My favorite subject in college had nothing to do with my communications major.
I took Astronomy 101 and 102 to avoid the chemistry sequence that my BS degree required. I will always be grateful to the University of Kentucky for this ‘broadening of my horizons,’ because it introduced me to Professor Thomas Troland.
Dr. Troland was one of the best teachers I have ever had. His sense of humor made his classes zip by, and made me a true fan of astronomy, a subject I had little knowledge of prior to college.
If you are interested in the upcoming total eclipse of the sun, I encourage you to give a look-see to this UK news story featuring Dr. Troland, who I am proud to say is a good friend to this day.
On Valentine’s Day, it seems rather redundant to blog about love…but to not mention it at all would be rather Scrooge-like.
So I send this online Valentine to Sir Alexander Fleming, who on this very day — Valentine’s Day, 1929 — introduced penicillin to the world.
Maybe Alexander was mooning over his love that day in the lab when he left a plate of staphylococcus bacteria uncovered. He later noticed that a mold — penicillium notatum — had fallen upon it and killed many of the bacteria.
Penicillin was born, and future scientists would develop it into the medicinal form used to treat many serious diseases, like syphilis and the ever icky staph infection.
Isn’t that romantic.
Although I am personally allergic to penicillin, I still think Alexander deserves some recognition on his anniversary. If he hadn’t made such an important discovery in the field of medicine, a lot of folks wouldn’t be able to celebrate in a such a big way tonight…iffin you know what I mean.
If you watched Conan last night — or this morning on DVR like me — you saw his interview with astronaut Colonel Chris Hadfield, who recently retired after his return from a six-month stint on the International Space Station.
While he was there, he conducted experiments on the impact of low gravity on human biology.
But that didn’t score him a guest shot on Conan.
No, Hadfield used Twitter and Facebook to chronicle life on the space station in video and pictures. In fact, his cover of David Bowie has received over 18 million hits on Youtube.