Ennui

By Dr. Jim Ferguson The French have a term for feeling listless, weary or dissatisfied. Americans might say they have the blahs or the doldrums. Since English is an amalgam of many languages and cultures, the French word ennui is now part of our English lexicon. I’m a stickler for words which are the tools […]

The law

 By Dr. Jim Ferguson Medical decisions are relatively straightforward because they emerge from facts and reason rather than emotion. We all have emotional and rational aspects of our personality, but errors often result when important decisions are driven by passion. It may be risky to discuss the topic, but the passionate debate of gun control […]

Hacking

By Dr. Jim Ferguson The flu continues to rage, and the spittle keeps flying. You may find this a  disgusting statement, but I assure you it is a valid observation. Years ago I watched two friends talking in front of a window as the morning sun streamed in. Just as dust, suspended in the air, […]

Rhetoric

By Dr. Jim Ferguson Do you believe or trust what you hear these days? Admittedly, I have become a skeptic about climate issues and politics. And I no longer trust the media who, like Chicken Little, preach everyday that the sky is falling – at least since Trump became president. I don’t believe it’s healthy […]

Antithesis

By Dr. Jim Ferguson By the time you read this, it will be February. This year Groundhog Day will be on Friday February 2nd. Legend holds that if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, we’ll have six more weeks of winter. Hopefully, it’ll be cloudy over Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania and spring will be just around the corner. […]

Salt of the Earth

By Dr. Jim Ferguson Lately, I’ve become somewhat of a bird watcher. Perhaps this is because I’ve discovered it to be a contemplative exercise. I’ve always been an observer of nature, probably for the same reason I’m an internist. Details are important in internal medicine. Now, as I do my spiritual journaling, I watch birds […]

Snow Days

By Dr. Jim Ferguson When I had a full time medical practice, snow-days were relaxing. My office was closed and hospital rounds were not dictated by a waiting room full of patients. How times have changed for me. Now, snow-days mean school closures and we get the “cute-ones” for the day and often more. All […]

Podagra

By Dr. Jim Ferguson Every week I wait for a story to find me. Sometimes a story is obvious like Trump versus The Swamp. Sometimes a story line just strikes you on the toe. When Becky and I built our retirement home we were sure to include a wood burning fireplace. There’s something about fire […]

Reflections

By Dr. Jim Ferguson They say Christmas is for children, and I would agree, unless being around kids at Christmas makes you younger at heart. I have four grandchildren ages fourteen to one year old. The teenager is in a “galaxy far, far away,” and a bit too cool for Christmas morning exuberance. And the […]

‘500’

By Dr. Jim Ferguson As the year closes, I find myself considering an end to my weekly column in The Knoxville Focus. Aging doctors, and columnists, need to know when it’s time to go. As best we understand, humans are the only time-conscious creatures on earth. Perhaps an exception is my dog Jack, who knows […]