Thursday, October 27, 2005

MOADD scoop: Harriet Miers is not human

it was in the press today that Harriet Miers, Dubya's bessie mate from way back when, has withdrawn her position as nominee for head of the US supreme court.

as i'm sure you're all aware (being the well informed, good looking and funny people you all are) her nomination had drawn loads of heat (as robert de niro might put it in the michael mann film of the same name) because she was a bit crap in terms of upholding republican ideology and also because it smacked of wanton cronyism that she was put forward as a candidate just for being George W's buddy.

anyways, what i think is even more interesting is that George and Harriet bear a STARTLING resemblance to 1960s English stage variety double act Ray Allan and Lord Charles, previously last seen on Des O'Connor tonight... curiouser and curiouser.

[i am listening to Deceptacon by Le Tigre]

Monday, October 24, 2005

A Toxic Book

i've just been in Foyles (great central london bookshop with the BEST coffee shop in london - Ray's Jazz on the first floor) and nipped into the medical to pick up some more books for my exam (see i am doing something productive with my week off...)

anyways i was at the counter when i happened upon this book called Making Sense Of Your Medical Career. now although it's actually written for medical students, i thought that maybe i should have a flick through to see where "it all went so wrong boo hoo" for me. so i did.


this is a book that actually sets out (to poor little naive medical studes) that the only way to progress in medicine is to network network network at every opportunity, kiss as much arse as possible, that you must must must publish a research paper as otherwise it's career over and, in one section (the relationships section), suggests that one should decide whether random chats with people in the corridor are actually going to benefit one's career in any way, and, that one should as much as possible try to cut out encounters that are not going to further one's ascent up the career ladder. it actually says that (my paraphrasing).

so the question that must be asked is

what fucking planet do these people come from?

the guy who wrote it isn't even a fucking doctor yet. how did he suddenly become qualified to tell people how they should run their lives?

i mean seriously - cut out chatting to people if it doesn't further your career???! what?! i did laugh out loud at a "relationships" section - i doubt that the author could ever sustain any kind of relationship except maybe with Hal, the murderous computer from 2001: a sapce oddyssey.

the cynics amongst you could say "actually mate you're the one with the fucking career crisis at the moment" and i'd say "who's round is it? i think it's yours." but joshing aside, without getting a big head, i have "achieved" everything that this book is trying to get medical students to achieve.

the thing is i did the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of everything the book preaches should be done.

networking? fuck that. would rather be having a laugh down the pub.

eliminate chit chat? fuck that too. i love my non-sensical exchanges with the bloke in the newsagent when i'm buying the paper.

as a result has my career suffered? well not by this book's yardstick. i've done well in exams, published, got a job at a "prestigious teaching hospital" and what's the secret? well i'd like to say that i tried to be a nice bloke at all times, treated people the way i would want to be treated and never looked down on anyone. instead of networking/eliminating frivolity/etc may i suggest that people try and do that. there you go, my words of wisdom. and that didn't cost you £15.99.

as for this toxic evil book (go check out the website for a kind of watch-a-car-crash reason) my advice to any medical students is don't waste your money.

i'm starting to worry more and more. if young medical students are looking at books like this and using it as their guide to life then the NHS is even more fucked that i initially feared.

the day i stop believing that you can "make it" in life without becoming a sycophantic wanker is the day i shoot myself

grrrr.... where are my antihypertensives? night night.

