Monday, September 29, 2008

Monday Afternoon Craving

I have been craving marrow bones for DAAAAAYYYYYYYYS. I just gotta get off my lazy ass and haul off to Bob the Butcher to pick up a bag. Maybe this coming weekend.

Man's fake girlfriend thrown out with trash

According to investigators, the man had lived with the sophisticated doll for several years after his wife passed away, but decided to part with her after making plans to move in with one of his children. “It seems he grew attached to the doll over the years,” said the chief investigator. “He was confused about how to get rid of her. He thought it would be cruel to cut her up into pieces and throw her out with the trash, so he proceeded to dump her illegally.”

I th ink I myself would have a hard time parting with the sex doll not because I'd grown attached to her, but because those things cost over 5 grand apiece.


True Blood follow up

For real, I think I just give up by this point.

See, I believe that if you're going to tell a story that already exists and that with which people are already familiar, you stick with it. If you want to change around characters and their associations with one another, make up a new story. 'Cause, dude, what they're broadcasting, it's just pissing me off.
And I know I can't be the only one.

What's frightening about this?

That I actually understand all the Treky and HGTTG references written in.

from xkcd

Friday, September 26, 2008

Mental_Floss Daily Quiz = Chocolatey goodness

Mental_Floss has a George Castanza candy quiz. The scary thing was that I did the entire quiz before I realized there was an answer pool immediately above the questions, and I still got an 80%. I swear I'm not a candy bar hound, I swear.

I love this video.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Did someone order a scrotum?

A few days ago I posted about a series of illustrations I'm doing for an upcoming Urology textbook. Here's the one I did of the layers of the scrotal wall. Click for a bigger pic. Or not.

Thursday Afternoon Pet Peeves

For realz, people, don't name drop, it's unbecoming.

Furthermore, don't ask for favors. I only like doing favors for nice people who don't ask for it, not for people who expect it.

MTA Undercover Agent Strikes Again!

So, I've said in the past that the MTA subtly and cleverly place agents throughout their transit system with the sole purpose of driving me nucking futs. Today was no exception.

The subway arrives, I go to step on, and a child, a seven year-old, adorable little girl, followed by her doting mama (or grandmama, I couldn't tell) literally shoves me out of the way with her little toothpick arms, runs to a seat, sees where I'm gonna sit, changes her mind, shoves me out of the way AGAIN and sits in my seat. "DUDE!" I exclaim, completely taken aback, and look over at (grand)mama. Laughing, she said, "Say excuse me."

Since living in NYC, I've encountered numerous children with a complete and utter lack of manners, but this is the first time I've ever felt like confronting the offending parent about it.

Touche, MTA, touche.

Hehe...he said "epiglottis"

Ever since Bush's reelection, I've been saying that he's gonna try to find some reason to postpone the next election so he can stay in office longer. Now, it looks like McCain is starting to dip his toes in that water.
John Scalzi, science fiction writer and author of the blog Whatever, posted recently on John McCain.

[McCain] "also suggests we cancel (or, “delay”) the presidential debate on Friday, and maybe the VP debate next week. You know, just to be sure we’re all focused on the economy, instead of, frivolous things, such as the fact that John McCain apparently hasn’t had a useful thought about the national economy since he married a heiress, and that Sarah Palin can’t be trusted to extemporize about damn near anything without appearing like she’s stuffing her conservative-yet-stylish pumps far enough down her throat to alarm her epiglottis. "
For reals, McCain? Honestly, the only scary thing that's been happening on Wall Street has been that rich people are losing their money. I am not rich. Do you see me panicing? Banks are FDIC insured, so I'm not worried about my life's savings disappearing.
Relax people, rich dudes feeling an economic pinch is good for them. It builds character.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wanna see my nard?

I've been working on some anatomical illustrations for a urology text book due out next year, and this is my drawing of a testicle. You like my nut, yeah?

See, there's this doctor who does medical illustrations, and his name is Netter. He's seen as the best medical illustrator out there, but I wanna be better than Netter. Netter sucks.
I am the next Netter. No, Netter's Vanessa's predecessor.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Is this just a legaleeze way of saying Neener Neener?

