Friday, December 3, 2010

Friday Rant

Does everyone have people like this in their lives?

I'm talking about the person who makes an irritating but by no mean heinous mistake, and when it's pointed out to them, they can't just say "oops" or "yeah, that was a mistake, sorry for the inconvenience", they have to make up a not-even-believable lie to explain how they were right all along and didn't make a mistake. Such as "no, I didn't mistakenly include you on the distribution list of that threatening email, I 'blank' cc'd you, so you'd know to do something about it". So not only does this person not know that it's blind cc, not "blank", this person also does not know that Outlook does not include someone who is blind cc'd in the distribution list, that's why it's a blind cc.

This person also does not know that blind cc's are somewhere in the range of awkward to rude, depending. If you want to send a third party a copy of an email without the email's original recipient knowing about it, you don't blind cc them (and run the risk of the blind recipient using "Reply All" and outing you), you go back to your Sent box and then forward the email to the third party with a note of explanation of why you wanted the third party to see it.

So what to do with people who can't acknowledge a mistake and don't realize that they are incompetent liars? It's tempting to point out the mistakes in the lies, too, but if the person's a supervisor (or a parent), that's not likely to be politically correct.

Maybe this is one of the reasons blogs are so popular.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Can you even hear this over me purring?

Hybrid + Radiohead = O



Not that there was anything wrong wiht the original:


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Break My Soul

& other works by Hybrid:












[you know I really wanted there to be a movie somewhere in "The Fountain", but there just really really really wasn't]


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Emperor's Nightingale & Other HCA Tales

This is Shelley Duvall's version of a Hans Christian Andersen tale Mom used for ballet recitals.



Mom liked Han Christian Andersen tales, and we had a set of talking books (books with casette tapes to play while we read along) of his stories growing up.

My favorites were Thumbelina and The Little Mermaid (which Disney later ruined).





Thank you, Mom.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

How To-esday: Trippin' in Africa, Steve Harvey-style

Recommended by my work roomie (not PG-rated):





Friday, October 8, 2010

Monday, October 4, 2010

Swan Lake, Chinese-Acrobat Style



Thanks to Mom's childhood (and lifelong) friend, Jean, for sending me this. 

Friday, September 24, 2010

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Monday, September 20, 2010

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Can Motivation be Shared?

I began reading Drive this weekend.





I won't tell you I'm going to finish it, because then I might not. ;)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

How to Make Vegetable Spring Rolls

Dina says they are better brushed with oil and baked, rather than deep fried.


Chinese:
How To Make Crispy Vegetable Spring Rolls
VideoJug has lots more...

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I saw the moon this morning while I drove to work. It still looked full.



Friday, July 16, 2010

Massive Attack Attack

Inertia Creeps:




Butterfly Caught:




Can't find a vid of Angel that will embed, so my imaginary reader will have to click through, sorry.


Live with Me:



Dissolved Girl:




Had enough? Me neither.


Teardrop (theme song from the TV Series "House"):



Special Cases (featuring Sinead O'Connor):



What Your Soul Sings (another Sinead song on 100th Window):

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Beats Antique - No Visuals Necessary

Beauty Beats:



Oriental Uno (feat Fanfara Kalashnikov):



Table Toy:



Caterpillar:


Lantern:




PaigeOneYoga is offering belly dancing classes now. They had an intro class this past Sunday, to which I stupidly did not go.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

June Full Moon

Last year's June full moon, photo by John Biondo:


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Friday, June 18, 2010

Make Up Your Mind to Have No Regrets

If I've posted this before I'm...not sorry.


