The answer is: Yes. In fact, he’s been “in da house” since Monday. Sick. Out of commission. Down for the count.
It didn’t used to be that way. In my younger doctor days, I would often work through “the crud” because I was convinced that I was indispensable and that my patients would go blind if I wasn’t in the office. So I would trudge in, snot dripping, coughing, wheezing and croaking from the inevitable laryngitis that would set in after a few days. I was careful and often wore a mask, but still, put yourself in my patients’ shoes. I had no trouble getting my patients to open their eyes on days like that.… Read the rest
but no human can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
The first time I read that verse was on a the cover of a tract which had been left behind on a shelf inside the pulpit at the Roanoke Church of Christ in the 1960s. We kids weren’t supposed to be playing there, but the adults were too busy talking to notice and the prospect of discovering what mysteries were hidden behind that “holy of holies” was too tempting to pass up.
The tract was fire-engine red and had an animation on the cover depicting a man with his tongue hanging out of his mouth, like a dimply red carpet unfurled.… Read the rest
“Name them one by one,” the song says. So here goes:
1. I’m running, not far or fast, but pain-free for the first time in quite a while. I’ve shifted my foot strike from my heel, which is where it’s been since fourth grade, to my forefoot. “Barefooting” as it’s sometimes called. I don’t exactly run barefoot on asphalt (ouch!), but I do use a “minimalist” training shoe, the Nike Free. This is supposed to be more “natural,” the way you were meant to run back in the day when your survival meant eluding a predator such as a saber-toothed tiger or that annoying herd of mastodons that lived over in the next valley.… Read the rest
I was finishing up my charting on the last patient of the day last Friday afternoon when DU, a friend from Harding and a longtime blog reader and commenter, left me a message: “Eyeguy, call me when you have a minute. Thanks. RTR!”
DU is a Bama man, born and bred, and I could tell by the excitement in his voice that college football fever was eating up his bones. I’m a relative late-comer to the party, but after reading Warren St. John’s Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer, the fundamentalist bible of fanatical Bama fandom, a few years ago, I repented of my childhood allegiances to Virginia Tech and Notre Dame and was washed beneath the Crimson Flood.… Read the rest
All across the country, parents are reluctantly cutting the umbilical cord and launching their youngin’s into the cold, cruel world.
Of kindergarten and college, that is. I’ve seen the evidence on Facebook: “Oh, ever since (insert beloved child’s name here) was born, I’ve been dreading the day we would send him/her off to kindergarten/college. I can’t believe how time flies!”
The New York Times has weighed in as well, documenting the rise of “parting ceremonies” on college campuses designed to give parents the not-so-subtle hint that it’s time to “hit the road” rather than hang around for a week at a local hotel and show up on campus each morning to escort Little Junior to class to check out the suitability of his professors, not to mention the laundry room to make sure he knows how to insert his “Action Card” into the slot and separate whites from darks.… Read the rest
As she thumbed through our passports with her practiced fingers and keyed the necessary data into her computer at Miami International Airport, the pleasant, Hispanic U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer was all smiles, the perfect blend of professionalism and “Welcome Home, Cherished and Valued Citizen” hospitality.
I was looking directly at her when she came to my name and her face suddenly darkened. She knitted her brow and tapped a few more times on her keyboard, double-checking, perhaps hoping to stem the flow of bad news that was appearing on her screen. Then she gave it to me, straight between the eyes.… Read the rest
I had a very smart man, a rocket scientist in fact (we have a few in Huntsville), tell me recently that America was going to hell in a hand basket. He didn’t say it quite that way because a respectable Christian, Southern gentleman would never drop the “H” bomb in front of the ladies unless he was reading it out of the Bible. But that was the basic gist of it.
He said a lot of things, that we had strayed from the intent of the Founding Fathers to establish a “Christian Nation,” that widespread belief in evolution was the root of much of society’s evil and ills, including increasing teenage suicide rates, and that really things had grown much worse since prayer was banned in public schools.… Read the rest
I would never tell my good friend Dr. Mark Elrod of Harding University (Hail!) to go to hell. He’s too nice a guy for that, plus he has this “condition”–an enlarged heart. Not the type that would cause you to keel over in the middle of a pick-up basketball game, but the kind that bleeds heavily when people are suffering. It’s a malady we could all use a little more of these days.
As for Pat Robertson and Rush Limbaugh, those purveyors of post-quake logorrhera, and the political dude from South Carolina who when speaking about people on public assistance used the analogy of denying animals food so they couldn’t “breed” but now “regrets” saying that even though it brought him much attention and fired up his “evangelical” base–I would wish them all straight to hell in a handbasket.… Read the rest
Pardon me, but does the goofy-looking nerd in the suspenders and top hat reading Mother Goose look like the type of guy who would strike fear in the hearts of murderous Ku Klux Klansmen?
Um, no, I don’t think so.
And if you had asked any of us who attended Harding University in the early 1980s the same question and what we thought of the future prospects of Jerry “Boo” Mitchell, first-class clown, favorite chapel announcer and author of the somewhat subversive “Fifth Column” which appeared weekly in the school newspaper The Bison, we would have likely laughed and said something like “high school speech teacher,” or “radio talk show host,” anything, really, other than the Civil Rights version of Gabriel Van Helsing.… Read the rest
In the past, I always swore that Ocular Fusion would never devolve into one of those TMI “OMG, my big toe aches and I want everybody in the universe to know about it and sympathize with me” kind of blogs.
But that was then, and this is now.
That was before I happily ventured out into the sunny, 65 degree Alabama weather this past Saturday and down to McGucken Park to fling the Frisbee disc with Number One Son and Uncle T. who was visiting from Colorado Springs.
And now my right gluteus maximus is tied-up tighter than King Tut and a tombful of his Egyptian cousins and concubines.… Read the rest
But let justice roll on like a river,
righteousness like a never-failing stream!
Regular readers know him as JRB. He’s a Harding grad like me and the most prolific commenter on this blog, the one whose fervent man-passion for his beloved ‘Dores and his meticulous command of the King’s English often get him into a scrap or two with my Bama-lovin’ alter ego, Mike the Redneck.
And through the power of the written word, a cell phone speed dial and a few blessed opportunities to break bread together, he has become one of my best friends and confidantes in the world and the “little brother” I never had.… Read the rest
I should have known better than to start a “My Hair is Bigger Than Your Hair” embarrassing photo war with a guy who had his own darkroom and always kept a fully-loaded 35mm camera in his glove compartment.
But that’s exactly what I did this past Saturday when I uploaded my photo album “Big Hair Alert!” (“Selected shots of family and friends from 1980-1990, back when hair was hair and we wore it loud, proud and tall”) to my Facebook page.
I did a double take when I filled up the trusty German sports sedan at Sam’s Wholesale Club the other night.
Was the final total really only $33? I took off my glasses, checked for smudges, rubbed my eyes, put them back on again and stood there staring at the digital readout. I wasn’t seeing double. I was seeing half.
I looked around and the mood among my fellow customers was one of great jubilation. One man was happily chattering into his cell phone, “Can you believe this?” Another finished filling up his Ford F-150 Double Cab, stared at the final total and started bawling like a baby, tears of unadulterated joy flowing like a river down his ruddy cheeks.… Read the rest