Thursday, December 30, 2010


Don't tell the Ontario Chicken Board this, but
this oh-so-easy and -yummy chicken noodle soup recipe
works great with leftover turkey! I really recommend using FRESH rosemary rather than dried, though. And don't forget the parsley (fresh or dried, doesn't matter). A little squeeze of lemon juice adds some snap to the bowl.

Catelli's come out with whole wheat egg noodles that are yummy, so you can be brave about making that substitution as well.

Feel free to add in an extra leek (such a wonderful flavour!), or add some mung sprouts and/or ripped fresh baby spinach to your bowl when the soup's steaming hot. VEGETABLES ARE GOOD.

Like Crocuses in Spring, the Shovelers Appear -

Like Crocuses in Spring, the Shovelers Appear -

Monday, December 27, 2010

Each of us is a seed

I am blown away by the beauty of this thought:

"Each of us is a seed, a silent promise, and it is always spring." - Merle Shain

This, my friends, is a meditation-worthy quote. I think it could be a life-changing one.

You are what your father ate too

Fascinating. It's not just genes, but which ones are turned on/off, and how somehow this gene activation is transmitted from one generation to another. The implications are enormous - not just for those who are considering having kids, but what about *society*? If we needed additional moral imperative to intervene in famines, wars, etc., or even just in elevating the standards of nutrition in our cultures, here it is ...

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Desert dawn

Desert dawn
Originally uploaded by John_Freeman.


Thursday, December 09, 2010


There's a thank-you card inside you, waiting to be written. Don't take someone else's contributions for granted. We all want to be appreciated. Send that note - you will have NO IDEA how much it will mean - to them, to you. Who knows what beautiful chain of events it will trigger as your gratitude goes out into the world?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Rent Is Too Damn High Party s Jimmy McMillan at the NY Governor Debate

Healing is magical

“The tendency of nature is to restore the injured body to health, but in order for health to be maintained there must be a change in behavior or understanding. The burnt hand does not return to the fire. Healing includes not only ... the regrowth of damaged skin but the learning of a lesson which previously had been unknown.”

“In order to be healed, the patient must embrace something which was previously outside him or herself, while at the same time returning his or her organism to the care of nature. The intrusive, interventive element may come from God, the spirit, the supernatural, or the surgeon's scalpel, but at any rate it changes the patient intrinsically from the way he or she was before. Healing is magical.”

- Matthew Wood, “Vitalism”

Thursday, October 28, 2010

By Little and By Little: A Girl Named Gia and A Blue Bicycle

By Little and By Little: A Girl Named Gia and A Blue Bicycle

Great story about how the Universe provides opportunities when we ask questions and are open.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Scientists suggest that cancer is purely man-made (The University of Manchester)

Scientists suggest that cancer is purely man-made (The University of Manchester)

News Analysis - When Avandia and Other Drugs Cause Problems They Are Supposed to Prevent -

News Analysis - When Avandia and Other Drugs Cause Problems They Are Supposed to Prevent - "The population is aging, many have chronic diseases. And companies are going after giant markets, huge parts of the population, heavily advertising drugs that are to be taken for a lifetime.

And the way drugs are evaluated, with the emphasis on shorter-term studies before marketing, is not helping, Dr. Carpenter said.

“Here is a wide-scale institutional failure,” he said. “We have placed far more resources and requirements upon premarket assessment of drugs than on postmarket.”"

Friday, October 01, 2010

Divided they ride - Canada -

Physically separated bike lanes. So, so awesome. Hello, Toronto planners - are you listening????

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Every living thing yearns to be free

Every living thing yearns to be free
Originally uploaded by Noisypond.

This is a photo I took in 2006 that I apparently didn't think was all that good, but when I looked at it today, it struck me for some reason. I cropped it a little and like it even more.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A know-nothing strain of conservatism - Andrew Coyne -

A know-nothing strain of conservatism - Andrew Coyne - "It isn’t just that the Tories habitually ignore the expert consensus on a wide range of issues—crime, taxes, climate change—it’s that they want to be seen to be ignoring it. It’s the overt antagonism to experts, and by extension the educated classes, that marks the Tory style. In its own way, it’s a form of class war.

