Outside The Office | September 2017

Living the Life

Currently, what book are you reading, what TV series are you binge-watching, what app do you use the most, and where do you get your daily news?

Book: Keep Swinging, a Kindle single by Rick Martin. I also recommend The Billionaire’s Vinegar: the Mystery of the World’s Most Expensive Bottle of Wine by Benjamin Wallace, and When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi.

TV series: I am rewatching Game of Thrones. You can get lost and forget what happened 3 hours after you watched it.

App: The Weather app, to check whether I can ski or wake-surf in the morning or have to sit it out.

Daily news: I do not have time for news, and it is hard to tell what is real and what is fake these days. If I read anything, it is the Liberty Headlines (libertyheadlines.com; totally red [ie, conservative]) or the Daily Skimm (the skimm.com; totally blue [ie, liberal]), and then I have to figure out what is real and fake.

What is something in your life you would happily do again, and what is something you would never do again?

Happily do again: It may sound sappy, but I would remarry my wife. I would also do high school or college or anything again except the first 2 years of medical school.

Never do again: My nephew and I once decided to climb a mountain and ski down. The wind picked up to 60 or 70 mph, and I was about to walk off the edge of a mountain before someone guided me in the right direction. Next time, I would look at that Weather app first. Again, I would never want to redo the first 2 years of medical school, but they are required.

If you had to donate half your income tomorrow, to whom would you give it?

I would give every homeless person in Greensboro a job. I am not wealthy enough to do much, but every man and woman should have a job. I would give them a salary and a home, and I would get to pick their job. If they chose not to participate, then I would have them move to Burlington, Winston-Salem, or High Point, North Carolina. Of course, I would pay for the move.

What are three places at the top of your bucket list?

No. 1. I have never played golf in Scotland. I would like to do that and listen to the bagpipes while drinking scotch on the 19th hole.

No. 2. I have never had a chance to dive in the Maldives, which is one of the coolest spots on the planet.

No. 3. I should probably go to one pole or the other, but that would be really cold. I am not into cold. I would also like to see Machu Picchu in Peru, but it is cold there, too. Maybe I should keep thinking about No. 3.

If there is one high-risk thing that you have not done but remain curious about, what is it?

I have always wanted to jump out of a plane—one that is flying and has no problems. However, I cannot because I broke my neck while barefoot waterskiing, and my orthopedic surgeon said that parachuting and bungee jumping are out of the question unless I want to risk never feeling my arms and legs again.

Karl G. Stonecipher, MD
  • clinical associate professor of ophthalmology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • associate, Piedmont EyeSurgical and Laser Center, Greensboro, North Carolina
  • director, TLC Laser Eye Centers, Greensboro and Raleigh, North Carolina; CRST editorial board member
  • stoneNC@aol.com
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