As promised, here is the next category in our inspirational music series. To be quite honest, no songs really instantly pop into mind when I think of my life as a grad student (unlike when I think of life as a med student). Why is this so, I asked myself. Well, it turns out that I haven’t taken this whole being a grad student thing seriously. I’m not a grad student! I’m a med student doing grad student stuff! Elitist? Probably. But I can’t help it. Maybe I’ll examine this issue some more in a later post—I don’t really feel like being too introspective right now.

But not to fear! I have in fact come upon a song (on the way to lab, no less) that’s perfect for describing my days as a grad student: Simple Plan – Welcome to My Life. At first glance, this would seem to be a misunderstood teenager’s anthem, but as you’ll see as you read on, it clearly also relates to my experiences as a (misunderstood) grad student.

Do you ever feel like breaking down? [because your experiments just won’t work]
Do you ever feel out of place?
Like somehow you just don’t belong
[because you’re a med student stuck in grad school]
And no one understands you

Do you ever wanna run away? [and just finish med school]
Do you lock yourself in your room [office]?
With the radio [windows media player] on turned up so loud
That no one hears you screaming [because your experiments just won’t work]

[…]

To be hurt
To feel lost
[because you don’t know why you’re doing this]
To be left out in the dark [because your major professor simply blows]
To be kicked
When you’re down
[your major professor makes you do his stupid shit]
To feel like you’ve been pushed around [see above]
To be on the edge of breaking down [please, I just want to finish]
And no one’s there to save you [where are you when I need you, advisors?]
No you don’t know what it’s like

Welcome to my life [as a grad student]

Do you wanna be somebody else? [yes, I would very much like to be a med student again]
Are you sick of feeling so left out? [my classmates are all graduating this year]
Are you desperate to find something more [I just want to be done!]
Before your life is over? [please?]

Are you stuck inside a world you hate? [yes]
Are you sick of everyone around? [very much so]
With the big fake smiles and stupid lies [especially, you, major professor]
While deep inside you’re bleeding [I think I’ve got an ulcer now]

[…]

No one ever lied straight to your face [I’m talking about you, major professor]
And no one ever stabbed you in the back [see above]
You might think I’m happy
But I’m not gonna be okay!
[at least not until I get out of here]

So there you have it. Welcome to my life as a grad student. Tune in next week for another inspirational music post.

In the meantime, feel free to send suggestions my way for future inspirational music posts using this contact form.

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» The 10 dirtiest jobs in science.  Hey, they forgot to include being your major professor’s bitch.  Okay, I guess that isn’t quite as literally dirty as those on the list, but it sure feels like it is. # 0

» Yum!  Now that’s something I can live with: eating curry to stave off cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.  Researchers in Singapore found that people (aged 60-93) who ate curry even only occasionally scored higher on the Mini Mental Status Exam (MMSE) than those who never ate curry.  The curry spice, turmeric, contains curcumin, which has potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.  And the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease in the elderly in India is fourfold less than that in the United States. # 0

» There’s a great article today about how the MIT Dean of Admissions wants to reduce admissions anxiety in teenagers.  How about parents getting off of their kids’ backs?  That would help.  But I do admire her for trying to create a friendlier system that might just ease the pressure enough to not give parents such reason to push their kids so hard.  Too bad it probably won’t happen any time soon.  And go ahead and try to tell Asian parents to stop pushing their kids to the point of insanity.  I dare you. # 0

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