You can see it in the sneering references to Michael Ignatieff’s Harvard tenure, in the repeated denunciations of “elites” and “intellectuals.” In the partial dismantling of the census, we reach the final stage: not just hostile to experts, but to knowledge."

Monday, August 16, 2010

Daily Kos: Judging Obama

Truly insightful, worth the full read.: "The debate on whether it is more appropriate to say that Obama has done a lot or that he has done too little regularly divides DailyKos, and I'd like to tackle it from a slightly different perspective, to say that this is not really about Obama, but about the perspective of the different groups about our civilisation.

I would like to propose that those who think that Obama has not done enough consider that the current system is profoundly failing, and that it is time for systemic changes, instead of the tinkering they see Obama doing, whereas those that tend to focus on what Obama has done think that the system is flawed, but mendable, and that Obama is doing just that, moving things back in the right direction.

And the fact is - we don't know yet what group is right, and we may not know for a few more years."

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Perseid Meteor Showers

Just back from an observatory where 100s of people sprawled out on the grass to catch the Perseid meteor showers. I only saw the occasional "falling star", but the experience of so many races & cultures coming together to peacefully enjoy this celestial display - and the spontaneous rounds of applause it elicited - were 100% worth it. I ♥ Canada.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Royalty Free Music

This quirky, sombre snippet makes me want to use it as the soundtrack for a movie I had no previous intention of making.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

My Name is Roger, and I'm an alcoholic - Roger Ebert's Journal

A wonderful testimony about Alcoholics Anonymous.

Another great quote

The use of force is a last resort. One aspect of violence is that it is unpredictable. Although your initial intention may be to use limited force, once you have engaged in violence the consequences are unpredictable. Violence always brings about unexpected results and almost always provokes retaliation.

- HH the Dalai Lama

Monday, July 26, 2010

Interesting quote

"Sometimes harsh words or physical intervention may be called for. Patience safeguards our inner composure: we are in a stronger position to judge an appropriately non-violent response than if we are overwhelmed by negative thoughts and emotions. It is the opposite of cowardice, which arises when confidence is lost as a result of fear. Being patient means we remain firm even if we are afraid." - HH the Dalai Lama

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Mahablog

The Mahablog: "I get an impression that some of the protesters are opposed to building mosques anywhere in the U.S. A google search showed there already are three mosques in Manhattan and more than 30 in the New York City area. How do we know they aren’t going to train terrorists? some ask. I guess the same way we know, or hope, they aren’t training pedophiles at Saint Patrick’s. If we aren’t going to turn into a police state, sometimes you have to give people the benefit of the doubt that they are what they say they are."

Excellent point, and I love the biting humour. Sorry.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Portrait of the ‘Barefoot Bandit’ reveals lonely, hungry child -


A social worker’s report from the time he was first arrested, at 12, drew a succinct conclusion, at least from the boy’s point of view.

“Colton wants Mom to stop drinking and smoking, get a job and have food in the house,” the report said. “Mom refuses.”

Friday, July 09, 2010

Thank you very much, British Petrol

Thank you very much, British Petrol: "Which means, of course, that no catastrophe will ever be large enough, and the only thing that will finally force us away from oil is, of course, when we run out. And as Alberta's disgusting oilsands prove, we're developing simple horrific, planet-raping techniques to ensure that doesn't happen for a long, long while. Hell, Texas's 'best and brightest' in the biz are already proposing, not ways to wean us off oil, but merely ways to develop better technologies for more efficient drilling. Sort of like saying of course we should never stop declaring wars; we should only develop better ways to kill people. Good thinking. Thanks, Texas. P.S.; Go to hell."


An awesome story from one of my favourite bloggers about the serendipity of an irritation.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

YouTube - UbyKotex: Help Me Choose - Social Experiment

Freakin' hilarious.

