Monday, June 26, 2017

(I didn't actually prick my finger with a needle)

(the system crashed and we're working with paper???)

(reading books and watching movies over the long weekend)

Saturday, June 24, 2017

I'd let everyone know the trials that doctors go through, the hours we actually work and what we get paid. The fact that every doctor has had to stick their (triple-gloved) finger into someone's ass to see if (among other things) there's blood in their shit; I'd make sure that people know the kind of things we have to deal with, from hair-raisingly gross to nausea-inducing frightening. I'd make sure everyone knows how competitive our work environment is, how little support we get sometimes, and the times of naked fear when we're knee deep in and have no idea what to do next, what the hell do we do next? Everyone should know how badly we get scolded by patients, nurses and seniors. And then we go home and our parents think we've had a glamorous night when in fact we pricked our finger with a needle that just drew HIV blood, we had to see a TB patient and they coughed blood on the uniform we're wearing now, our senior scolded us because we couldn't speak hokkien, a patient threatened to sue us because we took an hour to see her, and someone died on call. We're tired. 

I swear I'm not doing this for sympathy, or a pay raise, or more respect. I'm not doing this because I want people to understand me. But people come in with unrealistic expectations: subconsciously thinking we're gods and that with an injection, two pills and a quick feel of the pulse we can solve all their problems, from joint pains and indigestion to crippling headaches and heart failure. When they realise we're not gods and can't solve all their problems, that we're not unendingly patient and able to miraculously understand what they think without them saying it; when patients realise how human we (and the system) are, they get upset, feel betrayed, and angry. Angry. I think if they understood the reality of this, they would moderate their expectations. 

Yes, medicine is wonderful and miraculous and leaps ahead from where we were when we started. But we're not playing at being god, we're just trying to make life a little better. 

Camila Cabello - crying in the club

Thursday, June 22, 2017

“To what purpose is all the toil and bustle of this world? What is the end of avarice and ambition, of the pursuit of wealth, of power and pre-eminence? Is it to supply the necessities of nature? The wages of the meanest laborer can supply them. What then are the advantages of that great purpose of human life which we call bettering our condition

“To be observed, to be attended to, to be taken notice of with sympathy, complacency, and approbation, are all the advantages which we can propose to derive from it. The rich man glories in his riches because he feels that they naturally draw upon him the attention of the world. The poor man on the contrary is ashamed of his poverty. He feels that it places him out of the sight of mankind. To feel that we are taken no notice of necessarily disappoints the most ardent desires of human nature. The poor man goes out and comes in unheeded, and when in the midst of a crowd is in the same obscurity as if shut up in his own hovel. The man of rank and distinction, on the contrary, is observed by all the world. Everybody is eager to look at him. His actions are the objects of the public care. Scarce a word, scarce a gesture that fall from him will be neglected.” 

---Adam Smith, The Theory of Moral Sentiments

"The predominant impulse behind our desire to rise in the social hierarchy may be rooted not so much in the material goods we can accrue or the power we can wield as in the amount of love we stand to receive as a consequence of high status. "
--Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

why do the wrong sounds come out my mouth

I said, 'People only have as much authority as you give them,' and my mom started laughing.
- there's more truth to this than most want to believe
- it gets me in trouble sometimes...only sometimes.

I said, 'When I'm angry my anger overflows and I get mad at everything and everyone around me.'
- thought it was a myth but it's true.

I said, 'Please don't.'
- I meant, please take me with you when you go
- I meant, none of us have this figured out anyway, it's ok.

It's not gonna be ok, is it? It's not going to turn out ok. But we're supposed to be sweet and kind all the way until the ultimate not-ok and we die?

I wonder what kind of human being I am now.

But I don't think the aim in life is to be universally loved, to be tender and loving to every soul who passes our road. I think the aim in life perhaps is to be fair and authentic. If our starting point is sincerity, I think a lot less things will go wrong. And a lot more will go right.

Studio ghibli - message by rogue (piano)

Monday, June 19, 2017

The world used to be a fun place. Remember?

Actually, not really. It was always just this place.

I guess it's never too late to have a change of perspective.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Recently I've been thinking

About how life tends to chew up people and then spit them out.

Is it all about choosing the right thing to get chewed up over? Is it about pretending not to notice you've been spat out? Because it seems like it's terribly hard to avoid getting chomped in the first place.

Is it about finding the right people to go through the grinder with you? Or is it about being the one who leads everyone to charge into the dragon's maw?

Maybe it's about finding a corner to stew in, looking at gums and teeth and pondering the meaning of life. Or perhaps it's about looking around for the right sharp tooth to throw ourselves on.

Probably there are those who look at the dragon in awe and call it a god. There are probably also those who call the cavernous mouth hell; they argue eternally with those who call the outside hell.

I'm just playing around with metaphors and dragons and amusing myself but it's true that recently I look at the sky and wonder if it's a ceiling; look at the countless buildings and think about unspoken rules and laws that give us convenience and constraints both; look at those who make some of the rules and wonder what they think.

I believe people have a general idea of what they intend, but the world is endlessly complicated and a ball thrown from A to B will likely get banged at A.1, blown by B.2, hit by a boar at C and end up somewhere around K. Eventually.

In essence I think that people rarely know the answers to anything. And that makes me chafe when someone tells me that this is what you're supposed to do. Up yours, I want to say.

Society is created when a bunch of people decide to follow a number of spoken and unspoken rules. So I'm looking through history trying to understand how this began, because maybe I'll get a better idea of what it really entails. Having grown up in this petri dish, I can't really see the culture for what it is, so to speak.

In essence... recently I've been thinking all over the place.