Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sign of the Apocalypse

You know that times are hard when the descriptive picture of your frozen pizza looks like this
And your actual pizza looks like this
Umm...has the price of pepperoni suddenly skyrocketed? Is there some strange link between the oil spill in the Gulf and the availability of pepperoni in the US? It makes sense that lots of places are skimping on shrimp, but why are they picking off pepperoni?

Totinos better watch out or I'll take my ninety-six cents elsewhere.

(Ok, I won't, but that's only because no one else sells pizzas for ninety-six cents!)

On another note, I think I'm going to brush up on my Spanish now. I called my patient for tomorrow and I don't think he speaks English. Why do I think that? Because three times I told him my name is Lauren, and three times he called me Yolanda.

Tomorrow might not be so bueno.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

More solid proof that dental school is making me smarter

Here it is--

I don't have a picture, but Jeffrey passed his boards, too! In fact, he not only passed them, he smoked them (just like I knew he would). Thanks to all of you who prayed, worried, and crossed your fingers along with us while we waited for our results.

Speaking of people who worried with us--some of them came to visit last weekend! My parents came down on Friday and then my grandfather and his friend, Helen, joined us on Saturday. We did the usual things (shopped, talked, showed them the school, etc...) and then we decided to try a new restaurant for dinner on Saturday.

My grandfather carries a list in his car of Texas Monthly's picks for best burgers and best steaks in Texas. Number five on the burger list is a place in San Antonio called "The Cove." It was so high on the list that we decided we had to try it.

I had heard before from my aunt and uncle that the place is quite a dive, but I wasn't prepared to see the restaurant sandwiched between graffiti covered walls and some of the outdoor tables literally inches away from a coin-operated car wash. I have to admit, I was scared.

I was more scared when I went inside and saw that the "Texas burger" that made Texas Monthly's list included refried beans and corn chips on it. Concerned, but not willing to back down, I ordered the burger with everything on it.

A few minutes later, I put the most delicious burger I've ever eaten into my mouth. Dee-eee-lish--ous! I highly recommend The Cove. Casual, fun, family-friendly, and so yummy.

Before we left the restaurant, we stopped to take some silly pictures. For your viewing pleasure...

In case you're wondering--we don't know the little boy in the last picture. He just wanted to take some pictures with us.

Monday, July 12, 2010

My First Patient

Last week my scheduler at the dental school scheduled my first patient for Tuesday afternoon, July 12th. I spent a good amount of time reviewing her past year of medical history and the notes the last student had written in her chart. I examined her Xrays, and came up with a list of questions I needed to ask my professors before I saw the patient.

Yesterday my patient confirmed the appointment with my scheduler.

Today I stayed late with a professor to go over this patient's case and talk about her treatment for tomorrow.

Tonight, when I called her to confirm...
...she cancelled.
Not the best way to start out my clinical experience of 3rd year. It just goes to show that you might hate going to the dentist, but the dentist hates it more when you don't come!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Express Yourself

Yesterday, in an attempt at being a good wife, I ran some errands for myself and for Jeffrey, then picked up a few things at the store to make a good dinner. (By "good" I mean "delicious," not healthy, because I picked up ingredients at the store to make bacon-wrapped green bean bundles. Yummy!)

I had only grabbed about 7 things, so I searched out an express lane that was 10 items or less. There were about 3 people in front of me, including the person who was almost done being checked. I assumed the line would move quickly, but soon I noticed that something was wrong.

*From this point on in the story, I will be replacing the curse words said by the individuals involved with 3rd grade insults written in italics. You're welcome.

The woman being checked at that time was huffing and sighing and generally acting annoyed as she bagged her groceries. The checker asked the woman a seemingly innocuous question (Would you like your receipt in one of the bags?) and the woman responded, "Yes. You booger-eater."

The checker, obviously upset at being insulted, said, "What did you call me?"

The woman said again, "I said you're a booger-eater."

The H.E.B. employee asked the woman if she would like to speak to a manager, and the shopper responded, in a voice positively saturated with malice, "Yeah, I would like to speak to your nerd manager because I need to tell him what a little poop face you are and that you need to be fired."

The employee called her manager over and the disgruntled woman began her expletive-laced tirade again. The manager somehow got her to stop long enough to ask what had happened. The woman then relayed the events that had led up to all this anger. She said, and I censor:

"That checker is a little piece of toe jam! I waited in this line for 5 minutes and then when I got to the front this brace face said (and she did this part in the most mocking voice), 'You can't check out here--you have too many items.' I told her that I could check out here, so then she wouldn't even bag my stupid groceries for me."

Can you believe it? She was enraged that the woman at the 10 items or less line protested her having 25 items. She was the one who was wrong!

All the while, the entire checkout line had been at a standstill. Hoping that the woman would hear me, I said loudly, "So she held us up by having too many items for the express line, and now she's holding us up with this?"

(She didn't hear me. If she had, I'd probably have a black eye, and she'd have an assault arrest on her record. That would have been awesome.)

Instead, she asked to see the manager's manager, related the story again, and finally huffed her way out the door after flinging the manager's hands off her cart when he tried to help her to her car.

What a woman.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Meet me at 3:15

Well, it's 8:30 pm and I just tucked my husband into bed and kissed him goodnight because he has to report to the hospital tomorrow at 5:30 am. Unfortunately, his first days of school have been much more exciting than mine, so I'll be stepping in as his "designated blogger" until he gets a little more rest and a little more free time.

Today he had to go to a conference in a building that is technically within walking distance of our campus, but not really--because pedestrians take their lives into their own hands at every street crossing in San Antonio. (Example: Yesterday I saw a car stop completely at a red light, grow impatient in 3 seconds, and then turn left while it was still red.)

