Tuesday, January 22

How You Never Want Your Anatomy Teacher To Start a Lecture on the Eye

"The eyes are the window to the world and into your soul. I like that."

Remember the Reason for the Season

Forgot to post this yesterday.

Monday, January 21

Review of 1969 Best Picture: Midnight Cowboy

Well there's 1 hour & 53 minutes of my life I'll never get back.

The only good part was, at the end of the 2 breaks I took during the middle of it, it gave me an excuse to say, "I gotta get back to my male prostitute movie." I don't plan on ever saying that again.

Sunday, January 20

My Litmus Test

I've finally found it: My litmus test for my future husband. Sure, a good character, sense of humor & ability to give me blonde-hair, blue-eyed kids is still on the list. . .but being the cheese or ham that I am (and I have about 100 kids that can attest to this fact because they are subjected to it every Sunday morning), I totally want to do this! (PS Fast forward to the 1:30 mark.)

Weding Party - video powered by Metacafe

Battle of the Butter

There is a war currently going on at home and it's not over the usual domestic disturbences: vying for ownership of the remote control, toilet lid up or down, temperature that the thermostat is set to or even if the TP is rolling in the over or under direction. (over just makes more sense) No, this battle is over the location of the butter. Being a creature of habit, I have the same thing for breakfast everyday and part of that breakfast includes a piece of toast. Every morning I open up the fridge - where I'm expecting to find the butter - and every morning I am dissappointed. After grumbling under my breath or making some sort of noise that would universally be categorized as frustrated, (I haven't had any coffee at this point) I make my way over to the far right cupboard, open the right door and - voila! - the butter!! There it is in all it's glory: the green two-toned plastic container of Fleishmann's butter. And snapping off the lid I expect to & do find that half the butter is melted and the other half has that "I've been melted and resolidified too many times to count" look to it. So I butter my toast and throw it back into the fridge - where it belongs.

Every morning I open the fridge because I'm also a creature of optimism and I hope that the enemy has seen the light (literately) and stuck the butter back where it belongs: in a chilled enviroment where butter remains in a solid state, the way it was intended to be. If I look in the cupboard first, then it's a sign that I've given up, I've conceded. I can't expect the butter not to be in the fridge. I haven't figured out exactly who I'm at war with, but rest assured, this is one I will win.

Sunday, January 13

Go Dallas!

Good thing I'm not a betting person because I would be out some serious cash after this weekend.

I would have put money on Seattle. How can you not root for the closest team to your own hometown & is led by a Hassleback?

I would have put money on whoever played New England. Sorry, I'm just not a fan of that team and it's cheating coach.

I would have put money on Indianapolis. I would have loved another year of all those Peyton Manning ads! Ever sent one of these to a friend? Peyton actually knows your friend's name!! They're hilarious! Now what am I going to go at work all day?

So now I'm 0-for-3. Dallas just has to win. I sit by a very avid Dallas fan for 9 hours everyday. And I need him to be in a good mood, otherwise I'll feel bad and end up getting him coffee and take dictation, and I'm not sure I can do both on a Monday!!

Thursday, January 10

Something You Never Want To Hear From Your Anatomy Teacher

When asked about the location of a specific nerve coming out of the spinal cord on a PowerPoint presentation:

"I think it's around here somewhere."

Why I'm Doing What I'm Doing. . .

Trust me folks, free shoes (though never refused and always exciting) just doesn't cut it anymore. Here's an excerpt from an article on CNN (the link to the article in it's entirety is below)

But despite the embarrassment, I'm actually glad that the whole episode went public because it's given me a chance to talk about what I believe is the real problem with American healthcare: compassion, or more accurately, a lack of it.

At the hospital I was often treated more like a number than a patient. At times, staff members literally turned their back on my cries of pain and pleas for help. In one case a nurse even stood by tapping his fingers as if he was bored while my tiny wife struggled to lift me off a waiting room couch.

I've now seen our system at its very best and I've also experienced it at its very worst. But in each case, the difference had nothing to do with whether the hospital had the latest equipment or whether it looked like the Taj Mahal. It had to do with compassion. It had to do with respect. It had to do with treating people the way you'd want to be treated when going through something unfamiliar and frightening.

That's why I don't want to hear anymore about universal health care or HMOs or the evils of insurance companies until each and every hospital in this country can look me in the eye and tell me that they their staff is full of truly compassionate people who treat their visitors like patients, not products. Hire and train the right people, and then and only then come talk to me about everything else you need.

Our politicians are right; we do have a health care crisis in this country. But it's not going to be fixed by them, it's not going to be fixed by some government agency, and it's certainly not going to be fixed by throwing more money around. No, if you really want to fix our healthcare system then look no further than the word "healthcare" itself because the secret is right there.

