Spring/Summer 2002

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The Anals of Hopkins

For nearly a century, denizens of the animal house known as the Pithotomy Club showed that medical students can be as raunchy as the next guy.

By Janet Farrar Worthington

This is a story about a club that put on a show -- a yearly production with songs and skits so raunchy that nearly everyone who heard them, even some of the participants, blushed. In such bad taste were the lyrics to these numbers that Baltimore printers refused to typeset the program. No cow was too sacred, no body part or function too delicate, no subject matter off limits. And nobody was immune to the skewering. But who were these miscreants who joined in this outrageous revelry and often followed their big show with all-night gambling and an event known as the "beer slide" that resembled bowling with humans? They went on to become some of the finest doctors Hopkins has ever produced.

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My Father's Daughter

It's not uncommon for good doctors to be bad patients. But my father's inertia to the disease that is killing him represents the ultimate self-destruction.

By Lara Devgan

Should I, after teas and cakes and ices,
Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?
- T.S. Eliot

My father used to pick me up from school on Friday afternoons in his dark blue vintage Mercedes. It handled beautifully, and we'd cruise west down Sunset Boulevard, weaving through traffic, hugging the turns, until Hillcrest Drive forked into Westwood. Our ritual was always the same -- the news on the radio, the running account of our days, and Diddy Riece, the best ice cream shop in West L.A. My father got pistachio, and I, butter pecan. We would sit on the outdoor patio, dwarfed by fashion boutiques and cinemas, and chat and people-watch in the sunshine. The complexities of life would melt into each lick of ice cream. "This is a small good thing," he would say. It is still my favorite childhood memory.

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Beaming Out Tumors

There's no doubt we can deliver higher doses of radiation and still produce fewer side effects, says the chairman of the newest department on campus.

By Mary Ellen Miller

The field of radiation oncology has always been a different animal. Its practitioners don't treat patients with drugs or surgery, like other physicians who deal with cancer patients. Nor are they radiologists, who take images expressly for the purpose of diagnosis. Instead, they are a combination of both -- specialists who treat cancer with powerful energy of radiation.

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