Tag Archive | Tennis

Pain is Gain

The last time I felt like a crumpled piece of cardboard, I was playing tennis for the first time. This was way back in 9th grade, when I wanted to become more active and athletic. Alright, honestly, I was just being Asian and wanted to appear more presentable and well-rounded for college applications. So yes, I was thinking of getting into a good school before I entered high school because I was just itching to leave without starting.

Anywho, I remember vividly the first day of tennis practice. The sun roasting me like Thanksgiving turkey, bright and early. We started training with ridiculous laps around the track field and Speedy Gonzalez sprints on the tennis courts. I was melting and hacking for air after the first 2 hours of my tennis career. When I got home, the pain started to hit. I was seriously sitting on my childhood Fisher Price chair, arms and legs outstretched like a stuck mummy. My muscles were nonfunctional. I could not lift a leg without falling back. I was useless, pitiful, and enfeebled. But it was funny. My sister laughed at my immobility. She could poke me and I lacked the energy and muscle power to kick and return a knuckle-sandwich.

As I got more fit with tennis and running well into college, I never had to experience such pain and soreness, until last week. It has to be a record of how many new things I attempted in one week: Step-dancing, Bollywood hip-shaking, and skidding down the snowy slopes. Let’s say I have plenty of hematomas (aka, fancy medical term for bruises) and soreness down my legs, hips, butt, and a little bit of my arms. Half my body right now is mad ugly and very much useless. Simple things like clapping or lifting up my backpack were exasperating efforts.

I still applaud myself for balancing fun time with study time in medical school. Yes, I partied, clubbed, exercised, cooked, watched crime shows, and spent all night glued to Asian dramas under my bed covers throughout college. But really, in medical school, you are expected to be buried in cubicles. My sister is still amazed I have time to dance and go on restaurant excursions. Now I guess I’m paying for it with my broken body and bruises.


Professional quotes

Outrageously professional quotes by Dr. Schecter, my biochemistry professor. Instead of paying attention in my classes, I was compiling his awesome professional quotes from an incredibly ‘educational’ first semester:

“You don’t need honors to do a rectal!” – Med students just need to pass and not fret over that extra ‘honors.’

“I won’t tell your mother…” Regarding a frontside or backside attack of the anomeric carbon of an open-chain glucose.

“Old fart comes from good biochemistry” – What happens when lactose intolerants overload on banana split sundaes and Johnny Rockets’ milkshakes.

Lacking some milk love

“When I go to diners on Long Island, I think the waitresses have I-cell disease” – Describing classic symptoms of a lysosomal storage disorder, which includes severe mental retardation, restricted joint movement, skeletal abnormalities, bouts of respiratory infections, cardiorespiratory complications, coarse facial features, and eventually death.

“Beer is much more healthy than Coca-Cola” – Because excess fructose in American junk food, such as high fructose corn syrup, leads to increased acetate feeding into fatty acid synthesis. High levels of triglycerides pave the path towards diabetes and artherosclerosis.  Isn’t it funny to think that when you drink beer and alcohol, you’re consuming what the yeast excretes??

“Play golf, not tennis” – As Schecter’s clinical treatment for McArdle’s disease, where patients are missing muscle glycogen phosphorylase. Symptoms include muscle pain and fatigue, muscle cramping following exercise, myoglobinuria, and kidney failure.

“Demented Renaissance” – In describing how too much L-dopa leads to hypersexuality, in nursing homes (?)

Without apoptosis, we’d be better swimmers” – Prenatally, the webbing of hands and feet are destroyed to give us fingers and toes. Cell death is a normal part of the beginning (and end) of life. Otherwise, we’d be mutant amphibians.

Michael Phelps in the making

Apoptosis can be divided into 4 stages:  Death signals, Integration or Control Stage, The Execution Phase, and Removal of Dead Cells by Phagocytosis… Death Signals. This is getting morbid” – Biochemistry of Apoptosis. These proteases called ‘caspases’ initiate apoptosis and cellular executions: cyt c, death receptors, killer lymphocytes.  Sounds like an underground criminal mafia gang, like the Chinese triad (三合會).  Check out the 2002 Hong Kong film, Infernal Affairs 無間道, featuring Tony Leung and Andy Lau. Guns, blood, and treachery bombard this crime-thriller. It’s like mayhem that goes through our bodies every day to prevent uncontrolled cell division and renegade cells from going on a murdering rampage.

And then all hell breaks loose in the cell… that’s very dramatic. I like it” – Yes, pure hell. Once the caspases set off the mayhem, entropy only increases. The protease cascade is quick, self-amplifying, destructive, and irreversible. O boy.

It’s better to be a little kinky than too straight” – Dr. S. McLaughlin, talking about cis double bonds adding kinks to unsaturated fatty acid tails.

Kinky it is

Serena… the Devil Beast???

Serena is one scary chick. No, not a chick, A BEAST!!!  What she said in her tantrum was uncalled for, showing the whole world her unprofessionalism and devilish side.  You do not just get pissed to the point that you smash up your prized racket and threaten a poor line-woman with a fluffy tennis ball. She was completely out of line when she said, “You do not know what I’m capable of,” as she shook a tennis ball violently. If you watch television clips, you can hear her threatening to shove a tennis ball down the poor Asian woman’s throat.

I’m surprised at such outbursts. At least have some decency to remain cool and sportsman-like, and not turn into some Incredible Black Hulk.  I mean, I would not mess with those manly muscles myself.  She can go on saying she is committed to her job, and her tantrum shows how much she loves her job.  But at least stay human and understand how the other person feels.  Serena thinks she’s superior and all, but if she cannot be human, I lose respect for her completely.  She deserves her fines and losses, despite the controversy she continues to generate.  She continues to show little remorse, which points more to her true character. She’s competitive and crazy to the point she forgets how to treat other people, because she thinks she’s on top of the world. Ugh…

The Monster

The Monster


The Champion Has Fallen :{





Roddick throws temper tantrums and cannot win. Nadal is injured and loses his semifinal match. And now the unbeatable champion from the great land of Switzerland, no other than Roger Federer, breaks his winning streak and loses to some dude Del Potro??!! WHAT IS THIS WORLD COMING TO??!!

Federer played the US Open Finals with blood and sweat, for nearly 4 hours and 5 sets! Very exhausting indeed. I started watching the game at 5 pm with my friends, on my lovely large-screen abandoned TV. It didn’t end until after 8 pm. The match was filled with highs and lows, boos and screams. My heart leaped with excitement with each winner and ace Federer hit, playing Del Potro like a puppet dog. My spirits sunk when Federer double faulted or hit a huge out. The dude has been unstoppable though, still holding on to his #1 position for dear life.

It would have been more incredible to watch a Nadal v. Federer game, which I have yet to experience. Better yet, another Federer v. Roddick. I missed an awesome Wimbledon show this past year, where Roddick nearly won by a sliver of hope. But no, he has been disappointing me. And so did Federer too. Maybe he’s just getting old compared to younglings like Del Potro. An Argentenian underdog beat out both Nadal and Federer to claim the year’s title. Oh well, let’s see what happens next season 🙂