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optoblog movie short #001: The Air Puff

Title: The Air Puff

Author: David J. Langford

Contact: editor@optoblog.com

Fade in.

INT. – OPTOMETRIST PRE-TEST ROOM – DAY

DR. LANGFORD, an optometrist that smiles like a clown, tosses his clipboard on the adjustable table behind three items of ophthalmic instruments. He lowers the table as JANAE, pretty and wholesome, sits down on the stool on the other side of all the machines.

DR. LANGFORD

So...Jay-Nay? What brings you in for an eye exam today?

JANAE

Juh-Nae. Oh, just a check up.

DR. LANGFORD

Okay, then. Let’s start with this machine.

JANAE

Oh, no. Is this that puff of air thing?

DR. LANGFORD

Yeah. This one is not too bad.

JANAE

Really?

DR. LANGFORD

It’s the most gentle non-contact tonometer on the market.

JANAE

‘Kay...

Janae puts her forehead on the rest. The doctor clicks the button. The machine whirs, and we hear a PUFF of air.

JANAE

(high, almost squeal)

Oh!

She sits back and rubs her eye.

DR. LANGFORD

Ready for the next one?

JANAE

I guess...

The machine whirs again then PUFFS. Janae recoils the same way.

JANAE

(rubbing second eye)

I’m glad that’s over with. What does that machine do, anyway?

Dr. Langford tries to repress his wierd smile.

DR. LANGFORD

It checks eye pressure, which is important to know because if it’s outside the normal range, you could have a serious eye condition.

Janae blinks a lot.

JANAE

My eyes feel dry now.

DR. LANGFORD

Okay, let’s move on to this machine. It gives me a close idea of any glasses prescription you might need. Chin on the chin wrest.

She puts her head up to the autorefractor. It beeps and then-PUFF!!

JANAE

Ah! Hey! I thought we had already finished the puff of air thing!

DR. LANGFORD

Did that puff at you?

JANAE

Yes!

DR. LANGFORD

Huh, let’s try the other eye then.

She puts her head back to the machine, but the monitors shows that she’s squinting in anticipation.

DR. LANGFORD

Okay, for the machine to take the measurement, you’re going to need to open your eye wider.

JANAE

But I don’t want it to puff at me.

DR. LANGFORD

Just a little wider...

Janae’s eye opens just barely more and...PUFF!

JANAE

Ow! It did it again.

DR. LANGFORD

(holding up the print-out)

Well...it printed out these glasses prescription numbers, so it can’t be broken.

JANAE

But it blew air at my eye!

DR. LANGFORD

I’ll have a look at it later. Let’s move on to the last machine in this room.

He holds out a clicker for her to take.

DR. LANGFORD

It’s going to test your peripheral vision. Every time you see a flicker in your side vision, just click on the button. It takes about a minute per eye.

JANAE

Okay, that doesn’t sound so bad...

She takes the clicker from Dr. Langford and puts her forehead up to the machine. She SEES THE FLICKERING SQUARES on the screen.

JANAE

So when I see those dealies I just click?

DR. LANGFORD

Yup, but don’t move your eyes around just look straight ahead. Okay...begin.

She presses the clicker and- PUFF! She sits back.

JANAE

What the...

DR. LANGFORD

Keep clicking!

She gets in the the machine again. She clicks, and...

.MONTAGE OF GETTING PUFFED

PUFF! Janae clicks, puffs, and yelps over and over. Dr. Langford looks on with a sly grin.

INT. – OPTOMETRIST PRE-TEST ROOM – DAY

JANAE

Doctor, every time I clicked on the button, it gave me a puff of air in the eyes!

Dr. Langford looks at his display.

DR. LANGFORD

Oh, you know what? I had it set to the serial tonometry setting. Sometimes it’s helpful to take multiple readings to see what your eye pressure is over time. Oh well, no harm done. Let’s go into the exam room.

INT. OPTOMETRIST EXAM LANE – DAY

Janae enters rubbing her eyes and sets her things down. As the doctor enters, she looks in the mirror on the wall to see that her eyes are bright red.

JANAE

My eyes are really red!

DR. LANGFORD

Don’t worry, that will go away in a minute. Have a seat on that dentist-looking chair.

JANAE

I hope you’re right.

DR. LANGFORD

Of course I’m right.

He scoots a big Phoropher up to her head.

DR. LANGFORD

Now, which is better? One or two?

We see an eye chart, and switching between one or two, WE DON’T NOTICE ANY DIFFERENCE.

JANAE

Um..

