Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Sick Day?

Most of the workforce has a "sick day" policy whereby individuals have a set number of days during which they are allowed to call in sick and unable to work efficiently.

I don't think this policy applies to doctors. It's really quite stupid, when you think about it, since doctors work with patients with varying degrees of immunocompromise and therefore risk spreading their upper respiratory infections and what-not with reckless abandon. However, (in my experience), most of my MD friends have to be practically incapacitated before they'll call in sick. Which is why I spent the better part of the day doing the usual routine of seeing patients, doing procedures, and generally running around like a madman while feeling like complete crap. Hopefully I'll rebound tomorrow...

Monday, January 28, 2008

James Pictures

Whatta day. I barely have the energy to blog. At least I can post these pics of my newest nephew, James Benjamin O'Malley who is maxxin' and relaxin' in Phoenix. The O'Malley Family is indeed expanding!

I am in the process of suffering a massive beat-down of historic proportions these days on the Mass General Hospital Renal Consult Service. If I had more energy I would spin some yarns about the tragedy and comedy of human life and its failing kidneys. However, I am tired and must rest up for another day of centrifuging strangers' urines and jamming catheters into unsuspecting neck veins.
Congrats again, Cathy, Tim, Henry, & James! You all look great!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Big Sur III

First things first: Congrats to my sister Cathy & her husband Tim for having their second child yesterday (January 26, 2008), James Benajamin O'Malley. I'm an uncle once more! Everybody's healthy and we're all very excited.

Finishing off the pics from our hiking day in Big Sur. As you can tell, Sophie spent quite a bit of time in the Baby Bjorn (the kick-ass baby carrier which Claire & I feel is deserving of consideration of the title "Most Useful Baby-Related Item"). Nir gives it a whirl.

Up, up and away!

Sophie & Dad on the hiking trail.

Crossing the Footbridge
Can you fit an entire person into a tree?
How about three?
Nir harrasses a banana slug, mascot of the nearby University of California-Santa CruzView from the Top!
Sophie relaxes at night in the hotel room with her stuffed animal otter from Uncle Nir.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Big Sur II

Ah, it seems like only yesterday that I was listening to the braying of mammoth elephant seals vying for male dominance on the California shoreline...

For now I am frantically churning out consults on hepatitis C cryoglobulinemia-induced renal failure. Which would you rather see pictures of? Let's stick with the elephant seals.

We went to an elephant seal rookery which is along the Highway One on the coast. There are something like 15,000 elephant seals that come to chill out on the California shore in this specific spot, and it's a pretty impressive site to behold.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Big Sur I

The grand finale of our San Francisco trip was a 2-day jaunt down to Big Sur, which comprises the bulk of the coastal region of California between San Francisco and Los Angeles. It's surprisingly sparsely-populated, and the sole road for several hundred miles is the famous California State Route 1, which provides spectacular ocean vistas with nearly every twist and turn. Here's a selection of a few pictures from our voyage.

The open road.
The Bixby Bridge on a gloriously sunny day in the middle of January.
Scenic spot with cool waterfall.Interesting greenish-red vegetation covering everything.
Sunset over the Pacific
More Big Sur to follow!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Alien Life Forms at Monterey

For the next leg of our vacation photos, we move on to Monterey, California, about 100 miles south of San Francisco on the Pacific Coast. They have a way-cool (though a tad pricey) aquarium there, which leads us to our first picture on the left. What the hell are these bizarre floating forms with purple spots floating about? Alien life forms? Art nouveau bathing caps? No sir--they are in fact jellyfish. It was probably my favorite exhibit at the aquarium, and very well-displayed.

Nir communes with the jellyfish.

Jellyfish Close-up!A close runner-up for favorite exhibit: the otters exhibit.
Nir poses next to black-and-white coastal landscape. I ask you, my readers: how is this man still single?
Anybody hungry for a sardine-covered pizza after seeing this photo?
Nate, Nir and Sophie prepare to get bowled over by a majestic Pacific wave (cleverly designed so that the wave crashes up against the window every few seconds...)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Usual Suspects

A full 33% (3 of 9) of my college roommates are currently residing in the Bay Area. Here myself, Nir, Doug, and Kevin are having a little reunion at the Pine Crest Diner in downtown San Francisco. I think you'll agree I'm the most scruffy-looking of the bunch (although I will admit that I just recently got my hair chopped as part of my still ongoing two-haircuts-a-year-plan).