You know, I’ve been thinking about this whole financial crash for a few weeks now. Dusting out the rusty files of my brain, I vaguely recall learning in high school social studies that the original depression was caused by banks giving out loans to people who were playing the stock market, and once the people lost all their money in the stock markets, not being able to pay the loans back, so all these loans defaulted. Today’s mortgage and loan default crisis is highly reminiscent of all them loans given out back in the day that people defaulted on.

Yes, I understand that the Federal Reserve is a PRIVATELY OWNED BANK AND NOT ACTUALLY RUN BY THE GOVERNMENT, and I understand that to run his war, W had the Fed print up a whole butt load of cash without any actual financial backing, and that caused the value of the dollar to decrease, and that this situation is hugely influential on America’s current financial standing. Let’s take that as a given, k?

Anyhoo, all these investment banks which have gone under are asking congress for a 700 billion dollar bailout, right? And the secretary of the treasury is heading this request. The Huffington Post published an article with a very interesting statement that comes from the secretary’s bailout request: Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

Excuse me? Doesn’t that mean the secretary can basically do whatever the hell he wants with that money, and no one can look into his actions? Am I wrong here? ‘Cause if I am, I would LURVE it if someone would explain why to me.

Tuesday Morning Curmudgeon

"I'm tired of all this nonsense about beauty being skin-deep. That's deep enough. What do you want, an adorable pancreas?"
- Jean Kerr

Ahh haha..PC = FAIL

From the New York Post:

Microsoft admitted yesterday that its high-profile new ad campaign to keep users from switching to Macs was made using its competitor's computers and software.
Red-faced execs said in a statement, "A wide variety of software and hardware was used to create, edit and distribute content, including both Macs and PCs."
The TV spots parody the popular Mac campaign where a nerdy guy represents the PC.

Monday, September 22, 2008

True Blood - the saga continues

Can I just say, I miss the real Sookie. The one who's not afraid of vampires per se, just of their nasty quirks, and I definitely miss the real Bill, who isn't a whiney, fake angsty dude with a bad haircut. I hate knowing what's about to happen, and when it happens, it's so disappointing. Yeah, Sookie finds Dawn's body, but not like that. And dude, Tara and Sam sleeping together? In the book, did they even know each other? And Jason taking vampire blood? I see how they're going to try to go off on a tangent here, straying from the original story a bit, which I can appreciate, being so tired as I am of knowing everything that's about to happen, but shouldn't they have Rene in more of the scenes, especially since he plays such a HUGE ROLE in the murders?
I just hope the series picks up the pace a bit.

so many levels of suck

when your co-workers bail on you leaving you to answer the shrieking phone ALL MORNING, so that you can't even go to lunch, even though your stomach is growling so loud patients in the front waiting room are wondering why you have wild dogs caged in the back.

Pringles EXTREME

I am a picky eater. But while shopping at Walmart this weekend, I came across some interesting Pringles flavors, and, well, my curiosity got the best of me.

The first one I tried was the Pringles Restaurant Cravers Onion Blossom. The first chip didn't taste much like onion blossom, the next one, a little bit, and the one after that, a little bit more. By the fifth chip, if I closed my eyes, except for the shape of the chip, I would have thought I was eating the real thing. You could taste the onion, the breading, and most especially, the sauce. They were delicious.

A bit more rebelliously, I picked up a tube of Screamin' Dill Pickle. I got it home, opened the tube, and sniffed. Yep, smelled like dill pickle. I tasted. Yep, tasted like dill pickle. For reals. And while it sounds disgusting, they were surprisingly addictive.

Next weekend, I'm gonna get a can, pulverize them in the food processor, mix them with some ground beef and make burgers. I bet they'll be EXTREME to the max, yo.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Evil Villain Holds World Hostage

I never thought it would actually be possible. Nor did I think that anyone actually thought this way. But should someone, Dr. Evil perhaps, decide that they wanted to hold the world hostage for one hundred billion dollars, there's actually a way to do it.

After the doomsday machine, the Large Hadron Collider, was successfully "tested", and by tested I mean they sent a couple protons zooming through the chamber without actually accomplishing anything, they, of course, celebrated. Whilst celebrating, hackers actually hacked into the LHC system, and WERE ONE STEP AWAY FROM OBTAINING CONTROL OF THE DEVICE!!! Did you hear me? Someone can hack into the LHC to control it. Had they activated the LHC, they could have created that black hole I've been talking about, killing us all.

I wonder how W would have handled that one, eh?

