Between living in Haiti and Botswana over the past few years I keep finding instances in my life where I don’t give second thoughts to things I think most people would instantly question. For example, one of my classmates from Chile calls himself Satan (not his given name, just what he calls himself now). This is not a lie. The first time I met Satan I had to double check I was hearing his name correctly but as soon as I found out I was hearing it correctly I accepted it without a second thought. This was about a month ago. Then on Friday I was contemplating my presence in medical school in Cuba and what exactly I have gotten myself into and then it hit me: I got to school with a guy who calls himself Satan. I’m not nearly as surprised with his name as I am with the fact that I didn’t give it a second thought until a month later. I just accepted it as it was.
In Satan’s defense, he is a really amicable fellow. He just happens to love the genre of music called “death metal”. Odd for a future doctor? Perhaps, but thank God (no pun intended) that it is only music. I’m sure he will make a good doctor, and I feel that fans of death metal deserve a doctor who understands their life just as lawyers and bankers have doctors that understand their lives. After all, he will probably be really good at diagnosing, treating, and understanding injuries encountered in mosh pits at concerts.
I guess situations like this are destiny for those of us who search out understanding of other people and their situations. It seriously makes me wonder what other things in life I miss that other people would immediately see as odd. On the other hand, it also helps me understand that things I think are odd, such as poverty in the midst of so much wealth, other people accept as part of the normalcy of life. So in the end who is odd and who is normal? My answer: If a medical student named Satan can be normal pretty much anything can be.