Now that I've taken my course in evidence based decision making, and passed the final with a perfect 10/10, I think it ought to be pretty clear to everyone that I'm essentially now a PhD Epidemiologist. If you've been following along here with the descriptions of the course, that's worth at least an MPH. So congratulations to us all. Go forth, as I will, and demand special privileges relating to seating arrangements in restaurants and at friends' weddings. If they give you any static, gently press your index finger to their lips and say, in a calming voice, "Shhhh. Shhhh. I'm a doctor." Trust me. They'll come to see it your way.
I am now carefully spreading my pestilence at a major international airport, with the goal of seeing whatever cold virus I've got circle the globe by the third of August. The Scientopia folks assure me the virus DNA is 'tagged, bagged, and luminescent when bombarded by semi-polarized ultraviolet light'. So we'll be able to track it.
Now I'm on my way to my high school reunion. That's right. The high-school nerd returns to the beast's lair, equipped with doctorate, title, bibliography, and federal funding history. I couldn't wait to get the hell out of there when I graduated. The local newspaper did a little spread of all 200 or so graduating senior and asked each of us: "What do you think [my town] will be like ten years from now?" My response, which generated no small bit of townsfolk indignation, was, "Who cares?"
I'm not going to try to flaunt any credentials at people, of course. That's arrogant and stupid and certainly wouldn't impress anyway. But I doubt I'm alone in imagining my former tormentors awed by my success while they remain trapped in menial and manual labor positions. I'm not saying it's the most flattering portrait I'm painting of myself right now, but it's an honest one. Anyhow, this is all very confessional for this space, ad thus probably belongs over at Infactorium and not here.
I'm going to go back, see people I've not seen for a couple of decades now, and hope it's not as horrible as living among them was. That's not too much to ask for, is it?