The hackers, of course, defended their actions by saying that they were attempting to point out the security flaws in the LHC's system, and not, as I believe, doing it to just see if they could.

This made me want to cry

A while back I watched a documentary about a polar bear. It couldn't get to any huntable food, so it was attacked walrus'. Of course it couldn't kill a walrus, 'cause those fuckers are huge. So, when it ran out of energy, it laid down at the edge of where the walrus herd (pod?) was gathered, roared, then died of starvation. It was the most depressing thing I'd ever seen.

Until this. It's a Portuguese PSA about global warming, and it made me want to cry. And hug a bear, monkey and a kangaroo...not necessarily all at once or in that particular order.

Yes, I am aware that some people don't believe global warming is actually happening. Believe what you want. But you can't argue that carbon emissions are good for the atmosphere, so those people can go suck it.

link via Neatorama

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wednesday Afternoon Pet Peeves

Grown-ass people (or grown ass-people, hehe) who say words like "likeded", "aks", "lookeded" and "akses" instead of "liked", "ask", "looked" and "asks".

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Who are you voting for?

I know who I'm voting for, and I know most people already know who they're voting for, but are they voting for that person for the right reasons? Or simply because they're towing party lines?

ABC News has a quiz to help you decide who's a better candidate for you. I was surprised that I completely agreed with McCain about the economy, although Obama won me overall.

Are you voting correctly? Take the QUIZ.

that thing that you do, you know, the thing...

Dude: I need an appointment to see the doctor.

Me: For what problem do you need to be seen?

Dude: The regular one…that…you do…

Me: Well, we see patients for infertility, semen analysis, vasectomy, and vasectomy reversal.


Me: Sir, which do you need to be seen for: infertility, semen analysis, vasectomy or vasectomy reversal?

Dude: Yes.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Another way I hope I don't die

Discover Magazine recently came out with an online article of extreme things your body can endure (i.e. getting hit by lightning, free-falling out of a plane with no parachute, etc), what happens to your body during said extreme activities, and ways these activities can kill you: How to Fall out of a Plane and Live

To date, my most feared way of dying is by drowning. Now, after reading this article, death by exposure to vacuum comes in at a close second.

Exposed to a Vacuum

Engineer James C. LeBlanc climbed into a vacuum chamber at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in 1965 for a routine test of a spacesuit. His suit leaked, and for 14 harrowing seconds he was exposed to a near vacuum. LeBlanc later said that he could feel water boiling off his tongue. He then passed out, but technicians and engineers quickly repressurized the chamber; LeBlanc survived with no permanent damage.
Medical researchers at NASA estimate it is possible to revive someone exposed to
a vacuum for as long as 30 seconds. Air will be sucked out of your lungs immediately, and trying to hold your breath will be futile against the pressure. In a vacuum the gases and liquids in the body expand rapidly, animal studies show, but your skin and blood vessels maintain enough pressure on your body and its fluids that you will not instantly explode—no matter what you’ve seen in Hollywood films. According to NASA’s analysis, your tissues will swell slowly as water boils away and gases like nitrogen come out of solution, pushing against the membranes of your cells, stretching them and damaging your organs.
If you are fully exposed in outer space, the intense ultraviolet radiation from the unfiltered sun will give you a nasty sunburn on one side. In a vacuum, heat is not lost easily, however, so even though the temperature in deep space is –454 degrees F, you will not freeze immediately. Much sooner—after about 15 seconds—your oxygen-deprived brain will shut down. At that point you will black out, and you will probably die in another minute or two.

I'm not really sure how I feel yet

True Blood is the new series on HBO about a telepathic girl named Sookie Stackhouse who lives in a small Louisiana town called Bon Temps. The twist is that vampires have recently come out of the closet, and insinuated themselves into every day life.

Honestly, writing it out like that, it's a pretty weak concept. I have had to watch, though, out of sheer loyalty, because I've been a fan of the book series for years now.

The show True Blood is actually based on Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse series, and I was excited to watch the show because I figured it would be loosely based on the book. It's been a while since a Sookie book has come out, and I'd be interested in seeing some new slant or twist to the series.

Unfortunately, however, it wasn't loosely based on the series. It's exactly based on the series. To a tee. And honestly, it's really frustrating me. I'm watching this show, knowing EXACTLY what's about to happen. They haven't spiced it up, and the changes they've made to the original aren't even that interesting. The Tara character, in the show, has known Sookie since kindergarten, is in love with Sookie's brother, and works at the bar as a bartender, whereas in the book, they've only known each other for a few years, and she owns her own, successful, clothing store called Tara's Togs.