[listening to she fell into my arms by ed harcourt]

A week without the bleep

good afternoon

i am at home, listening to some tunes and having a cup of tea.


i should of course be studying and it would be a lie to say that i haven't done anything today - i did try to work through a few questions but yawn it's so comfortable on the sofa.

oh yes. i remember i alluded to three complaints letters i had to write. well they are to...
  1. IKEA: cunts (see below)
  2. Ed's Diner: a really bad chain of wannabe retro American diners. popped in yesterday to the one in Soho with a friend for a cup of fucking coffee and the jumped up little shit behind the counter directed us to a cafe down the road. what kind of fucking diner doesn't let you come in for coffee? grrr.
  3. Work: probably the most important one (i dunno if i'll actually do 1 and 2). Now you guys might realise that i'm not exactly happy at work so imagine my delight at coming home from holiday a few weeks back to be told that MY PAY HAS BEEN CUT

yes they've cut my bloody pay. and i'm working more hours than ever before. i really can't believe it. what the hell are they playing at? so yes now i have to write a letter applying for "pay protection". legally if you've been working at the same hospital but rotating departments they can't cut your pay (according to our shitty toothless union the British Medical Association) but the NHS are complete wankers and do what they want. or pull so much paperwork in front of you that i'm sure half their staff just cut their losses as they can't be arsed to jump through 5 million hoops.

so add that to the list of reasons why i'm a disgruntled doctor.

anyway at least i'm on leave.

[listening to Teenage Riot by Sonic Youth]

Sunday, October 23, 2005

When Tolstoy finally finished War and Peace...

... he realised that although his toils had produced a masterpiece, it would never top my achievment of finally PUTTING UP THESE FUCKING BOOKSHELVES.

ladies and gentlemen (and i know there are people visiting this page amazingly - over 200!) i give you my new shelves.

[i am listening to kissability by sonic youth]

Saturday, October 15, 2005

I am so going to bed

not going to put anything on tonight as i truly am shattered. was absolute carnage today at work though i was working with good company so it was a good laugh.

anyway. i'm off for a pint. then beddy byes. sorry the past few days have been lame.

tell you what. i'm going to hold off the blog till tuesday when i have something interesting to say and... ALL THE BOOKSHELF pictures in the world.

see you soon

[just been listening to Country Honk by the Rolling Stones]

Friday, October 14, 2005

Something for the weekend

I have spent precisely 4 hours awake in my own home these past two days.

I had the pleasure of doing the on call again today in the hospital. left work about 8.45pm, got home at 9.30, had something to eat and i'm now tapping away at this in bed.

it was really busy again today.

one of the doctors called in sick so there was myself and this other guy covering the ward. it was carnage. we have a lot of ill people and admitted a couple of also unwell people who needed sorting out.

and i always end up leaving at least 30min late because i feel too bad letting the night dude come on to loads of things to do. sadly though i'm beginning to think that although it might help them out:

  1. i am not getting paid any more to spend extra time in hospital
  2. no-one is actually going to thank me for it
  3. i'm going to cut into my 'free' time
which is pretty selfish and all but... i dunno. it's worrying because i don't like the person i'm becoming. god - to be where i was five years ago - all wide-eyed and MUCH less jaded.

and tomorrow i have the pleasure of the weekend at work too. i hope for my sake it's better than today.

oooh yes! and then i read this

'i'm paid too much a doctor writes'

it was originally an article in the New Statesman the other week and has been picked up by the national press. this guy is a bit of a cock. everyone knows nurses don't get paid enough and should get paid a fuck load more (as should pharmacists, domestics, etc) but this guy has been working 6 weeks and with his position is unlikely to be doing nights or weekends. i would really like to see whether he thinks he deserves his money after he's been on for 7 nights straight, and each night being CONSTANTLY paged about problems that go from 'bollocks' to 'near cardiac arrest patients.'

Anyways. tomorrow i promise you can have pictures of the bookcase.

And guess what? two of my good friends are coming down for the week from monday and also from the 24th October i am on

STUDY LEAVE for a week - no work. Yoo Hoo!