Black Screen

SUPER: 20 MINUTES LATER...

INT. OPTOMETRIST EXAM LANE – DAY

DR. LANGFORD

And now which is better, one or two? One or two?

JANAE

I don’t...uh..

Dr. Langford pulls the machine away.

DR. LANGFORD

Okay, it looks like you don’t need glasses still.

JANAE

All that just to find out-

DR. LANGFORD

Okay, one last thing, I’m going to look inside your eyes with my microscope.

He swivels a slit lamp over. It looks kinda’ like those other machines in the pretest room.

JANAE

Doctor, look...I’d rather not do this one.

DR. LANGFORD

Well, I need to look inside your eyes to complete the exam.

JANAE

But couldn’t you do it with something...else?

He pulls out an ophthalmoscope, an innocent-looking flashlight.

DR. LANGFORD

I guess I could use this.

JANAE

Let me see that.

He hands it over. She twists it apart, looks, and reassembles it.

JANAE

Yah, I guess that’s okay.

He takes it back and gets...uncomfortably close to her face.

JANAE

(pushing back)

Whoa, whoa!

DR. LANGFORD

With the ophthalmoscope, I have to get in close. You chose this one. Don’t worry. Nothing touches you.

Janae still has a defiant look of doubt.

DR. LANGFORD

Just a quick thing, and then we’re done.

JANAE

(a look that says don’t cross me)

Real quick.

DR. LANGFORD

Yes.

JANAE

It won’t hurt.

DR. LANGFORD

No.

JANAE

Fine. Get it over with.

He brings the “flashlight” in again, still uncomfortably close.

We SEE ALL THE BRIGHT LIGHTS that she sees.

And then... PUFF! She recoils.

JANAE

That’s it! I’ve had it!

She stands up from the exam chair.

JANAE

I’m not paying for this!

She starts to walk out.

A BLACK SPOT BLINDS her central vision and full view of the doorway.

Janae hits the wall. She holds her forhead.

JANAE

You are sick!

As she exits she has fire in her red, red eyes.

EXT. PARKING LOT – DAY

Dr. Langford strolls to his car. As he gets out his keys.. WHACK! A force of nature- a flash, which vaguely looks like Janae, body checks him onto the car. His limp body then slides to the ground.

Janae brings around the car a big air compressor on wheels. She holds open his eyes while pressing the trigger. Air whooshes his hair and then her aim corrects to his eyes.

JANAE

(as she alternates the aim between his eyes)

Which is better now, doctor? One! or Two!

Dr. Langford whimpers, eyes red. Now Janae has the weird smile.

FADE TO BLACK and ROLL CREDITS

INT. OPTOMETRIST EXAM LANE – DAY

Dr. Langford gets really close to Janae with an ophthalmoscope...and steals a kiss.

FADE TO BLACK

Posted in Optoblog, Scripts.

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Fun Fact #001

The phrase “apple of thine eye” is really a mistranslation. We should be saying “Little Man of the Eye” or “Little Doll of the eye.”
If you are the little man in God’s eye that means He is watching over you so closely that whoever looks at His eyes will see you in His cornea’s reflection.

Posted in Asides, Optoblog.


The Mysteries Surrounding Imagine Dragons, Matt Meese, and On Top of the World Music Video

The “On Top of the World” music video by Imagine Dragons is my most favorite music video of all time.  The video portrays a faked moon landing while referencing Stanley Kubrick and late 1960s pop culture.  It was written and directed by Matt Eastin and Corey Fox.  In addition to Imagine Dragons, it features the lead actor from Napoleon Dynamite, Jon Heder, and many from the cast of StudioC, BYUtv’s sketch comedy show.   Guest appearances also include Whit Hertferd, Marvin Payne, the monkey from Friends, members of New Electric Sound, and Robert Connolly from Fictionist.  Also appearing is Alex Sermon, wife of lead guitarist Wayne Sermon, and Aja Volkman, wife of lead singer Dan Reynolds and from the band Nico Vega.

Making Of

Some great coverage regarding the making of the video includes:

Studio C and Matt Meese

Interestingly, many of the StudioC cast members are in the video, but not all of them!  Here is a list of Studio C cast members and their roles along with a link to their twitter accounts:

Curiously missing are Matt Meese, Stacey Harkey, and Stephen Meek.  It’s possible that with a tight shooting schedule that the three of them were out-of-town or otherwise disposed, but is that likely?  Sure, neither Stacey nor Stephen are  the creator of Studio C, so they may not have been asked to be in the music video.  (However, why not??!!!???   What is wrong with you guys?  Will Stacey and Stephen ever speak out about this injustice?)  Now, Matt Meese on the other hand created Studio C.  Why wouldn’t he be in the Imagine Dragons music video with almost all the other Studio C cast?