See, the differences aren't that important.

I just keep watching in the hopes that something new and surprising will happen. I know there have only been two episodes thus far, and we haven't even made it half way through the first novel, and there are currently seven novels, so it'll be a long while before anything new happens, but I can't help but hold out hope that they'll stray from the original story line to give Sookie readers something new and juicy to latch on to.

Furthermore, taking an outside perspective, the episodes are so slow-going that I can't imagine anyone NOT a loyal Sookie reader being able to keep up enough interest to tune in week after week.

Maybe I'm being too harsh. It reminds me of a teenager who has to write a book summary, and instead of writing it in their own words, they just copy the back of the book word-for-word. It's like the script writers couldn't come up with anything good, so they just went page by page and copied down everything there. There's absolutely no originality whatsoever.

What ever. I know I'll keep watching, and I know I'll keep being annoyed. What else is new?

Friday, September 12, 2008

I Had a Dream Last Night...

I had a dream last night that I had the Verizon Network, and they invaded my house and ate all my food, and I had to call the cops because they refused to leave.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Fine. I admit it. I was wrong.

Yeah, fine, the world didn't end. I can admit when I'm wrong. But just because the LHC didn't create a sustainable black hole this time, doesn't mean it won't in the future.

Here's a t-shirt from neatorama. Yuck it up now, suckos, while you still can.

I know, I know

Hey. I know I haven’t really been around lately, and for that, I apologize. My boss is editing a text book, and one of the physicians working with him is doing a chapter on anatomy. I’m working with that physician to do the drawings for the anatomy chapter. My drawings are gonna be published in a textbook. Word.

Now, to completely change the subject, I’ve been watching a lot of those Mystery Diagnosis shows on Discovery Health while working on these drawings. I feel for these people who no one believes. Let me tell you about my own medical mystery.

In November of 2005, BF bought a video game: True Crime: Streets of New York. Every time I would play this game, I’d become overwhelmingly nauseous, and have to stop. After a few days, the nausea progressed to violent vomiting, so I stopped playing the game all together.

A few days pass, and I’m fine, but then all of a sudden, my nausea returns. All the time. I can’t watch TV, I can’t write, I can’t read, all I can basically do is either sit or lay there with my eyes closed. I start missing work, and my manager begins to get royally pissed off at me. I call my PCP, who can’t see me for two months. When I say that I can’t wait two months, they refer me to the emergency room, which is what doctors in NYC do. Not wanting to go that route, I contact my ENT, who’s taken very good care of me in the past, and he refers me to a gastroenterologist. I call, make an appointment, and am excited that maybe we can get to the bottom of this.

I’m an avid self-diagnoser. I could not, for the life of me, figure out what was wrong. It felt like my body just didn’t want me to eat anymore, like it had finally had enough.

The GI doctor was nice enough. He gave me a thorough examination, including palpating my abdomen. When he got to a certain point, he noticed that I winced. “Your gall bladder’s a bit large,” he said, prodding me uncomfortably.

He sends me for an ultrasound, saying that if I had gall stones, I’d need to get my gall bladder removed ASAP. Painless nausea is one of the symptoms of colocystitis, he tells me. To cover all his bases, he also orders a colonoscopy and upper endoscopy, as well as a DECIDA scan, they pump me full of weird medicine that made my groin burn and watched my gall bladder twitch on a screen.

All tests come back negative.

The nausea not abating, he prescribes me anti-nausea medication, beginning with compazine. One night, after taking a dose, my t6tongue swells up to mammoth proportions, and I have to go to the emergency room. Then he gives me zofran, which is incredibly expensive, and made me incredibly constipated, on top of the fact that my nausea didn’t go away. You know what helped me control it? Taking a double dose of my anti-anxiety medication. And no, that doesn’t mean I an attribute my nausea to anxiety, since the medication is actually an anti-seizure medication, often used to control symptoms of nausea.

My GI doctor, in the face of all these negative tests, decides that the problem must not be with my gall bladder, it must be with my stomach. Perhaps I have gastroparesis, where the stomach becomes paralyzed for whatever reason. They send me for another test, where I eat radioactive eggs and then lay in a scanner for six hours while they watch me digest.