YouTube - UbyKotex: Buy Me Tampons - Social Experiment

A second chance or a boot in the face - The Globe and Mail

There's a REASON: why Margaret Atwood is both a Canadian icon and a force to be reckoned with.

"Two protests, seemingly miles apart, were about the kind of country we want to live in"

Tuesday, July 06, 2010 - The World in Action - The World in Action

LOVE LOVE LOVE this!!!! Almost 100000 people have already signed Avaaz's "petition" to send birthday greetings to the Dalai Lama. Imagine - around the world today, people are being unified in appreciation for this voice of compassion, perseverence, grace, and understanding. I just signed the petition, and now I'm seeing a constant flow of personal messages in various languages wishing the Dalai Lama well, and thanking him for his impact on the world.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Obama’s Winning Streak: Peter Beinart on His Historic Gains - The Daily Beast

Obama’s Winning Streak: Peter Beinart on His Historic Gains - The Daily Beast: "So he hasn’t plugged the leak, and his poll numbers are sagging. Truth is, Obama has exceeded in 18 months what Clinton and Carter achieved in a combined 12 years."

Friday, July 02, 2010

When binges go wrong : All & Sundry

I laughed until I cried.

Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

[In the U.S., drowning] is the number two cause of accidental death in children, age 15 and
under (just behind vehicle accidents) – of the approximately 750
children who will drown next year, about 375 of them will do so within
25 yards of a parent or other adult. In ten percent of those drownings,
the adult will actually watch them it, having no idea it is
happening (source: CDC).


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

RealClimate: Leakegate: A retraction

When someone tries to tell you about fixed data regarding climate change, bring up this article.

So let's start addressing the issue finally, hmmm?

Fareed Zakaria: A Voice of Reason

Why it's taken so long for someone to talk like this is beyond me.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Q&A: Tony Robbins on his NBC reality show -- The Live Feed | THR

Q&A: Tony Robbins on his NBC reality show -- The Live Feed | THR

Interesting interview. I'm a big fan and hope to be able to catch this show.


"When I'm not doing something that comes deeply from me, I get bored. When I get bored I get distracted and when I get distracted, I become depressed. It's a natural resistance, and it insures your integrity." -Maria Irene Fornes

My classmate Dimpi posted this quote on her Facebook profile a week ago or so, and I've thought about it a great deal since I first read it. I find the way Fornes describes her self-sabotage and relates it to her integrity fascinating. And I've wondered ... in what other ways could seemingly unproductive behaviour keep us from violating the deepest and truest selves?

Like maybe my awkward behaviour around that person I really really liked until I found out that he was a bit of a philanderer? Or the reserve I've felt around someone that I just couldn't shake off, and then I realized that they have a pattern of inappropriately crossing other people's boundaries, or betraying friendships? What if, deep inside, my instinct/intuition has done a fantastic job of sussing out the situation, but my head hasn't yet caught up? Wouldn't that conflict create some confusing/inexplicable thoughts and behaviours?

A conversation with a friend last night made me do a LOT of processing and thinking today (along the lines above), and I think I'm going to give my intuition more credit going forward. It's worked well for me in the past, in retrospect. Integrity has always been very important to me, but now (as a result of mulling over this quote) the meaning of the word is even richer - it includes being true to myself at my deepest core. And I can't do that unless I stop fighting that instinctual understanding and pay attention to what I may already know but haven't figured out.

Starting today, integrity doesn't just mean decency and keeping my word. It also means being patient enough to hear - and trust - that still small voice, and to live in congruence with my core.

I may not have fleshed out this discussion sufficiently, and I may revisit this topic in the future, but these are my thoughts for now. I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this. Feel free to comment below. :)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

You can tell where this is going, but you can hardly believe it when it gets there : Pharyngula

"Anti-feminist" asserts rape acceptable equalizer: "I'm also wondering now if the fact that we've got our oh-so-sensitive testicles dangling gently in a place just ripe for a savage kick isn't an example of cosmic justice, after all."