UPDATE: Read this comment by an anonymous poster who seems to know what he or she is talking about.

Well, it turns out Matt may be in it after all.  Take a careful look at this image.

TV viwers watch the Moon Landing via a shop window.  Is Matt Meese there?

I propose that the guy in the brown fedora wearing sunglasses is none other than Matt Meese! (UPDATE: The aforementioned anonymous poster says the Fedora Guy is Monson Hayes.)

Notice the face in question is baby smooth with faint lips just like these photos of Matt Meese trying not to laugh:

Matt Meese almost laughing.

Matt Meese almost laughing. h/t @Studio_C-Fan

[UPDATED: IMDB now says, :(13 Nov 2013) Music video released for Imagine Dragons “On Top of the World” – Window Watcher”  I had previously been informed that IMDB said he was a Russian cosmonaut, which he clearly wasn’t.  Sorry about the much-ado-about-nothing.]

So I apologize to Matt Meese for accusing him of not being in the video when he actually was.  It’s possible that Stacey and Stephen were in the video but their scene was cut.  I would really like an explanation.  It’s curious that more people involved in the making of the music video haven’t blogged every detail about their involvement.  The only one to do so that I’ve seen is the costume designer (see link above).  Did they have to sign non disclosure agreements  or something?

Hot Topic

Imagine Dragons currently have four official videos. This narrative could be considered controversial because, well, just ask anyone, “Do you think we put men on the moon?”

You are likely to get strong responses for Yes and No, Continued…

Posted in Asides, Optoblog.

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The Problem with Godzilla (2014)

I took my son to see Godzilla in 3D on opening night. It was great that we shared the experience, but the Godzilla movie left me emotionally unsatisfied for 3 reasons:

(Spoilers ahead)

 

  1. I thought the movie was about the father, but then they take a turn, and I guess we follow the son the rest of the movie even though the father had all the emotion in the first act.
  2. Everyone knows you don’t kill the mentor until the end of the second act.  If the father isn’t going to play the hero, then I guess he is the mentor.  They kill the father in the early second act.
  3. Fine, you kill the father early on, but you’re not going to let us see any catharsis with the father and son? Seriously, the closing image should have been the son at the father’s grave or something. Emotionally I want to see the son reconcile with his father.

Anyway, other than not being emotionally satisfying, Godzilla 2014 was…fine.

Posted in Asides, Reviews.

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Allergy Eyes Handout

I posted on my practice website the information that I wrote for a patient handout on allergy eyes. There’s some new stuff in there reflecting the current research on intestinal flora and allergy symptoms.
See also:

It appears that most of America’s health problems could be solved by ceasing the Standard American Diet and implementing the Paleo/Atkins/LowCarb diet. I’m betting research will someday show it helps with glaucoma, AMD, dry eyes, MGD, and many other eye conditions related to inflammation and blood vessel pathology.

Posted in Optoblog.

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I am Dropping Participation with BlueCross

This is the e-mail I just sent to BlueCross:

Dear BlueCross,

It is with regret that I inform you that I wish to terminate my contract with BlueCross and no longer be in your network. I understand that I have to continue seeing BlueCross patients for 90 more days.

If you are interested in why I am leaving you, my accounts receivable with BlueCross patients is unacceptably high.

Since I am an optometrist, I need fast, easy access to whether a member has a routine eye exam benefit (S0620, S0621) and whether a contact lens evaluation is covered (92310).

For non-Regence plans, I have to make lengthy phone calls and navigate through terrible phone trees before finally talking with a representative. This process takes longer than performing the actual exam.

While Regence has a nice website for explaining benefits and is good about paying what I expect, every other BlueCross association is unpredictable about paying what I’m expecting. I often have to send out statements or refunds. Usually statements. Hence the high accounts receivable.

I know this will hit you in the wallet as well since I am the lowest-fee eye doctor in Cache Valley. If in the future BlueCross comes out with a website that allows an optometrist to see vision benefit details for any BlueCross member from any state/association, then feel free to let me know, and I’ll reconsider. I would also reconsider if a new rule allowed one to participate only with Regence and exclude all other BlueCross associations.

Sincerely,
David J. Langford, O.D.

I find it unacceptable in this day and age that I can’t look up vision benefits for an entire insurance company in one place. This probably has something to do with BCBS being independent associations instead of one giant insurance company. It is still ridiculous and a big pain in my side that won’t be there in 90 days.