Another negative test.

Frustrated, I hauled my chunky, nauseous ass to a general surgeon – one of the best in NYC – who examines me, prods me, then tells me he can’t help me. Later on, I get ahold of his consultation letter to my GI doctor: “She’s bipolar, so her symptoms are most likely affected,” he wrote. Seriously? Dude thought I was looking for attention. Meanwhile, I was throwing up almost daily.

I was ready to give up and just follow my GI doctor’s recommendation of just controlling the nausea symptoms with medication FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE. My mother, however, would have none of it. She made me go get a second opinion from another surgeon. I picked Dr. Pomp. He’s weird looking, kind of like a puffer fish, but he was really nice. He didn’t think my problems were gall bladder-related, but was willing to review my records. In the meantime, my mother, who lives 8 hours by car away, asked around until she got the names of doctors from my hometown who saw patients with the same problem I was having. I called the most highly recommended doctor on the list, who couldn’t see me for a month. I called the next doctor down, who was willing to work around my schedule, as I was going to have to fly in specifically for this office visit.

The day of the office visit came. I flew in to Rochester, NY, met my mom at the airport, and drove to the doctor’s. He sat with us for about twenty minutes, taking my history and reading the records I’d brought with me. He examined me, looked thoughtful, and then asked if I was having any pain in my back or arms. I was surprised.

In high school, I’d fallen off my bicycle, thereby tearing the lip off of my right shoulder socket. It now dislocates all the time. Every now and then, my shoulder will bother me. It had been bothering me quite a bit, actually. I said yes. It had never occurred to me that my shoulder had anything to do with my nausea. He nodded, and then told me I had what was called acalculus colocystitis. Gall bladder disease WITHOUT STONES. He said that while it’s extremely rare in people my age, he’d been seeing it more and more often. My mom and I cried.

He wrote Dr. Pomp a recommendation that I have my gall bladder removed. I flew back to NYC the same day. I met with Dr. Pomp later that week, and he finally agreed to remove the troublesome organ. The surgery was scheduled for June 6, 2006. At first, when the secretary told me the date, I thought she was joking. 6/6/06? That can’t be good.

The day came, and BF went to the hospital with me. I was brought into the OR, and Dr. Pomp came in. The last thing he said to me before putting me under was “Vanessa, I just want you to know that I don’t think this will solve your problem.” I told him I didn’t care, take the fucker out.

There were no complications. I woke up from anesthesia about four hours later, and knew I was cured. I had no nausea, and my shoulder no longer hurt. The pathology report came back a week later: chronic acalculus colocystitis.

I haven’t been nauseous since.

The side effects from surgery? I have a bit of reflux, which is controllable. But to this day, I am hesitant to go to doctors, because I don't want to deal with doctors not believing me. I am sick of the egos on these people, who think they're never wrong.

Dude, if you think you're sick, you probably are. Don't EVER let them tell you it's in your head.

It's the end of the world as we know it...

from xkcd

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

You googled "sexy ass" and got me instead, huh?

Do you know what the most popular entry of my blog is? It's this one. And how do people get to this page, you may wonder? By googling various iterations of "sexy ass". They think they're getting something dirty, but they get math instead. That entry has been linked to, as of the posting of this, 187 times.

Pervs. So, xkcd published this here cartoon a while ago. It makes me laugh. Try it. It will amuse you.

Would you like some cheese with your whine?

From Gawker: Mega-popular Twilight series author Stephanie Meyer has put on "indefinite hold" the last installment of her teen vampire books because a draft was leaked to the Internet. She is too sad about the leak to continue.

Uh, dude, if the last installment is what I think it is: Twilight from Edward's perspective, I'm pretty sure she leaked herself. She had a whole bunch of chapters on her website from before this book was in the works for publication.

I'm just saying, she's got a best-selling series for which people go to parties. She's not exactly on par with Harry Potter, but she's not far behind. The last installment of the Potter series was leaked on the internet, but that didn't stop Rawling from publishing. Meyer's gonna whine that a draft got leaked? And then pout and refuse to publish? Come on. Quit your bitching and be grateful.

Fucking diva.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Oh, doctor humor...

A good friend of mine who's a reproductive doctor up in Boston, just sent me this. Oh sperm humor, how you amuse me.