Star Trek/ Philosophical Tangents – Dr. Plastic Picker
 

Category: Star Trek/ Philosophical Tangents

Just ot get your attention. This one is funny.

August 16, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I’m rereading “East of Eden” by John Steinbeck. I loved Steinbeck when I was a teen. I think I read his complete works. But at fourteen I was reading mostly for plot lines. I was and am generally a fast reader. I read every word, but Mr. Plastic Picker was always amazed how fast I read. He hardly believed that I read as much as a did, being a college student of English literature himself. Other than the number of children I have, I tend to be a prolific person. I take joy in the actual number of our networth, the number of posts I have written (273), and the number of bags of trash I have picked up (260). I also now have salvaged 940 items. I don’t mind being my chronologic age because it’s the number of years I’ve lived. My maternal grandfather died at 107.

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Little Half-Vulcan children. Mr. Plastic Picker and I have two.

June 18, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I have had a slight headache since yesterday and even this morning. I’m sitting at the kitchen table a bit earlier than usual at 503AM. I made myself some coffee and took 1000mg tylenol. Headaches always worry me. Neither Mr. Plastic Picker and I are prone to getting headaches, and when either of us gets a headache – I know something is off. I even wrote two posts about headaches for both of us. Here is the one about Mr. Plastic Picker https://drplasticpicker.com/mr-plastic-picker-had-a-headache/ and here is reflection on my previous tension headaches https://drplasticpicker.com/tension-headaches-drplasticpicker-cures-myself/. Blogging helps with the headaches as does walking along the beach.

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Our daughter was so excited about this book. Just published.

June 3, 2020

by drplasticpicker

My paternal grandfather told me something toward the end of his life that I will never forget. I believe I was actually in medical school already and home for a brief visit. By then he was already older and weaker, and had suffered one or two strokes. He was intermittently lucid but even for a beginning medical student I knew that he had dementia. But during one of those early morning visits when he was lucid he told me that he had returned to his home village at some point in the Southeast Asian country he had left unwillingly because of political ubheaval. At this point he was no longer a strong man in his mid 40s but likely in his late 60s. He said someone from the village offered him something that was morally repugnant for money. He had returned to the village to give help build a school. And he told me, his oldest granddaughter, with fierce convinction, “Until the day you die, you do not know if you have lived a good life.”

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From the internet. Discord from My Little Pony. This is your enemy.

June 2, 2020

by drplasticpicker

It’s 617AM and this morning I will pick up my 200th bag of ocean bound plastic. I started this journey 10 months ago and the world today is a stark place. I began gathering the 200th bag yesterday and filled it with some mostly paper litter, but will need to finish it this morning. Dr. Plastic Picker is ambitious. For my 200th bag I chose a large kitchen garbage bag. I think everyone on Instagram will really like a big bag for the 200th one.

As I’ve mentioned to you, my patients in clinic and my own children, I do a lot of thinking when I’m picking up plastic. I started litter picking and ocean beach cleaning after emotional exhaustion from my work which is doctoring children. But nature healed me and the simple act of cleaning up our neighborhood helped me. When I pick up trash, I let my mind wander and I often think of you – my patients and my own children. Dr. Plastic Picker has been a pediatrician and a mother for too long. I found that rather than trying to escape work worries, I was able to think more clearly about all the forces that hurt children. And as a doctor, I naturally want to fight against those forces. One of those forces is Big Oil and Big Plastic that is trying to flood the environment with plastic waste.

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Vegan in dinner last night. A third of a slice of cheese snuck in, so vegetarian but almost vegan.

June 1, 2020

by drplasticpicker

The country is hurting so much right now. I posted about #blacklivesmatter to be on record that I support racial equality and equal representation. I had friends who had reminded us on social media that silence equals consent for the status quo. As someone who is trying to influence people to decrease their plastic use, I know that this is true. But I did not physcially go protest. We stayed home. Like everyone else, I worry about the increased spread of COVID-19. with the mass demonstrations. But the truth is, this was going to happen because COVID-19 presents a real danger as does institutional racism. People had had enough. How much racist rhetoric and brutality can people take? I will go to work today and I am sure it will come up in clinic.

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Did you know Vulcans live to 200?

May 30, 2020

by drplasticpicker

It is the last day of May and I think I’ve come to the natural conclusion of my time with Trip and T’pol in Star Trek Enterprise. I wrote a blogpost close to my heart regarding how being immersed in their romance helped me get through the last three months of COVID-19 quarantine https://drplasticpicker.com/the-star-trek-enterprise-romance-of-tpol-and-trip-im-going-to-give-them-the-ending-they-deserve/. I watched some of the fan montage videos and read more fanfiction that was on-line yesterday. I rewatched some of the key scenes from the first three seasons, and rewatched my favorite scene several times yesterday. The series helped me get through the last three months but at some point it is time to end this chapter. Sometimes the second or third time around you are experiencing just echos of the intense first moments, feelings.

Is this why people have extramarital affairs, sometimes without reasons continue to have many many children, or ask to change offices again? Are we always trying to recapture that intense first moment?

