Tuesday, June 27, 2006

i don't have much to say

life is fairly mundane. my COE advisor is in Canada for 3 weeks, so i am left on my own. i definitely have stuff to do around here - but it's all mundane work - writing abstracts, working on the paper, taking my stats over to the biostatistician across the way *when i actually have stats*, getting my flights to louisiana and texas taken care of, preparing the posters for the AAV and the LSU symposium, prepping samples for electron microscope and cell sorter -- yada yada yada. i'll probably only run a couple of different lab sample runs over the next few weeks.

i'm still working out. i haven't really lost any weight - but people keep commenting on my physical appearance. so i know i'm more toned. i can finally see it myself. it's frustrating that my weight seems to stay about the same though, i would think - as much as i've been doing - i would lose SOME. of course, i could stop eating ice cream and wok hay every couple of days. but what's the point of exercising if you can't enjoy the foods you love? ah, the eternal question.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

has passed me by. i am now 27 years old. mildly depressing, considering that i have 2 more years of vet school to go, plus a year of interning, plus 3 years as a resident. ugh. i'll be 800 years old before i'm finished schooling. sometimes i think i need my head examined.

i'm probably supposed to ruminate on my life up to this point. but the thought is vaguely depressing, so i'll just talk about mundane frivolities. we went home on friday night, spent the night - ate with my in-laws. saturday, my mother cooked me a huge, delicious dinner (cordon bleu!) and then we watched my brothers try to 1) shoot clay pigeons/the neighbors house/a car window and 2) burn down the woods in front of my parent's house with fireworks. both were a rousing success. i also had cake. and ate it, too. we came back last night around 10pm and went to school for a run. we went about 2.8 miles. i was disappointed with my run, i didn't feel good, and i didn't make it 3 miles. could have been because of the huge dinner i gorged myself upon before leaving. but at any rate, it wasn't a great run -though i felt surprisingly alert and good after it was over. afterwards, it was around 11:30 - and some friends called me to convince me to go out for a 'drink or two' on my birthday. yeah - 5 shots of various alcohols later (tequila, vodka, and jagermeister - in that order) i realized it was 4 am, and i was signficantly drunker than when the evening started. no hangover today, i'm happy to say. i have no idea why - but apparently drinking more (as i obviously have been this summer) has taught my body to hold its liquor. i haven't had a hangover either of the last 2 times i drank too much.

at any rate, today was fun and low-key. i went and saw the film brick with alison. it's an homage type movie to the film noir genre. surprisingly good. though the slang/jargon of those types of movies made it often difficult to understand what the hell anyone was talking about. i'll definitely have to see it again to catch everything. i really enjoyed it though. afterwards, we went to borders for a bit, then wok hay for dinner. nothing like snappy kung pao chicken on lo mein noodles to make my night. now i'm here, about to go watch the last 2 installments of band of brothers (aka the most depressing miniseries EVER).

i wish i did have something interesting and meaningful to talk about. perhaps something like my realization - as of late - that most people are pretty screwed up, in their own ways. and that our generation is morally bankrupt, corrupt, and/or decrepit - whatever you want to say. but that's for another day and another post.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

shaping up to be a fun summer

well, my summer is going to be more interesting than i thought.

first, i've been asked to present my research from this summer at a conference held at LSU in aug (3-6th). the school is flying us down and paying for everything - so that's definitely exciting. i've never been to louisiana. too bad i can't find time to go to new orleans. LSU is in baton rouge.

at any rate, on aug 6th - instead of flying home from louisiana - i'm flying to texas for the annual AAV conference. that's association of avian veterinarians. it's a great opportunity for me - my mentor will introduce me around, and i'll get to meet people that could help me get a residency/internship post-graduation.

my vacation is coming up. i'll have at least 2 weeks off from school - which i desperately need - because i'm tired of that place. sometimes it feels like i live there.

so. lots of flying store for me this summer. you that know me know how much i despise flying. but - i figure a couple of important things when considering flying. first, fear cannot rule my life. if i ever want to travel, i have to overcome the fear of flying. or at least control the fear. second, we all gotta go some time. would dying in a plane crash be any worse than any other way? probably not. so yeah, happy thoughts.

in all seriousness, i'm really excited about our research, especially about presenting it. i love to talk in front of people. makes me feel smart:)

guess that's all here. i'm still running. and still enjoying it. most of the time. sometimes not so much. i have found that treadmills suck after running outside. time and the miles CREEP by. so i'm mostly running outdoors now and using the gym to keep in shape between big outdoor runs.

