Sheer force of stubborn repetition

Today I learned that Starbucks iced coffee is brewed at double (double!) the strength to offset the dilution from all the ice cubes.  This is the most important discovery of my life.  

So I normally study like a real person, but before exams I like to pound last-minute facts into my head by playing addictive flashcard games with them on Quizlet.

(Note:  I had to edit that last sentence because I originally wrote: “I like to literally pound small details into my head”.  Um, no you don’t, self.  No you don’t.)

Exhibit A – My morning:


That’s how I memorized developmental milestones this morning, and with the help of Starbucks, psych prevalences will be attacked this afternoon.

I admit that this is a little neurotic.  But that’s okay, because 1) fair enough, and 2) as far as everybody else in the library can tell, all I’ve done this morning is sip iced coffee and play some weird matching game online.

… Which is, you know, accurate.  (Med school!  *jazz hands*)

19 thoughts on “Sheer force of stubborn repetition

  1. I (heart) QUIZLET!!!

    Mostly because I can’t draw what coagulative necrosis looks like on hand-written flash cards. I have all my histo slides on it now which I looooooooooove.

    I broke down and took my ipad to the gym the other day and went over them (if I saw someone else riding a bike with an ipad I would think, “what a serious douche, who does that girl think she is? Does she think she looks cool?”).

    But desperate times call for desperate measures.

    I am jealous of your starbucks access, btw.

  2. “And now I can barely work the keyboard because my hands are shaking so much. I wonder why I have this tremor? OMG! I better see a neurologist!”

  3. I would also recommend Anki. I’ve used it to study for Step 1 and I have no idea what I would have done without it. My only regret is that I didn’t use it from the beginning of MS2 onwards (I only really started using it in earnest in February). It even tells you what to study and when … so that you study your cards before you forget them. I’m strongly considering using it for all of MS3 since I know I’m going to be tired after most days and flicking through flash cards will be about all that I can handle. I can also keep better track of my stats, so I know which cards I’m doing better on. Plus, in comparison to GunnerTraining, I can actually control what I study in terms of the content. Then again, there is one very obvious downside: you have to make the cards yourself. That takes time.

    Quizlet is good – but – low bandwidth. I can review ~ 250 Anki facts per hour, including spending time looking up things I don’t know.

    Also, this guy/gal ( has a pretty decent collection of flashcards on, probably more useful for the Step 1 section than the others.

    • I used Anki for my undergrad anatomy class! Even though I fell off the Anki wagon at some point this summer, it was still amazing how much I had retained when I started med school anatomy in the fall. Made my life so much easier, you’re right.

      Thanks so much for that link – it’s pretty much amazing. If you’re down with it, I’m going to add it to my Online Resources page.

      • um, whoa. You two just revolutionized my upcoming last week of Step 1 studying (last week! ah!). I never feel like I have the time to both make and effectively use Anki cards, but between Quizlet and the link, there’s a chance that I’ll actually learn a little more. Thanks a ton!! If it’s cool with you guys, I’ll probably add both to my resource recommendations, too.

        Seriously. Thank you. 🙂

        • No problem. I do it for the kids …

          And, I have no right to give you permission to add the link since I had nothing to do with its creation … but link away!

          Good luck on Step 1.

  4. Developmental milestones = uggggggggggggggggggg

    All I remember is at 4 months, they bring their hands to midline (that’s right, right? I can’t remember).

    They double brew the coffee so that you become MORE ADDICTED silly. When it’s hot, it takes that much more caffeine to do the trick.

    • Not sure if I could be any more addicted to caffeine than I already am.. So I’m pretty sure Starbucks double brews because they love me and want me to be happy.

      … I need a detox program for summer.

  5. Oh, you make me glad I do not have now nor have I ever had the desire to be a doctor. But, you know, good luck with all those tests!

    • Haha, thanks!

      It’s funny – I said the same thing to a friend of mine back when I was 6 months away from starting a BFA program. I was pretty excited about never having to take another math or science class. I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HAPPENED.

      (By the way, your blog is awesome, and I can’t wait for your series to be published. Science is pretty cool, but it’s not nearly as cool as lesbian detective novels.)

  6. Holy crap. Just looked up from handmaking micro cards and saw this. The exam may be only two days away but I TOTALLY have got to try this now!

  7. I recently started drinking so much coffee that I was getting palpitations. Oops. There used to be a place here that sold iced coffee with frozen coffee ice cubes.

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