EditorialNawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and WhimsyDominick M. Maino, OD, MEd, FAAO, FCOVD-AEditor, Optome...
words, a puzzled look appeared on her face. She                     New Orleans is the land of Bourbon and atold me that s...
but a full bodied spirit requiring careful, dedicated         •	Maino D. An American optometrist in Edinburgh.preparation....
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Maino D. Nawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and Whimsy. Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(4): 158-160


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Maino D. Nawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and Whimsy. Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(4): 158-160 An editorial I wrote about my experiences in New Orleans

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Maino D. Nawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and Whimsy. Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(4): 158-160

  1. 1. EditorialNawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and WhimsyDominick M. Maino, OD, MEd, FAAO, FCOVD-AEditor, Optometry & Vision Development; Professor of Pediatrics/Binocular Vision, Illinois College of Optometry Keywords: New Orleans, Nawlins, wisdom, literate, who could also speak and write normalpractice management English the rest of us could understand. Astounding! (My presentation is available on Slideshare and is Nawlins. NOLA. New Orleans: An urban titled: Technology: Medical Education and Clinicalmegalopolitan environment like no other. Practice-The Human Interface2) New Orleans is actually not a city. It is a sensation.It is sensory. It is tactile, kinesthetic and gustatory. New Orleans TherapeuticsIt is auditory and visual. It is an olfactionation of As I walked around NOLA, I noticed a markedits surround (a wide variety of smells, most of them increase in art galleries since my last visit a few yearsincredibly good). It is memory past. It is visual ago. In one of the galleries, the work of a specialfuture. It is now, ever changing. education teacher turned artist, Randy Cooper,3 was While lecturing at the Information Systems featured. He takes wire mesh and turns this material(IS) Educator’s Conference (ISECON) in New into a 3D sculpture. What sets this work of art apart isOrleans this past fall,1 I noted that those in the painted canvas placed behind it that gives shadowattendance were similar and even more depth to the presentation. The arts ofto functional optometrists Nawlins supports all things 3D!in several ways. They werecurious, open to new As I continued my travelsideas, skeptical when it in this city of built-in multi-was appropriate to be sensory therapy procedures, Iso and loved life. These came across a guitar playingindividuals represented angel apparently mumblinga different kind of geek, through a song with a greathowever. They were sense of musicality. Whileteachers. I met one Dr Maino demonstrating the singing, she added rhythmicperson who was a teacher Brock String to IS Educators. clicks and clacks with the tapsof English prior to her More than 75% of the on her shoes. The vocal part of audience had a binocular visionascendency to IS-hood. dysfunction as noted on the the song sounded like she wasImagine that, a computer Brock String! using words, but I could not understand any of them. ThisCorrespondence regarding this article should be emailed to dmaino@ico.edu was similar to throat singing,or sent to Dominick M. Maino, OD, MEd, Illinois College of Optometry, but there was something3241 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60616. All statements are theauthor’s personal opinion and may not reflect the opinions of the College different.4 As I waited for her The 3D art of Randy Cooperof Optometrists in Vision Development, Optometry & Vision Development to finish, I noted that she didor any institution or organization to which the author may be affiliated. not look at me easily. As a performer, even thoughPermission to use reprints of this article must be obtained from the editor. she was comfortable within her performance, she didCopyright 2012 College of Optometrists in Vision Development. OVD isindexed in the Directory of Open Access Journals. Online access is available not seem to be so with her audience of one. Afterat http://www.covd.org. she finished the song, I told her how I really enjoyed her art of non-singing music. She tentatively lookedMaino D. Nawlins Knowledge and Other Bits of Wisdom, Wit and at me not quite understanding my statement. WhenWhimsy. Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(4): 158-160 I mentioned that she was singing but not using158 Optometry & Vision Development