The secret is "care." After all, at the lowest of my lows, it didn't matter to me whether the hospital had marble in its bathrooms or plasma televisions on all its walls. The only thing I cared about was finding someone who actually cared about me.

Tuesday, January 8

The Missing Essay

You know when the best time to start writing a college admission essay is? 10:00pm, one week before the application is due. I mean really, who needs all those rewrites anyway? Let's save a tree shall we? I'm good with one draft. Instantly I've proved to the admission essay that I can form sentences (noun + verb), that I'm witty (you can never go wrong with a blonde nurse joke) and that I'm: smart, driven, creative, people-oriented, task-oriented, capable of leading a team, capable of being led, flexible, patient, a quick learner, friendly, a team player, able to work by myself, well-traveled, capable of working under different management styles and most importantly an alumni. You know, all the stuff they look for in a 500-word nursing school essay.

But when you do start to write an essay at 10pm, not everything sounds good the first time around. You may type something that sounds absolutely brilliant and cliche free one minutes and a few seconds later, you a rereading a piece of crap sentence that is missing either a verb or noun - the two basic components of a sentence.

Luckily, to my right was my editor. . .AKA Mom. . .AKA the ex-English professor. I highly recommend everyone go out and get one of these right away before they sell out. There has never been anything so handy as having a parent who is brilliant in grammar and whose brain contains an entire Thesaurus. Except maybe living 1.2 miles from my elementary school when I would forget my glasses & lunch containing a PB&J sandwich - sans the crust - 4 times a week. Yes, that was pretty handy, otherwise I'd be the starved, blind nerd instead of just the nerd.

For some reason, my editor didn't think these thoughts deserved to remain on paper and shipped across the state (& country ?) to be read by people somewhere in a cold conference room with comfy chairs, that also holds lots of coffee and snacks, ready to determine my future career, happiness and sanity. (such power!) I hope you enjoy reading them I much as I enjoyed writing them: (that author cliche was meant to prepare you for the onslaught that is about to come)

**I was too busy taking advantage of the International Studies opportunities and playing tennis to consider my future after Linfield.
**Anything less than a full ride is unacceptable.
**Once again, I realized the weight placed on grades for nursing school and so I began PCC in 2006 with the same vigor & determination of achieving the perfection that was sought after & attained eight years prior in high school.
**I would love to be associated with a school that rewards merit financially. Please don't force to me to get knocked up. As you'll soon discover, I am a very competitive person and will go to great lengths to recieve financial aid. Apparantly some scholarship committees look down upon good grades, teacher recommendations & clear career directions.
**Did I mention I played tennis? OK, so I know it's no football, but did I mention there's a wall named in my honor in McMinnville? OK, so I realize there's no actual plaque or mention of my name but trust me - it's there. And if that's not enough, I was the 2001 Homecoming Twinkie Eating Champion.
**It turns out I am thankful for flying into a retaining wall and hitting the sidewalk
**Actually my third-grade essay said I would “own Nike” when I grew up, so maybe it’s not exactly as I envisioned.
**I finally mustered up the courage last year to quit my job.
**It was then, my life path steered in a new direction.
**I'm excited to journey down this new path life has presented me, except I think I'll travel on foot instead of my bike.

Even after reading all that, I'd still let me in!

Monday, January 7

New Year's Predictions

I hate New Year's resolutions. According to one source, 65% of people have broken their "get in shape" resolution by January 4th. Which is why I didn't go to the gym until January 5th. So instead of making resolutions, I'm going to make predictions for how my life will shape up in 2008. Now I guess you could make the argument that some could be conceived as resolutions in a roundabout way. But unlike Clinton, Bush, attorney general nominees and basically any politician, I'm not very good at playing the semantics game. Some are real, some are wishful thinking and some may seem like wishful thinking but are actually real - it's up to you to decide. Keep in mind I talk a big game but also keep in mind that I was bestowed with the supreme honor of being voted "Most Ambitious" in high school by the 14 people who actually decided to vote and I have always valued it in a special place in my heart because that vote really sets the tone for the rest of your life.

Looking into the crystal ball, by December 31, 2008, I will have. . .
**Run the Portland Marathon in under 4:59:59
**Traveled to a foreign country
**Began the 2-year training plan for the mother of all adventures that will occur in 2010. (it's just killing you to know, isn't it? Hint: it's not the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii. It's THE MOTHER of all adventures. . .in my opinion.)
**Been more girly
**Wed John Krasinski and bore his children, Grace & John
**Bought a new golden retriever puppy
**Been given a free ride to Duke nursing school
**Had a tan for at least a month
**Made for darn sure Hillary Clinton is not my president
**Attended 3 out-of-state weddings (heck, there has to be at least one other person I know that can make this come true)
**Been early to events (because just being on time isn't good enough)
**Had an actual conversation in Spanish that does not include asking someone where the library is
**Not cried while teaching Treehouse - except if I'm in physical pain
**Stumbled upon buried treasure in my backyard
**Solved world hunger AND world peace

Looks like 2008 is shaping up to be the best year EVER!