Monday, June 19, 2006

it's official

i ran 3 miles last night, outside, and it was 83 degrees. it was hard, but when i finished, i felt surprisingly good. i thought i'd want to collapse, but i was pretty pumped. i'm officially ready to run a 5k. i still have about 2 more weeks to improve on my time, which will be good. i'm not interested in being competitive in the race - i just want to finish. i would like to do the race in 30 mins, which would be slightly less than a 10 minute mile. i guess we'll see. i'm going to use the treadmill at the gym as a way to get my speed up - shorter distances, faster. then i plan on running outside, at night, to keep my distance up. i'm excited and proud of myself. i feel fit! someone told me today that i looked great, so i guess the working out is finally beginning to show. i feel less flabby, definitely.

yay. i love running.

Friday, June 16, 2006

still running

so, i figured out why i did so poorly in my first 5k. at least, i think i did. i've been reading a book by jeff galloway - the world's running guru. he trained the guy who broke the marathon time world record several years ago. he has a very interesting approach to running. at any rate, i was running too much. 6 days a week most weeks. and i wound up over training. so, since i've started reading his book, i've cut actual running down to 3 or 4 days a week. on top of that, galloway insists on incorporating walk breaks into every run. you run - for example - 5 mins, then walk 1. it gives your leg muscle a brief break and helps you keep your time up. the guy he trained to run the marathon ran AND WALKED - and broke the world record. he ran 26.2 miles in just over 2 hours. unbelievable, eh? at any rate, yesterday i ran 3.5 miles in this fashion. i ran a mile, walked for about 5 minutes, then ran 2 miles without stopping, walked a couple of minutes, and ran another half mile. i felt great when i was done. not only when i finished, too - i felt great as i was running. exhilirated and good. i was pushing myself but i didn't feel like i was going to die.

i think i need to be committed

because i'm addicted. i ran twice today. once at the gym - 2.5 miles on the treadmill - after i got off work. then, after the movie with alison tonight (the lake house), jim and i went and ran 1.6 miles at school. it was a beautiful night. 12:30 am - and we did a harder run than normal - up several hills. big run for me, because it was mostly inclined - not flat. we ran from thompson boling arena up to neyland stadium and back to the parking lot. 4.1 miles of running in less than 12 hours! i'm tuff!

such a beautiful night. 75 degrees with a breeze. i still manage to sweat insanely.

listening to wolf parade, bloc party, and the bravery a lot lately - all very modern / new wave 80s sound. especially the bravery (whom i LOVE).

Thursday, June 15, 2006

running running

i'm up to 2 miles outside. jim and i did the lake loudon greenway in front of the vet school again. i still have a love / hate relationship with running. i love the idea of running, but when i'm actually doing it, all i can think is 'god - when will this agony end?' a friend told me that running doesn't really become natural and you don't get into a 'groove' until you've run at least 3 miles. so i'm over halfway to the point where running becomes fun.

ha. ha. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. fun. running. hahahahahahahahahaha.

ok. i have to go to work.