Thursday, June 17, 2010

"If it were up to them the rain would get him wet"




Someone on YouTube translated it as:

He sits at the table and writes.
with this poem you will not take power, he says
you will not make revolution, he says
nor with thousands of verses will you make revolution, he says
and what more, these verses won't make peons, teachers, or carpenters live better, eat better, or he himself eat, live better.
Not even for wooing a woman can they be used.
He won't make money with them
he won't get into the movies free with them
they won't give him clothes for them
He won't get tobaco or wine with them
nor parrots, nor scarves, nor boats, nor bulls, nor umbrellas will he get from them.
if it were up to them the rain would get him wet.
He won't reach forgiveness nor grace because of them
with this poem you will not take power, he says
you will not make revolution, he says
nor with thousands of verses will you make revolution, he says
He sits at the table and writes.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Monday, June 14, 2010

Diferente



Gotan Project are coming to NYC at the end of September (new widget in the right sidebar!). Alas, I have about as much chance of seeing them in Sofia, Bulgaria. :(

Thursday, June 10, 2010

We Don't Need No Quiet Dogmas

The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present.




I confess, I am wearing a single-function device (although it tells the date as well).

Here's the title ref for any of my imaginary readers interested in a brief ride in the wayback machine:



I have The Wall courtesy of Baby Brother. We saw it at The Uptown Theater on Connecticut Avenue when it came out, with his friend Greg and Greg's parents. I was a little worried about the adult content & Holocaust stuff with Greg's parents, but his mom said she liked it & thought it was well-handled. (I was a bit of a Floyd-Head in high school, but preferred the older stuff, especially Wish You Were Here, Dark Side of the Moon of course, and Meddle.) Alas, it just doesn't seem like Angelina's kind of thing, but Young Anakin should see it while he's still in high school if he's ever going to see it...

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A note on Recent Reading

I'm pleased to have begun reading a little again. It has coincided with an abandonment of my computer at home and weight gain, but the weight gain is probably as attributable to my current obsession with NCIS as to my having taken up a little reading again.

Which is why my current and recent reading are not being updated much.

Nevertheless, some notes:

1. Tami Hoag's books do not seem worth bothering with again. Granted the one I chose seems to have been an intentional (and self-conscious) departure from her usual Forensic Science angle on murder mysteries, but I remain left with the impression that I might as well watch television.

2. Louise Erdrich never disappoints. Terrific storyteller, presenting fascinating meditations on identity. I sort of disagreed with the ending of Shadow Tag, I would've liked to see it go in another direction, but it was not untrue.

3. I can't find my copy of The Woman Warrior. Wah.

4. Luckily, I still have a couple of Amy Tan's on my bookshelves that I hadn't had time for before.

5. This is a picture of a Tennesee Rose of Sharon quilt, which i got curious about when Louise Erdrich mentioned it in Shadow Tag:




When I am an old woman, I may or may not wear purple, but I shall quilt.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How Diabetes Affects Vision

Here's a patient education video about the effect of Diabetes on vision:



(This lady has a great voice, doesn't she?)


In more depth, here are the folks from UC, who told us about Congestive Heart Failure last year:


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

How-To'sday: 6 Sunscreen Hints from the WashPost

For parents: 6 facts about applying sunscreen

-- Most sunscreens need time to react with substances in your skin before they become effective. Be sure to apply them at least 20 minutes before you go out in the sun.

-- Sunscreens containing zinc oxide or titanium dioxide create an invisible barrier to UV rays on top of your skin and start working immediately.

-- SPF stands for sun protection factor and determines how long that sunscreen will allow you to stay in the sun without burning. Use at least an SPF 15.

-- The Environmental Protection Agency puts out a national UV index forecast map, with sun protection advice, every day. You can even put in your own Zip code! Go to http://www.epa.gov/sunwise/uvindex.html.

-- Sun-protective clothing, which has a sunscreen in the fabric, really works (but can be expensive).

-- SunGuard is a laundry additive that gives your clothes long-lasting sun protection when you add a packet to your wash.

Monday, May 24, 2010

“Deep down, obesity is really an economic issue”

A study in Seattle compared BMI of shoppers at different food stores and concludes that people who shop at pricier grocery markets tend to be thinner. Since wealthier people tend to be thinner, this is not surprising (hence the duh-study tag), but it does call into question just how helpful programs aimed at educating children about nutrition will be for reducing obesity rates. Not that I'm against educating the nations' children about nutrition, it's about time, but it needs to be combined with programs that put daily physical activity back into schools and address some of the subsidization programs that make unhealthy foods so much cheaper than healthier food.

