From the editor:

Fumbling toward spring

March 9, 2016

It’s been a heck of a couple of days. I just can’t seem to get it together. Oh, it’s nothing serious — truly first-world problems — but still frustrating. I’m trying to get ready to go to a weeklong conference and I think the world is conspiring against me, even as the first hints of spring are hitting campus.

This weekend, I had all sorts of errands to do. I had barely gotten out of my neighborhood when my car started making a horrible screeching sound. I turned around and drove home. I crawled underneath to see what it might be (you know, because I’m some kind of mechanic, only not) but saw nothing. Since it’s still under warranty, easy-peasy — take it to the dealer. Except the closest dealer is 60 miles away. So my husband and I made the trek to drop it off. (The silver lining here is that is was rock salt jammed in the undercarriage and nothing serious.)

When I got back in town, I tried again to go out and run errands. At my first stop, I got to the cashier and, after fumbling through my wallet, purse and pockets, was dismayed to discover my debit card was nowhere to be found. Failed shopping trip No. 2 was in the books. And I had to cancel the card and get a new one.

The last two days at work have been so busy, I found myself working until after midnight last night just to keep up. Forgetting I had to carpool again today and being tired, I hit the snooze one too many times to get to work promptly. As I pulled into the closest parking lot to my office, I was thrilled to find a spot. If you’ve ever parked at MSU, you know this is a big deal. I thought, “Finally! Things are looking up!” I practically jumped out of my car in glee — only to drop my phone and completely shatter the screen. Sigh.

But hey, at least it was a beautiful day to walk to the phone repair store. But, leaving my phone there for hours feels like leaving part of me behind. And, I’m so ridiculous that I actually pulled out the empty case on my walk back to text my husband and daughter to tell them I was without my phone. Double sigh.

To top it off, I have a dentist appointment today. I don’t hate the dentist as much as my husband does, but it’s not my favorite thing to do in the middle of the day. I would have forgotten except they called to remind me to take an antibiotic prior because of my heart issue. Except, I don’t need to do that anymore. Years ago, my cardiologist prescribed antibiotics before procedures as protection. Later, he decided the risk of developing an antibiotic resistance was higher than any risk from a dental cleaning.

Antibiotic resistance poses a real threat to people and animals. Luckily for the world, Spartans are on the case. Read the MSUTODAY FEATURE: Outsmarting Antibiotic Resistance, to learn how Spartans are answering a global call to action to control infectious diseases for a safer, healthier world.

Antibiotics aren’t the only drugs that cause concern when not used properly. Prescription opioids, used to control pain, are the cause of addictions and overdoses at epidemic levels. Bret Bielawski, an assistant professor in the Department of Osteopathic Medical Specialties, is an expert in this topic. He believes it’s critical to address the issue with medical students he’s teaching. Read his FACULTY VOICE: Combating an Epidemic, to learn more about this public health concern.

Sumaira Hai is on a path to becoming an osteopathic physician, though she’s currently a journalism junior in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences. She’s part of an innovative program as an Osteopathic Medical Scholar in the College of Osteopathic Medicine. Though journalism is a less conventional route to medical school than biology or chemistry, Sumaira is thrilled with the opportunities she’s had at MSU. Read her STUDENT VIEW: Taking the Unconventional Route, to learn more about her studies.

When I think about my frustrating few days, I realize it really is the small stuff. I’m not seriously ill, I’m not dealing with the tragic issue of addiction in my family. I’m not learning to save lives. A cracked iPhone is nothing compared to those weighty issues. Every day I’m reminded about all the serious challenges Spartans are tackling. Spartans look at the world, identify problems, roll up their sleeves and start figuring out how to solve them. Who will attack the big stuff every day? Spartans Will.

 

Lisa Mulcrone
Editor, MSUToday
twitter bird@LMulcrone

Photo by Derrick L. Turner