June 2024


Whatchamacallit 161: bamboo toothbrushes

A year or two ago, I used the bathroom at a friend’s place – noticing the non-plastic toothbrushes. I asked about them – learning about bamboo toothbrushes that are entirely biodegradable, no plastic involved, no plastic consequences for the planet, especially since I go through 4-5 toothbrushes in a year; sometimes more if I […]

TB or not TB – Baum & Zeit at Beelitz-Heilstätten

A couple weekends ago, I met up with one of my colleagues and headed out to Beelitz-Heilstätten, out on the southwestern edge of Berlin.

Beelitz-Heilstätten is a very well known site for explorers of abandoned buildings – it’s a site with a plethora of buildings that have, to be blunt, seen better days. Back […]

Thanks to Todd Young and the other Republicans… I could not visit the Anasazi Heritage Center

The door was locked — no way to see the treasures of the Native Americans who lived in the region.

After loading up on cliff dwellings at the Ute Mountain Tribal Park and Mesa Verde National Park, today’s plan to visit the Anasazi Heritage Center was a bust.

All thanks to Todd Young, my […]

My Persnickety Eyes and Me

Back when I was in Bloomington I decided to get my eyes examined – yes, I know I could do this in Germany, but doing it in Bloomington was nice because the people there know that I have a weird problem with my eyes and can check in on it.

I came away from the […]

It’s time to change dentists.

When it comes to things like the dentist, inertia is my dentist’s best friend.

The fact is that my dental practice here in Berlin is overpriced and incredibly stylish. Stylish to the point that while there I always feel a bit out of place because I don’t wear the finest brand name clothing in the […]

Two things that are annoying about America

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve had a lot more interactions with Americans than I normally do, and I was reminded of two things that I find annoying about the States.

First, the drinking age is 21. I cannot think of a single good logical reason for this to be so.

Second, health insurance […]

Honestly I thought I was going to wimp out, but I didn’t. No more Physical Therapy!

Last week, after my initial two physical therapy sessions, I was harboring doubts about the veracity of physical therapy. (Actually, I lie: it started immediately with the first meeting.)

As a consequence of my doubts, I sought to find out whether or not I was required to use all six physical therapy sessions that had […]

I got asked a very strange question today!

On a scale of one to ten, where ten is so painful that you’d jump through a window to commit suicide, how painful is your back right now?

It’s questions like this that remind me how little I like doctors and the medical profession in general – not that I was asked this by a […]

Is the Republican Party in the US ever right about anything?

For about as long as I can remember, going back to Ronald Reagan in the early 1980s, the Republican Party in the United States has tended to espouse three core beliefs:

First, the United States has high taxes and these high taxes hurt the economy because they discourage rich people from investing in […]

My afternoon was so bright, I had to wear shades!

Make no bones about it, despite the cloudy weather, Monday afternoon I was wearing shades.

This was because I spent some time at the IU School of Optometry getting my eyes examined by Liz, a student—and I chose to get my eye examination here in Bloomington because her supervisor is the doctor who diagnosed what […]