Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Moving Experience

I’ve found a cool apartment! Okay, okay…so it’s not perfect. Just a few bugs. I mean literally! First expense? An exterminator! Is it worth the cash? Well, I can’t afford a more expensive place, so a one-time (please!) cash outlay should be okay. Maybe just a can of “Raid?”

I need a way to move my stuff. Daddy, can I borrow your truck? You don’t have one? Why not? Do you want one? I’ll help you pick it out! Well, it was just a suggestion. No need to get all bent out of shape! I guess I’d better call the truck rental places. What do you mean…$200…PLUS mileage? AND Gas? Good grief!

While I’m on the phone I’ll call the utility and phone companies. Yes, I know I haven’t used your services before. No, I don’t have a credit card; this is my first place. You want what? A $100 deposit? For EACH? Holy cow…do you people have a license to steal?

Daddy, I need $500 for moving expenses! I used all my money for the first and last months rent AND the damage deposit. Well, how was I to know this was going to be so expensive? Sell something? Daaaaad…I NEED my TV!

Boy, this place is pretty empty. Maybe I should buy a couch and a chair. Nah…I have my bed. That’ll be good enough. I don’t need a table; I’ll just use this box.

Renters Insurance? I don’t think so! What do I have to insure?

Just got my first phone call! I’d love to come to your party! Daddy, I need a car. Because it’s too far to walk to work, that’s why. Umm, Daddy…there’s car insurance too! Thanks, Dad…you’re the best! And gas? I didn’t think so…

Time for dinner. Let’s look in these boxes. Oh, No! No dishes or pans. No FOOD!

Uhhh, Mom?

You may be in love if...

One of the most common human experiences that two or more (depending on how ambitious you are) people can share is love. But, it’s not always easy to tell if you are in like, lust or full blown, forever loving. With that in mind, I’ve created this list of signs that you may be crazy in love!

1. If you’ve ever stared deeply into the eyes of your significant other for more than 10 seconds without cracking up hysterically … you may be in love.

2. If every person in your life tells you that she/he’s no good and you’re mailman, pharmacist and local news station agrees, yet you think they are “just jealous” … you may be in love.

3. Guys: if you’ve taken the pictures of the other women in you’re life off the walls, like the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition posters, Playmate of the month calendar, Monster Truck Rally 2005 … you may be in love.

4. Ladies: men can produce excessive amounts of eye watering, nose burning noxious odor from almost any food or drink, and then aren’t above sharing it with others, especially at night. Knowing all this, and you STILL want to sleep in the same bed with him … you may be in love.

5. If your significant other asks you how they look in their new retro polyester lime green outfit and you say they look hot … you may be in love…. or you have a really strong self preservation instinct.

6. Guys: if you’ve ever given up washing and waxing that new car you just bought to watch “Sleepless in Seattle” with you’re girlfriend/wife for the 20th time … you may be in love.

7. If you always remember every anniversary and birthday of your partner, and you’re not female … you may be in love.

8. If you think the underwear and socks you get for your birthday and Christmas every year is a pleasant surprise … you may be in love.

9. If you thought the Sears Tool Set and rolling cabinet you got for your birthday was great idea, and you’re not male ... you may be in love.

10. If you are taken to Burger King for a romantic dinner, and that doesn’t bother you … you may be in love.

11. If you notice your local florist starts arriving at work in a limo since you became a customer ... you may be in love

12. If hearing "Honey, wheres my clean underwear?" brings tears of joy to your eyes ... you may be in love

But the easiest way to tell if you are in love is this: If there is no one on this planet that you would rather spend everyday of your life with than the one you are with … then you ARE in love!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Top 10 Hangover Cures

The morning after the night before. You wake up on the floor of your room in the same clothes you wore last night and you can still taste the remnants of the takeaway you devoured on the way home. Upon opening your eyes you utter the immortal and too often spoken words “I'm never drinking again!”. The promise is made every saturday and sunday morning by anyone who has overindulged themselves the night before and you can gaurantee that as soon as the following weekend comes around these same people will be out drinking themselves into the same state.