  2. 2. words, a puzzled look appeared on her face. She New Orleans is the land of Bourbon and atold me that she could understand all the words she southern distillate frequently referred to as whisk(e)y.was singing and was surprised when I told her that Over the past 3 years I have done my very best toI could not do so. From our interactions I thought become a learned scholar when it comes to all thingsshe might have Asperger Syndrome which has noted of this chameleonic aqua vitae elixir.7,8 Scotch whisky,vocal irregularities that include residual articulation Bourbon, and Tennessee’s spirits of color fascinatedistortion, uncodable sounds, and sounds noted as me. They require the finest grains and barley, waterinappropriate in phrasing and resonance. Her demure of the purist quality, and wood. Each of these threedemeanor and fascinating ingredients by themselves is of interest, but whensound production, along combined carefully, with delicate artistry and awith a magnificent sense hopeful outlook towards the future; the end result isof musicality and rhythm; nothing less than spectacular.brought me into a world of I visited the Bourbon House9 in NOLA specificallywonderment, motion and to see if they had any special Bourbons suitable forsound/audition/vocalization/ my sipping pleasure. I found the bartender to bevisual integration. I would most enthusiastic and knowledgeable when it camelove to be able to duplicate to the subject of whiskey. I also discovered that thethis within a therapeutic Bourbon House is the home of the Bourbon Societyenvironment. Angel singing without words. of New Orleans.10 With the barkeep’s assistance, I New Orleans should be an optometric chose an 18 year old bottle of Jefferson’s Presidentialvision therapy procedure. It certainly meets all Select Bourbon. This was a fairly robust spirit withthe require­ ents of using the state of the art hints of oak, vanilla, and caramel. When I combined mconcepts of neuroplasticity it with a platter of oysters on theto alter brain structure.5,6 Thank you for all that half-shell, it changed character.These concepts include the It became a bit sweeter withuse of novelty, height­ ened you do to make the lives overtones of citrus, apple andattention, and arousal. English toffee. The gustatory Continuing my NOLA of our patients better.” en­vironment changed theadventure, I experienced two experienced outcomes.ladies who, with a violin and guitar, created street music Changing our therapy environment often altersto excite the auditory imagination. The violin could our therapeutic result. If done correctly, the outcomewail like a banshee or purr like a kitty. The guitar was is often more than the sum of its component parts.a rhythmic drum, as well as lyrical accompaniment. When water, grain and wood are altered in such a wayI bought their CD and couldn’t wait to listen to it to produce a flavor-filled spirit and then you add toat home. While driving in my car, I listened to this this an interesting experiential-altering component,now apparently discontented violin and the lone it often results in a new and improved outcome. Trybeating heart of a guitar. Unfortunately, all I found new combinations during your optometric visionwas disappointment. The violin now produced a tone therapy. Obtain new and improved results. Stretchthat was just ever so slightly under-pitched. The guitar your patient’s experience.came across as overbearing, beating out the rhythm La Fée Verte (The Green Fairy) was banned in therelentlessly. United States in 1915 and not available again until The only thing that changed was the environment. 2007. It was banned because grape vines once againOn the streets of Nawlins it was a riotous intermingling started to grow in France. It was banned because it wasof sound, rhythm, smells, lights and visual delights. In deemed to be evil … and evil’s name was Absinthe. Itmy car it was two folks playing a slightly out of tune was banned because like many spirits in the early 20thviolin and a backup stringed instrument. When we Century, it lead to intemperance.conduct optometric vision therapy, the environment Absinthe is an anise-flavored, often green coloredis as important as the therapy techniques we use. distillate (hence the nickname Green Fairy) madeMake your therapy environment as supportive of from Artemisia absinthium (grand wormwood), greendesired outcomes as the procedures chosen. anise, sweet fennel, and other herbs. It is not a liqueur,Volume 43/Number 4/2012 159
