Friday, May 14, 2010

Cool Explosions & The End of Suffering

Because of my high-school fainting spells, I had to steer clear of Biology classes in college. That didn't leave a lot of options when it came to getting my science classes in. I took a couple classes in Geology in my first year or two of college, but it was awfully dry (pun intended).

I heard through the grapevine that there was an older dude who taught Chemistry and actually made it fun (I was only able to pass Chemistry in high school because of the ridiculously generous curve Mr Johnson gave us). Word was that he was quite humorous and had really cool small explosions that he enlightened the class with. The name of the course was Chemistry Appreciation. I decided that if I got in over my head, I could just drop the class.

On the first day, I found a seat and waited for the professor to appear. Just then, there was a burst of smoke at the front of the room and he appeared amidst it. I felt like I was at Hogwarts, if it had been invented back then, that is. Oh, who am I kidding? He arrived like every other prof usually does.

The first day of classes is always interesting in that you never know if the teachers will be a joy to learn from or insufferable bores that will be a slog to make it through the quarter with (Semesters weren't adopted until a couple years after I graduated). Fred Foss had a great sense of humor and must've been in his late 60's or higher. He said that he planned to live a LONG time, that the best revenge is to outlive others. He mentioned that there were strategies one could use to help make this possible, not least of them, whiskey and a broad.



Seriously, he said that he'd not been sick in many years and one of the reasons he believed this was so is because of the high amount of vitamin C he ingested every morning. Back then, I caught a cold or flu at least a few times a year, so was more than willing to give his suggestion a try. I wound up buying a bottle of vitamin C that had 500mg tablets, significantly higher than what the FDA recommended (I believe Foss took an even higher dose).

Time passed and Mr. Foss performed many of the tricks, I mean, illusions, I mean experiments that I'd heard about. He made Chemistry more fun than I thought possible. And as the months passed, I did, indeed, get sick much less frequently: It should also be noted that I never get the flu shot.

When I hear that others are suffering with a cold or the flu, I sometimes opine that it wouldn't hurt for them to up their intake of vitamin C. It mostly falls on deaf ears. I'm not sure if they don't believe that it will work or are just of the mind that suffering is next to Godliness, but I always shake my head when I hear that there are bugs going around as they never seem to strike me.

6 comments:

Rocketstar said...

Great teachers are priceless. Vitamin C does nothing to kill viruses or ward them off. Some studies say there may be a SLIGHT help with the effects but basically does nothing.

Thomas said...

I've also heard that vitamin C doesn't have the power that I've since attributed to it. Perhaps it was my belief in its power that caused my immune system to seemingly strengthen.

It certainly makes me wonder if my health would continue to flourish if I stopped taking the supplements.

And if I then started getting sick more often, would it be because I wasn't taking the vitamin C any longer or because of my belief that I would get sick more frequently without it?

Extra Ordinary Me said...

Garlic works...
I don't know about vitamin C though. I wish I was more immune to viruses.

Narkissos said...

beliefs are pretty powerful stuff...my docs sez stay positive, it helps your body recover faster...
had a favorite teacher....my psychology professor, ol' dude woz hilarious....:)

Sundar said...

Linus Pauling (the only guy to win 2 Nobel Prizes, one in Chemistry) also advocated taking high doses of Vitamin C. I think he lived a long happy life. Just sayin.

Timothy Smith said...

My favorite teachers are the ones that focus more on how to think instead of what to think.