I feel sorry for my BCBS patients. If it’s any consolation, the Utah State University BlueCross beneficiaries can send in their receipt and get 70% reimbursed for a routine eye exam done out-of-network. Not bad.

Posted in Optoblog.

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How Movies Would End if Written by Utahns #002

EXT. CITY STREET – DAY

Our plain-clothes, police action hero, DOYLE, stands in the street, arms outstretched. A 1971 PONTIAC LEMANS screeches to a halt, barely missing him.

Doyle pulls a gun and muzzles the driver.

DOYLE

Get out of the car!

The DRIVER acts like he is about to unbuckle his seat belt, but really he draws a GUN from his appendix holster.

BAM BAM BAM! All three hit Doyle in the chest. Bending down to a knee, Doyle returns fire, but his shots go wide as the LeMans skids out in reverse.

Doyle collapses on the blacktop.

The bad guy Doyle was chasing gets caught later by a smarter, more polite policeman who is still alive.

Posted in Optoblog.

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How Movies Would End if Written by Utahns #001

EXT. DESERT HIGHWAY – DAY

KURT RUSSELL and KATHLEEN QUINLAN look blankly at the engine of their Jeep Grand Cherokee.

A TRACKER TRAILER pulls over, kicking up dust in their faces. A seeming normal-looking JOE hops out.

JOE

Looks like yer broken down. Why don’t the missus ride with me in ta town. You, feller, stay here till the tow truck arrives.

KATHLEEN

(to Kurt)

I don’t know...

KURT

That sounds perfect!

(to Kathleen)

I’ll see you later, honey.

They smooch. Joe is already opening the door to the passenger side of the cab. She walks over but questioningly looks back at Kurt.

KURT

Stay safe! I’ll be waiting. Right here.

Joe helps her up. Closes the door and walks around to his side.

JOE

Don’t worry. I’ll take care of her.

Kurt waves. The truck pulls out. Two hundred yards later, the truck crosses into the oncoming lane, CRASHES over a speed limit sign, and comes to a rest after glancing a concrete barrier.

EXT. CRASH SITE – CONTINUOUS

Kathleen exits the cab. With an unsteady gate she walks in the middle of the highway. Pupils dilated, she checks both directions frequently. She has BLOOD spatters on her face. She rubs an ear with one hand and holds a REVOLVER with the other. Kurt runs up.

KURT

What the heck happened?

Kathleen stows the gun back in her purse.

KATHLEEN

(shouting)

What?

Kurt leans in to her ear.

KURT

What happened?

Kathleen slows her jitters.

KATHLEEN

Well, he said he was going to rape, torture, and kill me. I said to stop the truck, but then he tried to restrain me, brandishing a knife. So I shot him.

Kurt looks at her and then into the cab. Joe is hunched over. Blood is spattered around the windows.

KURT

Well, we can still drive this rig into town. Do you want to dump the body out or unhitch the trailer?

KATHLEEN

Body.

Posted in Optoblog.

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Funny Utah Medicaid Observation

Utah Medicaid is changing their copays for 2014:

For Non-Traditional (Blue Card), they used to only cover the first $30, then you would pay the balance. Now, at my office your routine eye exam is covered without any copay since I am an optometrist. (At an ophthalmologist office, there is a $3 copay.)

For Primary Care Network, a.k.a PCN (Yellow Card), you used to have a $5 copay. For 2014, there is no copay on the routine eye exam at my office since I am an optometrist. (At an ophthalmologist office, there is a $3 copay.)

For Traditional (Purple Card), there is still no copay for 2014 on a routine eye exam.

I think it’s funny how the patient pays less to see an optometrist vs an ophthalmologist. On the face it doesn’t feel fair. Theoretically, for the same procedure code, why should the patient pay any different?

Practically, OMDs charge more than ODs, so maybe this is a way for Utah Medicaid to incentivize “clients” to see an optometrist instead of an ophthalmologist. OMDs could be miffed, but they probably aren’t because $3 isn’t that big of a penalty; therefore, it should cause very few patients to actually alter provider choice.

Still, it’s curious. I wonder at what OD/OMD copay differential the OMDs would become vocal.

Posted in Optoblog.

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Part Time Optometrist Position in Utah

Are you looking for a part time, fill-in-type optometrist job in Northern Utah? VisionHealth EyeCare is hiring a Saturday-only optometrist. See this webpage for a job description and how to apply.

Posted in Optoblog.

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