Monday, July 24, 2006

Random Scribblings 2

Ok first up, apologies to Zen for quoting her as a gossiper with YP in my previous post. There can be two possibilities, which I will leave it to the readers to decide which is more likely to have happened:-

1) YP and Zen DID NOT gossip about anyone or anything. Just because I saw the two girls silently engaging in some gossip-like talking tone and atmosphere so I assumed they were gossiping;

2) YP and Zen DID gossip about somebody or something. But I am being a bit tactless here to kinda smear Zen's good image by actually posting it on my blog.

In any case, sorry to Zen for me quoting her in my previous blog in such a undesirable position.

***
If you guys have been reading Elena's blog you will then know that she has got a new toy called the PLAYSTATION PORTABLE/PSP. Great gadget I must say, and even non-gaming fans would marvel at its beautiful sight and curves. Not a cheap toy admittedly, but since I promised here to get it for her if she got an A for any exam (which she did get) I finally bought it last Thursday. It costed me quite a bit but it is worth while since it also coincides as her 21st birthday present. She is all happy with the PSP and thinking its by far the most valuable thing on Earth that she has received. But I can't say the same for her parents, who think I have just gotten her a device which will practically send her studies to the doldrums. But that's the only thing she likes!!! Tough, really.

And to echo her plea/avarice for enhancements for her new toy, she wants a 2GB Memory Stick and a couple UMD games for her birthday! So you figure out la, either pool money or ask her new brother buy for her la. Her 21st birthday is on the 26th of July, ie this Wednesday!

***
Been thinking hard on which PDA or PDA-phone I should get my hands on. Well you see I am quite a fickle minded person, not that it's my nature, but rather I keep changing my decisions when I read reviews or comments on forums about the gadget I am eyeing. First it was the HP IPAQ rw6828 PDA-phone, then I dumped it and looked at the XDA 2 Atom, then the Atom Pure, then the Palm TX, then Treo 650, then Palm TX, XDA 2 Mini, back to TX... I dunno what to get!!!!! Rajinder thinks I am too fickle minded and have too much money to spend, but there is only one thing I am aiming for --- no matter what PDA type I get, it MUST be able to use cracked Skyscape medical programs! Newer Pocket PC version WM5 hasn't been able to be cracked, 2003 PPC is too old, Palm is too simple IMHO... So I will just continue debating with myself. Sigh...

***
JPA is offering a 200k loan to students who are doing twinning programs at the tertiary level apparently. Those doing medicine are given first priority for consideration followed by dentistry, pharmacy etc etc. There are a list of criteria in the website but generally if you have been doing well in IMU you should apply for it. Repayment depends on your contract, ie either 10 year bond to forfeit the loan, full repayment, or 75% discount if you do well in your second part. Btw, the max loan amount is only for your tuition fees. Living costs is on you. In any case I see it as a very good opportunity to lighten the burden of middle class households like mine and to enjoy being viewed as being affliated to the JPA. HAHA! Those interested can go visit the official JPA website and look for the loans tab. It's all in BM so YP get your maid to help you translate k.

***
Going with Elena to Kuching this Thursday evening to visit Grace, and hopefully Sheena in her Treehouse. All excited since we have never stepped foot in East Malaysia. Hopefully we can be lucky enough to see and taste and feel all the essence of Catland within the few days we are there. But it's actually more of catching up and bonding with her in her last few days left before she leaves on the 20th of August. So big thank you to Grace for letting us put up with you.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Random Scribblings...

Too little time, too many things to say. So when I FINALLY get the time to blog, this is what you get --- little bit of everything.

First things first, I am going to Cat Land to visit Grace! Yay! My first trip to East Malaysia and first time on AirAsia! (It costs me RM 320 for a return flight) I will be going there at the end of this month to see for myself if there are really treehouses from which some of my friends live in and swing around. Not to mention San Francisco kopitiam which one dear friend of mine has been working at (too obvious...). Anyway, thanks to Grace and her hospitality, Elena and I shall be putting up at her big house and having makan times with her specialist parents. Oooh that's so cool man... Will post up pics when I return, hopefully.

***
Met up with the YeeP! last Thursday at Mid Valley to sama-sama watch the Pirates of Caribean. While it was fun to meet up with her and many other friends, in the end the real catching up part was a disappointment. Sometimes even if we have that many friends, we can't possibly be talking to all of them at one go. So yeah, as far as Yee Pei is concerned, we only heard gossips from her (with Zen) and Richard asking her about her blog. We assume she has nothing too interesting to tell us. Won't be seeing you off, so big BYE BYE here! Other people? Well they are people like Raj, Elena, Daniel and co which I see all the time. So nothing special, not that I take them for granted. The movie itself was good, apart from the all too sudden ending which leaves most people scratching their heads, as if the film roll suddenly got cut. Interesting nontheless.

***
Among the M2o3 people these days, there is this famous tagline that has easily replaced the all too common "See you again" that we all say to each other before we part. It's not only popular, it makes you look good when you exchange that quote with some one else.