Dana Milbank - Republicans' new Web site not exactly what they hoped it would be

Quote of the day: "'A 'teacher' told my child in class that dolphins were mammals and not fish!' a third complains. 'And the same thing about whales! We need TRADITIONAL VALUES in all areas of education. If it swims in the water, it is a FISH. Period! End of Story.'"

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Stomacher - Untitled/Dark Divider on Vimeo

INCREDIBLE video. I am impressed and inspired. This was apparently his first effort at time lapse photography!!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

If today were a symphony

If today were a symphony:

The first movement would be a lilting, bucolic scherzo of songbirds starting at 5AM;

the 2nd movement would be a long discordant adagio starting @ 7AM, featuring heavy machinery w/ jackhammer riffs;

& the final movement, starting sometime after dinner, would be an odd trio of indistinct dialogue from my roommate's TV, the murmur of airplanes flying in & out of airport a half-hour away, & the plaintive caterwauling of a feline companion whose appetite consistently exceeds her alloted portion.

Gulf Coast oil spill map

Gulf Coast oil spill map

A 2020 Vision for Healthy People | Health Care Reform Center

A 2020 Vision for Healthy People | Health Care Reform Center

Daily Kos: Slouching toward neofeudalism (updated)

Daily Kos: Slouching toward neofeudalism (updated)

Op-Ed Columnist - New Alarm Bells About Chemicals and Cancer -

Op-Ed Columnist - New Alarm Bells About Chemicals and Cancer -

Coffee Herbs | Acupuncture and Herbs

Coffee Herbs | Acupuncture and Herbs

The Moral Life of Babies -

The Moral Life of Babies -

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Jian Ghomeshi interviews Al Green (archive)

qpodcast_20080901_7217.mp3 (audio/mpeg Object)

I listened to this interview yesterday, and it really intrigued me. I especially like the portion that begins around the 28-minute mark, where he talks about his job being to "tell all the lonely people that there's LOVE in the world." Beautiful, really - how many people feel that they've been given this kind of mission in life? What would our world be like if more of us truly believed and trusted in this kind of a message?

Why ‘hooking up’ has become so prevalent on campus -

Why ‘hooking up’ has become so prevalent on campus - "The new study, published in March, also helps explain why hooking up has become so prevalent. Trying to actually date seems too risky — put yourself out there, and you might get hurt.

'Men talk most about rejection,' Kahn says. 'When you're hooking up you're not going to get rejected, 'cause you're probably wasted anyway.' (Previous studies have shown that most hookups are preceded by alcohol consumption.)

Both genders said the potential for a broken heart is one of the biggest drawbacks to traditional dating."

Monday, May 10, 2010

First course of veggies may appeal to hungry preschoolers

First course of veggies may appeal to hungry preschoolers

Wow, this is an interesting study! Any parents of young kids wanna try it out and tell me how it works for their families?

Jigsaw Sudoku - Free Online Sudoku Game

Finally! I've found a sudoku puzzle I can win! LOL Jigsaw Sudoku - Free Online Sudoku Game

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.: Sex, Lies and Oil Spills

The Bush/Cheney legacy lives on.

This makes me want to swear, but there is no profanity that will scale to the level of this destruction and waste.

Tactical error

This conversation just happened:

Telehassler [with thick accent]: Hello, may I please speak with [my full name].

Me: Yes, speaking.

Telehassler: blah blah blah Mr. [last name] blah blah blah I should let you know, Mr. [last name], that this call is being recorded for quality control purposes.

Me [politely]: Oh, will they tell you that because I am female, you shouldn't refer to me as Mister?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


I'm Back !
Originally uploaded by Yoann Rigolleau.

Found on Flickr. I wish it were mine, but I'm studying, not playing with my camera. In France. Sigh. :)

Social networking helps hermit crabs find homes

Social networking helps hermit crabs find homes: "One previously identified strategy that apparently helps each hermit crab find the very best shell is joining a lively group activity known as a synchronous vacancy chain. When a new shell becomes available, crabs gather around it and queue up in a line from largest to smallest. Once the largest crab moves into the vacant shell, each crab in the queue swiftly switches into the newly vacated shell right in front of them. As a result, a single vacant shell kicks off an entire chain of shell vacancies that ultimately leads to many crabs getting new, and generally improved, housing."