ps: running - fun. hahahahahaha. 9 days until i'm 27. i hate birthdays.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

much needed vacation time

jim and i took a mini-vacation this weekend. we needed it desperately. we spent saturday, sunday, and monday in asheville. jim's friend, luke (and his wife, lucinda) live in a sweet little house there, adjacent to downtown asheville. the house has a 'cabin' built onto the back - with a bedroom, bathroom, small kitchenette, and living area. it was like staying in a condo. we had a relaxed and fun 3 days. we went kayaking on saturday. my first time in a kayak on a river. it was a little scary - but i had a great time. 4 hours floating down through the gorge on the pigeon river. the rapids were 2+ - and i only flipped once. it was my own fault, i wanted to surf in a hole - and i got into the hole okay - but then i got turned sideways and flipped. other than that, i did pretty well. the gorge was beautiful and we had so much fun. that night, we went out for mexican, then walked around downtown asheville. sunday, we got up moderately early and had a ridiculously good breakfast at a place called sunny pointe cafe. i had french toast stuffed with almond cream cheese and covered with strawberries and jam. i've never had anything that good and RICH for breakfast. we then drove to shiprock, NC and went climbing. it was a flawless day and really cool in the mountains (low 70s).

monday was a low key day - walking around downtown asheville, visiting several art galleries, window shopping, and ice cream.

all in all, it was a GREAT 3 days. it made me feel like i was 20 again - when jim and i used to camp and climb all the time. back when we had no responsibilities and jim still lived with his parents. those were fun times. spending the last 3 days with jim like that reminded me of all the reasons i fell in love with him. we're going to make a concerted effort to spend more time doing the things we used to do together. keeps the relationship thriving. i think some people (including us) lose sight of that idea, especially when daily responsibilities, pets, bills, and everything else starts to weigh on one's soul. it's so easy to forget the good things in life and why you were attracted to each other in the first place.

we got back at around 9:30 last night, threw on our 'athletic' gear - and went for a run along lake loudon (in front of the vet school). that's where the fireball 5K is going to be, so i figured it was a good place to start running outdoors. it was a bit different than running on a treadmill. harder, i thought - though jim always argues that treadmills are harder (read - boring). i only ran 1.1 miles. i was a little disappointed in myself - even though i told myself the first time i ran outdoors, i would only run a mile - allow myself to acclimate. i wanted to go at least 2 last night. but i didn't pace myself very well - it was windy - and the course is a slow, mild uphill for the first half. at any rate, it was a nice run and a beautiful night (72 degrees). i'm looking forward to doing it again tonight. the fireball 5K is a night run - at 9pm, so i'm pretty excited about it. i have to get up to 3.1 miles pretty fast though, the race is july 3rd.

at any rate, that's about all to say here

Friday, June 9, 2006

things to say

hrm. i got a second job. at another laboratory, making $15 an hour with no taxes taken out. it's the same place my sister-in-law works. i was initially hesitant to take it, but we need the money, i have the time, it's great experience, and why not? if i want to stay in academia post-graduation/internship/residency - then the more research opportunities i take and the more papers i write, the better. i'm not thrilled at the idea of working in a lab all day every day, but i suppose there are worse things in the world. at least i'll have a little shoe money now:)

i ran 2 miles yesterday. i was really proud of myself. it was hard. i hope to be up to 3 miles by the end of next week. i haven't taken my newfound hobby out of doors yet, so that'll be interesting. i run on a treadmill, which gets boring. i haven't actually tried running outside yet. i'm afraid i won't be able to pace myself or something and i'll run full out and then burn out a half mile into it or something. it's just a change from the routine and that scares me a little. plus is so hot, and i don't like heat. sweating, i don't mind. heat i detest. i'm either going to run outdoors in the morning or at night, though i feel safer in the morning.

i guess that's all to report from the mundane existence of me. jim and i are trying to go away this weekend, to asheville. do some of the things we used to do together, when we first started dating - climbing, hiking, that sort of thing. it should be fun and much needed.

