William The Coroner’s Forensic Files

Wednesday, 30, July, 2008

Pimp My Haiku

Filed under: Poetry — williamthecoroner @ 09:55

The Haiku contest this week is about PAIN at Sparrow’s.

Bright, pricking, sharp pain
Burning, hot and deep, aching
Qualities of Pain

DeGowin and DeGowin 5/e McGraw Hill NY pp. 33-35

Put Down The Keyboard and Step Slowly Away From It

Filed under: Oddness — williamthecoroner @ 09:48

It is always an ego boost to find out that women have been dreaming about me. Unfortunately is wasn’t a naughty dream, or so she says, but one cannot have everything. Though on further consideration, I wonder what sort of recreational pharmaceuticals an English professor with three kids is getting into, anyway?

Anyway, it’s not like the odd body modification dreams other folks have reported, so the herb must not have been too good, anyway… Though with Carteach as Q and Marko as Pinky, you gotta wonder…

Monday, 28, July, 2008

An Under-appreciated Influence on American Television

Filed under: Forensics,Social Commentary — williamthecoroner @ 16:04

No, it’s not the BBC.  Though some shows Sanford and Son, made the transition from the UK to America , others Men Behaving Badly limped along, some Coupling died early deaths and others Red Dwarf never made it out of pilot and other Absolutely Fabulous never had a freaking chance considering the subject matter.

But just because you can’t show drugs being taken by the characters doesn’t mean that drugs aren’t a vital part of American Television.  Hmm.  This could bridge the gap between my Drugs of Abuse class and it might make a SAGES seminar for undergraduates.  All the television shows that drugs have served as either a creative influence or just their raison d’etre:

Addams Family



Beverly Hillbillies


Bosom Buddies

Car 54 Where Are You?

The Flying Nun–hallucinogens

Gilligan’s Island–cannabis

Green Acres–vodka

Herman’s Head–God knows


I Dream of Jeanie

McHale’s Navy

Mr. Ed–Hallucinogens, particularly

Mork and Mindy–polypharmacy

Monkees–hubris and alcohol

My Favorite Martian

My Mother the Car

Petticoat Junction

Three’s Company

Most Hanna-Barbera cartoons–volatile organic compounds from the paint

Monday Cat Blogging

Filed under: Books,Cat Blogging — williamthecoroner @ 12:45

Otis at Loganberry books. 13015 Larchmere Boulevard; Shaker Heights, Ohio 44120; 216.795.9800
Monday-Saturday 10am-6pm; Thursdays ’til 8pm

Sunday, 27, July, 2008

Sappy Cat Blogging

Filed under: Cat Blogging — williamthecoroner @ 18:27

Baby Siberian tigers from Amneville Zoo in France.(Photo Credit AFP/Johanna Leguerre)

Wednesday, 23, July, 2008

Internet Celebrity

Filed under: Life, the universe, & everything.,Social Commentary — williamthecoroner @ 23:13

Looking at the changes in my statistics that occurred when Brigid mentioned me I was thinking about internet celebrity. This blog is doesn’t fit a neat pigeon-hole, it’s a not a political blog, nor is it about popular culture (except to make fun of it). I really am afraid of the 2008 election, and I’m sorry that there isn’t a F*** alla youse lever that I can pull. I also really don’t know or care about Britney Spears or any of the other pop tarts that are on the horizon. I realized a long time ago when I didn’t recognize any of the names being mentioned in People magazine that the world had passed me by.

And, I’m sorry, but what is the point with the Heath Ledger hoopla? He was an actor with talent and a drug problem. This differentiates him from the other millions of druggies in the world how?

It’s is a forensic/teaching/medicine/gun blog. I do manage to avoid writing posts about “what I had for dinner” or “what I did on my summer vacation”. I’m not a good enough writer to make that interesting. But I’ve been mentioned on other blogs. I’ve made professional contacts and personal contacts from blogging. Center of Gravitas has an article on blog celebrity I liked, and I excerpted some of the relevant points.

The major question, though, is What would make a good William the Coroner T-shirt for this blog? Tell me in the comments.

Anonymous: You say that spam advertising penile enlargement “still counts” as a comment on an entry.
Obscure: You get one or two incisive responses to your most provocative posts.
Middling: You have a loyal core of readers who will give a comment, even if it is just out of pity.
Celebrity: You are guaranteed a minimum of forty comments even if the blog entry is nothing more than a picture of your empty breakfast bowl.


