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  1. Which way did you go? Hey Tyzack and Kukaso - feel free to ask away. I'm applying for training programs in cardiothoracic surgery later on this year. Want it very much!
  2. I knew that I wanted to be a doctor from a young age, I don't recall exactly when, maybe 8 or 10. Both of my parents are doctors, both with backgrounds in surgery; one a neurosurgeon, the other a gynaecological surgeon. When you grow up in such an environment, hearing their stories from work everyday and the things they did, you can't help but be influenced and interested, even if only by osmosis. My parents encouraged me to strive for excellence and achievement in all aspects of my life, and were (and still are) always there to give the support I needed when the going got tough. I enjoyed all of my subjects at school, but always had a particular affinity for science. Once I knew I wanted to go into medicine, I gave it my all, and with the support of many people, got into medical school. What particularly helped me in making my choice was having grown up appreciating the realities of what the job actually entails. People often go into medical school doe-eyed and naive, imagining their life will pan-out like a medical drama, a world in which CPR has a 100% success rate and you almost always win. And this is unavoidable: until you're doing the job yourself, until you break the cancer diagnosis, until your pager goes off in the middle of the night because your patient is arresting, until you're fighting the system and the admin and the ignorance you encounter on a daily basis, you have no idea what it is to be a doctor. But I was perhaps a little more prepared, in that I got small insights from my parents who were windows into that world for me. They would hide it, no parent wants to burden their child, but I'd notice that they were often coming in late and leaving early, and when they had experienced a rough day and didn't want to talk about it. Medicine is so broad a field, and the education you get can pull you in so many different ways. The childhood psychiatrist, the transplantation cardiothoracic surgeon, the radiologist examining CT scans - they all learned the same fundamentals, starting in the same place. This breadth was also a major attracting factor - its a broad degree you can do a lot with. And that's often the real decision you face - at med school, it seems that the majority of people are excited about a different speciality every week, and soon after, you're pushed to make a decision as to which way you want to go. For some its easy, for others it isn't!
  3. http://geekdad.com/2015/01/danish-archer/
  4. (Just to note I'm simply trying to delve deeper into the reasons we think things through. No condoning of violence towards anybody, and no offence intended.)
  5. Hey Elgee, study is fine thanks, hope you are well! I think in a more perfect world, one would have to truly believe in the cause they were fighting for - in feminism's case, however, I would say that given the desperate state of male-female inequality, the true "feminists" should not only be willing, but actively encouraging men to fight for "their" cause. My personal opinion. While I absolutely agree with your point of view, and would behave the same way, it frustrates me that we men often don't realise/acknowledge the inconsistency we have here. You say that you won't hit a woman, not because they're weak, but just because. And you also say you'd beat a man "within an inch of his life" for hitting a woman. Why the difference in treatment? Do you really think that women aren't weak? Or do you think deep-down that it is your duty to rescue the damsel in distress in your shining armour, because they are weaker, and therefore merit your protection?
  6. Having read the article I largely agree with the author, that I could not define myself as a feminist, because what a feminist is, exactly, seems to differ widely depending on who you ask. I am aware that inequality exists for women in many avenues of life, and am opposed to such - is that enough to qualify me as a feminist, a decent human being, or a clueless male who doesn't know what they're talking about? In any case, I'm happy to go on behaving as I am, without the need for the "feminist" label. I'm genuinely interested Elgee in why you think empathy is the key to men being allowed to label themselves as feminists? I have never myself been the victim of genocide, or domestic violence, or homelessness and yet understand that these are social injustices that we must fight to set right. Do I have to have spent some time living on the streets for me to be a "legitimate" supporter (or indeed instigator) of strategies to end poverty? Similarly, do I have to be a woman to "legitimately" take action for equality campaigns?
  7. My brief review of The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande: http://physicianhealyourself.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/71/
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