Of course I am referring to every drinkers nightmare – The Hangover. It simply drains the energy from you and turns you into a walking zombie.
If like me you suffer with terrible hangovers then never fear because help is at hand. I have prepared a top 10 list of hangover cures and remedies to get you back to your old self as soon as possible with minimal hassle.

Cure Number 1 – The Hair of the Dog.
OK so this is probably not the best way to cure the hangover. The last thing anyone wants to do after a severely heavy night on the town is to go back down the pub. This technique is simply a way of postponing the horror of the hangover by topping up the levels of alcohol already floating about in your bloodstream. This method is commonly used among students and younger drinkers who love to live the party lifestyle but beware it only postpones the inevitable.

Cure Number 2 – Re-hydration
This is a common mistake made among most people. Making sure to take on as much water as possible is one of the best ways to avoid a hangover. Around about 200ml of water per 30ml of alcohol is a good rule of thumb. Usually most people are either too tired or too drunk after their night of drinking and simply collapse when they get home. So make sure you drink lots of water before you go to bed. It may mean several trips to the toilet in the night but believe me its worth it.
Sports drinks are also a good idea. The taste might not always be any good but try and consume as much Lucozade, Powerade and any other “ade” you can find.

Cure Number 3 - Food
If you've got a steaming hangover get over to your local café and order a huge big fry-up.

Protein is a good source of amino acids and a good hearty breakfast has loads, so you'll soon be on the road to recovery.

Actually food is a good idea all round - before, during and immediately after drinking. Food doesn't absorb alcohol, but it does increase metabolism, activates alcohol absorption, and increases the speed with which the body processes alcohol.
You may not be able to keep any food down but as much as it might not feel like it it is helping.

Cure Number 4 – Lots of Rest
Going back to bed is an effective way to help your body regenerate and recover. The reason I say “go back” to bed is because simply staying in bed all day is not a good idea (unless you have found some poor mug to cater for your ever need). Make sure you get up, have something to eat and drink, maybe even have a shower to freshen yourself up. Only then should you consider going back to bed. Wouldn't you much rather be asleep for the pounding headache and the upset stomach?

Cure Number 5 – Don't drink so much in the first place!
I no it seems obvious but its true. Try and think about moderating the amount you drink during the night. Don't be conned by your mates or crack under peer pressure to have that “one more” shot or that “swift pint” before you go home. Make sure you no when you've had enough.

Cure Number 6 – Fresh Air and maybe some exercise.
The second last thing you probably want to do is to crawl out from under your duvet and brave the sunlight. The last thing however would be to do any exercise. However this is good for you as it speeds up your metabolic rate and processes the alcohol quicker. It doesn't have to be anything too strenuous just a simple walk around the block would be fine.

Cure Number 7 – Headache Pills
Some people swear by the notion that taking headache tablets before you go to bed is a great way to prevent a hangover or at least reduce the pain. Wrong! A better idea is to take a couple of headache tablets, preferably ibuprofen based ones, in the morning followed by a big glass of water then head straight back to bed. At least his way your head won't feel as thought there is a Frenchman living in it.

Cure Number 8 – Don't mix your drinks.
A good way to make sure that the hangover from hell doesn't come and invade your skull is to stick to one type of drink. Drinking spirits, lagers, shots and anything else you may get your hands on is not a great idea. Its not big and its not clever.

Cure Number 9 – Banana's
Bananas have sugar in the form of fructose, they also have potassium, which is one of the things you lose a lot of when you've been out getting hammered. Bananas are also a natural antacid which helps with the nausea, and are high in magnesium which can help relax those pounding blood vessels causing that hangover headache.

Cure Number 10 - Tomato's
Tomatoes are full of antioxidants and vitamins and they're healthy so get munching. If you don't like eating tomatoes, drink them in a Bloody Mary. You'll feel better in about 15 minutes.

Bloody Mary
-1.5 oz vodka
-Dash of lemon (or lime) juice
-Worcestershire sauce
-2 or 3 drops Tabasco sauce
-Pepper, salt and celery salt
-5 oz tomato juice
-Serve in a tall glass over ice

If the idea of more alcohol turns your stomach why not try making a Virgin Mary, it's exactly the same recipe except without the Vodka.

Special Tip Number 11 – The Sauna.