Nighty night

[i am listening to Can't Stand Me Now by The Libertines]

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Goodbye Morph - Hope you are happy in clay heaven

as a quick post script i just wanted to pay tribute to the legend that was Morph who tragically passed/melted away today in a fire in the Aardman Animations warehouse. (Link to the news article)

a tragic loss to the entertainment industry.

there was a very moving obituary from Tony Hart in the Guardian G2 today too.

very sad *wipes tear from eye*

see you laterz

The bookshelves are up; the career is going down

well to be honest today was a bit better at work. not so much of the running round organising things but actually a bit of medicine in practice.

had this very sick patient who is still sick but stable. i hope they're ok overnight. it was pretty satisfying to get her as sorted out as possible and comfortable. i guess now i can just hope for the best.

anyway i'm going to make this quick as i'm shattered after my on call...

by the way. THE SHELVES ARE UP! pictures tomorrow (can you wait?!)

[i am listening to Easy Like Sunday Morning by the Commodores]

Monday, October 10, 2005

The work of a trained medical professional

anyways about today

well it was painful again. i had lots of stupid things to do. i spent about an hour in total on the telephone seeing if one lab (lab 1) in the hospital could send another lab (lab 2) in the same hospital a set of slides (slides as in to look at under the microscope). the chain of events was as follows:

  1. doctor from different team reviewing one of our patients asks if the slides can be sent to another lab for a second opinion by another expert... fine. no probs.
  2. i call lab 2.
  3. they say they do not have the slides as lab 1 have not sent slides over to them yet.
  4. i call lab 1
  5. lab 1 says they are aware of the slides i speak of
  6. lab 1 says they however cannot release the slides to another lab unless the person who analysed them in the first place give permission for them to do so (fair enough - confidentiality)
  7. i call person who analysed slides to ask for permission to release. they say "no probs mate"
  8. i call back lab 1 and tell them big man has said ok to go
  9. they say they cannot find slides and will call me back
  10. i hear nothing from them for one hour
  11. i call back lab 1 who tell me that actually they did send slides to lab 2 last week.
  12. i call back lab 2. they have no idea where slides are. didn't realise that slides had been sent. they will have a look again. they will also call me back.
  13. i do not hear from lab 2. i call lab 2 back. they say they are still looking but it is now 4.30pm and nearly hometime so not much will be done.
  14. i leave my number and number of doctor working overnight so they can call someone when they do find slides. they say "cheers" but they're all going home. best to call back tomorrow and see the progress.
  15. i tell reviewing doctor (see point 1) about the chaos. he is very pleasant and thanks me profusely for trying to sort it out. i realise this has been a waste of time.
to be fair not all of my 'work' today was like this but 98% of it was calling people, ordering things on the computer, emailing lists to people, etc. so perversely i leave work at about 6.45pm thinking that i'm glad i sorted out all the little jobs (bar the slides) over today so that tomorrow the ward will run smoothly.

then it dawns on me.

i've not actually done anything that my cactus couldn't do.

there are plenty of interesting (personally, intellectually, academically) patients on the ward with quite complicated things going on with them. some are very sick and i'm always amazed by the resolve and strength of character of some people when they're ill.

i haven't had any time to talk properly to any of them about how they feel, what they're worried about, etc all the stuff that a good caring doctor should do (cliche but true)

i haven't had any time to look into detail about some of the more bizarre rare problems that you don't see normally in medicine that a few of the patients have so from a learning point of view it's also rubbish.

and i'm knackered now! i'm so tired! from doing fucking nothing productive! from pushing paper all day long! by the time i've cooked dinner it'll be bed time. bollocks.

the tragic irony of it is there are thousands of people in pakistan now in need of help.

here is the BBC's take on it today "Aid begins arriving in quake zone"

i could be doing anything out there now which would be of more use than points 1 to 15 above - like clearing rubble or fucking anything. better than moving slides about the place that's for sure.

i am starting to resent now that the bullshit that i've been doing all day has sapped physical as well as mental energy.

well i'm going as the longer i spend on the computer the less sleep i get.

see you tomoz (maybe) - i have cod fillets in the fridge tonight. yum!

[i am listening to somwhere else by razorlight]

IKEA and their bookshelves

evening all

so have just got home. how was your day?

have just made myself a bloody good cup of tea and am still staring at despair at those shelves on the floor. will have to leave them another night. i am really starting to resent it. it's like an unwanted guest who rocks up and stays at your place uninvited for several days whilst at the same time eating all of your jaffa cakes.

here is a picture of the fucker. smug isn't he.