Anonymous: Your blog is not linked by anybody.
Obscure: Your friends and family link you.
Middling: People you have never met link you.
Celebrity: People link you only out of the hope that you will link them back.


Anonymous: The only e-mail generated from your blog is a secret offer from a Nigerian who needs you to open a bank account for him.
Obscure: You occasionally get e-mail from people you don’t know in real life.
Middling: You get birthday cards from people you don’t know in real life.
Celebrity: You get mail from people that you probably don’t want to know in real life.


Anonymous: You have no social contacts based on your blog.
Obscure: You have social contacts who read your blog, but they already knew you before you ever blogged.
Middling: You have met new friends through your blog that you would have never met in real life.
Celebrity: You have slept with people through your blog.


Anonymous: You are most often naked while you write your blog.
Obscure: You have given away t-shirts based on your blog

Middling:You can actually sell t-shirts based on your blog at CafePress or other such sites.
Celebrity: Designers send you their new clothes in the hope that you will wear them while you blog.

Consequences And How You Present Yourself

Filed under: Forensics,Social Commentary,Social Ostracism — williamthecoroner @ 23:12

If you drink, you should not drive. I have enough work, thank you very much. If you drink, don’t get behind the wheel. If you do drink, get behind the wheel, kill someone, it’s probably not a good idea to dress up in a prison jumpsuit with the label “jailbird” and be photographed drinking at a party. It’s a really bad idea to put them up on your Facebook page. Again, I learned early on in my medical career that I just wasn’t a medical student, I’d become the avatar for medicine. I was an example of how good (or bad) doctors were in society by how I carried myself. This wasn’t right, smart, nor was it fair. But it was how it is. I’m very careful of what I blog. I’m careful of how I drive. I’m not a punk kid anymore. Neither was the idiot with the Facebook page.

Living in a large city brings with it a degree of anonymity, and therefore a lack of responsibility. But people do know who you are, and Google is forever.

Pimp My Haiku

Filed under: Poetry — williamthecoroner @ 21:04

Sparrow is having her haiku contest again.  Winner recieves a care package to the service member of his choice.  This week’s subject is CHILDHOOD.  Mine are:

All the time I need
The days stretch out before me
I go to the woods

Boss, bills, & burdens,
Debt, demands, decay, & distress,
I know naught of these.

Tuesday, 22, July, 2008

There Are No Dumb Questions? In Which I Unleash The Great White Snark

Filed under: Forensics,Medicine,Teaching — williamthecoroner @ 11:36

So there I was, in class, talking about bariatric surgery.  I was mentioning the risks of those surgeries.  In 1-2 percent of the time, one can die from them.  The GI tract, when you mess with it, has a certain number of limited responses.  It can bleed, it can scar, it can get blocked with scar, and it can burst open.  That’s just what it does.

A student sticks up a hand “Are you a pathologist then?”

I really, REALLY wanted to say “No, I’m an accountant.  I just wander around cutting up dead people as a hobby.”  I knew if I said that I’d get dinged on my student course evaluations for being unhelpful.

Monday, 21, July, 2008

Five Minute Ucite

Filed under: Teaching — williamthecoroner @ 13:54

Part of my continuing faculty development course I took last year involved watching Fr. Guido Sarducci’s Five Minute University. He distilled everything you learn and retain in college to five minutes. That’s uncomfortably close to the truth. But I did find the five-minute summary of my faculty development course, which is useful as I think about developing my new courses.  The Five-Minute UCITE

  • Less is more; change what you’re doing every 8-10 minutes
  • Have them talk to each other
  • Fish is fish. Whatever you say, students will filter it through their prior experiences
  • Whatever your learning style, it is different than ¾ of your students
  • Prior experience is key—they learn by starting with what they already know
  • Students have to be emotionally engaged to learn—it’s your job to make that happen
  • Draw a concept map and use it for each of your courses (if you can’t figure out what the most important three things are and show they’re related, neither will your students)
  • Align your goals, your teaching methods, and your assessments
  • Use grading rubrics, especially for writing assignments
  • Make your feedback clear, frequent, and helpful
  • The first five minutes are critical. Lean forward and smile, be enthusiastic
  • Get to know them—learn their names
  • Groups are good—let them figure out the grading and discuss the ground rules
  • Allow them choice if possible
  • Start with them—it’s really about their learning, not your teaching
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