This is a potentially dangerous method of recovery and will involve you having to set some sort of world record for the most glasses of water drunk consecutively. If you and a few friends take a trip down to the local sauna then stay in there for around 10mins (No Longer!) then you will sweat out all the toxins in your body. However you will have to drink as much water as you possibly can because you will obviously be dehydrated to begin with. Beware because there are some nasty side effects of you spending time in this sweaty environment. The place will smell of pure alcohol and sweat and it will not be pleasant.

This is about all the advice I can offer you except for good luck and happy drinking.
You may reprint this article on your site as long as it is reprinted in its entirety and the resource information remains intact.

For the chance to attend a Christmas Party in London with a difference then check out the “One Night in Havana” extravaganza at the Vinopolis.

The TOP 50 WAYS to Survive College for the First-Time-Off-To-College Kid

1. Never miss a meal – you might regret it later that hour.
2. Park your car accessibly close.
3. Don’t park in timed zones (2 hour, etc.) – parking overtime adds up.
4. Don’t park in No Parking zones – parking tickets add up and have to be paid before next semester’s registration.
5. Don’t park in Tow Away zones – towing fees are hard to come by.
6. Take the bus.
7. A fine-point Sharpie is the best thing to use for signing autographs.
8. A fine-point Sharpie is the best thing to use for signing casts.
9. A fine-point Sharpie is the best thing to use for signing “I’m a friend when you need one” cards.
10. Staplers can be used to repair the hem on your jeans.
11. Staplers can NOT be used to repair a torn dress or bra strap.
12. Staple removers make great ice tongs for tiny ice cubes.
13. Staple removers are almost worthless for removing heavy-duty staples, whether they are in paper or your drunk roommate’s eyeball.
14. The smell of the contents of a laundry bag is proportional to the height of the guest you just brought in your dorm room compared to where the bag is hanging. The shorter the guest, the higher the bag needs to hang (fumes rise).
15. The smell of the contents of a laundry bag gets worse as the contents get higher in the bag.
16. There are two alternatives to the smell of the contents of the laundry bag:
a. Wash the clothes.
b. Buy new clothes.
c. Taking the clothes home for the weekend for Mama to wash is not an option!!
17. When you have to produce a chart for Geography class, make it color-coded.
18. The extra expense and time of a color-coded chart will be well worth the effort when you see the “A” on the paper.
19. RoseArt makes the cheapest markers and colored pencils for making charts for Geography class.
20. Crayola markers last longer and are probably darker, but since they all dry out eventually and you’ll have to buy another set next semester for the Anthropology charts, why waste the money now?
21. Wal-Mart is the best place to buy school supplies, towels with the University logo, and sweatshirts with the school emblem on them.
22. Prices for EVERYTHING at the college bookstore are seriously inflated to show a profit to the Board of Regents.
23. The Board of Regents really does not care how much you spent on markers.
24. Wal-Mart was the first store on the moon and on Mars, so there will be one in your college town. Find it. Patronize it. Get to know its manager.
25. Wal-Mart and Waffle House are case studies in your Marketing classes textbooks.
26. Waffle House is open 24 hours a day.
27. Waffle House coffee will hold open your eyes, fill an empty tummy that has no other money, and warm a tired student who needed a place to come in out of the rain.
28. Waffle House waitresses LIKE tips.
29. Waffle House waitresses love college kids who tip.
30. Waffle House waitresses will listen with interest when you are professor bashing – just make sure he’s not her brother before you start berating him.
