Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A great excuse to go outdoors

Feeling a bit brain dead after a week in the office? Then it's time for a trip outdoors to ingest some bacteria!

According to research recently presented at the 110th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology, exposure of mice to Mycobacterium vaccae, a soil bacteria commonly ingested outdoors, stimulated neuron growth and improved their ability to navigate mazes.

Pity that it's raining outside right now.

Via ScienceDaily.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Spending and safety nets

ABC's Foreign Correspondent program had a segment tonight called China - The Biggest Domino asking whether China can keep up its rate of production and consumption. An interesting statistic is that they consume the lowest share of GDP ever recorded, relying on foreign consumers and big infrastructure projects to drive demand.

According to the "Chinese battlers" they interviewed, the reason for the low demand is the lack of a social security safety net, especially with regards to medical issues. They have to save as much money as they can in case they have an accident or fall ill.

There are certainly many arguments against the reckless spending habits of the West, but perhaps it should (but probably won't) give pause to some of the anti-welfare lobbyists, especially those who rely on selling non-necessities to the general consumer.

A message from the Oil Industry

Following on from the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico the Oil Industry would like to assure citizens that it is working as hard as possible to ensure that such events will not take place in the future. As events show, the release of underground oil can have devastating consequences for the environment. That is why we are working to extract as much oil as possible from these underground reservoirs and converting it to harmless substances such as plastic or carbon dioxide. These processes will ensure that future generations will no longer risk causing climate change through the burning of oil.

Texas: the biggest state (of stupidity)

Anyone would think that the objective of the nutcases on the Texas Education Board is to raise a bunch of kids dumb enough to believe that products advertised on daytime television are actually worth buying. Anyway, I thought that Iran was a beacon to the world chosen by God (or Allah in their case). Or was it that North Korea was a beacon to the world as chosen by the Kim Dynasty? Oh, it's all so confusing. Isn't it so nice to be so blissfully ignorant.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

One and a half

I can't believe Alex is one and a half. It feels like such a short/long time. It's a long time since I had a full night's rest (just had to duck out and attend to him then), but he has also changed so much over a short period. He's going through the toddler phase of trying to demonstrate his independence and saying "no" (even when he means yes). But he continues to demonstrate his wicked sense of humour and his love. Every moment with him is precious, which is good, because so few moments are without him, except for those painful days at work. Neither B nor I could ever imagine how much joy he has brought to our lives over the past year and half. May it continue for many, many more.
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Thursday, May 06, 2010

Appropriate reading material

I wonder if it was a good idea to purchase 'The men who killed Qantas' the day before flying with them (to Canberra) and when we have an upcoming FF trip on them as well. Oh well. I like their current CEO. He's a mathematician.

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