NBA Arms Race

July 22, 2009

The 2009 NBA offseason has been pretty exciting.  A lot of big names have changed teams.  It seemed to start with one team obtaining a major player that would help them win the championship next year.  Then two teams responded with moves in order to keep up.  Then three other teams were forced to make trades.  Now there are at least several teams that have a legit chance of winning the Larry O’Brien trophy next year.  The following is who I think has the best chances of winning it all.

1. LOS ANGELES LAKERS

The Defending Champs.  They lost Trevor Ariza to the Rockets but obtained Ron Artest.  Basically, they traded a quick defender for a more powerful one.  Artest does score more but his shooting percentage isn’t very good.  He also punches people.  We still don’t know whether Lamar Odom will return.  If he doesn’t, it will be possible to dethrone the Lakers.  If he does return, it will be near impossible.  PLEASE MIAMI, LURE HIM AWAY!!!!

2. SAN ANTONIO SPURS

You know I’m bias.  Spurs could have been #3 or #4 but I’m sticking em here.  They obtained solid firepower with Richard Jefferson and a reliable big man in Mcdyess.  Just look at this possible lineup: Parker, Ginobili, Jefferson, Duncan, Mcdyess.

3. BOSTON CELTICS

Rasheed Wallace is a versatile big, able to post up and shoot the 3.  If Kevin Garnett can be healthy, they will contend with the Cavs and Magic for the top spot in the East.

4. DALLAS MAVERICKS

It was a hard decision placing the Mavs here instead of 2 or 3.  Look at their potential lineup: Kidd, Terry, Howard, Marion, and Nowitzki.  The new acquisition, Marion, gives them an athletic forward who can guard most people and score in transition.  I think their weakness is that they don’t really have a closer.  The Mavs always end up CHOKING!

5. ORLANDO MAGIC

They basically replaced Turkoglu with Vince Carter.  I don’t think this hurts or helps them.  They also lost two guards, Lee and Alston, which leaves them with Jameer Nelson who I think is a bit overrated.

6. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS

The Cavs obtained Shaq.  I have no idea how they are going to do.

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Mexicans are Mobile??

June 23, 2009

All pharmacy students know that memorizing the generic, brand, and dose of the top 200 drugs is essential.  Some of them are hard to learn so I make some crazy memory aids.  One of them is this.

Meloxicam, the generic, sounds like “Mexican”.  Mobic, the brand, sounds like “mobile”.  So in my mind I imagine that Mexicans are mobile because they can pick up their belongings and move anywhere!!

I can’t believe I just typed this.

How I Feel About You

June 11, 2009

It’s late right now.  I can’t sleep so I’m going to post.

What I want to say out of appreciation

Dear EGF

When we were together, you made me so happy.  I miss the smell of your hair and the touch of your skin.  For the most part, you treated me right.  You can be bitchy, but you never directed that bitchiness toward me.  I’m glad we met, but now that we’re not together, I do miss you.  I care about you.

Love, PK

What I want to say out of anger

Dear EGF

You’re OCD, a hypocrite, and a passive-aggressive bitch.  I treat you right.  I spend time with you, I go out on real dates, I never curse or yell at you.  I treat you with respect.  But I feel you don’t fully reciprocate the feeling.  Before we started dating, our mutual friend said I wasn’t your type.  She said you liked (adjective, adjective) guys.  That has always been at the back of my head.  I felt like no matter what I said or how I acted, you would never fully be with me because I wasn’t your type of guy.  For the past two weeks, I could tell you were ignoring me/losing interest.  To be honest, I could see your lack of interest and in return I lost interest in you.  Good bye.

PK

Status Update

May 31, 2009

For a while I forgot that I had a blog.  I was only reminded when my mail account notified me of pending comments.

So  I finished my 2nd year of pharmacy a couple of weeks ago.  It’s hard to believe I made it this far and that I have only 2 more years to go.  In just two years I’ll have a PharmD degree and so many job options.  This year was insane though.  Nobody and I repeat NOBODY in my class enjoyed it.  You should have seen the look on some people’s faces.  It was a combination of boredom, sleepiness, and I disgust.

Right now I’m starting an unpaid internship with the hospital I did my IPPE at.  Yes, I’m working for free.  I refuse to work in a chain and it is hard to work at a hospital with no prior experience.  The DOP of the hospital said there will be a position in mid to late July.  So I’m just gonna work there in order to get some intern hours and then later I’ll start getting paid.

