Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Brown Blizzard

Well the plans are only in a framework state at the moment, but Roxanne and I are set to move to Portland, OR in early/mid May. Today is transplant Day -76, and I still have a lot of things left to do here in Pittsburgh before it is all said and done. It is also only 68 days until I graduate and technically am a doctor (see picture below for details). I said I would start one of these for the people here at home to stay in touch so here it is.

After a long 3 month reprieve marred by the Snowmageddon of 2010, I am back on my P4 rotations. I am a week and a half into my pediatric oncology acute care rotation at CHP and am finally falling back into the rhythm of working. Driving to the rotation turned out to be a pain in the ass (not to mention expensive as we pay tuition to go work for free...YAY!) as you have to park in a garage and take a shuttle to get to the hospital for a total transit time of 45-60 minutes. So I have been walking home as it only takes 40 minutes  and I can use some exercise. This has only been possible now that reasonable weather has resumed and most of the blizzard has melted. However, now that the snow itself has melted, I have noticed that a new blizzard has hit Pittsburgh. Almost as despised as the classic blizzard, this is a blizzard of the brown. As the weather warms up, snow melts, and mobility returns, the creatures of the burgh migrate to the streets to finally void their bowels in a more ventilated location and give their pizza air fresheners a chance to overpower the stench of their luxury poop-holes.

Having narrowly avoided these poostacles on a daily basis for over a week now, I decided to do a little analysis of the actual severity of the situation. To me it has seemed that I have been wading through knee deep sidewalks of defecate, but I wanted to quantify the situation in more concrete terms. Following a path along the left side of the road starting at CHP and ending at my apartment on Walnut street, every incidence of sidewalk poop was recorded. For the purpose of this study, an incidence of poop consists of the whole deed, and is not counted log per log. If the sample was qualitatively consistent enough and in a close enough proximity to other samples that one could reasonably assume it originated from the same creature, it was marked as one incidence. In the entire 2.1 mile (11088ft) trip, 23 sidewalk poops were counted. That gives Pittsburgh's current state of existence a poop per 482ft. With the average person taking 2000 steps to walk a mile, each step is about 2.64 ft, which means that in Pittsburgh, you are at risk of soiling your shoes every 183 steps! Go to red alert! The situation is critical! All prior studies on the subject show that a poo-per-step rate of <250 steps is indicative of a brown blizzard and cause for alarm. So, for the love of your feet and your shoes, call your mayor and let him know that he once again needs to come and save us from the blizzard. Call out the plows and backhoes! If we are lucky, we might have this cleared up by next year. In the meantime, get out your waders.

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