Here's the msnbc article about the study, and below is a chart from the article:

Supermarket obesity rates
Seattle researchers ranked supermarkets according to the obesity rates of their shoppers at these Northwest and national grocery stores. A body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher indicated obesity.

— Whole Foods Markets: 4 percent
— Metropolitan Market: 8 percent
— Puget Consumers Cooperative (PCC): 12 percent
— Quality Food Centers (QFC): 17 percent
— Fred Meyer: 22 percent
— Safeway: 24 percent
— Albertsons: 38 percent
Source: University of Washington

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Education as Public Health Initiative

OK, well first, I would argue that governmentally-sponsored education is a public health initiative, but only with someone who actually wanted to argue the point. I'll spare my imaginary reader here.

From the New York Times article about Berkeley's optional summer project for incoming freshman:
The university said it would analyze the samples, from inside students’ cheeks, for three genes that help regulate the ability to metabolize alcohol, lactose and folates.

Those genes were chosen not because they indicate serious health risks but because students with certain genetic markers may be able to lead healthier lives by drinking less, avoiding dairy products or eating more leafy green vegetables.

Berkeley’s program for the class of 2014 is the first mass genetic testing by a university. Jasper Rine, the professor of genetics who is leading the project, said it was designed to help students learn about personalized medicine and identify their own vulnerabilities.
Detractors say the students would require counseling to process the results, and that students who don't test as having a risk factor might be encouraged by the result to be more careless with their health.

Typical save-us-all/idiots-from-ourselves knee-jerk response, IMO. These are Berkeley freshman, and should not have to be told what to think to avoid being stupid. That sort of response is what smothers education in the Era of CYA. "If we let people to think for themselves, they might get it wrong and we could be sued!" It's the New Censorship.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

More Than a Babysitter

Another "Duh" Study whose time has finally come, in its entirety from WebMD:

Quality Child Care Leads to Smarter Teens
Study Also Links High-Quality Child Care With Fewer Behavioral Problems in Teens
By Kathleen Doheny
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD

May 14, 2010 -- The effects of early child care may be more long-lasting than commonly believed, according to a new study.

At age 15, teens who had high-quality child care in their early years performed better on academic and cognitive tests than did other teens, and they had fewer adolescent behavior problems, says study leader Deborah Lowe Vandell, PhD, professor and chair of education at the University of California, Irvine.

''We think a lot of people expect the effects of early child care would fade away by age 15," Vandell tells WebMD. "We found they didn't. Children who were in early high-quality child care did better academically and cognitively at age 15, compared to other children in the study."

Teens with a quality child care background also had fewer problem behaviors, such as breaking rules, hanging out with kids who get into trouble, and arguing, the researchers found.

The study is published in the journal Child Development.

Effects of Child Care: Study Details
The new findings add to previous research on the same group of about 1,300 children, born in 10 cities across the U.S. in 1991 and followed up over the years. The study is the National Institute of Child Health and Development’s Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development.

In previous reports, Vandell and her colleagues found that children who had early, high-quality child care did better academically and cognitively at grade 5.

"What we also found in previous reports is that children who attended child care for more hours displayed more acting out in early childhood."

The researchers rated the quality of a child care program by observing, noting the caregivers' behavior with the children, and evaluating how sensitive and responsive they were to the child's needs, among other measures.

Vandell and her team then collected the results of standardized school tests measuring achievement and cognition and collected information from the teens, their families, and school personnel.

At the age 15 follow-up, results were obtained for 70% of the original participants.

The backgrounds of the children were diverse, including middle class and low income, two-parent families, and single-parent families.

In the study, Vandell says, "90% had some type of child care experience. It could be preschool, nursery school, child care in the home, home care by babysitters, or nannies. The hours varied, from seven to about 60 [weekly]."