Goodbye Walgreens

March 15, 2009

I lasted two months at walgreens.  I started in January and quit today.  It wasn’t even two full months of work.  It was about 8 days of computer training and only 6 days of actual behind-the-pharmacy work.  I don’t understand how other people can do it.  The thing I couldn’t stand the most is the damn insurance.  I hate insurance.  Why do we have to handle insurance issues?  The patient and insurance company should have to handle issues themselves.  Also, whenever I worked, it was so packed that no one could really teach me.  I usually was relegated to filling the drugs.

The pharmacy manager seemed bitter.  A couple of days she talked about quitting the job, blah, blah, blah.  The last time I worked was about 3 weeks ago, so the store manager called me and asked what is up.  I said I’m too busy with school and will probably not work anymore.  She said, “So that’s it?  You’re done?”  I said, “Yea.”  And that’s what happened.

At least now I know retail is not the path for me.  I give my respects to the people in retail.  They are special people who have thick skin or are crazy or both.  Now I’m looking for a hospital job or maybe an independent.

Pharmacy Kid – Dead and Gone

January 20, 2009

Dead and Gone

Oh hey, I’ve been in pharmacy school way too long.
Just trying to find my brain back home.
But the old me is dead and gone… dead and gone… dead and gone.
Oh hey, I’ve been in pharmacy school way too long.
Just trying to find my brain back home.
But the old me is dead and gone… dead and gone… dead and gone.

Ever had one of them days you wish would have stayed home.
Run into a group of nerds getting their study on.
You walk by, they quiz you, you reply then sh*t get blown.
Way out of proportion way past discussion.
Just you against them, quiz one then rush them
Figure you get pimped here that’s next
They don’t wanna stop there now they bustin’

Now you blushin’, mind is rushin’
You to the class with a bad concussion
Plus you hit four times but it hit yo pride
Speechless all day and ya textbook bound
Never mind that now you lucky to be alive
Just thinkin’ it all started fussin’ wit three guys
Pharmacy pride in the way but your pride is the way you can f*ck
Around get shot down any day

Students die everyday, all little bullsh!t
Pop quizzes, mind games, ordinary school sh!t
Could this be cuz of  hip-hop pharmacy
Or did the ones with the great minds not use it?
Usually students don’t know what to do when they back against the wall
So they just start cheating
For red or for blue or for A’s I guess
From Bankhead at the old projects

No more stress, now I’m straight
Now I get it, now I take time to think
Before I make mistakes just for my mental state
That part of me left yesterday
The heart of me is strong today
No regrets I’m blessed to say the old me dead and gone away

Oh hey, I’ve been in pharmacy school way too long.
Just trying to find my brain back home.
But the old me is dead and gone… dead and gone… dead and gone.
Oh hey, I’ve been in pharmacy school way too long.
Just trying to find my brain back home.
But the old me is dead and gone… dead and gone… dead and gone.

Rhodiola Rosea & Vitamin B Complex Day 1

December 5, 2008

11:00 Took half a tablet of Vit B.  Feeling alert so I start studying.

1:00 Feeling tired now.  Take a full capsule of Rhodiola. I start feeling effect after 15 minutes.

3:00 Still feel alert

6:00 Still feel alert

9:00 Feeling sluggist.  Not sure if it’s because of my dinner or if the Rhodiola is wearing off.

Rhodiola Rosea & Vitamin B Complex Day 1

December 3, 2008

Will be updating/editing every several hours or so.
12/03/08 (Day 1)

Dosage

175mg rhodiola root extract = 5mg rosavin
Half capsule of Vit B complex

Observations

8:00 Took the aforementioned pills.

8:15 Didn’t feel anything

8:30 I am NOT a morning person.  I usually feel dead tired for at least a few hours after I wake up.  But 30 minutes into this experiment, I feel more alert than usual.

10:00  Feeling pretty good.  I think I’m hitting full effect now.

11:30  Alertness still up, but concentration falling just a tad bit.

2:00 Rhodiola and Vit B are definitely out of my system.  I can’t pay attention in class anymore.  Need nap.

Testing Tips

November 6, 2008

Credit goes to Tamim Ansary of MSN.  I decided to paste the entire tips with my commentary in italics.

Okay, so you want to improve your scores. Don’t blush; I know how you feel. You’ve come to the right place: I’ve searched the Internet and talked to teachers and test makers for the very best in test-taking tips and techniques.

I’m going to skip the vanilla tips. Study hard. Get plenty of sleep before the test. Try to relax. Yeah, all that stuff’s important, but you can probably figure it out yourself. Here are a few tips that may not have occurred to you.