31. Waffle House waitresses will come to your graduation and look on you with pride as their “rent-a-kid” if you’ve tipped often enough.
32. Use a corkboard, not the wall, as your bulletin board.
33. Push pins leave little holes in the wall.
34. Push pins leave little holes in your bank account when you have to pay to have the holes filled in at the end of the semester. Staples do, too.
35. Staples are hard to remove from a bulletin board. Use push pins.
36. Push pins can not be used to deflate your roommate’s boy(or girl)friend’s tires. Except when inserted into the sidewall of the tire (near the rim).
37. Taking 12 pairs of shoes to college is a bit excessive, especially since you’ll wear OUT your favorite tennis shoes, sandals, and loafers, but the others have to be transported to school and back home.
38. Dr. Scholl’s makes great gel inserts for worn-out favorite tennis shoes.
39. If you share a room/bath with several other roommates or hallmates, set the guidelines, nicely, on the first day:
a. Don’t use my ________ (insert soap, shampoo, crème rinse, deodorant, towel, washcloth, loofah, etc. as needed) and I’ll try not to use yours but once or twice.
b. Don’t bring your girlfriend (or boyfriend) to the room without warning me first. If you do, bring me earplugs and eyeshades so I won’t have to watch what you’re doing.
c. Don’t take my last pencil/pen/paper without warning me first. If you do, I might have to use the back of your term paper for my class notes.
d. Keep your dirty, smelly laundry on your side of the room. My side will be full of my own.
e. Be nice to me. Otherwise, my overly large primate friends might trash your side of the room one night while I’m out for the night and have conveniently left the door unlocked.
f. Let me know when you’re going to spend the night out so I can make use of your side of the room.
40. Hole punchers only work if you keep them aligned.
41. Hole punchers only work if you keep them emptied of the little dots they create from punching holes in your papers.
42. Little dots from the hole-puncher hopper make great confetti.
43. Little dots from the hole-puncher hopper are REALLY hard to get out of carpet.
44. The cheap, shag carpet in older rental trailers that your older college friends are renting holds a ton of little dots from the hole-puncher hopper.
45. Use the appropriate size binder clip for the project.
46. Binder clips come in several sizes:
a. Teensy (holds 1 sheet of notebook paper or 2 kisses)
b. Tiny (holds 4 sheets of notebook paper or 1 folded dollar for the Waffle House waitress).
c. Small (holds 8 sheets of notebook paper or 2 quarters for a bad Waffle House tip).
d. Medium (holds 20-40 sheets of notebook paper or for attaching 1 small magazine to your roommate’s pillowcase).
e. Large (holds 100 sheets of notebook paper or a split seam of a fairly loose garment until you can get back to your dorm room; a split seam of a tight garment needs a coat or garbage to cover it up – repairing it is a waste of time).
f. Excessive (holds 4 books and takes 3 people to press it open; if you get your finger caught in its jaws of death, have someone else dial 911).
47. Sticky-do’s (commonly referred to as “post-it notes) come in several flavors:
a. 1.5” x 2” (Small. Worthless for anything but reminding yourself to buy larger sticky-do’s).
b. 3” x 3” (Medium. Don’t use this size to leave notes on your roommate’s pillow like “We’re all out of cornflakes. FU” [quote from Felix Unger, played by Jack Lemmon, in “The Odd Couple,” a GREAT movie about roommates]).
c. 4” x 6” (Large. More expensive, but in the louder colors, make great backgrounds for your roommate’s dull bulletin board).
48. Gem clips, whether plastic or metal, are worthless. Unless you need to hold used tissues together while your drunken roommate spills the beans at IHOP about the frat party bash/orgy/sleepover.
49. IHOP waitresses like tips, too.
50. Academic pursuits in college are for your spare time. Pursue them sparingly.

