What Would Jive Dinosaurs Do About The MOC?

I just read the article entitled “Why board certification is important to this physician,” supporting Maintenance of Certification (MOC) by Dr. Christina Girgis, MD. It’s also one of her blog posts, which has a different title, “I’m Glad I Took the Boards: Thoughts From a Board-Certified Psychiatrist.”

Hair Guy ancient-aliensIt’s notable because my impression is that MOC supporters are rare, possibly as rare as alien encounters. While I was reading it, I thought of the Ancient Aliens TV show on the History Channel; you know, the one with the hair dude, Giorgio Tsoukalos? Sure, I watch it! He and others are known as the ancient astronauts theorists and they tend to preface their remarks with the opener, “You have to wonder if…” or “You have to consider the possibility of…” and the punch line is always some speculation that the aliens did it.

I disagree with Dr. Girgis (surprise!) but I respect her opinion and her position on the MOC. All of the commenters so far are very respectful but tend to disagree with her as well. And I gotta tell you, a couple of them included an internet acronym slang term I’m unfamiliar with, “WWJDD?” I’ve compiled a short list of meanings some of which I found on the internet and a couple I just made up:


  • What Would John Doe Do?
  • What Would Johnny Damon Do?
  • What Would Johnny Depp Do?
  • What Would Jack Daniels Do?
  • What Would a Juvenile Delinquent Do?
  • What Would John Dillinger Do?
  • What Would the Justice Department Do?

I’m sure you could think of others, but what I’m interested in is what WWJDD has to do with the content of Dr. Girgis’s article. Maybe you can help me.

New Mascot3My other thought along the lines of the other pertinent factor–aliens, is how our new mascot might feel about MOC. Oh, we’ve finally named her Alice and her egg is named Clive because the ultrasound showed it’s a boy. I’ll be closing the poll today; thanks for your help! Actually our Chief Resident, Dr. Jen Donovan, cast the deciding vote, after I consulted her with the ultimate question, What Would Jen Donovan Do? For that matter what would a medical student do? It turns out that one medical student has not publicly denied being fascinated by watching blood squirt from the eyes of a horned toad in Freshman Zoology.

Dr. Jen Donovan and Alice
Dr. Jen Donovan and Alice
Med Student and Alice
Medical student had no comment


It turns out that Alice knows a fair amount about the possible link (and I did say “possible”) between aliens, dinosaurs, and those who love MOC. So Alice and guys like the hair dude believe that humans may have evolved from reptoids, a race of reptilian humanoids who actually hailed from deep space and hide underground on our planet (where else?). Trust me, Giorgio knows a lot about this.

Ancient Aliens Hair Dude 10 minutes after eating fruitcake
Ancient Aliens Hair Dude 10 minutes after trying to make sense of Performance in Practice (PIP) module

ReptoidAccording to Alice, you have to consider the possibility (and who would argue the point?) that some sort of space-time warp led to MOC being rolled out in the late Jurassic Period to ensure that saurians were fully engaged in continuous evolution to the point that reptoids appeared, eventually leading to that evolutionary line’s mass extinction when the ancient astronauts (based in a buried pyramid somewhere in Chicago) who spawned this race became deeply concerned that reptoids were at risk for being dumbed down by MOC.

But because of the cyclical nature of evolution with phenomenal progress followed by mass disappearances of entire populations, it was probably inevitable that MOC would reappear in our own era, probably because of poorly understood epigenetic influences tending to preserve the continuity of the MOC gene.

Huh! I’ll bet you didn’t think an Apatosaurus could think that deep.

Anyway, we had a faculty meeting yesterday about MOC and board certification, a first in the history of the department I think. I doubt Dr. Girgis would have felt alienated there. We’re a very polite group. One item I would like to make clear right now is that not all academicians support MOC. Hey, I’m an academic. I support the principle of lifelong learning but I’ve always thought that MOC is a very poor embodiment of the principle.

You just have to ask yourselves one question. What Would a Jive Dinosaur Do? Remember, only we can prevent another mass extinction–by learning to live together. Thank you for your support and have a great weekend!