Tour of Duty

By Dr. Jim Ferguson Often, the hardest part of writing is getting started. Sometimes I think I’ve said enough in this column after a half million words. This is especially true as another editorial deadline approaches. And then I get a phone call of praise or a fellow church member thanks me for a recent […]

The Maestro

By Dr. Jim Ferguson You may not be aware of it, but Knoxville is in possession of a jewel. No, I’m not referring to the Knoxville Zoo or the University of Tennessee, both great aspects of our community. I’m referring to the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra.  Recently, my brother and I attended the KSO performance of […]

Good Bones

By Dr. Jim Ferguson I have mentioned in previous essays that my wife, Becky, and I are in the midst of  downsizing. When we first built our home thirty-seven years ago I swore I would never do it again. I have always said they would have to take me straight from my house to the […]

I’m Listening

By Dr. Jim Ferguson “I’m listening” was Frasier Crane’s shtick on his comedy sitcom. I’ve just about quit listening. Not to my wife, which might be dangerous, but to what is advertized as the news. I was once more naive, and believed that events were reported factually. I’ve come to understand this as fallacy. All […]

RINOs and DINOs

By Dr. Jim Ferguson I’ve often wondered why sharing a good book or movie with someone gives me such joy. Tastes are as varied as humanity, but common visions exist and are apparently sought. My wife, Becky, enjoys murder mysteries, especially if there is political intrigue associated with Washington D.C. I like science fiction, a […]

Home is where the heart is

By Dr. Jim Ferguson I’m not a beach person; I’m more of a mountain guy, just not a back woodsman. So when it’s time to get away and recharge, the beach, the hot sun and sand are not my first choices. However, I’ve always liked to travel and when friends asked us to go with […]

Modern Life

By Dr. Jim Ferguson At the risk of being labeled insensitive, it is obvious to me that men and women are different. And despite the media and the PC culture working overtime to tell us otherwise, we are created male and female. Of course there are exceptions in sexuality because being human comprises a spectrum […]

Diagnostic Conundrums

By Dr. Jim Ferguson It’s hard for me to just be a concerned father when your beloved daughter is sick. There are three types of people in the world: children, adults and parents. I will always be the father of my kids. This sacred relationship transcends any post-modern notions of equality. We all want to […]

Lexicon

By Dr. Jim Ferguson I’m glad I already speak English. It’s a complicated language with contributions from more than 100 other languages, and has more words than any other. I’ve watched our Burundi friends struggle with homophones such as “new” and “knew,” as well as idioms like “it’s raining cats and dogs.” If you include […]

The Street Key

By Dr. Jim Ferguson The life force seems to beat stronger in some folks than in others. As a doctor I’ve observed this, but as a scientist I don’t understand the phenomena. We’ve all heard stories of aged couples where the surviving spouse strangely dies shortly after the other. It’s almost like the will to […]