Only 41% had child care classified as high or moderately high quality.

Early Child Care Study Results
How much better did the kids with high-quality child care do? On a test of academic and cognitive achievement, Vandell says, "the children who had high-quality child care scored 5.3 points higher, on average."

To put that in perspective, the average score, in general, on the test is 100. Her study participants, overall, scored 106 on average. The teens with high-quality child care scored 5.3 above that, she says.

Those who had high-quality child care tended to have fewer ''acting out'' problems as teens, they found.

The more hours the teens had spent in early child care during their first four and a half years, the more risk taking and impulsivity they reported as teens, the researchers found, but that was partly compensated for by the effects of quality care on fewer acting-out behaviors.

Although the effects were small, they're important, the researchers say, and they don't fade away over the years.

Effects of Early Child Care: Another View
The messages from the new study are clear, says Ellen Galinsky, president of the Families and Work Institute in Washington, D.C., who reviewed the findings for WebMD. "Quality matters, and the way this study measures quality is to look at the relationship between the child and the child care provider over time. Is it warm, is it caring?"

Even if a teen's child care program was not high quality, parents can compensate, she says. "It's never too late. Whatever positive [things] their child is interested in, they can build on and extend," she says. "Motivation begets motivation."

Likewise, if a child is too aggressive and in danger of behavioral problems, experts know a lot more now about how to help that child than they did at the study start in 1991, Galinsky says. One technique, for instance, is teaching a child ''perspective taking," where a child is taught to ''read'' another child's state of mind to guide his own behavior and avoid conflict, Galinsky says.

Finding High-Quality Child Care
How can parents decide if a child care setting is high quality?

Vandell suggests getting referrals to child care programs from friends, then selecting two or three programs that sound good.

''Talk to the people on the phone, and then go observe," she says. Stay for several hours or half a day if possible. Don’t focus only on the caregiver, she says. Instead, pick a child or two who matches your own in age, behavior, personality, and energy level, if possible. See how each child and the caregivers interact.

Check to see if your state has an evaluation program for guidance, Vandell says.

Pay attention to the environment when you observe, says Galinsky. ''If the kids all run over to you when you walk in," she says, "they're bored."

"If all the art work is the same, the teachers are entertaining the children," she says. If the children are encouraged to be creative in their artwork, it's a good sign, she says.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Babies Like Nice Guys

Can't embed it, but the NY Times has a video of a study at Yale that shows babies prefer nice characters:
In one of our first studies of moral evaluation, we decided not to use two-dimensional animated movies but rather a three-dimensional display in which real geometrical objects, manipulated like puppets, acted out the helping/hindering situations: a yellow square would help the circle up the hill; a red triangle would push it down. After showing the babies the scene, the experimenter placed the helper and the hinderer on a tray and brought them to the child. In this instance, we opted to record not the babies’ looking time but rather which character they reached for, on the theory that what a baby reaches for is a reliable indicator of what a baby wants. In the end, we found that 6- and 10-month-old infants overwhelmingly preferred the helpful individual to the hindering individual. This wasn’t a subtle statistical trend; just about all the babies reached for the good guy.
From the associated article:

Socialization is critically important. But this is not because babies and young children lack a sense of right and wrong; it’s because the sense of right and wrong that they naturally possess diverges in important ways from what we adults would want it to be.
And:
But the new studies found that babies have an actual understanding of mental life: they have some grasp of how people think and why they act as they do. The studies showed that, though babies expect inanimate objects to move as the result of push-pull interactions, they expect people to move rationally in accordance with their beliefs and desires: babies show surprise when someone takes a roundabout path to something he wants. They expect someone who reaches for an object to reach for the same object later, even if its location has changed. And well before their 2nd birthdays, babies are sharp enough to know that other people can have false beliefs. The psychologists Kristine Onishi and RenĂ©e Baillargeon have found that 15-month-olds expect that if a person sees an object in one box, and then the object is moved to another box when the person isn’t looking, the person will later reach into the box where he first saw the object, not the box where it actually is. That is, toddlers have a mental model not merely of the world but of the world as understood by someone else.
Conlcuding:
Babies probably have no conscious access to moral notions, no idea why certain acts are good or bad. They respond on a gut level. Indeed, if you watch the older babies during the experiments, they don’t act like impassive judges — they tend to smile and clap during good events and frown, shake their heads and look sad during the naughty events (remember the toddler who smacked the bad puppet). The babies’ experiences might be cognitively empty but emotionally intense, replete with strong feelings and strong desires. But this shouldn’t strike you as an altogether alien experience: while we adults possess the additional critical capacity of being able to consciously reason about morality, we’re not otherwise that different from babies — our moral feelings are often instinctive. In fact, one discovery of contemporary research in social psychology and social neuroscience is the powerful emotional underpinning of what we once thought of as cool, untroubled, mature moral deliberation.
But you'll have to read the article for the caveat...

Friday, April 30, 2010

How to earn $50,000 in High School: Epidemiology

From the Philly Enquirer:

Posted on Tue, Apr. 27, 2010


2 area high school girls win public-health contest

Two area teenagers were awarded first prizes Monday in the country's top public-health contest for high school students. Shoshanna Golden, 17, of Allentown, and Gazelle Zerafati, 16, of Villanova, took top honors in the Young Epidemiology Scholars Competition, which ended Sunday in Washington. Each won a $50,000 college scholarship.
Golden, a junior at Moravian Academy in Bethlehem, won for her research project "Energy Epidemic: Teen Perception and Consumption of Energy Drinks." The project examined how much her peers know of the possible health risks of energy drinks.

Zerafati, a junior at the Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, won for her project "Epidemiology of Migraine in Teenage Girls, A Student Population-Based Study." Zerafati, who suffers from migraines, surveyed classmates to learn what they knew about the crippling headaches. - Sam Wood

Friday, April 23, 2010

Peter and the Wolf

A classic I've always loved. Although the music does not require narration, the narration does provide clear and fun education for a child, without feeling like a lesson:









Happy Birthday, Prokofiev!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Blackbird

Why you wanna fly Blackbird you ain't ever gonna fly
No place bif enough for holding all the tears you're gonna cry
Cos your mama's name was lonely and your daddy's name was pain
And they call you little sorrow cos you'll never love again
So why you wanna fly Blackbird you ain't ever gonna fly
You ain't got no one to hold you you ain't got no one to care
If you'd only understand dear nobody wants you anywhere
So why you wanna fly Blackbird you ain't ever gonna fly


No vid, just the song:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Bonobo (& Andreya Triana)







(no vid in this last one, sorry)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Gotan Project





And finally, Antonio Banderas proving to some would-be delinquents that dancing is not necessarily for sissies...(this one's a remix of the movie clip with Gotan Project's music & a very nice fit, IMO, altho' of course way schmexy)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Ralph Wolf & Sam Sheepdog

More classic Warner Brothers 'Tooning. Little do the sheep suspect...



But sometimes they tattle:




Fin:

Monday, April 5, 2010

Ralph Wolf & What's-'is-Name Sheepdog

Another great series featuring a Wile E -type character, Ralph. In these first two 'toons, the sheepdog's name is Fred, but later, he becomes Sam.






Here they are a sort of "odd couple", and the sheepdog has become Sam:




I love how smug Ralph looks here going through his morning routine. I never feel smug in the morning. Must be nice. Of course if the rest of your day goes downhill from there...




Well, that's probably enough for today. More tomorrow...

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Sheep May Safely Graze




And other portents...



?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

"Right" Thinking 12: The Final Chapter

So how does having this fairly comprehensive review of Western thought about ethics help mindfulness? Well, because fish didn't discover water. It's hard for us to be aware of what's around us and in us all the time, and this history of ethical thought is continually shaping our thinking. We need to become aware of how this king of "right" thinking may and may not be the Right View we are striving toward.





