Saturday, August 9, 2008

Move Over, Rembrandt

SPM is finished, so hallelujah! hip hip hurray! and all the rest.

The exams were not a cakewalk, and the qwerty* who set the ENT question paper ought to be taken bungee jumping. Without a rope. The less said about those painful two hours trying to answer (the operative word being 'trying') questions about the treatment for CSF rhinorrhoea (when cerebrospinal fluid leaks out through the nose, usually due to an injury) and resorting to my imagination for the answer (I actually wrote “endoscopic cauterization of the leaky area”. Don’t try this at home, kids.), the better.

Nothing very funny happened during the practical exams this time. Last year, I dutifully enumerated the names of inhalational steroids when asked about inhalational anaesthetics, and named the drugs used for MTP (medical termination of pregnancy) when I misheard the question as the drugs used for MDP (manic depressive psychosis). I suppose we are all becoming old and dignified now. Even me. What a horrible thought.

Oh, no, wait. I did goof up in the Ophthalmology case presentation. I proudly defined astigmatism as the refractive error in which a point source of light cannot be made to produce a punctuate image upon the retina by any spherical correcting lens, and promptly proceeded to assert that the type of lens used to correct astigmatism was spherical. But this was the only incident. Oh, and proclaiming that menstruation is a contraindication for adenoid surgery. (Adenoiditis is seen only in young children, in case you didn’t know.) Yeah, that is all. The incident during the SPM viva does not count. The one where I rattled on about the treatment of tuberculosis patients and did not hear the examiner ask the next question. Three times. But that could happen to anyone, right? RIGHT?

You might assume, on reading this report of my ‘stellar’ performance in the exams, that my passing the exams with air travelling hues is a given. You could not be more wrong. The bane of my existence continues to be, well, the bane of my existence. As in, SPM may not be done with me. Take a look at some of the diagrams in my practical record book.

I hear you, peoples. And that the fuck is a head louse, female. As the actual thing looks like this, on the right, you can rest assured that it does not live on people's heads. This is why we should be worried about nuclear bombs. You can never tell about those mutations.

You didn’t need my helpful little label to identify him, did you? This is the bad guy that spreads bubonic plague, among other things. Look at him closely. If you ever see anything resembling the thing in that picture, contact your nearest Pest Alien Control Centre. I shall not object to your using that image to scare your kids who don’t eat their vegetables. Or even adults, for that matter. Just send me lots of money every time you do. I shall soon be rich. *rubs hands in anticipation*

And now, for the gem of the collection. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome

Cuuuulex larva! Observe the graceful little tufts of hair(?) on its head! The eyes open wide in innocence and wonder! The cute little respiratory siphon at the bottom! All it lacks are a few pairs of arms and a bazooka.

The only point in my favour is that the record books carry only 1 mark, out of the 200 allotted for SPM. But this being SPM, you never know. Those Parkists are weird.

The classes for final year should start soon. THE final year. It feels like yesterday that I was a scared little first year, thinking 4.5 years was a LOT of time and the future was far away. *sigh*

About my dad, I still miss him terribly, and I still can’t believe he’s gone, just like that, but somehow, sleeping is a little easier now. It’s been 8 whole weeks without him, and somehow, wherever he is, he must be missing his little baby too. I hate getting preachy, but I would just like to remind you smokers that someday, it might be your little girl grieving for you. Acha quit smoking with his first heart attack 15 years ago, and it still got him in the end. We never even got to say goodbye…

I was wrong. It still hurts as much as it did.

*If you are not a QC fan, click here.