Knowing the dangers of walking, Jeffrey and Kevin (the other 3rd year on rotation with Jeffrey) took Kevin's car over to the building. When they asked the security guard where they should park, he said, "Anywhere you want." They informed the guard that they were students and needed zone 4 parking (like our parking pass says), the man said, "There's not any over here. You'll have to park elsewhere." They asked if their parking ticket could be validated with someone so they didn't have to pay. The answer, of course, was no.

Shaking off this confusion, they went to their conference and hung around a little bit afterward. Jeffrey was busy talking to someone in the building when his partner in crime suddenly started to pull him out the door. Kevin said that he had just received a strange phone call from one of the secretaries in the surgery office.

The secretary had called Kevin and told him that one of the surgeons wanted to meet with him and with Jeffrey. She asked, "Can you guys be in our office at the hospital at 3:15?"

Kevin, glancing down at his watch, noted that it was already 3:15 at that moment and they weren't even on the same campus.
He answered, "Sure."

Moral of the story: If you can't time travel, don't bother trying to become a surgeon.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Our 20th First Day of School

That's right--today marked the beginning of Jeffrey's and my twentieth year of formal education, but somehow that first day of every year still gives us butterflies in our stomachs!

After waking up and getting ready, we ate a quick breakfast together, knowing that we might not see each other as much as we used to due to our new schedules.

An obligatory "First Day" picture in our doctor clothes...
I spent the morning in orientation lectures and in the afternoon we began a didactic course about esthetic dentistry. That course will end 10 days from now with a practical examination and a written final. Starting off with a bang!

Jeffrey, who had not been given a definite schedule until this morning, took a pair of scrubs with him to school just in case he needed them. It turns out that his planning ahead was justified when his attending doctor asked Jeffrey and the other 3rd year medical student, "Who can fly to Little Rock this morning to pick up some lungs for a transplant this afternoon?"

The other boy volunteered to go on that unusual errand, so the attending told Jeffrey that he could scrub in to watch/assist on the transplant surgery! Jeffrey was given a couple of hours to change clothes and eat something before the surgery would begin. At this moment, he is probably watching someone's heart beating in an open chest. Incredible!

Unfortunately, he won't be home until late tonight because the surgery will take about 5 hours...but it's not every day that you get to see a patient get a new set of lungs, so Jeffrey is so excited to even have the honor of watching the surgeons give this man or woman or child a new lease on life.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Solid proof that dental school has made me smarter

Last year Jeffrey and I had a lot of conversations like this:

Jeffrey: What are we having for dinner tonight?
Lauren: I don't know. What do you know how to make?
Jeffrey: Toast and Totinos pizza.
Lauren: We had that last night.
Jeffrey: That's all I know how to make.
Lauren: I don't want to cook. Want McDonald's?

(And then we gained weight.)

This summer I decided that a smart person would prepare some meals in advance and have them ready to go for the school year. It took me three days to do all the shopping and get the motivation to make all these meals, but I now have solid proof that dental school has made me smarter.
Ta-da! Fifteen casseroles, labeled and waiting, in the freezer for nights when I don't feel like cooking.

Of course, the entire reason I worked to get all these casseroles done this weekend is because Jeffrey's and my fall semester starts tomorrow. Yikes! What happened to our summer???? Oh, yeah...the board exam. I remember now. Honestly, we're pretty excited about our 3rd year of school. Third year seems to be the time when our education kicks up a notch because we will start caring for patients (under careful supervision, of course). We feel ready, but nervous--excited, but cautious. It ought to be interesting...and I'm sure there will be plenty of stories to blog about!

We had a dinner party for several friends we knew from ACU last weekend, and the house is still semi-clean from that night, so I decided to take a few pictures for those of you (mostly Beth and Melinda) who have been waiting patiently for months to see more of the house! Here's the living room...

And the stairs...
And the landing area at the top of the stairs...

More pics later...hopefully!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Name Calling

I like to imagine that when my mom was pregnant with me she and my dad spent hours discussing possible names for me. (It makes me feel important, ok? And also makes me feel less creepy for spending hours picking names for my future--albeit unborn and even un-conceived--children.)

I don't know if my mom and dad spent hours picking out my name, but I do know that they thought carefully about it. Good news, Mom and Dad: Lauren doesn't rhyme with anything, and is virtually unable to be transformed into any sort of cut down or gross nickname; therefore, no one made fun of my name.

Bad news, Mom and Dad: No one knows how to say it.

My name is spelled L-A-U-R-E-N. Because it has an "A," I like it to be pronounced "Lah-ren." Instead, this is what happens...

Me, meeting a new person: Hi, I'm Lauren Edwards. (I purposefully emphasize the "ah" sound.)
New person: Hi, Lora. Is it Lora? Or Loren?
Me: LAH-REN. (Even bigger emphasis on the "ah.")
New person: Oh, Loren. Nice to meet you.
Me: Ok. Whatever.

Sometimes this makes me frustrated. Other times it just makes me laugh. I get especially tickled when people try to spell my name. A few days ago I went by Starbucks to buy some coffee and, per usual, the former conversation took place between the barista (if it's a guy, is he a baristo?) and me. When I got my drink, it had "Loran" proudly scrawled on the side. That is not my name, but I drank it anyway, because I knew what he meant.

My all time favorite, however, has to be one of my high school boyfriends who once wrote me a note that began with "Dear Larn." I'm thinking of officially changing it. Think how much money I'd save by reducing the ink needed to write my name by two letters.

As an added bonus, I could introduce myself like this:

Me: Hi, I'm Larn Edwards.
New person: Hi, Lora. Is it Lora? Or Loren?
Me: It's Larn. Rhymes with yarn.
New person: Oh. Hi, Larn.
Me: Sweet victory.