  3. 3. but a full bodied spirit requiring careful, dedicated • Maino D. An American optometrist in Edinburgh.preparation. It also requires various tools needed by Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(2):58-5913no other beverage.11 • Maino D. Single Malt Scotch and Developmental After a meal of gumbo, rice and beans, and red Optometry. Optom Vis Dev 2012:43(1):6-914fish; could there be any better way to end the evening • Maino D. The number of placebo controlled,than to taste once forbidden New Orleans fruit with double blind, prospective, and randomizedfriends at the Old Absinthe House . The bartender (in strabis­ us surgery outcome clinical trials: none!. m“yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum” pirate dress) reviewed Optom Vis Dev. 2011;42(3):135-13815the checkered history associated with absinthe while • Maino D. Mistakes were made (Yes by you!).setting up the necessary tools for the La Fée Verte ritual. Optom Vis Dev 2011;42(2):66-6916Absinthe glasses, spoons, fountain, sugar cubes and • Maino D. The airline’s manual of prac­ ticeiced water were put to their intended use while a green management for optometry. Optom Vis Devlight illuminated the glass from beneath. Slowly as 2008:39(3):111-11217measured drops of water dissolved the sugar cube and Thank you for allowing me the privilege of servingthe elixir turned a milky-white green within the glass, the membership of COVD as editor of Optometry there was no doubt that a La Fée Verte was present Vision Development. Thank you for your support andin our midst. Similar to Absinthe, optometric vision willingness to let me improve my craft as both authortherapy (orthoptics) was embraced by the French. and editor. Thank you for all you do to make the livesSoon however, it was banned by our ophthalmologic of our patients better.colleagues (OMD) in the United States as being evil.Only recently has it been considered acceptable by Referencesour OMD colleagues. 1. Available from http://goo.gl/lccb2 accessed 11/12 No matter where we go, examples of how best 2. Availabe from http://goo.gl/rfgiz accessed 11/12to conduct optometric vision therapy emerge from 3. Available from http://www.randycooperart.com/ accessed 11/12our travel environment. Whether it is home here in 4. Available from http://goo.gl/8iJlk accessed 11/12Chicago, in Fort Worth, Texas or even in Nawlins; 5. Maino D, Donati, R, Pang, Viola S, Barry S. Neuroplasticity. In Taub M,we view our world through multisensory lenses. Bartuccio M, Maino D. (Eds) Visual Diagnosis and Care of the Patient with Special Needs; Lippincott Williams Wilkins. New York, NY;2012:275-288.Use these lenses with your patients. Allow them to 6. Maino D. Neuroplasticity: Teaching an Old Brain New Tricks. Rev Optomexperience vision and all the sensorial attributes of life 2009. 46(1):62-64,66-70.in a wondrous manner. 7. Maino D. Single Malt Scotch and Developmental Optometry. Optom Vis This is my last editorial for Optometry Vision Dev 2012:43(1):6-9Development. Our new publication, Optometry 8. Maino D. An American optometrist in Edinburgh. Optom Vis Dev 2012;43(2):58-59Visual Performance (OVP) will soon fill the void 9. Available from http://goo.gl/eoB6P accessed 11/12however. As a founding co-editor of this new journal, 10. Available from http://goo.gl/7FdIs accessed 11/12I hope to bring not only all that was great about 11. Conrad, B. Absinthe: History in a bottle. Chronicle Books, LLC. 1997.OVD, but also new ways of sharing the excitement of Available from http://goo.gl/0LyEz accessed 11/12what we do every day with the entire world. 12. Available at http://www.oldabsinthehouse.com/ accessed 11/12 Please take a moment and re-read a few of (what 13. Available at http://goo.gl/0bG5T accessed 11/12I consider) my best efforts at word-artistry. These 14. Available from http://goo.gl/HXCpA accessed 11/12editorials include: 15. Available from http://goo.gl/M3gC1 accessed 11/12 16. Available from http://goo.gl/dMK56 accessed 11/12 17. Available from http://goo.gl/IGeWB accessed 11/12160 Optometry Vision Development