Tuesday, February 16, 2010


My dearest Nora, wherever thou mayst roam,

Here I present to you photographic evidence of the disgusting manner in which my flatmates conduct themselves about the apartment: Living With Pigs

Here's hoping that your life is clutter-free and sanitary.

May the grace of He keep you always,

J.O. Morris


  1. I like the side-blog now totally dedicated to photographic evidence of lowerlifeformflatmates.

    I have been living very neatly on my own for a long time so I can appreciate your need to vent as this year, at the haggard age of 30, I found myself living in residence at my Uni. I have three roommates all under the age of 25. Maybe I'll submit a few pics to add to "Living With Pigs". Actually mine are pretty good, but I have some doozies from my BF's place.

    I saw your comment on DrD's blog. I wouldn't start stressing about the MCAT now, save that to the week before. You will be much more prepared than I was (I finished pre-reqs and wrote the exam 6 weeks later). If you can stay in the US for MD school it's much better--read cheaper and easier to get the residency you want.

    I miss home almost everyday and actually don't like living in Ireland at all. I tolerate it because it was the most desirable of 3 acceptances. You'll get in somewhere and in no time you'll be happy to be spending every free moment studying something you are *actually* interested in.

    That was a long comment. Oops.

  2. Haha, how far under the age of 25 are they? I'm 27 and none of the chaps I got stuck living with are near 21. Your photos would be a welcome addition, should you decide you'd ever like to submit them!

    It's funny, but it's not the MCAT itself that I'm too terribly concerned with. I feel really solid in all of the areas, save for a little biology that has leaked out of my mind...and physics, which I've not yet taken. That's pretty intense taking the MCAT straight away like that! I should have my whole spring semester to relax and take a prep course (if I can afford it). Whew!

    The reason I say that I'd consider European schools is that I'm considering hauling off to Europe to live my life, anyway. I have some family spread out in a few countries, and I feel like I'm better suited for some of them than I am the US.

    Missing home is completely understandable, but I can't imagine not enjoying Ireland! What don't you like?

    No need to apologise for the long comment. In fact, I prefer it! Thanks for your advice, by the way!

  3. I definitely 'get' the wanting to leave the US and live in Europe.

    I kinda said goodbye to everyone in Canada when I left and implied that I may or may not return. I don't like bigbox stores, I hate transfats, and I don't want to buy a BMW SUV to fit in with my colleagues in years, thus Europe seemed like an obvious fit.

    What is not to like about Ireland? Hmmm...when I think about writing them down they sound really dumb but it's little things that add up and make you crazy.

    For example: 1) a hot tap and a cold tap. WTF? Why does every sink in the country have a hot tap and a cold tap instead of ONE spout with a hot and cold handle allowing a person to create--wait for it---WARM water instead of BURNYOURMFFINGERS OFF HOT! or freeze thebacteriaoff cold. I am a compulsive handwasher (hello nurse!) so this makes me crazy.


    2) They have little tiny bars of soap in the bathrooms. Ewwwwww. Grossssss. Once again, it's not rocket science people. Dispensers are so 1987. Yuk. I have to touch someone else's mank soap scum to wash my hands in boiling/freezing water. I am displeased.

    3) It's bloody expensive here. That's another reason. Did I mention my tuition is 40 000 EURO a year? Yeah. 'Nuff said.

    3) The grocery stores are kinda ghetto*. Take Zellers and make it groceries and VOILA you have Aldi or Leidl.

    *They do get points though for selling booze at all grocery stores...including wine, beer, and hard liquor. I can't afford to drink but if I could--wow--would I be impressed that I could pick up a bottle of my favorie Rioja at the local Aldi (which only caries cheddar cheese and white bread, BTW.)

    4) It rains. Like, everyday.

    5) Everyone assumes I am an American when I open my mouth (no offense). But Europeans don't really think too highly of the US.

  4. *My comment was too long apparently so I had to split it into two. There is a first time for everything...*

    6) Running shoes for women=impossible to find. Apparently the only exercise that women do in Western Ireland is *walking* in gold puma's. I run. And not in gold puma's.

    7) The coffee is absolute shite. I mean *really* shite. It's sock juice. It's water dressed in brown. It's wrong every way possible.

    8) The only veg you can can guarantee to find as a side dish are boiled parsnips, fries, or boiled parsnips and boiled carrots. When you say "salad" they give you boiled parsnips.

    9) There are no chocolate chips and no good chile sauces. I mean the crazy hot Vietnamese ones. And believe me, I've looked.

    To be fair to the rest of Ireland, I kind of live in the Armpit of Eire. Every time I've gone somewhere other than here I've enjoyed it. Galway is gorgeous, Dublin is fascinating and stunning. But I live, in Res, with no car, in the armpit. With no money. And a crap bus service.

    10) My family is a bazillion miles away as are my friends and favorite recreation activities (mountain climbing/skiing/hiking/biking, road riding, trail running...)