Wednesday, June 7, 2006

mundane existence

as in - i have one. and i absolutely love it. have i mentioned that having a regular job, a paycheck, and a schedule that doesn't change much but doesn't involve studying is the greatest thing ever? i wish i felt some desire to return to school, but i don't. i do still desire a career as a veterinarian though, so i'm sure that will drive me through the next 2 years (of hell).

i'm still working out diligently. i ran 1.7 miles today. again, probably not a big deal for some people - but if everyone only knew how much i previously HATED running - then you'd understand. 2 miles tomorrow is my goal. i think i can make it. i'm trying to get up to speed so that i can run the fireball 5K that's coming up july 3rd. it's a nighttime run (9pm) - so i won't die of a heatstroke (thankfully).

in other news, my research is progressing alright. it's a little frustrating. i have discovered that i lack the meticulous nature required for research. i have a frightening lack of attention to detail. it scares me a little, because - as a doctor - i'll have to pay attention to stuff. and it's hard to learn a skill like having an attention span. one of my mentors told me that having a meticulous nature isn't something one can learn. always heartening to hear. he's out of the country at the moment, leaving me to wreak merry havoc on the flow cytometer. i have learned - this summer - to restrain a parrot one-handed and draw blood with the other hand. i'm doing great with the restraining and the drawing blood, separately. yesterday was my first attempt to do both. i hit the jugular - oh happy day ! but then i lost it, so eventually dr g had to take over and get the sample. but it was my first attempt, so i was fairly pleased with my success.

we saw the omen last night - with friends/fam. save the 2 hours of your life that movie would waste and run screaming from any theater that shows it. YES. it was THAT bad.

jim studies all day - i think his life is more boring than mine. but i don't think either of us is complaining. he starts teaching in about a month, but until then - he just has to study. we have dinner together (that I COOK!) every night and watch movies and generally just relax. it's like being a normal couple again. it's a great feeling - but i'm a little sad - because i know it all ends - for a REALLY long time, come august. because once third year starts, i'm not 'free' until after my fourth year is over. and really not then, especially if i do an internship and residency. but i won't think unhappy thoughts tonight.

Tuesday, June 6, 2006

i have something niggling at me that i need to write down - but every time i start to attempt to explain it, i find that i really can't. rattling around inside of my brain is the feeling of impermanence, coupled with the knowledge of my own ephemeral existence. on top of that...i just feel ... odd? i guess. i don't know. i have too much time on my hands. i'm volunteering at the shelter and supposedly - any day now - i'll start the research that i'm getting paid for... so it's not exactly like i'm choosing to be lazy. i can't get another job - with the possibility of actually starting my research soon looming...so i'm basically stranded...waiting for real work to begin...and i guess i'm bored. which is always bad, because it gives my mind ample time to work up to a neurotic episode. i had a panic 'flit' last night - which is the beginning of a panic attack -that i got under control in amazingly rapid time - a few minutes...i guess. i was still up till 4am though, assuring that when i finally did go to sleep, i would stay that way.

i don't know what started this weird feeling. yes i do...actually. i was browsing around on vetnet and stumbled across a classified ad for a room rental. the post was by an incoming first year from NCstate. when i saw that pictures of the room/house for rent were posted, i went and looked - and wound up on the girls photo album website. i stayed and cruised around, looking at pictures of this future vet and her friends, family, trips, holidays, and graduations. i think that looking at those pictures gave me a sort of 'life deja-vu' -- in that -- despite the fact that i know nothing about her or her friends or family...the pictures made me think of my family and friends... and i realized that we are all the same. not in the literal sense - everyone has different life experiences. . . but we are all humans, floating along on this rapidly turning planet, moving toward the inevitable conclusion of life, involved in our own pursuits, our own lives, happily (or unhappily) immersed in the existence that defines our paradigm...and yet (at least in my opinion) we are all headed for the same end. and what's it all for ? ?

i'll refrain from ranting about the futility of life and existence ... because i often wind up arguing from a nihilistic standpoint - and really, that can't work, can it? because if i were a nihilist, i would just slit my wrists and get it over with... life is one big anticlimax.

i had intended to write this post to talk about what i learned from my first year of vet school and what i think about vet school and how i feel about becoming a vet and how excited i am to get to fourth year, even though that means 2 more years of my life are irrevocably gone..but now, i can't think of how to start or why it matters.