[Episode 12 of 12, running here Saturdays from January 16th through April 3rd.]

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Laminate Flooring (How-To-'sday)








[photo of the full moon in March 2006 by fotoedge]

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sea of Roses (Marino De Rosas)

Kandelera:



Ninna Nanna:



Reina Eleonora:



How's that for a chill and uplifting start to a beautiful Sunday?



[photo credit: lavender.]

Saturday, March 27, 2010

"Right" Thinking 11




[Episode 11 of 12, running here from January 16th through April 3rd.]


Don't forget to turn off everything between 8:30pm - 9:30pm tonight! Even your 'pooter! If nothing else, you will learn all the things in your home that suck electricity when you're not looking.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

How To Replace Subfloor (How-To-'sday)

(Please forgive the horrendous excuse for background music.)


Monday, March 22, 2010

Duck Dodgers!!!

As promised:





[We'll pretend the TV series didn't happen...]

Saturday, March 20, 2010

"Right" Thinking 10




[Episode 10 of 12, running here on Saturdays from January 16th through April 3rd.]

Friday, March 19, 2010

Be a Neighbor, Wear a Cardigan Tomorrow

“Imagine what our real neighborhoods would be
like if each of us offered as a matter of course, just
one kind word to another person. One kind word has
a wonderful way of turning into many.”
--Fred Rogers

In commemoration of Mister Rogers' birthday tomorrow, be sure to wear a cardigan or do something neighborly.

The full Archive of American Television interview from 1999 is available here. I won't embed the whole thing on RFORC, but will put in the first segment & my imaginary readers can decide for themselves whether there's time to listen to the rest.




Is Leamur a dork for considering television historically important? Discuss. ;)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

How to Make Home-Brew Beer

Ahh, the good ol' days...




My "retirement" fantasy is running a bookstore/cafe/bakery at the edge of some overpriced resort (like the bakery next to the Rio Mar, where we stopped every evening to get pastries for the next morning, except with a few books for sale or a little take-a-book, leave-a-book library). Adding a little brew-pub part is tempting, but probably too much work, alas. Maybe I can talk Cap'n Sam into taking it on. He always had way more success with the home-brew than me, anyway.


Oh, yeah: Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Vitamin D

Nutritional supplements are no substitute for sunshine, but in the absence of enough sunshine, the vitamin D supplements really aren't optional. Our daycare provider has some personal experience with the importance of Vitamin D supplementation, so she's especially aware of it, but this study really spells it out.


Vitamin D as effective as vaccine in preventing flu
Taking high doses of vitamin D3 supplements in winter helps reduce risk of acquiring seasonal flu in winter, a new Japanese trial demonstrated.

The trial results, reported in the March 10, 2010 issue of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, show that children given vitamin D(3) supplement were 42 percent less likely to get infected with seasonal flu than those who were given a placebo.

The efficacy is remarkable as it may be comparable to that of flu vaccine, which is generally low because the virus used to construct the vaccine is likely different from the circulating one.

Deficiency of Vitamin D, which is synthesized after human skin is exposed to sunlight or UV rays, has been associated with increased risk of seasonal flu and swine flu as well. However, most of such studies were epidemiological or observational.

In the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, Dr. Mitsuyoshi Urashima and colleagues at Division of Molecular Epidemiology Jikei University School of Medicine Minato-ku in Tokyo Japan gave one group of schoolchildren 1,200 international units per day of vitamin D(3) and another group a placebo to see how vitamin D would prevent seasonal flu.

The primary outcome of the trial was the incidence of influenza A and diagnosis was established by testing a flu antigen in a nasopharyngeal swab specimen.

During the trial between Dec 2008 and March 2009, 18 of 167 (10.8%) children given vitamin D tested positive for flu infection compared to 31 of 167 (18.6) children in the placebo group. The relative risk is 0.58, meaning those taking vitamin D were at 42 percent reduced risk of seasonal flu.

