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Showing posts from May, 2023

Cutting-edge technology that avoids the ‘cut’

By Noralyn O. Dudt About 18 years ago, I went through a medical procedure known as endoscopy. It's a procedure that enables a gastroenterologist to look into the inside of the stomach without making an incision using   a medical device called endoscope. Endoscopy is derived   from the Greek words "endon", which   means 'in or within'   and scope which means to 'see'. An endoscope is a thin, tube-like instrument with a light and a lens for viewing and is inserted into the body through the mouth. The tiny video camera on its tip enables doctors to view the internal parts of the stomach and the esophagus. As I was burping more than the normal, the gastroenterologist wanted to check   if my sphincter had   become loose. A sphincter is a ring of muscle at the junction of the esophagus and the stomach whose function is to prevent reflux of food and acid from the stomach into the esophagus.   If the sphincter does not close properly, food and liquid can move b

Washington, DC: Where the whole world is (Conclusion)

By Noralyn Dudt BACK in 1790 when Pierre L'Enfant was at work designing what was to become the nation's capital with wide boulevards and common squares,   he probably never envisioned the Washington, DC   that it is today. Although he had helped George Washington's Continental Army in fighting the army of another George (the   King of England) and had an inkling what the new republic would look like, he may not have foreseen nor understood the magnitude of what it would take   to smoothly   run a   democratic republic. That this new nation would require three branches of government to check each other may not have crossed his mind. This was a rather new idea—not since the Athenians   who introduced the concept of democracy around two thousand years earlier. That checks and balances would need a myriad of federal agencies to   efficiently maintain   the functions of government would have been unthinkable at the time: the Supreme Court, the Department of Defense; the Depar

Museums and Art Galleries of The Smithsonian Institution/Monuments and Memorials (Second of a three-part series)

By Noralyn Dudt WASHINGTON DC, the U.S. capital abounds in monuments, memorials, museums, and galleries. When the city was first designed in 1790, the planner whom George   Washington commissioned, Pierre L'Enfant envisioned a grand capital of wide avenues, public squares and inspiring buildings in what was then a district of hills, forests, marshes, and plantations. The centerpiece of L'Enfant's plan was a great "public walk." That's now what we call our National Mall. Stretching for 2 miles, from Capitol Hill to the Potomac River,   this "public walk" is   a wide, straight strands of grass and trees. The Smithsonian museums flank both sides and war memorials are embedded among the famous monuments that memorialize Washington,   Lincoln and Jefferson. With 21 museums including the National Zoological Park, the Smithsonian institution is the world's largest museum, education and research complex.   In one of the most visited museums—the Mus

Washington DC (First of a series)

  By Noralyn Dudt THE MALL in Washington DC is not a shopping place. It's America's public square. It's a place where massive demonstrations occur and requires an extraordinary amount of planning and preparation that involves the Park Police, Capitol Police, Secret Service, the VDOT and the MDOT ( Virginia and Maryland Department of Transportation), the Red Cross, the RFK Stadium for parking, and the METRO subway system for convenient transportation. Preparation includes making sure that routes to hospitals are not blocked in case the demonstrators get injured.   And the "porta-potty" stalls   are ordered to make sure demonstrators will be able to relieve themselves. The idea of multiple departments moving together in a bureaucratic ballet illustrates one of America's endearing quirks: FEDERAL Employees will work their fingers to the bone ensuring that you have the right to tell them how disappointed you are in the system that employs them. Founded on Ju