This is truly awesome.

Freezing the volcano’s lightning | Analysis & Opinion |

For my fellow photogs.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Children's cognitive ability can be affected by exposure to urban air pollutants

Children's cognitive ability can be affected by exposure to urban air pollutants: "A study by the Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health (CCCEH) carried out in Krakow, Poland has found that prenatal exposure to pollutants can adversely affect children's cognitive development at age 5, confirming previous findings in a New York City (NYC) study.

Researchers report that children exposed to high levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Krakow had a significant reduction in scores on a standardized test of reasoning ability and intelligence at age 5. The study findings are published today online in Environmental Health Perspectives.

PAHs are released into the air from the burning of fossil fuels for transportation, heating, energy production, and from other combustion sources."

NOW can we please get over the stupid "climate change is a hoax" spinning and just reduce our burning of fossil fuels?????

The Dawn Blog » Blog Archive » Music vs. militancy


Sunday, April 18, 2010

John McCain: U.S. Lacks A 'Coherent' Iran Policy

As opposed to "Bomb bomb bomb bomb bomb Iran"?

Just listen to his sick "heh heh heh" at the end and tell me you aren't deeply, passionately grateful that Obama's in charge instead.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hébert: Groping in the dark in Ottawa -

Hébert: Groping in the dark in Ottawa - "Taken together though, they make up the disturbing pattern of a government that would rather blindfold its critics and keep Canadians guessing as to its actions than be accountable for them."

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Increasing use of newer antipsychotics in children: A cause for concern? | Therapeutics Initiative

Horrific: "American children are approximately three times more likely to be prescribed psychotropic medications in general than children in Europe. Antidepressant and stimulant prescribing are three times greater in the US than in the Netherlands and Germany, while antipsychotic prescribing in the US is 1.5 to 2.2 times greater."

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Featured Article - Older non-smokers gain most from tobacco ban, study suggests

Featured Article - Older non-smokers gain most from tobacco ban, study suggests: "A study in New Zealand showed that, three years after a smoking ban on all workplaces was introduced, hospital admissions for heart attacks among men and women aged 55-74 fell by 9 per cent. This figure rose [increased] to 13 per cent for 55-74 year olds who had never smoked."

This is really interesting research! It basically suggests that ~4% of all MIs in 55-74 year olds is caused by second-hand smoke in public places!

Featured Article - Thrill-seeking holidaymakers are putting dolphins at risk

Featured Article - Thrill-seeking holidaymakers are putting dolphins at risk

Seems pretty obvious to me ... Wild animals are meant to be wild animals, not petting zoo objects.

Why do you think we do this to such creatures? My own theory is that most of us are so disconnected from the wild, magical, beautiful, and mysterious in our own lives and hearts that we seek it in external things.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

My Way News - Hawaii considering law to ignore Obama 'birthers'


Christians Urged to Boycott Glenn Beck - The Caucus Blog -

Train wreck.: "Last week, the conservative broadcaster Glenn Beck called on Christians to leave their churches if they heard any preaching about social or economic justice because, he claimed, those were slogans affiliated with Nazism and Communism."

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Desmond Tutu - In Africa, a step backward on human rights -

Desmond Tutu - In Africa, a step backward on human rights -

But a wave of hate is spreading across my beloved continent. People are again being denied their fundamental rights and freedoms. Men have been falsely charged and imprisoned in Senegal, and health services for these men and their community have suffered. In Malawi, men have been jailed and humiliated for expressing their partnerships with other men. Just this month, mobs in Mtwapa Township, Kenya, attacked men they suspected of being gay. Kenyan religious leaders, I am ashamed to say, threatened an HIV clinic there for providing counseling services to all members of that community, because the clerics wanted gay men excluded.

Uganda's parliament is debating legislation that would make homosexuality punishable by life imprisonment, and more discriminatory legislation has been debated in Rwanda and Burundi.