  • Study in an environment that is the same or similar to the one in which you will take the test.  Also try to take a practice test in the same room when it is completely quiet.  Mark the time you start and don’t take more than the time you would have on the real test.
  • Wear an unusual scent when you’re studying, and then wear the same scent at the test, because aromas tend to bring back memories. (It doesn’t have to be perfume. Peppermint, chocolate, and ammonia have all been shown to work. But don’t wear too much; you don’t want to bother the other test takers.)  I haven’t tried this yet.  However, I have tried mints/gum because it supposedly stimulates the brain.  My experience: little to no improvement when it comes to mints/gum.
  • Don’t actually cheat, of course, but make up the cheat sheet you would use. It’s a great way to bring the subject into focus.  This definitely works for me.
  • Study in small blocks of time, spaced apart. Three two-hour sessions are better than one six-hour session. (But no, 360 one-minute sessions are not best of all.) I prefer one-hour sessions to two-hour sessionsSome studies say 30-minute sessions are best.  I guess use trial and error and find the time blocks where you retain the most info.
  • Go into the test with a full stomach and an empty bladder. ‘Nuff said.  Eating a mix of carbs and proteins are best.  Carbs are good for the earlier portion of exams and when they’re used up, proteins break down slower so they’ll provide “late energy”. Worst combo: empty stomach and full bladder.  ‘Nuff said.
  • Set a pace and keep to it. First, skim the whole test, divide the number of items by the number of minutes, and calculate how much time you can spend on each item. Mark when you should be getting to the quarter point, halfway point, and three-quarter point by jotting the time in the margin next to that place. Once you start, keep moving. If you can’t answer a question within your budgeted time, put a question mark next to it and move on.  Good advice
  • Prioritize. Answer the easiest questions first, then the ones that give you the most points, then the hard ones.  The only exception is when you know the harder questions will give you more points.  These cases are really rare, I’ve never encountered them.
  • Make sure to answer the power items. About every tenth question on many standardized tests is a so-called power item. If you get that one right, you get credit for the whole block of questions leading up to it. Whereas the nine questions that precede the power question test individual skills, the power item asks you to use a combination of skills. On a map test, for example, a question like “Is Perth (north, south, east, west) of Forth?” is NOT a power item. A question like “The shortest route from Perth to Forth crosses (Smith River, Boyd Mountain, Hologram Hill, None of the above)” probably is. Never leave a power item unanswered, even if you have to guess. This tip is good for standardized tests, but not very applicable for regular college exams.  College tests rarely have such “power items”.
  • Guess. On most standardized tests, only correct answers count. If blank answers count the same as wrong answers, you have nothing to lose by guessing. Suppose every test item has four answer choices. According to the laws of probability, if you guess you will correctly answer 25 percent of the questions on which you are totally clueless. However, there is dumb guessing and smart guessing–and that brings us to the subject of power guessing.

Power guessing for the utterly clueless
Follow these tips to maximize your guessing success on items you know absolutely nothing about.

  • On a true/false test, all other things being equal, pick “true.” (The correct answer on true/false tests is generally “true” more often than it is “false.”)
  • On a true/false item, a long sentence with many parts is more likely to be false.
  • Statements with words such as “never,” “always,” or “every” are more likely to be false. (So few things are “always” or “never” anything.)
  • Statements with words such as “sometimes,” “often,” or “usually” are more likely to be true.
  • On a multiple-choice test, if “all of the above” is a choice and you don’t know the answer, pick “all of the above.”
  • On a math test, if your choices are numbers, throw out the highest and lowest ones. Pick a midrange number.
  • If one answer choice contains quite a bit more information, tilt toward it.
  • On pure guesses, all other things being equal, pick the same option every time. For example, you might always pick C. Why? Because test designers try to randomize their answers and therefore skip around. If you skip around too–with your luck?–you and the correct answer may miss each other every time. If you hold still, however, you get probability working for you.

I also want to add that if you initially chose an answer, don’t second guess and change it later unless you’re 100% sure the new answer is the right one.  Your first choice is usually right.  If the temperature of the test room is unpredictable, you might want to dress in a couple layers.  I like a t-shirt plus hoodie.  That way, you won’t be distracted by sweating or shivering.

I Voted

November 4, 2008

I voted in my first presidential election.  Actually, it was the first time I voted for any government position.  There are a few things I wanted to talk about.  First, my total wait time was surprising. It was zero minutes, there was no line at all.  Once I got my name checked, I was shown a voting station right away.  I guess 3 o’clock in the afternoon is a good time to vote as everyone already voted or is at work.  In class, I heard people talking about the voting line being 3 blocks long.

When I was walking toward the voting center, there were a bunch of people who asked me if I knew who the candidates were for a specific party.  I swear, this happened every 5 seconds.  I just wanted to vote and go home.  I guess I should have expected this.

Also, one actual candidate for mayor and one for school board were there to greet voters.  They just said who they were and thanks for voting.  That definitely left a positive impression on me.  I voted for those peeps.  So yea, all in all, everyone went smoothly.