    There are things I love, like the accent...the fact that people are a little less stiff here, no one takes themselves too seriously, the profs say "feck!" in class and other very NONPC things, there is not a protective barricade around everything, and there is no Walmart or strip mall on every corner. The kids wear uniforms and you get fined for spitting your gum out. There are no GMO foods, they heavily promote Irish meat/produce, and the beer is oh-so-mightily delicious.

    I am also pleased that some bloody medical school actually had the brains to accept me into their program. Unlike the smacktards in Canada that didn't even give me an interview. So, yeah. Wow.

    I am preparing a photo montage of all the things about Ireland that I love/hate and I think I may have to use some of this comment since it pretty much WAS the blog posting that I had in mind but hey, you asked "What don't you like?" first so....yeah.

    Good thing you like long comments.

    I will now resume my head-in-books posture and revert my eyes back onto the page which reads in it's opening line, "Alpha-1 Antitrypsin deficiency..."

    The time is 0036h. And all is well.

    Keep on truckin' J.O.

  5. Wow, sounds like we have quite a bit in common. Related question: How popular are organic foods in Canada?

    Oh, my. I've heard from someone long ago about some country they visited having two different taps for hot and cold water, but I seem to want to think it was a former Eastern Bloc country. The thought of having to share a bar of soap with untold numbers of nasty folks is enough to send me into some kind of psychosis. Please, from one obsessive hand-washer to another, accept my sincerest offerings of sympathy.

    Wow, hard liquor in a grocery store! We have Albertson's here in the States, and a lot of them have a liquor store attached, but not integrated into the grocery area. hahaha, it's good to know that Aldi stores the world over seem to be just about the same.

    Say, those gold Pumas sound pretty stylish =P

    The lack of proper coffee comes as quite a surprise! Now, is that coffee that is served in restaurants and such, or the coffee one purchases in a grocery store...or both? Imagining the life of a medical student without proper coffee does not come easily.

    Ugh, I know what it's like to be subjected to rain every day (well, just about). Besides the increase in erratic driving behaviour, the other thing one can count on almost without fail once summer hits is a hefty afternoon shower. I don't spend 20 minutes each day styling my hair just so for it to go and be ruined by a downpour (kidding).

    Do your family and friends send care packages including decent coffee, chocolate chips, soap in a dispenser, etc.? I wonder if some of that kind of stuff (mostly the food) would be allowed to go through customs. I don't know much about that sort of thing.

  6. The positive aspects of your locale do indeed sound lovely. The zero tolerance for GM foods sounds like Heaven, as does not having a strip mall 'round every corner. Is there a lot of undeveloped land out that way? That's one thing I sure do enjoy seeing. The town my parents come from used to have a lot of it, but in recent years there has been a huge development boom and a lot of the scenery I so enjoyed is gone. hehe, and yes, having the good sense to accept you into their medical school is cause for praise, indeed. Did you apply to any US schools?

    Great! I can't wait to see the photos and such! I hope that you quickly acquired all of the knowledge about Alpha-1 Antitrypsin deficiency that there is to know and got some decent sleep!

  7. Hmm...organic foods. Well, in my (former) neck of the woods Whistler/Vancouver/Revelstoke, BC I would say they were very common and very readily available. Either by farmers market means, buying shares in an organic farm...or just at local store.

    Yeah, every time I come out of the bathroom I generally make some comment like, "Hm! I didn't realise I was moving to POTSDAM when I signed up to come here". Sympathy appreciated. People stare at me blankly when I start ranting on this topic.

    The coffee is shite everywhere. Restaurants, cafés...everywhere. I *did* get a Starbucks coffee in Dublin just to see and it was pretty close to home (she ducks to avoid usual moral insults and integrity questioning that ensues after admitting to drinking Starbucks).

    My family sends me my favorite (organic herbal fair trade picked by virgins in the moonlight) tea, though now I just order it by the crate from the UK. I haven't gotten them to send chile sauce yet...though believe me I will be returning with a crate of "GoLean" cereal and hot sauce when I come back.

    There is a lot of agricultural land, even in the cities, strangely enough. Pour example, when I look out my window I see cows some days. Which is pleasing.

    Most of the US schools didn't offer seats to international (i.e commie-pinko-Canadians) applicants so I applied/got into a couple of Caribbean schools. Chose Ireland. Looks like I am US bound for residency.

    As soon as I have some real procrastinating soon there will be photos...


  8. For what it's worth, I don't hate Starbucks as much as I used to. I've come to know a lot of folks who worked there over the years and all of them had nothing but glaringly positive reviews about the experience. The company apparently treats its employees quite well. Too bad that doesn't extend to everything else... Nothing to dodge from me over the matter!

    You made me giggle twice in that post. The first was about the tea, and the second about you commies to the north. We're just jealous here in the US, especially when we have $2000 deductibles on our health insurance! Ahem. Just too hardheaded to admit it yet. Someday, maybe in another 200 years... haha

    A view of cows from your window! How lovely!