Making ‘Jesus’ out of whole cloth

An ad in a newspaper offers me an easy way to “work from home and make $$$$$.” The television commercial shows a handy little “shake weight” that can make me look like professional bodybuilder in a matter of weeks. A tattered piece of 4th century papyrus, smaller than a business card and written in Coptic, claims that Jesus Christ had a wife.

Yep, there’s a sucker born every minute.

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Overton-born physician returns to East Texas

Charles Dickens once wrote that every traveler has a home of their own, and they learn to appreciate it more from their wandering.

Overton native Dr. Julie Philley understands this lesson well, having traveled far and wide since taking her first steps in a journey that has now brought her back to East Texas.

Philley, a 1995 honors graduate from Overton High School, has joined the staff of University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler as a critical care specialist at the Pulmonary Clinic, coming from UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

“I’m really happy to be back,” she said. “I feel very fortunate in having grown up in East Texas and I look forward to working closer to home.”

But it’s not only proximity to family and old friends that brought her back to the area. There’s a professional interest as well.

“I came back here to do mycobacteria research,” she said. “I developed an interest in that during my time in Baltimore and then continued in Dallas when I did my fellowship.”

Philley explained that mycobacteria can cause serious illness in people with damaged lungs when the germs get into their lungs via air, water, or soil.

“So I’m here to really further research into mycobacteria, and the cousins of tuberculosis, research field,” she added.

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Finding the good in “Breaking Bad”

I’m not much for television. It just seems like far too much of an investment of time for far too little of a reward.

Plus, I absolutely abhor commercials. For someone like me, who prizes the intellect above almost all else, commercials are a lowest common denominator that I simply cannot tolerate. All of that to say this: I am seldom up to date with the latest popular television drama or sitcom.

But when various friends of mine, independently of each other, started enthusiastically recommending the AMC show “Breaking Bad” to me, I felt I had to at least take a closer look. Fortunately, the first few seasons were just added to Netflix, so I started watching them last weekend and have since become something of a “fan” of the show. Now, I use the term “fan” loosely, because “Breaking Bad” is not the kind of show one watches with the same vigor and enthusiasm as lighter fare.

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13 years of wedded “bliss”

“…I will go down with this ship and
I won’t put my hands up and surrender.
There will be no white flag above my door,
I’m in love and always will be…”

Marriage is hard work. Yeah, I know: “Gee thanks for that keen insight, Captain Obvious.” But, no, I don’t think enough people understand what it means to really “work hard” on a marriage.

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150 miles in 60 days

“Close the ears on your head that listen mostly to lies and cynical jokes, there are other things to see, and hear…  a brilliant city inside your soul!”

Day by day, step-by-step, minute by minute, and one foot in front of the other. One step, ten feet, twenty yards… one hundred and fifty miles. 150 miles in two months. I’ve gradually increased my endurance and distance since running 60 miles during the month of July.

It feels good.

How does one start? How does one continue, keep going on, when things get hard. What pushes you forward, through the pain and mad stupor of slothful indolence. Like building a campfire in a tempest, sometimes the downpour of tasks and obligations make it all but impossible to kindle a fire.

There’s a line that comes to me in times like these: “you can’t make it stop hurting, the trick is to not mind that it hurts.”

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