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STYLE OF DAY ED YANG, 33, SURGERY RESIDENT

You might think that getting to work by 6 A.M., handling life-threatening crises every day and wearing a beeper around-the-clock might put a damper on your personal life. Not so, says Ed Yang, who saw his love life bloom when he moved from Tennessee, where he attended medical school, to San Francisco, where he entered one of the most grueling residency specialties: general surgery. Ed’s newfound popularity with women is a bit of a mystery to him, and he’s still getting used to its perks. “Five years ago I was working in a lab and the closest living thing was a rat. In the last two years I’ve dated lots of different women. This is quite a change for me.”

He is frequently assigned to the emergency room, where the frenetic pace doesn’t encourage long, get-to-know-you conversations. Accordingly, Ed has had to come up with a direct and efficient style of flirting. “You develop a shorthand, quick ways to let a woman know you’re thinking about her. If you catch a moment alone with someone you’re interested in, you reveal something about yourself and inquire about her; or maybe it’s a small physical gesture, a touch on the wrist. That’s how I break through barriers.” His approach works well with women at the hospital and in the outside world. “I try to achieve some level of emotional intimacy quickly. I want to find out what’s behind those eyes, to bond with someone. I think that’s what women respond to.”

Does he ever meet his next date while treating her for, say, a broken ankle? “You have to put physical attraction out of your mind with female patients,” says Ed. “It’s unethical not to. But there are times when you can’t help feeling drawn to someone and you have to work to control it. I’ve broken out in a sweat once or twice.”

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