Shu Jin: "Ok la Yee Pei, I go first la. SEE YOU IN UK AR!"
Yee Pei: "Yeah, SEE YOU IN UK too!!!"

At this moment, passers-by near them would take a look at them, startled not only by the outburst of words at a louder than usual pitch, but by the amazement that they are the select few who will be going to UK for one reason or another. So, this guy imitates along and gets the attention he seeks.

Richard: "Eh, Ai Ling, you leaving already ar? Ok lor, I SEE YOU IN UK la!"
Ai Ling: "Talk nonsense la you not go Australia meh? Lebeh only la..."

Only to draw laughters from strangers who have just met a desperate attention seeker.

***
At some point of your lives, have you ever had certain misunderstandings or differences between you and another person that has become so messy that it's absolutely irreconciliable? At the time you are involved in the fray, at the time when there is still chance to go back to where it began, you never thought of taking the step back. Rather, when time has passed and you have come to your senses, you realise the mistakes and loss that you have had but nothing can actually be done. We have moved on and we are in different paradigms of thoughts and experiences, thus we have effectly been severed of any possible ties in the future. All that remains is very superficial, very shallow, and the damage done remains for a lifetime. It may be their fault, it may be ours, but the end result is one that makes us feel it would have been better if we have never met in our lifetimes. Sad, but true.

***
This last part is to give my deepest and heartfelt condolences to my dear friend, Prasad, on the demise of his father last week. It truly is saddening and unfortunate to experience such a loss of this magnitude, but I believe that your dad is definitely in a better place now. Trust me, anywhere else in the galaxy is better than planet Earth where oil prices are sky rocketing and people killing each other. Be strong man, look to the future!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

So Much For O&G

All this while I had barely much idea of how one goes about being a specialist after our basic degree. I had alot of misconceptions, even thinking that one may probably have to spend a year or so attending lectures and PBL at some university, sit for an EOS and be a specialist after you pass. Or perhaps you just have to grow old enough to look and think like a specialist. I have asked many people but to no avail, till I personally asked a doctor who is preparing to be a specialist.

She is currently a Medical Officer who is attached to the O&G clinic and is getting experience to be an O&G specialist in few years time. Here it goes. Regardless of whether you have an MBBS from Malaysia or from any other part of the world, as long as you come back to Malaysia you have two options (I am talking about O&G here). Once you become a Houseman ie. a fresh graduate, you can either choose to pursue a Masters in Medicine degree (M.Med) or opt to go for the more glamourous Member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (MRCOG) certification. While BOTH these degrees will legally allow the holders to use the title of Pakar O&G or O&G Specialist, the M.Med degree is only recognised LOCALLY while the MRCOG one definitely goes far and wide. So as long as you are willing to pledge your life and loyalty to Malaysia, taking a M.Med degree will be sufficient for a specialist title (and of course the higher income and privileges that come with it).

Here's the difference between the two. Apart from the recognition factor, the level of difficulty and hence the level of quality differs quite greatly between the two. To ultimately possess an MRCOG certification, you have got to first take the MRCOG Part 1 exam which can be prepared for since Day 1 and sat for anytime when you are ready. Next, you will have to go for the Part 2a exam, which can only be taken at least 4 years from passing Part 1. Subsequently you go for the last Part 2b before becoming a certified MRCOG holder. The passing rate for Part 1 and Part 2a is only between 7-8% max, while the pass rate for the final part is a bit higher at between 15-20%. And so as you can see, the problem with getting this degree is the difficulty of passing its exams! To even qualify and be eligible to sit for the exams, you must have a logbook which shows that you have had sufficient work experience and exposure in this field. Really not easy man... Exams can be taken in any certified hospitals, not necessary to go all the way to England.

Now having said all that, I also found out a truth about this field. Apparently, Chinese males are the least popular among female patients in the O&G sector. A Malay female or Indian female would be the most welcomed, followed by a Chinese female, Malay male, Indian male and Chinese male. The acceptance level may not be so clearly demarcated in Government hospitals but when it comes to private practice we see such differences, like it or not. Of course, this is not an absolute rule but rather a common sight and understanding among the doctors and patients. So, perhaps O&G isn't for me after all. Better stick to Orthopaedics. That has another LOOOONG story which I won't want to go in depth. Basically to get an MRCS (Ortho) degree, one had better opt to do the local Masters before attempting to apply for the REAL MRCS because apparently the Part 3 exams is kinda by invitation only. They select limited students for it and it would matter if you came from a local or overseas university, for the MBBS I mean. So instead of waiting till you die, you would be better off doing a Masters and practicing as a specialist here first.

Oh well. Now I see the long and windy path to go up there...

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Back in Business...

Albeit a little late.

I LOVE ITALIA!!!

Not just because I betted on them and won, but they are really good. Since day 1 I saw them play I knew they would go far. After they had beaten Ukraine in the only clear cut 90 minute victory there is so far in the knock-out rounds of Germany 06, it was made even clear that they are definitely champions material. Now having gotten rid of the host nation, they are left to either bungkus France or Portugal, either of which stand no chance against Italy, IMHO.

GO ITALIA!!!