**As always, we appreciate your comments & suggestions of what you think I should do this year.**

Sunday, January 6

Let's Go To The Movies

A while ago I deicded it would be fun to watch all the movies that have won the Oscar for Best Picture, starting with the first Oscar ceremony in 1929. I've almost made it through the entire decade of 60's. Right now I'm on 1968's winner: Oliver! (yes, the exclamation point is part of the title, I'm not that excited about watching it.)

No seriously, I'm watching the cute little British orphans right now sing about their daydream of glorious food.

oh, here he goes, here it comes, one of the most copied movie lines EVER: "please sir. I want some more." He's says it again - but now it's a question. And now we have some possible child abuse. The old woman is commanding someone, anyone, to "pick him up and bounce him." Wow, this dude who is running the orphanage has an AMAZING voice. Too bad Pop Idol wasn't invented 100 years ago, this guy could totally pull a Paul Potts. I guess I didn't realized that "Oliver!" isn't a musical like Chicago or Sound of Music. They're really singing through the whole thing. For 11 minutes straight. . .all singing.

OK, I'm not going to blog through the entire movie. I don't think my brain could handle taking in & understanding a movie while simeltaneously spitting out witty remarks.

Hey, minute 18 - people are finally speaking, NOT singing. So someone just made a 19th century "yo mama" joke and apparently those didn't go over well back then either because Oliver(!) is now beating the crap out of this guy.

Hands down, the 60's has been the best decade for Best Pictures. It was definitely the decade for musicals. We need to bring these juries back and have them start voting again. Or maybe it's because I ended the 1950s two weeks ago watching Ben Hur AND Lawrence of Arabia back to back. That's over SEVEN hours of Oscar-winning movie magic. Females were on the screen for approximately 17 minutes of those SEVEN hours and the other 6 hours and 43 minutes were filled with white guys playing middle eastern guys all the while hating and yelling at each other. OK, OK, it wasn't that bad. Peter O'Toole was severly robbed of an Oscar & the chariot race was pretty awesome. Afterwards I concluded that no one could pay me enough to film a movie in the desert & I resolved never to contract leprocy (I think I have trouble getting a date now!)

Let's take a look at these fabulous movies:

*1960 ~ The Apartment starring Jack Lemmon (love him!) & Shirley MacLaine (weirds me out!) OK, so this one was probably my least favorite, which means it took the decade a bit to get warmed up. This one had scandal written all over it. She tries to commit suicide because the man she's having an affair with (who happens to be Jack's boss) won't leave his wife. Since the evil married man is paying for her to stay in the apt. next to Jack, Jack finds her on death's door, moves her to his apt to nurse her back to health, which takes several days and in the process stirs up rumors of co-habitation. (Ah, to live in a world where that's frowned upon.) So the burning question remains, which man will Shirley choose? The man she has been "seeing" for years who finally does leave his wife but wants to change everything about her or the funny, cute guy who, after 2 days, learns her favorites, encourages her quirks & likes to play cards? Gee, I don't know, it's just too tough too tell. . . Oh, and this one was in black and white. Wizard of Oz was color in 1939, what's taking so long people??

*1961 ~ West Side Story starring Americans and Puerto Ricans and Natalie Wood. Ah, the classic love story: Boy Loves Girl. Girl Loves Boy. Nobody wants boy and girl to love each other. Dancing chaos ensues! People sing. Shots fired. Boy dies. Everyone realizes New York city is not the best place to live. Viva la Portland!

*1962 ~ Lawrence of Arabia starring Peter O'Toole as a British soldier T.E. Lawrence and Obi-Wan Kenobi as an Arabian. This took me 3 days to watch, mostly because it was just. so. looooooooooong. I can't imagine watching this thing in a theater. Lawrence's transformation from a very button-up Brit to a blood-thirsty, war-loving, wanna-be Arabian is very slow (heck, he had over 3 1/2 hours) but the first time he shoots an innocent oh-crap-I'm-in-the-wrong-place-at-the-wrong-time guy point blank, you realize he's gone to the dark side. Didn't Obi-Wan teach him anything??

