My apartment, the halfway house.
It's that time of year. Not only are there not-enough-days for me to buy Christmas presents, but even worse (for those in that situation), it's interviewing time for 4th-year medical students as they endeavor to find a residency that will mark the end of the rest of their lives.
And wow, am I SO glad that I am not in their shoes.
On their dime, these poor haggard students have to fly all over the country (not uncommon to have an interview in New York one day and have to fly out to San Francisco for an interview the next day), going through interviews that start at the ungodly hour of 7:30am (I woke up yesterday at 7am for a 9am class, almost fell asleep umpteen times during class, and had to recover by taking a two hour nap in the afternoon. I am weak) and last for hours and hours, going through interviews, more interviews, and yet more interviews. Then a student will rank the programs he likes the most, the programs rank their interviewees in order of desirability, and these rank order lists are thrown into the magical pot, some hocus pocus is performed, resulting in the match list, with each med student (hopefully) paired up with a residency program. That's right, on the same day in the spring (known inventively as Match Day), Every Single fourth year medical student in the whole COUNTRY finds out where s/he will be a resident (exceptions are if you're in the armed forces or are doing a special program or are doing an early match).
Really, it's a lot like rushing a sorority or a fraternity. Well, if you rushed it in the South, or somewhere where it actually means something. My joining a sorority was definitely not so complicated. But to me, it seems the same - you put on a pretty face, they put on their best show, you talk and attempt to convince each other that you would be a GREAT fit, even if it's all a pretense, and then later you sit there and cross your fingers and hope hope hope that someone likes you enough to rank you high enough so that you get in.
It's so miserable, really. And that the hospitals don't pay for you to fly out, nor do they put you up, just makes it worse. The very least they could do would be to absorb the cost, but no. Too bad. If you want to be a doctor badly enough, you'll jump through the hoops. (So different if you're a future lawyer or consultant or banker, where the company wines and dines you and pays for everything. Even I got my flight to LA paid for last year when I went to visit my grad school.) Somehow, it doesn't seem fair, as medicine is generally all about doing the greater good and apparently doing the greater good makes you poor in the interim.
And you know, Los Angeles is a slightly desirable place to be. Has something to do with the weather, I hear. Thusly, lots of my friends, many of whom I haven't seen in over a year when I left medical school, have been cycling through LA, many staying at my apartment. I really don't mind, because they're all great guys (interesting that they're all guys. Apparently, I had like 2 female friends in the med school, which is funny because the female:male ratio was 3:1 my year. I think it's because most of the girls my year were uptight and didn't go out and drink. Anyways, both of my female med school friends are doing the armed forces match so they don't get to come to LA) and they entertain me greatly.
This current friend's been staying with me since Wednesday, as he wanted to check out LA before he went through his two interviews out here. It's really great, since I haven't really spoken to him since, um, we accidentally slept together while I was dating someone else (thanks, tons of alcohol!) and then he up and started dating this bitch who wouldn't let him talk to me, then I left for Boston, and anyWAYS, it's been like over two years since we've hung out which is entirely too long and it's great catching up. Plus, he pays for all my dinners which is so not a bad thing.
But while it's all fun and good, it also highlights the fact that gosh, I really can't share my space. I like having my apartment all to myself, walking around in a tank top and underwear (my prefered lounging clothes), with papers strewn all over the place (in paper-writing mode, you see) and high-heeled shoes precariously lying about, forming a sort of mini obstacle course. And sometimes they forget and leave the toilet seat UP and my bathroom has all these funny shampoo and soap smells that aren't mine and there are razors that aren't mine and it's just so bizarre. Plus, they drink beer and burp and tell crude jokes - oh wait, my female friends do that too. Incidentally, it's entirely wonderful hanging out with guys who are not metrosexuals (a term I don't generally like, but is wonderfully descriptive), as everyone I've dated in the past has more or less been.
Anyhow, so I've been slightly preoccupied with the quarter ending and entertaining all these out-of-town guests, hence the lack of cooking (why cook when they'll take me out to dinner?) or anything otherwise interesting happening in my life. Maybe someday soon! Maybe I've just become boring in my old age! Who knows!
And I've also realised that when I move in with someone, we're going to need two bathrooms. Ours and mine.