Quarantined: Unexpected finale, Part 1

D4 George Galaz tries not to 'fret' over his somewhat surreal senior year
March 25th, 2020

Editor’s note: When we reached out to our students to see how they were doing, some were already embracing their #QuarantineAndChill. Others let us know that they had run out of chill, and rightfully so. This was especially true for those set to graduate this year.

Just when dental school life was supposed to be ramping up and winding down—spring break, WREBs, celebrations, graduation—the coronavirus crisis changed everything. “Stay home, stay safe” became the quarantine mantra.

In this series of firsthand accounts, Texas A&M College of Dentistry students share how their vacation plans went south, how they’re staying sane and how they strive to find silver linings. Through humor and even frustration, they offer sympathies for our graduating class, as well as best wishes to those who will return next year.

D4 George Galaz

It’s early March 2020, and as a D4 I have loads to look forward to: spring break, birthday celebrations, and finalizing plans for WREB and post-graduation. All the signs were there that our world was about to get rocked, but reality hadn’t hit. That is, until recently, as news spread that the nightmare overseas would reach everyone here.

Fast-forward a couple weeks and the quarantine is pretty much in full effect. Home life seems like it will be the vibe for the coming weeks/months.

The obvious choice for me was to vegetate—which, of course, I did—on the couch for a few (maybe several) days playing video games like the good ol’ days back in middle school/high school. Anyone on Xbox wanna play some Halo?

As boredom crept on day after day—with hockey season suspended, Formula 1 postponing race weekends, and my favorite watering holes closed for the time being—my attention went to the love of my life for comfort.

Now let me tell you about this girl. She isn’t your typical girl next door, no sir. She has a 12-inch, C-shape neck radius with an apple-red alder body accented with a gloss polyester finish, 22 narrow/tall frets on a rosewood fretboard, noiseless single-coil neck and middle pickups, twin head Humbucker bridge pickups, master volume and two-tone controls, five-way blade pickup switch and, to top it all off, two-point synchronized tremolo!! Gentlemen, if that doesn’t put some hair on your chest, then I don’t know what will.

There is a certain “hell yeah” moment I get when I turn my amp and pedal board to my favorite settings, chug along to those first few power chords on my Fender Strat guitar and allow the heavy electric wave of sound to just violently punch through the walls around me. In the immortal words of AC/DC: “Let There Be Rock.”

Guitar and music have been a great way to keep the juices flowing, the hands busy, and the mind at work. I challenge everyone to dust off old instruments you have in your closets and create some tunes to fill your homes.

If you made it this far, I hope I at least helped with distracting you for 2-3 minutes from all the craziness going on around us.

To the D1s—May your pajamas and morning cup of joe keep you comforted during your early Monday morning online classes.

To the D2s—Enjoy the time away from the evil sim lab.

To the D3s—I got nothing … except at least you are entering your final year.

To the D4s—Love you guys. I’m looking forward to finally graduating alongside you.

Stay safe out there, TAMCOD. Give your loved ones a big hug and let’s all do our part in staying indoors to combat this beast.

—D4 George Galaz

Quarantined: Unexpected finale, Part 2

Quarantined: Unexpected finale, Part 3

Quarantined: Unexpected finale, Part 4

— Kathleen Green Pothier