[am listening to the scientist by coldplay]

Sunday, October 09, 2005

I Hate Medicine And Want To Leave

so this blog - why?

ok so i work a senior house officer (a junior doctor, 2 years after graduation) in a large teaching hospital in London.

i went into medicine as a fresh faced (though not as handsome back then - i fucking age well) essex lad with hopes of "making a difference" and "helping people" even though everyone at the time said you don't really.

well 8 years later i'm hating it.

i love the subject, love the patients, love the intellectual aspect. the problem is i don't love it enough to justify spending a seventh of each year working nights/weekends/late shifts.

as each day goes by i'm resenting the fact that it takes up so much of my life. i would rather be travelling, listening/playing music, doing a job i enjoy.

i really don't know what to do. in a way i'm glad i'm being honest to myself that i'm not getting anything like as much out of it as i used to but i don't know what to do about it.

apparently i'm not alone in feeling this way.

what is it about medicine in the NHS/medicine today that is making it so unappealing? i'm getting pretty sick of defending the NHS (which i still maintain is one of the few good things left about this country) when i'm so miserable in it.

that and what to do now is the reason for me foraying into the internet. this blog is supposed to be a way of finding out why good people (hopefully me being one of them) are feeling so disillusioned working in what should be a blinding profession.

the plan

there isn't one really at the moment but here's as far as i've got:
  1. i finish my job in august 2006
  2. stick it out till then
  3. get some exams (you have to do post-graduate exams to go into a speciality) as if my life goes tits up then i've got something to fall back on
  4. take 6 months off, maybe a year
  5. travel - South America is calling
  6. er.......
  7. that's it....
  8. you should always have an even number of list points
for the record: I DO NOT WANT TO DO GENERAL PRACTICE OR GO TO AUSTRALIA/NZ - which seems to be the only advice people have.

so there you go

that's the point of this blog... vaguely.

only 14.5 hours before i have to get up for work tomorrow.
that, my friends, is depressing.

coffee time

[i have been listening to the bucket by kings of leon]

Pile of crap bookcase

i am hung OVER

last night degenerated somewhat. as i mentioned we were at the white hart, then baltic which is on blackfriars road before heading over to the Pit bar underneath the Old Vic. the latter is pretty good if you're in the area for a late night drink as it's open way past pub closing. fucking bizarre clientele though - a mixture of theatre-goers, luvvies and wasters. better than cubana up the road which has recently ascended completely into chav status IMHO. probably because there's so many goddamn suits in there all the time. run by doctors from tommies up the road so i hear... must be crap.

it was the bishop's leaving do (just finished his PhD in pain... of all things) and yes am feeling rough today. bloody good night though.


this bookcase is really really pissing me off. it doesn't bloody fit together. don't worry - i don't have those hampers. i haven't completely descended into an existential crisis yet. i hate ikea (the one in croydon is particularly grating).

[i have been listening to Evil by Interpol]

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Bookshelves and Snoozes

so actually i've not done a lot for this blog today though i have figured out how to use it a bit better. anyways it's far too late to do anything at the moment but i promise to be less mundane tomorrow.

i have struggled with trying to put together a massive set of bookshelves and have discarded the stupid instructions with a healthy dose of disdain...

i'm off down the pub for post football chat (england are bollocks - i shall add england manager to my potential job possibilities when i leave medicine - aha! there is a clue for you about the nature of this site....)

it's the white hart in waterloo, just tucked away behind the station... a current favourite. here's a link (The White Hart in Timeout)

see you in the morning (though i'm pretty sure i'm talking to myself)


saturday! and MOADD (as i hope this blog shall be referred to on the "street") is up and running. i think i'll leave it a bit longer before i tell you why i decided set this up (stop salivating in anticipation please) so that i can actually work out how to use this properly.

will be back shortly

adios for now