Friday, August 30, 2013

Moving Musings/Lessons learned

(1) If you want something done, complaining or over-contemplating is the worst way to go about it. There's a fine line between consideration and hasty decision-making. At some point: Just do it and move on.
(2) The only person you can rely on 100% is yourself.
(3) With that said, if you expect nothing from others you'll never be dissapointed.
(4) Fed Ex is the best way to move. I owe my seamless transition to FedEx by not only picking up all my items on time, but also delivering them literally the same time I arrive and got my keys to move in. Thank you FedEx!
(5) Another Special thanks to American Express for being vigilant enough to monitor my expenses and alert me of unusual spending. 
(6) It's time for Swimming to go green. I already recycle, but now I've invested in some nifty Kors Hydration Vessels to reduce my usage of plastic water bottles. There's a nice deal on Gilt that allows people to make the change too! This was probably one of the biggest ways that I was wasteful so here's hoping that I cut that down.
(7) On that note, we all could benefit from drinking more water.
(8) You're never too young for nostalgia.
(9) Never, never NEVER not try to get fully settled as possible when moving. The mess in my new (gorgeous) apartment is unnerving and really frustrating to deal with and this all could have been resolved if I made a greater effort finish furnishing my apartment before I moved in.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The unexamined life is not worth living/Lessons

The unexamined life is not worth living -Socrates

Swimming has gone out to sea (meaning back to Detroit) for the weekend for a dear friend's wedding (Congrats S&Y!) and has returned with an airplane anecdote. This weekend proved to be highly productive, but has also curtailed my sleep a little. Swimming is excited and ready to start grad school in a few weeks (albeit in Cleveland), however,  I'll always have a little Boston edge in me.

On my way to detroit I had the luxury of sitting next to a priest. I took this opportunity to get back on religion's good side by choosing to strike up a conversation with him (I had formerly upset the Reverend that runs my front desk by accidentally not attending his dance recital/sermon last year and going to brunch with a friend instead--shame on me.) Anyway, I used the opportunity to learn about religion and ask him questions on the coexistence of philosophical thought and religious beliefs (we both agree that the two in fact complement each other and this priest had studied Philosophy in Rome--how lucky!) I was so enthralled with my priest's discussion that I took a risk and opted not to read the flight safety card this time. I usually always read the safety card since I'd like to be prepared and lead people to safety should something bad happen, however, I figured the priest would help us out in this case so I figured I'd just ride on his cassock this time. Anyway, I came out of this experience with a some solid lessons and a better understanding of certain aspects of religion.

(1) The unexamined life is not worth living. Probably one of the most famous Socratic quotes, but very relevant. As I cultivate my scientific thought, I have gained a deeper understanding about the idea that much of life is about asking questions and inquiring about the truth. Let's all be seekers of the truth.

(2) Being in the world is an opportunity in its own right. For some perspective, I feel lucky to go places and do things and I don't think I take that for granted. In fact, I take advantage of the fact that I can meet and learn about people from all walks of life and feel privileged to one day be a physician and have the opportunity every day.

(3) (Unrelated) but standing in an attack position seems to be effective at asserting power, confidence, and respect for Swimming's elder sister in a male dominated field. Methinks it's time to try that.

(4) Make the time to do what is most important to you and your future. -Swimming's former boss Dave (thanks! I need the extra motivation!)

(5) Find out who other people really are and how/what they think by asking questions.

With that, I leave you with the end to my story: I exchanged emails with the priest and parted ways and had a fabulous time at the wedding this weekend. To my surprise, I received an email from the priest saying the following:

Dear Swimming (name changed on purpose),

I think it was providential that we met yesterday - a dad wanted to switch seats with me, so I ended up beside you. I hope I didn't confuse or bore you...

Here is my email if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for your example of openness and thirst for the truth - God will bless you and already has!

Have a great Sunday!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

This Week's Lessons Learned

(1) Learning how to delegate is imperative to one's success in proper time management. Task Rabbit has once again saved me from a mountain of stress!
(2) You learn a lot about others simply by their responses upon receiving news about your successes and failures.
(3) 1-2-3 Allons-y!
(4) There really is no rest for the weary. For the triumphant, however, sleep is imperative.
(5) If I haven't posted the quote below earlier here it is again. Simply put, I love/revel/thrive when immersed in a relentless pursuit towards success or for a solution. Here's to keep moving on.
(6) Again, as much as I love the BBC program Planet Earth, it is far too troubling for me to watch it at night. (Tonight's episode featured a fox eating a baby duck as the parent ducks [who mate for life!] watched in distress.)
(7) I really do practice the art of being quiet and unassuming...which is most-likely why others are taken aback after publicizing a major decision that was actually very well-thought out internally.
(8) The hidden nutrients behind Chia seeds!

From the Abstract of the 1985 book Aquarium by Victor Suvorov about Soviet military intelligence:

Man is capable of performing miracles. A man can swim
the English Channel three times, drink a hundred mugs of
beer, walk barefoot on burning coals; he can learn thirty
languages, become an Olympic champion at boxing, invent
the television or the bicycle, become a general in the GRU
or make himself a millionaire. It's all in our own hands. If
you want it you can get it. Most important is to want
something: the rest depends only on training. But if you
simply train your memory, your muscles or your mind
regularly, then nothing will come of your efforts. Regular
training is important, but training alone decides nothing.
There was the case of the odd character who trained
regularly. Every single day he lifted a smoothing iron and
continued this for ten years. But his muscles got no
bigger. Success comes only when the training, of
whatever kind (memory, muscles, mind, willpower,
stamina), takes a man to the limit of his capacity. When
the end of the training becomes torture. When a man cries
out from pain and exhaustion. Training is effective only
when it takes a man to the very limit of his capacity and
he knows exactly where the limit is: I can do two metres
in the high jump; I can do 153 press-ups; I can memorize
at one go two pages of a foreign text. And each new
training session is effective only when it becomes a battle
to exceed your own achievement on the previous day. I'll
do 154 press-ups or die in the attempt.
We were taken to watch future Olympic champions in
training. There were fifteen-year-old boxers, five-year-
old gymnasts and three-year-old swimmers. Look at the
expression of their faces. Wait until the final moments of
the day's training, when you can see on a child's face the
grim determination to beat his own record of the day
before. Just study them! One day they will bring home an
Olympic gold to offer to our red flag with the hammer
and sickle on it. Just look at that face: so much tension,
so much pain! That's the road to glory. That's the path to
success. To work only at the very limit of your capacity.
To work at the brink of collapse.
You can become a
champion only if you are the sort of person who, knowing
that the bar is about to fall and crush him, nevertheless
heaves it upwards. The only ones who have conquered
themselves, who have defeated their own fear, their own
laziness and their own lack of confidence

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Etiquette Wednesday: Pedestrian Etiquette

(1) Please please please keep your phone conversations to yourself! It's quite a nuisance when I just want a quiet walk home and I'm stuck listening to some gabby girl's inane phone conversation with her BFF. It's one thing if someone is discussing something important, however, something tells me she is not discussing solutions for the energy crisis.
(2) Ok, really, what happened to ladies first? I seem to always be getting shoved aside and pushed around by quite rude men in a rush. No no no.
(3) No one ever follows this, but in America you travel on the right side of the street--I believe this pertains to cars and pedestrians on sidewalks.
(4) Nothing is more annoying than being stuck behind a slow-poke especially if they are just texting. If you are texting, move to the side to allow others to pass you.
(5) I have generated a theory on pedestrian-on-pedestrian collisions. This should eventually factor in walking pace, psychology, and direction but it goes something like this: notice next time when you are walking and someone else is walking towards you. My theory is that you will always cross paths at the narrowest place. I notice this everyday many times throughout any given day and now that I have disclosed this theory you will probably notice it too. At some point I will make this a substantial theory and post it on wikipedia. :)
(6) It is conscientous and courteous to be aware of who is in front and behind you. This means that if there are runners or fast walkers behind you please move to the side to allow them to pass you. If there is someone coming towards you carrying lots of groceries, has a stroller or child, a handicapped person, or even a doggie, it is also courteous to move aside so the person carrying the heavy load does not have move.
(7) When it's raining, be aware of how close you walk past others with your umbrella. It is no fun getting hit or worse getting soaked by the droplets off of someone else's umbrella.
(8) Always look before crossing the street. Even on walk signals because there may be ambulances or fire trucks coming. (This is especially important if you are wearing headphones and can't hear the sirens!
(9) On the same note, if you see an ambulance coming it is extremely uncivil to walk in front of it just to get where you are going. I see this all the time on my way to MGH and it is terrible to see other people selfishly walk in front of ambulances just to get where they need to go and not think or consider the injured person in the ambulance that needs the right of way. Come on people. Please put civility first!
(10) When passing others, please be mindful of not sideswiping them with your elbow, bags, backpack or whatever else you are carrying. I actually call people out on the street for this by saying "EXCUSE YOU!" it makes them feel bad, but some times people need to be reminded of manners and the fact that they are not the only people on the road. The point is, no matter how teeny, other people matter too.
(11) One would think this goes without saying, you'd be surprised how many people push me out of the way to get to the same place when I'm only a half a second behind them and they don't have the courtesy to open the door.

Please keep these in mind on your next walk. We would all be happier if we were all more courteous towards one another.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Little Swimming's activity-bucket list

Greetings Readers!

I've been toiling away at the bench trying to work on my research and I got to thinking there a number of activities that I would like to partake in some day. Thus, I am compiling a list of activities/Boston-related/totally random things that little Swimming wants to do. This is only the start and I'm sure there's more to come!

(1) Fly a kite
(2) Ride a horse
(3) Go to Boston's Aquarium!
(4) Go back to the Detroit Zoo before all the animals are sold.
(5) Cook some sort of meat (well-done considering Swimming's history of meat related food-born illness.)
(6) Learn how to sail.
(7) Become a sailor.
(8) Go on the Great Migration (the world's largest mammal migration in sub-saharan Africa.)
(9) Spend the night at the museum. Something I've always wanted to do ever since I saw The Hideaways as a kid.
(10) Actually be able to find The Weeping Zeus statue/fountain at Cranbrook. Back in my CK days, after school we would go on walks as a group and would visit it no problem. For some reason, till this day, I am unable to find it on my own. 

Saturday, August 3, 2013


Jay-Z-Forever Young (original video)

(1) #SaveDetroit
Sad to see the Detroit being liquidated. Apparently a Giraffe is only 80k! Anyone want to go halvsies? I want to name it Sally!
Let's Get Detroit Back on its feet
(2) From #theMBTAruinedmylife: when I saw the cover of rolling stone
(3) Baby Elephant loves to swim--super cute!
(4)  Patience is a virtue
(5) Things can change very quickly--just go with it.
(6) Document relentlessly.
(7) The fact that most people are not as meticulous as I am is extremely bothersome in the arena of a precise science.
(8) What to do when getting attacked by big scary animals
*Apparently you're only supposed to play dead if the bear has already attacked you.
**Also apparently if you're confronted by hippo you are screwed