Game. Set. Match.

March 21, 2018

Game news dominated my Facebook feed on Friday night, when, after years of  “up and comingstatus, my alma mater UMBC secured a place in history by knocking out UVA in March Madness. If, like my med school colleagues, you managed to miss what will likely be the biggest sportsball upset of the year, the Retrievers are now the first 16th-seeded team to beat a number 1 seed in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament (a feat accomplished a mere twenty years earlier by the Harvard women’s team). As a fringe benefit, excited UMBC-related updates effectively obliterated the slew of posts concerning another moderately significant event from earlier that day. Checkmate!

Set up for a St. Patrick’s Day get-together occupied most of Friday. Hosting something is sort of tradition for us, and this would be the final incarnation prior to an impending major life change. We made a concerted effort to avoid re-watching The Boondock Saints yet again and in doing so, neglected to find a relevant substitute and wound up not watching anything at all. Consequently we found ourselves playing games, inadvertently amplifying social interaction.

Match Day played out a little differently for me than most, resolving the Schrödinger equation not with a bang but a whimper. To say that a loud party for this particular piece of news “wasn’t my thing” is a gross understatement, which shouldn’t come as a surprise given the set-up in my previous post on the matter.  Sometime soon after waking I developed a resting hand tremor that didn’t resolve until later that evening. I got the email in the car on the way back from Costco, immediately showed Rachel, and spent the next eight hours cleaning the house, ignoring my phone, and mentally preparing to break the news to our family. After limping through the family conversations, I told my friends at the party, and finally began to triage the vast number of notifications that had accumulated–including a voicemail from the program I’ll belong to for the next five years. Sorry about that.

…and now via this most circuitous route we arrive at the part you already skipped ahead to read because it was set as a heading in its own paragraph and highlighted in bold:

I matched to UCSD for child neurology.

While I’m not interested in disclosing the particulars of my actual rank list (feel free to stop prying, post-interview surveys…), I will say that this program was among my top choices. In addition to working at an institution with a fantastic AI division, I’m going to be living in what I think is one of the most beautiful cities in the country. If you didn’t know I was applying to child neurology, well, let’s chalk it up to that whole five years of silence thing for the time being.

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