Gluten-Free Parody Makes Celiac Disease Less Miserable

My daughters are big fans of Les Misérables, and we regularly hear strains from the movie soundtrack throughout the house and on family car rides. They also are real troupers when it comes to helping with gluten-free baking and cooking, which is a necessity in our house because my son John and I both have celiac disease.

So Ruthie was excited when she came across this parody that blended the two topics…and posted it on my Facebook wall. If you haven’t had to deal with gluten-free baking, references like xanthan gum may be lost on you, but the parody by Michael Bihovsky is really well done:

Read the story of how it was created.

Another Austin Buzzer Beater

Regular readers who know of my family’s basketball roots may have seen this post from last March about my son’s basketball team, in which his teammate, my nephew Tom, took an alley oop pass for a last-second dunk to send Austin High School to the Minnesota State Basketball Tournament.

Last night my daughter Rebekah’s Riverland Community College basketball team had a similar ending, but I was in Cleveland and only heard the play-by-play over the phone. Rebekah had a great game with 19 points and 25 rebounds before fouling out with 2 minutes to play, and with 4.8 seconds left the opposing North Iowa Area Community College made 1 of 2 free throws to take a 2-point lead. Victoria Larson took the inbounds pass, dribbled 5 times to just past the 3/4 court mark, and let fly:

Congratulations Victoria on a once-in-a-lifetime shot!

More Video Fun: The Alley Oop

In follow-up Social Media 220: How to Customize Your YouTube Player, in which I showed how to tailor your users’ experience of the embedded YouTube player using this tool, here’s a fun personal video.

Last night the Austin Packers basketball team, on which my son Joe and nephew Tom are starters, had the largest margin of victory for an Austin basketball team in at least the last decade, as they cruised to a 74-19 win against winless Faribault. The starters played less than half of the game, but here’s the highlight taken from the four-minute compilation, as Joe took a beautiful Alley Oop pass from point guard Zach Wessels for a dunk:

If one of the rules for getting more video views is to have the video start fast and grab attention, jumping in at the middle lets you do that while keeping the rest of the video for context. And if you watch the whole thing starting from the beginning you’ll see that Tom almost had a similar dunk at the 1:19 mark.

We’re proud of how well the boys play, but more importantly how they play…as a team. And it’s pretty neat for my parents to be able to watch their grandsons on the same court, in the community where our family has lived for more than 40 years.

Now if I could just get Joe to update his Twitter avatar. 😉


Social Media 220: How to Customize Your YouTube Player

I have been interested in using a YouTube player to display some of our Mayo Clinic videos on our Mayo Web sites. One concern is that at the end of an embedded YouTube video, a list of related videos is automatically displayed at the end.

Here’s an example of a brief video I did to document my newly cleaned office as I prepared to start fresh in 2012:

With a quick Google search, I found this site, which makes it really easy to customize your player.

Among the changes you can make are:

  • Autoplay (have the video start automatically when the page is loaded)
  • Hide the video title
  • Hide the related videos list
  • Adjust size of the player
  • Enable or disable full-screen mode
  • Start the video somewhere in the middle.

Here is what it looks like after the customization:

Here’s another version with looping of the video (and showing the related videos):


The other neat thing about this online tool is that it lets you understand the syntax involved in the embed codes, so that you can adjust the settings manually.

Finally, here’s one more embed, in which I have our Mayo Clinic “Know Your Numbers” video start at the beginning of one of my two cameos.


Do you have other tricks for customizing display of your YouTube videos? How do you do it?

Where’s Lee?

This isn’t an allusion to my travels; I’m staying in Minnesota for the whole month, with no trips scheduled until February.

It’s about this video we did through our Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media, in cooperation with our colleagues in the Office of Women’s Health and our cardiology group.

I wrote the lyrics to this parody of Tommy TuTone’s 867-5309/Jenny and was the Executive Producer, and Makala Johnson from our team shot, edited and coordinated production. We had a great team for the project, including a band and back-up singers drawn almost entirely from our Mayo Clinic employee population, and over 100 enthusiastic concertgoers.

So here’s the trivia question for the day:

Where are my two cameos in the video?

Put your guesses in the comments below. And with February Heart Month coming up, I hope you’ll also help spread the word.