*1963 ~ Tom Jones starring Albert Finney. A miracle occured in 1963 because this movie is a comedy and it's a well known fact members of the Academy don't find comedies "Best Picture" worthy. Isn't another well known fact that it's much harder to make people laugh than cry? In any case, this movie is set back in England and Tom makes his way around the countryside helping damsels in distress. (And when I say helping, I mean messing around with.) He ends up finding a Sugar Mama and through a series of miscommunications and finally an actual communication, he ends up finally marring the girl he’s loved all his life – proving once again that there are certain girls you date (or in Tom’s case sleep with) and certain girls you marry. This movie also shows us that money can buy love, albeit temporary and fox hunting really is cruel and unusual.

*1964 ~ My Fair Lady starring Audrey Hepburn & Rex Harrison. What can I say? Classic. Funny. Gorgeous dresses. Huge hats. And don’t forget: “the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain.” Also don't forget to use your subtitles option. Oh, and chalk another one up for England.

*1965 ~ The Sound of Music starring the Von Traps. I love this even more since my official SOM tour in Salzburg. I’ve been in the courtyard, been to the actual glass gazebo pretending I was 16 going on 17, peered into the nunnery, fallen into a fountain because I was too busy thinking of my favorite things, slapped a nome on the head and twirled on top of the Untersberg like Sister Maria. My dad will even turn it on during the certain outdoor scenes, that’s how exciting it is! Oh, I’ve run across the bridge too, but I wasn’t wearing green & white curtains. Seriously, how can you not like this movie??

*1966 ~ A Man For All Seasons starring no one I’ve ever heard of. Here we go, back to England. I loved this one because it was based on the true story of Sir Thomas Moore who was beheaded (“his capa was detated!”) for failing to recognize the divorce of Henry VIII to Lady Catherine and subsequent marriage to Anne Boleyn (who would later lose her own head – thank you Tour of London beefeater tour guides.) Despite the Debbie Downer tone of this flick, there were more than a couple of laugh out loud moments which was enough for me to give this a thumbs up rating.

*1967 ~ In The Heat of the Night starring Sidney “Don’t call me Virgil” Poitier. Have to say, I LOVED this movie. Maybe it’s because I’m genetically predisposed to love Sidney since he’s my mom’s favorite actor by far. Maybe it’s because I’ve actually been to the South and can testify first-hand people are actually like that. (Side bar: I watched this with my parents and my dad asked what year this was supposed to have taken place in. I said it very well could be 2007.) Maybe it’s because I really wanted to know who did it. Maybe it’s because the sheriff character did such a great job at making you hate him, that you loved him. This is one of the few movies on the entire list that I could say, “I’m really glad that won Best Picture.” And yes. Mom was right. Sidney Poitier is a genius.

*1968 ~ Oliver! starring cute British kids. Good decade for British movie sets. So far I’m loving it. 1 hour & 20 minutes has passed since both the movie & me writing this post started. Oliver is adorable. English accents are adorable. Fagin? Not adorable. Here’s hoping make-up won an Oscar.

*1969 ~ Midnight Cowboy starring Dustin Hoffman & Jon Voight. This one is on tabs for tonight. I only really know 2 things about this movie: it is NOT filmed in or about people in England and that it is the first ‘R’ rated movie to win Best Picture - rated 'X' the first time time. I’ll admit – I’m not too pumped about watching it. Then again, I've watched Spanish movies in Spain, so I think I can handle it.

And you will never believe what just happened like right now. . .Intermission of Oliver! That gives me time to post to my blog!, get some soda! and use the bathroom!

Tuesday, January 1

So far, so good

After what was arguably the quietest New Year's Eve in recent memory (OK, in long term memory. And I don't even think you would have to argue - it's pretty much a hands down, unanimous winner), it was also one of the best in long term memory. Looking back, I'm going to miss 2007 like a child misses their blanket.

BLT (by the way, can we call ourselves the Condiment Crew? Just throwing it out there. I have a great idea for some t-shirts! Pink for the girls, blue for the boys & the picture of our condiment on the back. . .) spent the evening with Ryan "I Now Endorse Toothpaste in Really Creepy Ads" Seacrest and Dick "If You Make Fun of Me You Then Are Just Plain Evil Because I Had a Stroke" Clark.

So far, 2008 rocks! I made it home safely despite the crazies on the road and total lack of police cars. (still alive, check) I've watched the 1963 Best Picture movie Tom Jones (really not all that funny - I believe it peaked at minute 7), ate my Egg Substitues - thus saving me from high cholesterol & heart attacks later in life, (still alive in the future, check) and now I plan on getting all nursing applications ready to mail out tomorrow - thus ensuring a job that pays above minimum wage & gives sick days and off of 75th Place. . .which by the way will be shining like the top of the Chrystler building by the end of today. . .thanks to yours truly. (dad doesn't kill me = still alive, check)

Happy Dew Year!

Hey, at least he remembered all his numbers this year!