These are terrible backward steps for human rights in Africa.


That this pandering to intolerance is being done by politicians looking for scapegoats for their failures is not surprising. But it is a great wrong. An even larger offense is that it is being done in the name of God. Show me where Christ said "Love thy fellow man, except for the gay ones." Gay people, too, are made in my God's image. I would never worship a homophobic God.


Sexual orientation, like skin color, is another feature of our diversity as a human family. Isn't it amazing that we are all made in God's image, and yet there is so much diversity among his people? Does God love his dark- or his light-skinned children less? The brave more than the timid? And does any of us know the mind of God so well that we can decide for him who is included, and who is excluded, from the circle of his love?

Transformative scene from "V for Vendetta"

I finished watching "V for Vendetta" yesterday, and wanted to share this scene - it was just what I needed to see at exactly the right time. If you haven't seen the movie, I suggest renting it before you watch this. It's very, very good, and will provide context will enrich the viewing of this scene. (The movie is melodramatic in parts, as is par for the course for this genre.)

This scene is so powerful - monstrous and yet resonant with truth. "This is the most important moment in your life - COMMIT to it."

Friday, March 12, 2010

How Your Twitter Account Could Land You in Jail | Mother Jones

How Your Twitter Account Could Land You in Jail | Mother Jones

Interesting. The individuals were arresting for using Twitter to inform protesters of the recent G20 summit in Pittsburg how to avoid riot police.

Madison calls the arrest an attempt to "stifle dissent" and says his actions were "perfectly legal." His lawyer, Martin Stolar, calls them "absolutely protected speech." Madison also points out the irony that last June the State Department asked Twitter to delay scheduled maintenance so as not to interrupt Iranian protesters tweeting from the barricades.

Cancer is a preventable disease that requires majo... [Pharm Res. 2008] - PubMed result

Cancer is a preventable disease that requires major lifestyle changes

Very cool, especially since it's published in a journal called "Pharmaceutical Research"!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Doctor and Patient - A Surgeon Learns of the Choking Game -

The subject of this article is grim but really important. It's important to educate yourself and the young people in your life that this activity is extremely dangerous. The article also lists signs that can warn of a child participating in such "games".


"Until recently, there has been little attention among care
professionals to this particular form of youthful thrill-seeking. What
has been known, however, is that children ages 7 to 21 participate in
such activities alone or in groups, holding their breath, strangling
one another or dangling in a noose in the hopes of attaining a legal

"Two years ago the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 82 deaths attributable to the choking game and related activities. This year the C.D.C. released the results of the first statewide survey and found that one in three eighth graders in Oregon had heard of the choking game, while more than one in 20 had participated."

Friday, February 26, 2010

And then it was Friday

I have studied and scribbled and rubbed my eyes and practiced and missed most of the Olympics and spent many hours alone being epically harassed by two cats while trying to study, scribble, etc. and it already has all been worth it. Another midterm week vanquished, so much more learned, new confidence found, new resolve born, and another corner turned towards being able to help people live healthy, empowered lives.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

‘Love’ hormone may help autism symptoms - Mental health-

‘Love’ hormone may help autism symptoms - Mental health-

Hospital Infections: Deadly, Costly, And Potentially Avoidable - Shots - Health News Blog : NPR

Hospital Infections: Deadly, Costly, And Potentially Avoidable - Shots - Health News Blog : NPR: "Each year nearly 300,000 U.S. patients get serious cases of pneumonia and sepsis -- bloodstream infections -- during their hospital stays. Almost 50,000 of them die."

Just another sign that we urgently need to change the way we manage disease in today's world.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Family Guy Actress with Down Syndrome's Sarah Palin Smackdown Too Hot for NYT - sarah palin - Gawker

Family Guy Actress with Down Syndrome's Sarah Palin Smackdown Too Hot for NYT - sarah palin - Gawker: "In my family we think laughing is good. My parents raised me to have a sense of humor and to live a normal life. My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes."

