Like any other nonathletic, self respecting computer nerd, I spend most of the Olympics paying only enough attention to feign interest in a quick conversation. Being as socially awkward as any teenager can be, it struck me to do a quick Wikipedia read-up on Michael Phelps, so that I too could taste the sweet, sweet ambrosia of being included. In my research, I found that there are two famoues Michael Phelps. One, is the hyperactive American hero and Olympic champion. The other? A man of science.
Michael E. Phelps, Chief of the Division of Nuclear Medicines at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA pioneered a little medical miracle that you probably take for granted. That's right, Michael E. Phelps helped to develop "Positron emission tomography." "PET" is used to develop high resolution, three-dimensional models of organs, a "Super X-ray" if you will.
Haven't we, as Americans, always desired to honor the real heroes in our world? While Michael Phelps is winning medals and breaking records, Michael E. Phelps is saving lives. It may not be as glamorous, being a scientist or doctor than a fortunately mal-formed swimmer, but someone has to recognize our unsung heroes!
And that is why, even though Michael Phelps is number one in the Olympics, he will never be the number one Michael Phelps to me.