I write this in a dire attempt to procrastinate from writing any more about rat cerebellum. I swear down (apparently that’s the new term the kidz on the streetz are usingz thesez dayz, along with their propensity to add a “z” on to eveything) that if I never read about a mouse who can’t swim properly ever again it’ll be too soon.
Thus I am well and truly in the throes of a new experience- essay writing and deadlines. In medicine at Imperial the emphasis is
almost entirely on terminal assessment, with the total number of essays I have written in my time here amounting to one in four years. So having to find a discourse about developmental neurobiology for 2500 words is a far cry from my comfort zone walking up and down poorly painted corridors in an expensive coat finding the best way to wear my stethoscope to attract the lay-deez. In fact, I have become so preoccupied with deadlines that all normal functions appear to have been postponed. Last night’s meal consisted of a carton of orange juice and half a packet of honey roasted cashew nuts (the remnants of which can be seen on my desk). It’s no better for my housemates; the number of 4am finishes that have been endured is obscene, and one of my housemates has been living almost exclusively off the “reduced to clear” shelf from Tescos. I suppose this is what the real student life is like, eh? It’s a good job I like peanuts I guess.
But life has this way of making things worse for you at the best possible times. I’m pretty sure I’ve lamented on the topic of my boiler before, but it has yet again reared its ugly head. This morning, for some entirely inexplicable reason, there was no hot water despite there having been ample for my female compadres; you will appreciate that given the current inclement weather just how cold the cold water is. I guess it’s lucky that my experiences in the India taught me how to shower with nothing but an orange bucket, a plastic pint glass and a kettle (which may have been the best thing to come from the trip). Coincidentally we had a chap from British Gas pop round to do the annual boiler service and apparently there’s some panel that is critically important which is broken and had it fallen into the flames then something bad would have happened. I could tell this was bad because Johnny Gasman explained it by saying “because that could fall into the fire
and then…[ominous pause], well you wouldn’t want that to happen.” I’m not entirely sure he didn’t break it himself, but because he didn’t have a replacement part the boiler is now out of service. In fact, it’s so out of service that it’s been classed as “Immediately dangerous” and I have been served with hazard tape and stickers and piece of paper proclaiming “DANGER YOUR BOILER IS IMMEDIATELY DANGEROUS DO NOT USE IT IF YOU USE IT YOU ARE RISKING YOUR OWN SAFETY AND THAT OF THOSE AROUND YOU EVEN YOUR LIFE AND IT IS AGAINST THE LAW AND YOUR BOILER ASPLODE.”
Apparently British Gas have never heard of punctuation.
So that’s one of the world’s mysteries solved: the WMDs were never in Iraq, they were in fact in my kitchen cupboard all along. I wish I had told Tony that sooner.
So apart from boiler-derived comedy, how else have I been keeping myself sane amongst the chaos? Well, there was the Halloween bop a few weeks ago. This was very much like every other alcohol fuelled medic party I have ever documented here, but a special mention has to go to the costumes. I’m not a big fan of dressing up- I enjoy it in principle, but it’s just too much effort for a person as lazy as myself. So in a stroke of genius I burglarised my housemate’s bed sheet, and cut some holes into it, becoming the world’s best ghost (my girlfriend is pictured as some kind of Greek goddess or something; I couldn’t properly see through the misaligned eyeholes):
Unfortunately, it was a little too long and meant that I kept tripping up and getting covered in beer every 3o seconds, and as the eye holes kept moving I appeared more like a bumbling beer soaked rag than a ghost. Turns out it’s actually pretty warm under a bedsheet as well, so spent the majority of the night desperately trying to fan myself and spraying more beer everywhere. Luckily I wasn’t the only one with the same problem…
I repaid that debt to society I had accrued by attempting to scare children by teaching some Brownies the basics of first aid. What a nightmare. Lovely kids- they just can’t keep still for more than about 8 seconds and they all kept telling me about the horrific trauma they have experienced as world-wearly 10 year olds. I can’t overstate how surreal it is to be placed into the recovery position by 8 small children working in unity; I can only liken it to Gulliver’s Travels set in a suburban church hall. Jonathan Swift eat your heart out.
And on that note, I must return to my essay. Apparently this post is now 899 words! Maybe I could fill my essay with this guff and get extra points for originality?