I am bag 196 today of ocean bound plastic gathered https://drplasticpicker.com/plastic-picking-round-up/. There is an entire litter picking/beach clean up Instagram world, about 800 that I am connected with, who “follow” each other. One of the beach cleaners just north of me found a set of dentures, and it was on her bucket list of things to find. Another person in LA mentioned that I was so close to 200. It’s an off-kilter group which I’ve come to enjoy being part of.

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Spock doggy wants to know? Why not?

May 26, 2020

by drplasticpicker

It has been three years since I transitioned to physician middle management. This weekend was our three year anniversary of our six year term. I texted our group congratulations and reminded them that three years is a long time to do anything. Each of us have earned almost a bachelors degree worth of physician leadership, and another three years to go. Six years would be equivalent to a doctorate. At the three year mark in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, I can honestly say I would never have traded this leadership experience for anything. It has been a challenging three years, and we’ve had adventure after adventure – but it’s forced me to grow professionally and personally. Sometimes painfully but always worthwhile. I have accomplished and been part of projects I never thought possible, and have been pushed out of my comfort zone and forced to grow as a sentient emphathic person.

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Our daughter made butterbeer and we reused 2 plastic mugs we bought from Universal Studios a long time ago.

May 24, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I wrote what I think was my all time favorite blogpost yesterday about Star Trek https://drplasticpicker.com/the-star-trek-enterprise-romance-of-tpol-and-trip-im-going-to-give-them-the-ending-they-deserve/. I have reread that blogpost about 10 times and read it outloud to both my children and husband. I am now rewatching Star Trek Enterprise with T’Pol and Trip’s alternate ending in my heart. The magic of blogging is that I can do whatever I want, so I made it the Sticky Blog and tacked it on top. Who knows how many people will read it or if the Star Trek fansite I contacted yesterday will accept it as a guest blog piece? But that’s the beauty of blogging and financial freedom, I write mostly for myself. And yesterday I wrote about Star Trek. Isn’t it interesting that I love that silly piece more than the heart-wrenching ones that I needed to write about COVID-19? If you missed them these two were pretty good, one on the importance of social distancing https://drplasticpicker.com/covid-19-social-distancing-is-like-bedrest-kevinmd-version/ and another on physician sacrifice during the COVID-19 era https://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2020/04/an-anatomy-lab-partner-lost-what-would-chris-have-thought-about-covid-19.html. But that is human nature. We would rather retreat into our fantasty worlds than deal with reality.

Last night our daughter wanted to have a special evening. She is in that inbetween age of tweendom https://drplasticpicker.com/dr-plastic-pickers-thoughts-the-age-of-in-betweenness/. She is a more gregarious person that I ever was, eventhough she is quieter in person. I am very loud-mouthed in person, but truly an introvert. I would rather blog and be home and not see anyone, which is the greatest of ironies because I see patients and parents all day. I actually enjoy work and patient-care and productive meetings, but I think I enjoy those actions because I know I am being paid to do them and like the feeling of competence and progression. If I am not getting paid or accomplishing something that is moving our organization forward, I’d rather be by myself or with my family. Weird I know. I hate socializing for work, and only enjoy our department parties if I get to man the check-in desk which is an odd place for a physician middle-manager.

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One of the happiest moments of my life yesterday. I laughed so joyously. Mr. Plasitc Picker loves me and understands me.

May 23, 2020

by drplasticpicker

I’m not sure how you have been dealing with the COVID-19 quarantine, but I have been watching Star Trek. I mean A LOT of Star Trek. I grew up watching reruns of the original Star Trek. Spock, the Vulcan Science Officer, spoke to me. Even then, the action scenes were corny and the alien world settings unrealistic – but the storylines and the pseudophilosophical delvings into space and time and logic, touched something in my teenage heart. Then Star Trek the Next Generation ran 1987-1994, right during my middle school and high school years, I watched that too. I became a big fan of Captain Jean Luc Picard and his Shakepearan take on a Starship Captain. But there was not a great Vulcan on the show, so I have always been more of an Original Star Trek fan and of course Spock.

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Silly screenshot collage I made last night.

May 15, 2020

by drplasticpicker

Today is a big day for our family. Our oldest is in ninth grade and taking his AP Computer Science exam today. The picture above is a silly collage of screenshots I took last night, while he was relaxing downstairs in his room. I was playing with our puppy but more to distract myself from worrying about our son. His exam is at 1pm today, and Mr. Plastic Picker is working from home to make sure our son logs in on time and everything goes as planned despite the abbreviated exam due to COVID-19 quarantine. The exam is an hour long and online, which is different than other AP exams in years past. But despite the abbreviated nature of the exam, it is a big day for our family.

Mr. Plastic Picker and I met in collage and proceeded to live an idyllic life of students in love. We were always very frugal and were raised with similar values, so we would go out once a week to the same Korean restaurant for over 10 years at the same table with the same waitress and ordering the same dish. Otherwise we mostly just ate simple dinners in the University Dining Hall and would take walks around Boston. We watched a lot of movies. And then at some point, it was time to have kids and we had our oldest when I was in between Intern and Junior year of pediatric residency also still in Boston. I remember sitting with the Chief of Pediatrics, this lauded figure in academic medicine who had published many front-page articles in Nature, and he asked me to be Chief Resident – and I was honored and accepted but also told him I was pregnant.

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