteopathic medicine is, that last link is has a pretty good explanation, I recommend it.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Identity Crisis

So I have a name that's pretty common. I've tried googling myself for years, originally just to see what's out there, then to see if I could actually find something actually about me. There's a dermatologist in Atlanta and a sci-fi writer that are the most popular users of my name, but I also found

1. MySpace - 376 profiles
2. Facebook - 121 profiles
3. Friendster - 107 profiles
4. ZoomInfo - 78 profiles
5. Spaces - 68 profiles
6. Linkedin - 41 profiles
7. Hi5 - 32 profiles
8. Yahoo - 27 profiles
9. Bebo - 11 profiles
10. IMDB - 6 profiles

My name is common, so I tried adding other words to try and get something. I figured that maybe old high school box scores or the local paper in the town I grew up in might turn up some results... HA! None of those things worked out quite like I'd hoped, but the high school name did turn up the first correct hit I've ever seen. Identity crisis over.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Look Out Missouri, Here I Come!

So the decision has officially been made, I will attend A.T. Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine! I get to send in my signed acceptance letter along with my savings account later today. I know I told plenty of folks that I wanted to go to school in Mesa, but the school there just didn't match up with what I think I want from my medical education (as if any prospective med student really has any idea what medical education should be). So I'm excited enough that I'm know I'm not really answering a lot of the questions y'all are likely to have about how this whole process goes, but all the fun starts August 21st. And for everything else I've completely failed to address, please ask!