Monday, August 25, 2008

You don't have to outrun the bear, just your friend.

So, today was my first "quiz" of medical school and by "quiz" I mean test because no quiz is 76 questions long.  I had gotten to talking with a friend of mine over the weekend about failure and being the bottom of the class and how with grades it creates a somewhat competitive atmosphere, thus embracing the gunner lifestyle.  (but it also doesn't allow you to coast through med school at a "passing" level, which I appreciate). We were also talking about how the tests are graded on a curve and I said that heaven forbid it is one of us who is LAST in the class.  Someone has to be.  To which he replied "you don't have to outrun the bear, just your friend."  After I stopped laughing, I began to think in my head about who I was "faster" than.  You, you, you, maybe not you, you, etc.  Yeah, I am competitive, I'll admit it.  I want to get a good residency in a specialty I am excited about and if that means that I have to do research behind your back or rub shoulders with the right person, so be it.  I am not saying I will trip you while running, or even not help you if you need to get up into my tree, just don't sit on my branch because there is only room for one of us.  "Seat's taken"  These are facts.  This isn't for my ego, but for a family I will have one day and a job I have to happily show up to.  The application process was hard enough.  Thinking about someone in "my" seat at a better school wasn't easy to swallow.  Especially coupled with affirmative action, but that's a topic for a different discussion (I do believe I am in the right place though).  That doesn't mean I am not a nice person or will try to make you look bad, I just know my weaknesses and if I can't run faster than you, I better be able to climb a tree faster than you or know a better  way out of the woods.

There is one thing I try to keep telling myself when I get stressed about the mental aptitude of my classmates.  "If they were THAT smart, they would be at Harvard."

So today I have an opportunity to go do some volunteering.  The CMDA is serving 500 homeless people some dinner.  I will be going to that and getting grounded.  All this medical school is overwhelming at times and it will be nice to do something for someone else.  Isn't that why I am here???

Also, for the record, in regards to my ethical question.  I voted to tell the mother the results and give her the option to come clean before I spilled the beans.  She is the only one who already knows or has some suspicion (could have been quite a party) that the son isn't her husband's.  I also said this because if I were the husband, I would want to hear it from my wife, not some doctor I do not know.  I factored MY feelings into the equation, which is probably not a good idea.  "Do unto others" right?  Unless you are running from a bear...(just kidding)


  1. At first I thought your ethics question was some sort of ploy to solve a "Who's yo daddy?" Maury theme but, I continued reading. The posts are great so far! I'll keep up with them if they're going to be this entertaining.

    Baldy misses you!


  2. OK. Bear with me here...
    I agree with you. The mom has to know and go from there. But...what if there is no mom? What if she was attacked by a bear in the woods? Which brings us to another age-old question:
    DOES a bear sh*t in the woods? If so, couldn't you out-run him at that the point that he stops could! Or even at the point where he stopped to attack the boy's mother.
    Bottom line Travis...YOU will be able to out-run them! You have what it takes--brains, common sense, a competitive nature, compassion, a great big heart AND a fabulous sense of humor (inherited from your mother, no doubt!)
    Will you be in the top 10 of your class?
    Is the Pope Catholic?
    Does a bear...
    yep. You can do it!!!

  3. Just make sure that while you're climbing/running/navigating out of the woods, that you find time for some honey. And remember: it's not "last in the class," it's "in the lower half!" Switch the verbiage and you switch the associated emotion (and energetic attachment, but I'll try to avoid too much Woo Woo in my posts). And, no matter where you end up, they still call you "Doctor." Sorry, I couldn't avoid some mom cheerleading!