Category: Science & Technology

British Emily Gets A Little Cheeky

I’m pleased to report that we made it to Grandma’s house in Virginia, GPS notwithstanding.

I thought I would spice things up a bit for the trip by switching from “American Jill” to “British Emily.” Nothing personal against Jill, mind you, but I’ve always been something of an Anglophile, gravitating toward C.S. Lewis, Manchester United, James Bond and the like.

I felt downright sophisticated traveling up the interstate with British Emily’s smooth, cultivated King’s English guiding my every turn. She practically paid for herself just west of Knoxville when she nailed that Mellow Mushroom, one of our family favorites and the unofficial pizza of Southeastern Conference Football, just seconds before we would have passed that exit by.… Read the rest

Guide Me O Thou Great GPS–And Talk Sexy To Me While You’re At It!

garmin_nuvi_750_001.jpgI 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

Migrating Blogs, A Reprise

Some of you may have noticed that I pulled a Jason Bourne and disappeared from the grid for a few days and wondered what happened.

Theories have trended toward the exotic: That I was kidnapped by the Chinese who were concerned about my coverage of the upcoming Olympic summer games in Beijing, or that maybe the sicko serial killer Jigsaw from the Saw series snared me in one of his traps after I spoke so ill of him here and here.

That last one raises an interesting question: If Jigsaw did decide to come after me, what kind of trap would he use?… Read the rest

George Michael Was Right–Sort Of

Most of what I believe about the ongoing science v. religion debate can be discerned in this post from a couple of years ago.

Dr. Karl Giberson and I are pretty much on the same page, although he does a much finer job than I ever could of deconstructing the “new timey religion” of Richard Dawkins and Bama grad/Harvard biology professor E.O. Wilson.

Money quotes:

But let’s assume for the moment that this is possible — that science can be canonized, moralized, transcendentalized and politicized into a replacement religion, with followers, codes of conduct, celebrated texts and sacred blogs, houses of worship, “saints” of some sort and inquisitors of another sort.

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Thou Shalt Not Kick Thy Neighbor’s A$#

Once upon a time, just like the cell phone commercial, I fretted over how much time my kids spent text messaging their friends.

Then I tried it. And like Mikey, I liked it! There were many occasions and situations when a short text made more sense than calling. So we got an unlimited text message package and we all lived happily ever after.

But before the other night, I had never texted anyone except family members. But someone Lindsay changed all that…

Lindsay (texting from a number not in my address book): Hey its lindsay! Hope you guys are prepared to kick some neighbor in the a$#!

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Skinny White Guys: Wear More Deodorant and Lay Off Those Video Games

This post is dedicated to Number One Son and his roommate Zack.


For some time now, the number of women entering the health professions has been on the rise. Most entering classes in schools of medicine, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, etc have been comprised of around 50% women for several years.

The latest indications are that women are starting to grab a slight majority of entering slots. At the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry, women are really starting to rule the roost. A source there informed me recently that the 2008 entering class will be comprised of 80% women.… Read the rest

What I Learned In Atlanta

I just returned from five days in Atlanta attending the Southern Educational Congress in Optometry (SECO), one of the largest optometry meetings in the world. It had been a while since I had attended so large a conference, and I discovered that I had some catching up to do. Since most of you weren’t able to go too, I decided I would share a few things that I learned:

  • Be careful if you use a hotel elliptical trainer. If the “glide” track is angled differently from the one you use at home, it can ball up your calves into knots making it extremely difficult to walk for the rest of your stay.
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Migrating Blogs

migrating-birds.jpgFor those of you who might have stopped by since last Saturday, you probably noticed that the old blog appeared deader than a doorknob. You may have thought: Uh oh, The Eyeguy’s done up and gone off the deep end this time–he’s committed blogicide.

Nah. I would never do that. But my blog has been “migrating.”

Which leads to the following question: When blogs migrate, do they fly in formation?

Well, here’s the short of it. Basically, my hosting company was bought out by an outfit called NaviSite. Now you would think with a cool name like NaviSite that they would actually know what the heck they were doing and have a clue about navigating and migrating and such.… Read the rest

I Spy the Eyeguy, A Reprise

My tongue-firmly-planted-in-cheek post of last week caught the eye of one Fusioneer who just so happens to be a former Federal gumshoe. Not only did she use her detective tricks-of-the-trade to “spy” a picture of me on the internet, but she proceeded to “Simpsonize” me as well:


Handsome devil, don’t you think? I think he looks more like a Freudian psychoanalyst than an optometrist.

Now I was already aware that this former G-person (let’s call her “June”) knew who I was because I found out that she did several months ago (I have my own sources, you know). But June is no stalker, and we’ve traded some good-natured emails about cyber-snooping and other topics that I’ve blogged about.… Read the rest

The Grim Reap-Purr

I’ve never been much for cats. When I see one headed in my direction, I usually head in the opposite one (they make me sneeze and wheeze). Now I have one more good reason. Man, this Oscar makes that other one look like a real pansy.

The Grim Reap-Purr–it figures. Now I’m confident that there’s a perfectly rational and natural explanation for this one. But still, isn’t it fun to wallow in a good mystery every now and then, even for a little while?

Somebody should tell Daniel Engber that, the little scientific snot.

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One Man, One Slide

John had always told me, “Mike, when you walk into a room, you’ve got to make them believe that you’re the biggest gunslinger in the bar.”

He was referring to the way that I carried myself as I walked into the exam room. I guess he must have noticed the deer-in-the-headlamps expression on my face and the way that my jaw dragged along the floor as I encountered a dizzying array of eye disorders and diseases in those early days of my residency; nasty, often bloody, blinding stuff that never looked (or acted) quite the same way as the atlases and textbooks said it would.… Read the rest

PowerPointless in Huntsville

PowerPoint also conditions worshipers to act and react in visceral ways, so that the character of their bodily actions and emotional responses are at times downright Pavlovian. The screen, not the altar or cross, becomes the all-consuming center of attention, an object of intense fixation which triggers predictable reflexes and behaviors. When PowerPoint malfunctions, for instance, people become nervous and lost; they become conditioned to worry that it will malfunction. They find themselves thinking more about the screen and the technician at the soundboard than about the God whom they’ve come to worship and the larger worshiping body of which they are a part.

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CSI: Jerusalem?

It doesn’t get bigger than this. We’ve done our homework; we’ve made the case; and now it’s time for the debate to begin.

–Producer James Cameron on the upcoming Discovery Channel documentary, “The Lost Tomb of Jesus.”

Better hold the phone on this whole Easter thing–might as well cancel those sunrise services and sleep in for a change. You see, James Cameron, the man who brought you “The Terminator” and “The Titanic,” is announcing in a New York City press conference today that he believes archaeologists have found the tomb and bones human residue of the so-called resurrected Christ.

This is actually an old story repackaged to ride the crest of the recent wave of revisionist Christian history (think Da Vinci Code) that we’ve seen the last few years.… Read the rest

There’s No Wicking in Baseball!

As a runner, I’ve become hooked on so-called “wicking” fabrics like Coolmax and Nike’s Dri-Fit. The stuff uses capillary action to draw moisture away from the skin and toward the outside of the garment where it can harmlessly evaporate, leaving one cooler, drier and less chafed. And if you’ve ever gone running in 90 degree weather while wearing 100% cotton, you know what a big, bloody problem chafing can be (I’ll spare you the gory details).

But et tu baseball?

As USA Today reports, Major League Baseball has announced that beginning opening day this year, players will be tossing aside their wool caps for a newer high-tech, moisture-wicking polyester blend lid that, in theory at least, will keep players drier and more comfortable on the field.… Read the rest