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profanity in a ps?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by scrubsaresexy, Dec 25, 2008.

  1. scrubsaresexy

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    Is it really bad juju to use mild profanity (specifically the word a** and the word balls) in a personal statement? I'm using a story from my firefighting class, and it just really doesn't have the same kind of spunk if I tone it down. It also is a direct quote from something that someone said to me during my class, so it's not like I'm just being vulgar for the sake of being offensive. It was a compliment that someone said to me at the end of class, oddly enough...

    On the other hand, if that'll get me an automatic rejection, I will certainly tone it down as needed :laugh:
     
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  3. bodonid

    bodonid Dr. Spaceman
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    lol. I don't think you want balls in your ps.
     
  4. mtnman12

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    Don't do it
     
  5. scrubsaresexy

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    haha fair enough. I suppose its best to err on the side of caution and save the profanity for my memoirs ;)
     
  6. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    sounds like you don't got the balls to do it

    ;)
     
  7. Greonis

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    I would suggest not mentioning those words specifically. A major part of your future career as a physician is learning to present that which is both negative and overwhelming in a more simple and professional way. The last thing you want to risk doing (I say "risk" because each adcom is different and it is unlikely that all adcoms will have the same opinion) is having your statement's reader question your ability to communicate in a professional manner. On a more simple level, you risk having an adcom dismissing your application solely because you used such lewd words, independent of any connections they might make to your character.

    So, try your best to rewrite the sentence without it losing its spunk (easier said than done). No single aspect of your personal statement is worth jeopardizing your entire application over, after all! You might, for example, simply state that "extreme language" was used to help convey the class lesson more strongly.
     
  8. njbmd

    njbmd Guest
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    If you are dead set on using a direct quote then you have to use the profanity if that is the direct quite. If you are a good enough writer, you can paraphrase and get the meaning across without this. Remember, this is a personal statement for professional school. Your writing should be clear, concise and formal.

    If all else fails, just use your last statement. Something like "I received the ultimate firefighter's compliment at the end of the class" and leave the guessing. It's professional and if you have done your job in telling the story, it should get the idea across without the profanity.
     
  9. airplanes

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    don't do it.
     
  10. link2swim06

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Try to show that you can be a professional by choosing some other words. I mean it could help your story but the potential cost is enormous so I would avoid it.
     
  11. Marjan Islam

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    You sir would definitely have some BALLS to put that in your PS. But your ASS certainly won't get an interview if you do.
     
  12. Lukkie

    Lukkie Membership Revoked
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    :laugh:
     
  13. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    absolutely not kid... normally I encourage profanity, political incorrectness, and bad behavior in general but in a PS you most definitely to do not want to use it, quote or not. We're talking formal writing my child.
     
  14. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    PERFECT :smuggrin:
     
  15. thegetupkid

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    I would include it if it is in quotes. But what do I know...
     
  16. GoSpursGo

    GoSpursGo Allons-y!
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    If it's in a direct quote... don't use that quote.

    Really, you don't want a 70-year-old conservative WASP adcom reading about your ass and balls.
     
  17. funkymunkytoes

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    In my personal statement I talked about how Tourette's Syndrome is misrepresented in the media and quoted South Park. Specifically, I quoted Cartman saying, "Titty sprinkles!" I have no regrets because "Titty sprinkles!" got me an acceptance.
     
  18. Maygyver

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  19. gonj

    gonj Oh no you di'int
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    do it and let us know how it works out
     
  20. p30doc

    p30doc Ever true and unwavering
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    This thread reminds me of youtube's "tourettes guy".
     
  21. junkct

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    I agree. Then we'll have some hard evidence to back up our answers when someone in the future has the same question.
     
  22. scrubsaresexy

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    It's not actually about my balls seeing as I am a woman :p I'm only about 5'3" (on a tall day!) and weighed about 110 pounds when I completed my firefighting class. I more or less spent 8 hours a day beating myself up for a month straight (M-F) but I managed to make it through. At the end, my partner looked at me, and said "You busted your ass for this class. Girl, you've got balls." By the end of the class, he and I were throwing 250 pound extension ladders together and whatnot...we were awesome :)
    There's still quite a bit of sexism in the fire department, so for him to tell me that, it meant a lot. Like I said, though, I'll save it for my memoirs hehe

    But it is refreshing to have people respond to a thread about something other than "omg, i have a 3.99, will i still get in?!?" :thumbup:
     
  23. KeyzerSoze

    KeyzerSoze Scrambled Member
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    Even a 30-year-old liberal non-WASP adcom might be unimpressed with the OP's usage of the words ass and balls.
     
