Dec 30, 2003 | Q
On my top five list of presents I received for Christmas this year: Mattel’s Classic Football 2.
I remember wasting hours of my pre-teen life playing the original while riding to and from swim practice; I would also be willing to swear that I owned the real original at some point. Now, I’m just waiting for the re-release of Merlin…
If you’ve been looking for an excuse to go wireless with your computer, there’s almost no reason not to saunter over to Amazon and pick up a D-Link DI-514. Why? Because in addition to providing a good, basic wireless access point, it has a four-port switch that goes up to 100 Mbit/sec per port, and for the next five days, it’ll cost you a whopping twenty bucks after the rebate. How can you go wrong?
It’s funny how much better satire is at highlighting the hypocrisy of the religious right than straight news ever has been. (Note that that link is to the main McSweeney’s page, since as far as I can tell, the latest post doesn’t get a permalink until it’s no longer the latest post. Until then, you’re looking for “A Message from Pat Robertson and the ‘Vote No on Jesus’ Campaign” in the archives.)
Dec 22, 2003 | Q
Well, I guess my Apple accolades were a bit too congratulatory — it turns out that the problem that beseiged by iBook is not only widespread, but more or less ignored by Apple. There are dozens of other people that have posted descriptions of the exact same problem I experienced, and there’s even a thread on Apple’s support site full of people who are on their third and fourth logic boards. Most of them seem to have had to shell out the same few hundred I did in order to get their iBook fixed. And in that context, the service doesn’t seem quite as awesome. In the world of medicine, this many affected people would cause a drug to be pulled off the market, a new procedure to get scrapped, or a medical trial to get closed by the FDA. In the world of computer hardware, though, it just causes people to have to spend more money to fix products that are defective from the get-go.
Dec 18, 2003 | Q
I was all ready to write an excited, happy post about the unbelievable service that Apple provided when my iBook broke two weeks ago, and then Anil informed me that I had somehow missed Meg’s post about the exact same thing. Seriously, it’s identical down to the wacko Matrix screen seconds before total iBook lockup, and perfect in describing the amazing turnaround on the repair. Despite quoting me five to seven working days, my iBook went from dead to fixed in 48 hours, and all for a pretty reasonable flat fee. (And can I mention how cool it is that Apple offers a $50 service that will back up your hard disk before starting any repairs, but only if they deem that it’s likely that your hard disk will be threatened during the repair process? If they don’t end up needing to do it, they don’t charge you, and that just rocks.) The only downside to the service? That it makes me want one of the 12” aluminum PowerBook G4 all the more; too bad I live on a fellow’s salary. Of course, if anyone wants to buy me one for Christmas, that’s an entirely different story…
Dec 18, 2003 | Q
How cool — with the help of state media outlets, the story of Saddam Hussein’s strange Oregon license plate continues to unfold over at Slate.
Dec 16, 2003 | Medicine
Yet another good day of fellowship — a well-received tumor board presentation this morning (on something I knew nothing about prior to preparing it), an interesting consult in the newborn nursery, a probable confirmation of a non-diagnosis of cancer in a teenager, and a great bone marrow biopsy specimen (that came along with a compliment from the hematopathologist!).
Dec 13, 2003 | Medicine
Fellowship has been just as time-consuming and emotionally taxing as I anticipated it would be (as, in part, is evidenced by the random gaps in posts here), but something else I anticipated is that I’d have some amazing experiences this year. Today, the day of my program’s annual Holiday Festival for our patients with cancer, would definitely qualify as amazing. The Festival is held in a local hotel ballroom, and patients’ families are encouraged to bring all of their kids along. This year, a national department store donated a ton of presents, and other companies donated food, drink, and goodies for the parents. One of the senior doctors in the department plays Santa every year (mostly because he already fits the role with his body habitus and perpetual cheer), and all of the first year fellows play Santa’s elves, complete with bloomers, stockings, and pointy shoes. Today, we stood up on stage with jolly Saint Nick, helping the kids through the line, getting them to smile for the pictures, and handing out age-appropriate presents. It was just awesome to see all of our patients in their holiday best, running around and excited to be out of the hospital. (And it was actually fun to be mocked by a few of my patients, and pose with them for pictures so they could keep a bit of evidence that their doctor is willing to make a fool of himself for a bit good cheer.) And despite the occasional Christmas buzz-kill — a parent or two who cut into line, a few more who asked to exchange the gifts that their kids received because they wanted something better — I was glad to be a part of it.