Later on we joined up with another college friend, Tim, and we journed out the John Muir Wilderness which I had never visited before.

It's hard to capture the majesty of the Californian red pines...but that didn't stop me from trying.
Nate and Sophie hiding in a hollow tree trunk.
Nir becomes contemplative while gazing at the tree rings on a 1000-year-old stump (in fact, I am told that this exact stump was featured in the Hitchcock movie "Vertigo."
Another three-dialysis-catheter-day at work today. More fun tomorrow.

Monday, January 21, 2008

San Fran Murals

Photos of some cool murals in San Francisco...

I've stopped keeping track of how many dialysis catheters I've put in since the beginning of the year. These are basically these long tubes which are inserted in the vein which allows blood to be taken from the body, run through the dialysis machine which "cleans" the blood, and then gives it back to the body.

Today, just as I thought I was wrapping up my business, one of my patients decided to yank out his dialysis catheter. Needless to say, he was a little confused. I put in another one, and am praying that he makes it through the evening (as I am on-call).

New England versus New York in the Super Bowl! Who knows, perhaps my first year in Boston will coincide with the first-ever baseball-football-basketball champion from the same city? It doesn't seem so outlandish a prospect at the present time...

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Golden Gate Bridge

What trip to the Bay Area would be complete without at least one site-seeing expedition to the Golden Gate Bridge?

During our visit we learned that the cable diameter is bigger than Sophie (photo below).

Audrey and Claire re-enact the historic handshake which led to the building of the GG Bridge.

Charlie practices his paparrazzi skills by relentlessly persuing this poor heron on a nearby beach.
I'm exciting about today's football games: will the country get the Green Bay Packers-New England Patriots matchup it craves and deserves? I'm saying yes (which, historically, probably means at least one of the teams will lose today).

It's been a glorious weekend off for me as I am building up the stamina for a rough day-off-free stretch coming up. We watched the movie Superbad last night which I thoroughly enjoyed...I love movies about high school life. I am McLovin'.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Golden Gate Park

More vacation pics (since pics from my current life working in the hospital would be, quite frankly, pretty boring). For the first part of our stay in San Francisco we stayed with our friends Audrey & Charlie, and our first full day there we went for a stroll in Golden Gate Park. There had been a big storm a few days before and there were several large felled trees around.

The deYoung Museum (an art museum) is located within Golden Gate Park--it has an interesting, spaceship-like design which is made from a copper-based material. Currently of brownish color, it is supposed to turn green within the next several years.
Charlie points out his San Francisco address on the large-scale map of the city.
Vacations are a good time to catch up on leisure reading. I managed to read the books "Next" by Michael Crichton (pretty good), "Nature Girl" by Carl Hiaasen (okay), and "Handbook of Dialysis" by John Daugirdas et al (spectacular! what a page-turner!).

Click here for some important John Oates mustache-related news.

Have a good weekend everybody!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Sophie Break

It's days like today when I'm glad to have Sophie around.

What started out as a calm and collected Friday morning ended up as an afternoon/evening of absolute mayhem. I've decided that somehow, everybody's kidneys in Mass General Hospital decided to stop working sometime around 2:30pm. Three dialysis catheters and multiple consults later, I finally made it home to my smiling Sophie. Here are a few of the good pics of my daughter from our trip.

Here she is modeling my new hat, purchased for the bargain price of $6.99 at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco.
Sophie likes hiking with Dad!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Hiking Camelback Mountain

While in Phoenix, my Dad, Claire, Sophie and I went for a spectacular hike atop Camelback Mountain, a cool jumble of red rocks sticking out of the otherwise flat Phoenix landscape. It also involved going up a very steep rock face which was quite an adventure with a baby strapped on the back (me waving on the left). Also as a bonus, we ran into Arizona Senator John Kyl on the trail.

Climbing up the Camelback with mountains in the background.

You can see the Phoenix skyline in the background. Claire and Dad take a break.Great sunset picture from Dad's camera.
In other news, I'm pretty peeved at the "T"--I was freezing my nuts off for about twenty five minutes waiting for the stupid train to come bring me home from an already late day at work...