The anti-flu effect was found much more significant among children who had not been taking other vitamin D supplements and who started nursery school after age 3. The reduction in the risk was 64 percent for both groups.

In a subgroup of children who were previously diagnosed with asthma, 2 children taking vitamin D supplements experienced asthma attacks while 12 children receiving placebo suffered asthma attacks - meaning that vitamin D cut the risk by 83 percent.

The researchers concluded that the results suggest that vitamin D3 supplementation during the winter time may reduce the incidence of influenza A.

Dr. John Cannell, one of most knowledgeable vitamin D experts in the world and director of Vitamin D Council, a non-profit organization, and colleagues earlier published a heavy-weight review article in a scientific journal called Virology explaining that vitamin D is needed for the production of antibacterial peptides which help prevent flu.

In winter, people tend to stay indoors. Those who lack exposure to sunshine are prone to becoming vitamin D deficient. This is why people in winter are at higher risk of influenza including seasonal flu.

Dr. Cannell suggests adults can take 5,000 IU per day and try to maintain a blood level of 50 to 80 ng/mL (or 125 to 200 nm/L) year-round. One early study suggests that it is safe for schoolchildren to take 2,000 IU per day for a year without any noticeable side effects.

Vitamin D is found only in a few foods including eggs and fatty fish like salmon. Because of this, the vitamin D is fortified in some foods like milk, orange juice and cereals. But vitamin D levels in such foods are fairly low and you may have to drink literally 20 glasses of milk to get enough vitamin D. Vitamin D supplements are a good source of the nutrient even though sunshine is the best.

Dr. Cannell cautions that high intake of vitamin A can reduce the efficacy of vitamin D. Cod liver oil, high in vitamin A while relatively low in vitamin D, is not as good as it used to be as a vitamin D source.

A health observer suggests that regardless of your vaccination status, an adequate level of serum vitamin D should be maintained to prevent flu and many other serious diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
[it's interesting to click through and read the comments, too]

Now Leamur doesn't have to feel so lazy for her over-fondness for sitting or laying in the sun. I'm making and storing up Vitamin D. :)

Monday, March 15, 2010

Bugs vs. Marvin

In honor of JMax's birthday, here are some Bugs Bunny gems featuring Marvin the Martian:









[We'll save Duck Dodgers for another day...]

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Pi Day

It's also Talk Like A Physicist Day, apparently.

Leamur will be partying with JMax & some of his other  eccentric friends.  Leamur is still stung from having been informed that she has been a staid eccentric all these years when she remarked that she has been staid long enough and that grandmotherhood is her opportunity to be eccentric.  Harrumph.  This was shortly after JMax agreed with The Fashion Consultant that cat's eye glasses are never a good idea.  Leamur's been told that khakis don't look good on anyone, and that one We believe, the evidence is abundant after all:


(Better makeup & hair, too.  Sigh.)

But Cat's Eye Glasses rule!!!!



[Disclaimer:  Leamur sto- er borrowed this random kid's pic off the internet. 
She's virtual.  And judging from her clothes & the wallpaper behind her, probably older than me by now.  No actual children were harmed in the making of this blog post.]



Saturday, March 13, 2010

"Right" Thinking 9




[Episode 9 of 12, running here on Saturdays from January 16th through April 3rd.]

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Believe what you want, as long as it's legal...?!

From the New York Times:

On Wednesday, the Dalai Lama gave a speech in India on the 51st anniversary of his flight from Lhasa. He urged Tibetans everywhere to make contact with Chinese people and said a shift in attitude among ordinary Chinese might one day sway Chinese government policy toward Tibet.

“There will be a time when truth will prevail,” he said. “Therefore, it is important that everyone be patient and not give up.”
Doesn't sound like a power-obsessed, would-be Dragon Warrior to me...


This statement is scary, however:

"In Tibet, people can believe whatever they want as long as it is legal. The government won't interfere. Instead it will help people solve problems along the way," said the vice mayor of Lhasa, Jigme Namgyal, according to the China Daily.
I mean, wow. Really, just wow.