Thursday, February 18, 2010

YouTube - Chinese Bluegrass (REDGRASS): Red Chamber紅庭, Jaybirds

If you needed a demonstration of how global our society is becoming, of how music can bring people together, or of how we really aren't all that different from one another, I offer you this outstanding video:

Man decorates basement with $10 worth of Sharpie - Health -

Amazing!!! Man decorates basement with $10 worth of Sharpie - Health -

YouTube - hang insomniac jam

I recently saw a live performance with this type of instrument at my college. It was incredibly beautiful. As he explained, this drum uniquely provides the drummer with the ability to not only set a rhythm, but also to play a melody. It's an ethereal sound. Enjoy! :)

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Easy rice bowls

I just finished eating an amazing home-made rice bowl, and despite the fact I should be working on an important assignment, studying for a number of important upcoming exams, etc., etc., I have to share with you how incredibly easy and delicious it is to eat healthily, and provide an example. Considering the overwhelming scientific research indicating the benefits of eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables, I hope you enjoy some of the suggestions shared below. :->

I find when I have vegetables like peppers, broccoli, mushrooms, zucchini, etc. washed and chopped beforehand, it makes everything sooooooo much easier, even when cooking for just one person (as I am). Having a little chest freezer is a godsend too, as you can freeze small containers of guacamole, cooked rice, cooked quinoa, cooked chicken/turkey, etc. Months ago I even bought large packages of cheddar cheese on sale, then cut them into smaller pieces (good for 1 – 2 meals, depending), and then froze them all in a big resealable plastic bag. (Yes, the cheese is crumbly after being defrosted, but yay! That means I don’t have to shred it for my meals – just taking a knife to it breaks it into many small pieces.) You can also chop raw peppers (perhaps bought on sale or in season) into pieces and freeze them in an airtight plastic container, and use them for soups and stews later.

And do NOT throw out those broccoli/chard/kale stems! They are fantastic in soups, stews, and stir-fries. They just need more cooking time, like onions.

Anyway, let me tell you about today’s rice bowl. I used my rice cooker (a necessity since I otherwise burn rice when I try to cook it in a pot) to prepare a large batch of delicious brown basmati rice. (Most of it destined for my freezer.) While I was waiting, I collected my other ingredients: a few chopped peppers, a handful of baby spinach (chopped), about a tablespoon of guacamole, about another tablespoon of crumbled feta, some very small broccoli florets, a little bit of leftover turkey (from the freezer, then defrosted, woohoooo!), and a couple of mushrooms (chopped, of course). When I added the hot rice (about three-quarters of a cup) to the other ingredients, everything got nicely heated and steamed, without any additional cooking! I then liberally drizzled some balsamic vinegar and olive oil* all over this creation, added a little salt, and voila!

As you can imagine, you can vary the ingredients quite a bit, so it’s new every time! (Although if you choose something that takes longer to cook - like carrots - you will need to cook them in advance, or shred them.)

Okay, now back to my assignment … Wish me luck!!!

*Olive oil is soooo good for you raw, terrible once you cook it. My nutrition prof actually prescribes some patients to take 1 – 2 tablespoons of raw olive oil a day, but strongly advises against cooking with it.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Medical training does change you

This is what medical training will do to you: I see an ad for fitness training on a web page with a picture of a shirtless, very muscular (and handsome) man. And my only real thought is: What the heck is that huge muscle just below his ribs? And then I geek out and drag out my Netter's and realize it's a large external oblique abdominal muscle. And then ... he's forever the external oblique guy.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Why Antidepressants Are No Better Than Placebos -

Why Antidepressants Are No Better Than Placebos - "In 1998 Moore used the Freedom of Information Act to pry such data from the FDA. The total came to 47 company-sponsored studies—on Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Effexor, Serzone, and Celexa—that Kirsch and colleagues then pored over. (As an aside, it turned out that about 40 percent of the clinical trials had never been published. That is significantly higher than for other classes of drugs, says Lisa Bero of the University of California, San Francisco; overall, 22 percent of clinical trials of drugs are not published. 'By and large,' says Kirsch, 'the unpublished studies were those that had failed to show a significant benefit from taking the actual drug.') In just over half of the published and unpublished studies, he and colleagues reported in 2002, the drug alleviated depression no better than a placebo. 'And the extra benefit of antidepressants was even less than we saw when we analyzed only published studies,' Kirsch recalls. About 82 percent of the response to antidepressants—not the 75 percent he had calculated from examining only published studies—had also been achieved by a dummy pill."

