Wednesday, August 15, 2007


New word of the week:
Function: adjective
Date: 2007
Origin: Goiffonian/Fogelian hybrid
Etymology: A combination of the word rock, which originates from Middle English rokken, from Old English roccian; akin to Old High German rucken to cause to move, and fantastic, which comes form Middle English fantastic, fantastical, from Middle French & Late Latin; Middle French fantastique, from Late Latin phantasticus, from Greek phantastikos producing mental images, from phantazein to present to the mind.
1: Utter and total awesomeness, often accompanied with great happiness and mild inebriation.
Synonyms: Reesolicious, rocktacular

Monday, August 13, 2007

An official Missourian

As of this afternoon, I am officially a Missourian. Anyway, so I am now officially a Missouri resident because I got a MO drivers license this afternoon. I was especially impressed by how easy the process was. There was no line, and I was done with everything in less than 30 minutes.

I guess technically you could say I always have been one since I was born in MO, but I grew up on the Kansas side of the state line and there was always a bit of teasing between the kids that lived in MO vs those that lived in KS (for those of you that didn't know there is a Kansas City, MO and a Kansas City, KS separated by the state line). Although to many of you being from KS may not seem like something one would be proud of (after all our state board of education did outlaw teaching evolution and everyone thinks all there is in KS are farms, tornadoes, and Dorothy and the other characters from the Wizard of Oz), I am proud of KS. Especially in high school, it was better to be from KS than from MO because you got to drive earlier (you can get your learner's permit at 14 and a restricted license at 15, which allows you to drive to school and work by yourself, and in MO you can't get your permit until you're 15 or 15.5, I can't remember).

It's kind of funny how getting a small card can mean something. It really makes it seem real that I am starting this new part of my life, and i am going to be here for the next several years (I'm not really ready to start guessing the exact number, so we'll leave it at several). Furthermore, after such a fun summer, I'm really excited that I'll be here for a while. When I first told people I was applying or coming to WashU, some people were curious and even skeptical of what there was to do in St. Louis, but as hopefully this blog has at least partially described, there is a TON of stuff to do. Despite all of the exploring that we have done this summer, there is still so many things that we have not done and areas that we still need to explore. Anyway, we had our MSTP orientation this morning and then med school orientation starts tomorrow. Hopefully, it's not too boring, but at least it seems there will be lots of food and at least time to have fun at night.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

A "non-WUMPers" view of WUMP week

This week did mark a definite change of pace from our usual summer antics as most of the new arrivals were eager to start exploring the city (especially the central west end, however we did venture to the Hill last night to play bocce ball)! I also was not able to do WUMP because of my summer research rotation, but it sounded like everyone really enjoyed it and I'm also a bit jealous of the different things that they got to do. However, having a few days between my research rotation and orientation was really nice to be able to get some stuff done before things got crazy again.

I'm definitely someone who kind of likes to ease into things, so it was nice to be able to meet another wave of new people before the whole med school class gets here. It's been really nice that everyone has been so excited and willing to explore the city, and hopefully that will continue throughout the year, although probably the pace of social events will be a bit slower (which I think my desire for sleep and bank account will appreciate). It's been really interesting how diverse the group is, and I am guessing that will also be true for the entire med school class.

I feel like these types of preorientation/orientation times are really interesting because everyone is meeting tons of new people and trying to make new friends, but it is such an extremely unusual social situation that I find it hard to really get to know what people will be like normally. However, there's really no rush since we'll be spending at least the next 2 years with all of the med school kids and 6-8 with all of the MSTPers.

**These are some pics from last night at Tom's Bar and Grill, which has karaoke on the weekends.

WUMP week

As mentioned earlier, things are bustling around here. We MSTPs and research-oriented meds have been up to our usual fun and games for the last month or so, but everything rapidly changed pace last Monday with the beginning of WUMP.

WUMP is the Washington University Medical Plunge, a weeklong foray into the world of medicine and serving the underprivileged. St. Louis offers a lot of chances to do this, from Planned Parenthood to shadowing a doctor at a prison, from a sexual abuse clinic to a homeless shelter. Only three MSTPs (that I know of) participated in WUMP this year, but had it not been for our lab rotations more of us would have applied. I really wanted to go see the correctional facility, but alas I had data to collect.

WUMP also gives you a head start on the social scene. The 40ish people participating in WUMP get to do the introduction and name learning a week earlier than the other meds, and any rotating MSTPs still in their labs may quickly find themselves out of the loop. WUMP is long in the daytime hours, but at night everyone goes out in one big group that for the most part has no cliques established yet and live like rockstars. It’s great. Yesterday we got about 40 people together in the 100 °F heat and played ultimate Frisbee for 2-3 hours. With a large group of intelligent people like this, it’d be hard for us to have anything but constant fun in a new city.

However, it seems that the uniform solidarity of the WUMP group lasts about a week, as last night I noticed the first evidence of cliques forming while we belted out our favorite songs at a karaoke bar. (Not that this is a terrible thing, as it’s pretty much guaranteed with a group larger than a dozen). With the MSTP orientation beginning tomorrow morning, a day earlier than the meds, the science geeks will be retiring a little earlier than previous nights. We’ll need the rest, too, for on Tuesday we will meet another 80 or so people that comprise the rest of our med school class. Alright, my phone is beeping with texts every few minutes because I am pulling together a dozen for dinner. Hopefully one of the other writers will be able to specifically write more about WUMP.

I haven't forgotten you

So I have been meaning to write all week… but the week kinda got in the way of that. WUMP! I wasn’t actually in WUMP, but it did mean that about 40 new students showed up. On top of that, we have a few new MSTP arrivals since Friday.

Tomorrow’s high is in the low 100’s, so staying in to give my WUMP week report will be a perfect excuse to stay in and soak up the AC. Well, that and the fact that I arrived home at 1:45 tonight and this was the earliest I have come home all week. Partying like that really takes a lot out of a fella.

If I don’t follow through, post a comment of scorn!