doctor thumping back webDo you remember Leopold Auenbrugger? His father owned a tavern in Graz, Austria, and that's why a doctor taps your back, and sometimes, your front. The elder Auenbrugger judged the amount of wine in his casks by noting whether his tapping produced a hollow (empty) sound or a dull (full) note. Leo applied this to people, and now doctors can tell if the chest cavity is clear (hollow) or contains fluid or something else that shouldn't be there (thud). Now you know over 200 years of medical history!

Here is an historical event that affects us all and deserves a holiday all its own: The International Olive and Olive Oil Agreement of 1986! This agreement defines the terms "virgin olive oil" and "extra virgin olive oil." (No, as far as we know, there is not yet a "super extra virgin olive oil" or an "ultra virgin olive oil.) The difference are rather complex, but the bottom line is: Extra virgin olive oil has to taste like . . . olives!
Have you ever had that experience where it feels like food went up your nose when you swallowed or — Let's just say did the opposite of swallowing? That's because the uvula failed to guard the nasal cavity like it's supposed to. That flap of muscle and mucus membrane that hangs in the back of your throat like an upside-down bowling pin helps elevate the roof of the mouth during swallowing so food can plop down into the digestive system.

Now that you finally got that bottle of medicine open (Whew!), you have to pluck out that puff of cotton. That's okay — It's there to keep the pills from rattling around and breaking, and to keep them dry. It's best to remove the cotton ball when you open the bottle, because it can absorb moisture and can contaminate the medicine. I wonder why it's not made of nylon or rayon or spandex or — ?
In closing, ponder these questions: Why do American women shave their armpits? Why do only older men have hairy ears?

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