Op-Ed Columnist - Orphaned, Raped and Ignored -

Op-Ed Columnist - Orphaned, Raped and Ignored -

Again my hero Nick Kristof brings light to darkness, telling heartbreaking stories to us so that we'll give a damn and DO something.

Populism: Just Like Racism! - Matt Taibbi - Taibblog - True/Slant

Populism: Just Like Racism! - Matt Taibbi - Taibblog - True/Slant

Time to end pelvic exams done without consent - The Globe and Mail

Time to end pelvic exams done without consent - The Globe and Mail: "Imagine that you are undergoing a fairly routine surgery – say, removal of uterine fibroids or hysterectomy. During or right after the procedure, while you are still under anesthesia, a group of medical students parades into the operating room and they perform gynecological exams (unrelated to the surgery) without your knowledge.

Do you consider this okay, or an outrageous violation of your rights?

Regardless of your feelings, you should be aware that this is standard procedure in many Canadian teaching hospitals. "

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Op-Ed Columnist - What Could You Live Without? -

Op-Ed Columnist - What Could You Live Without? - "Kevin Salwen, a writer and entrepreneur in Atlanta, was driving his 14-year-old daughter, Hannah, back from a sleepover in 2006. While waiting at a traffic light, they saw a black Mercedes coupe on one side and a homeless man begging for food on the other.

“Dad, if that man had a less nice car, that man there could have a meal,” Hannah protested. The light changed and they drove on, but Hannah was too young to be reasonable. She pestered her parents about inequity, insisting that she wanted to do something.

“What do you want to do?” her mom responded. “Sell our house?”

Warning! Never suggest a grand gesture to an idealistic teenager."

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Op-Ed Columnist - Religion and Women -

Op-Ed Columnist - Religion and Women - "“Women are prevented from playing a full and equal role in many faiths, creating an environment in which violations against women are justified,” former President Jimmy Carter noted in a speech last month to the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Australia.

“The belief that women are inferior human beings in the eyes of God,” Mr. Carter continued, “gives excuses to the brutal husband who beats his wife, the soldier who rapes a woman, the employer who has a lower pay scale for women employees, or parents who decide to abort a female embryo.”"

Saturday, January 09, 2010

YouTube - Emma (ep. 1) (1/6)

YouTube - Emma (ep. 1) (1/6)

Absolutely delightful.

AP News :

AP News : "OSLO, Norway (AP) -- Aker University Hospital is a dingy place to heal. The floors are streaked and scratched. A light layer of dust coats the blood pressure monitors. A faint stench of urine and bleach wafts from a pile of soiled bedsheets dropped in a corner.

Look closer, however, at a microscopic level, and this place is pristine. There is no sign of a dangerous and contagious staph infection that killed tens of thousands of patients in the most sophisticated hospitals of Europe, North America and Asia this year, soaring virtually unchecked.

The reason: Norwegians stopped taking so many drugs.

Twenty-five years ago, Norwegians were also losing their lives to this bacteria. But Norway's public health system fought back with an aggressive program that made it the most infection-free country in the world. A key part of that program was cutting back severely on the use of antibiotics."

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Featured Article - Chlorophylls effective against aflatoxin

Featured Article - Chlorophylls effective against aflatoxin: "A new study has found that chlorophyll and its derivative chlorophyllin are effective in limiting the absorption of aflatoxin in humans. Aflatoxin is produced by a fungus that is a contaminant of grains including corn, peanuts and soybeans; it is known to cause liver cancer – and can work in concert with other health concerns, such as hepatitis."