  24. bodonid

    bodonid Dr. Spaceman
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    that was the first time I laughed at south park in the better part of a decade.
     
  25. stixx

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    This.
     
  26. bodonid

    bodonid Dr. Spaceman
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    No, still no. Even if you were saving babies in africa with Mbuto, I don't think you want that kind of language in your PS.
     
  27. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    EVEN IF the person reading it doesn't get offended by it, they will be like... wow, is this kid a ****ing moron? Next.
     
  28. Nemuri

    Nemuri It's too late
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    May I suggest a racial slur of some sort? It'll add more "spunk" :D
     
  29. gonj

    gonj Oh no you di'int
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    yeh drop a few f-bombs to show your passion for medicine too. that should be pretty good.
     
  30. scrubsaresexy

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    Hey, I got the point. Please don't turn this into an attack on my character, intelligence, personal beliefs, maturity level, etc.

    k thanks.
     
  31. StudentDoctora

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    I wouldn't do it. Instead, I would write something to the effect of "In somewhat crude terms, he told me [paraphrase here]" or "In terms more crude than I am willing to write, he told me [paraphrase here]," etc... :) Good luck!
     
  32. Kaustikos

    Kaustikos Archerize It
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    But do you have a 3.99? DO you? Because, if not, I would consider Caribbean:smuggrin:




    honestly, I would refrain from that quotation. As true as it is, I would try and find a way to go around the profanity. Just my .02
     
  33. tfa2007

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    I did it! My PS was a story from my classroom (I'm a high schoo teacher) and I quoted a student and didn't leave anything out of what she said, including b****. It was the first sentence of the PS so it was definitely an attention grabber. It probably offended some readers, but I've been accepted to several schools so it couldn't have been a deal-breaker!

    Just make sure you have a specific reason to use the profanity. If nothing else, it will probably make your PS more memorable!
     
  34. funkymunkytoes

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    Yes, you did it with a 34S MCAT score. That's quite different.
     
  35. rama kandra

    rama kandra Actual Psychiatrist jk
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    in the modern era, computers are reading your personal statements.
     
  36. Forthegood

    Forthegood ProcrastinationAficionado
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    All the words in the English language are equal, but some are more equal than others.
     
  37. Food

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    This is a surprisingly common problem among people writing PS. Sometimes you just want to be humorous and really take the reader to the setting of the story, and it's tough to do without the crassness of the characters involved....
     
  38. rama kandra

    rama kandra Actual Psychiatrist jk
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    show the essays with and without the language and see what reactions you get from pre-med advisors or professors who are involved with or know about admissions of any kind. I know they are not the ADCOM GODS but maybe they'll have some opinions... unless your gut says that putting in a little flair might make your PS shine. I know people who have written completely crazy PS and pulled all kinds of tricks - and wowed admissions b/c they learned a lot about the person on the other end.

    Or you could read a book on med school admissions essays that were 'successful' and just see how they are ... i have not read the books but perhaps they might have examples of 'risk' essays. My personal feeling is, if you go in with confidence and do it without going over the top, it may work in your favor.
     
  39. rama kandra

    rama kandra Actual Psychiatrist jk
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    were they med students or old folks?
     
  40. 236116

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    maybe she liked it :rolleyes:
     
  41. 236116

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    :lame:
     
  42. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    I'm trying to figure out what the "****" is
     
  43. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    and also, what'd he do to make you mad?
     
  44. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    he was a bad lover



    that's right, I went there :smuggrin:
     
  45. 236116

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    i believe that, but epi- you shouldn't knock your partners. you might've contributed to the difficulties.
     
  46. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar*
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    leave the guy alone. I sent you that video to keep you occupied and from trolling around. DOLLA DOLLA BIIIILLLLLLL woowooooooo
     
  47. 236116

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    baby baby baby
    gotta try harder than that

    i know you're used to hearing that, cbrons.
     
  48. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    if you were a girl, I'd date you ;)
     
  49. 236116

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    i thought he was a girl.

    well, that explains a lot.
     
  50. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    girl, this is why we can never be
     
  51. EpiPEN

    EpiPEN Aegis of Immortality
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    Yes, it does explain why you had problems identifying members of the opposite sex when dating. ;)
     

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