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This doctor shit is hard
What happens the day before the big test?
Part 3 Part 1 Part 2

April 17, 2005

By the time this gets published, I'll be done with everything, so I guess my timing is off, but studying like a madman tends to do that. It's been a crazy week, probably the busiest of my life, and it's finally all come to a head. I'm taking my MCAT tomorrow morning. What happens the day before the big test? Basically, it went something like this:

I got up at around 9 am, even though I usually take advantage of Fridays to sleep in. After 45 minutes of video games and a shower, me and my man Noel went to Fuddruckers, which sells massive hamburgers, and ate a big meal. He's taking the MCAT too, and although we were both thinking about the exam a little bit, we mostly talked about girls, roommates, New Brunswick's crazy guy, and the massive amount of nothing that we were going to do after this Saturday. We have it all planned out. I'm going to sit directly across from the TV, with my roommate OT in the other chair slightly to the left of mine. Noel will sit on the couch that is adjacent to OT's chair with its back against the wall. We are going to watch Law and Order episodes and eat. I will also smoke a lot of ghalyoon; it doesn't really matter which flavor, although I will probably be in the mood for caramel.

Back to the day at hand: after Fuddruckers, we had to get up, which is difficult after a 2/3 lb. burger with fries and dessert. Nevertheless, we made it to his car, drove back to our neighborhood, and parted ways, and when I got in to my house, I set about my business. I scoped out the spot where I'll be taking my test tomorrow straight NYPD style from my car with the aviators on, and I got my photo taken at Kinko's (they have an ID card for you to hand in, and they thumbprint you; mad weird). Then I came back home and studied.

People have been calling me all day and I've been calling them. We wish each other good luck on the test, reassure each other that we'll do fine... very genuine, mature-sounding conversations, agreeable text messages, etc. It's a far cry from when everybody was talking about doing Aderol and freaking out about what they would do with the next 50 years or so of life if they didn't get at least a 30. Each conversation makes me feel better; not that I feel bad, but it's nice to have people be considerate enough to wish you good luck the day before the shit hits the fan.

Anyway, things are probably going to go well tomorrow, and a bunch of kids are going to be able to get on with their lives, including me. I can't help but think of all the Iranian (or Perrrrshian) kids who have gone through or are in the process of finishing out the same shit I'm dealing with now. They become plastic surgeons in Beverly Hills, general practitioners in the Midwest, specialists out here and the cream of the crop back in Iran. I don't know where I'll end up or what I'll do, but I do know I'm gonna get in where I fit in and get that degree. Here comes another Iranian doctor.
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Maziar Shirazi is a junior at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey. Features in

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