Next: How to survive your first semester academically.

New Cause of High Blood Pressure Revealed; Expecting Logical Behavior

A new study in The New England Journal Of Medicine reveals that one of the principal causes of high-blood pressure in the contemporary world is logical thinking.

A researcher commented on the surprise finding, saying, “Look it’s basically an illogical world out there. So the more you try to deal with it logically, the more upset you’re bound to become – and up shoots your blood pressure. We found that, when we convince patients to give up interfacing with the world with the expectations that logical thinking sets up, they immediately become far more relaxed and, as a result, their blood pressure drops, often returning to normal levels.”

When asked if there might be other undiscovered factors that contribute to high blood pressure, he said, “Oh, absolutely. For instance, we’ve got a study in the works right now on that insidious culprit, sensitivity.”

“Sensitivity?” we asked.

“Yes,” he went on, “You see the modern world, especially as we interface with it through the mass media and frequently in corporate life, appears wildly insensitive to our individual wishes, so the more sensitive you are, the more likely it is to upset you. So we’re looking into how we can condition people to feel less, at least, when dealing with larger entities.”

“What about sensitivity in our personal lives? Is that still OK?”

“Well, I’d like to think so. But, since many domestic spats lead to higher blood pressure, we’re also considering a study to determine the benefits of reducing sensitivity in personal life.”

“But what good is it,” we inquired, “to have normal blood pressure if you’re determined to be illogical and insensitive?”

“Well, that’s part of the problem. In some ways, the cure may be worse than the disease. Of course, the ultimate way to lower your blood pressure is to die, but we don’t see that as a viable area for a long-term study.”

More things I have learned

Growing old does have one benefit ... experience. So, I am continuing here to share my vast pool of knowledge. Of course my girlfriend can't resist telling me I need to clean the pool, but heres the list anyway.

1. If you do anything that gets your hands wet, soapy or dirty, your nose WILL itch.

2. When you give your email out anywhere on the internet, you will soon learn all you never wanted to know about body part enhancements.

3. A cat does not love you. It simply allows you to live with it IF you pet, feed and clean it's litter box on a regular basis. Otherwise, you're history.

4. Your Co-Workers, on the other hand, DO love you ... at least as long as you continue to give them good stuff to talk about when you aren't around.

5. You are NOT the master of your fate. Your mother is. And when you get married, your wife is.

6. Life is beautiful .. Life sucks ... life is beautiful ... life sucks. Repeat as necessary.

7. There is a chip in all cars that keeps them from starting unless you stroke the dashboard correctly and sincerely mean it when you say "Come on baby .. you can do it".

8. Computers will only work correctly when you DON'T need them to.

9. A kiss is just a kiss, and a smile is just a smile, but a baby is forever.

10. There is no such thing as a ghost that can haunt you ... except in your own mind.

11. Nothing is carved in stone ... other than what will happen if you forget your other half's birthday or anniversary.

12. No matter how hard you try, you will NEVER be able to fold laundry according to your spouse's instructions.

13. Anything you think will happen, won't... and anything you think won't happen, will.

14. Love is a two way street .. unless you are on the freeway and then there may be lots of exits before you get somewhere.

Misspelled Scriptures

One way to confirm that cyberspace is the great equalizer is to observe the quality of editing that exists ...

I am truly amazed at the mangling endured by the English language on a significant number of sites. It's fair to assume that this malady has its roots in short attention spans during the school years. As a result, accuracy is often the first victim of poor spelling and grammar.

Still, if we're going to cite examples of this averral, let's do it with a touch of humor. Here are some responses by younger students from a secular school when asked to expound on various teachings of the Bible. Their words are unedited:

"In the first book of the Bible, Guinessis, God got tired of creating the world, so he took the Sabbath off."

"Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree."

"Noah's wife was called Joan of Ark."

"Noah built an ark, which the animals come on to in pears."

"Lot's wife was a pillar of salt by day, but a ball of fire by night."

"The Jews were a proud people and throughout history they had trouble with the unwympathetic Genitals."

"Samson was a strongman who let himself be led astray by a Jezebel like Delilah."

"Samson slayed the Philistines with the axe of the Apostles."

"Moses led the Hebrews to the Red Sea, where they made unleavened bread which is bread without any ingredients."

"The Egyptians were all drowned in the dessert. Afterwards, Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the ten ammendments."

"The first commandment was when Eve told Adam to eat the apple."

"The seventh commandment is thou shalt not admit adultery."

"Moses died before he ever reached Canada."

"Then Joshua led the Hebrews in the battle of Geritol."

"The greatest miracle in the Bible is when Joshua told his son to stand still and he obeyed him."

"David was a Hebrew king skilled at playing the liar. He fought with the Finklesteins, a race of people who lived in Bibical times."

"Solomon, one of David's sons, had 300 wives and 700 porcupines. When Mary heard that she was the mother of Jesus, she sang the Magna Carta."

"When the three wise guys from the east side arrived, they found Jesus in the manager. Jesus was born because Mary had an immaculate contraption."

"St. John, the blacksmith, dumped water on his head."

"Jesus enunciated the Golden Rule, which says to do one to others before they do one to you."

"He also explained, 'a man doth not live by sweat alone.'"

"It was a miracle when Jesus rose from the dead and managed to get the tombstone off the entrance."

"The people who followed the Lord were called the 12 decibels."

"The epistles were the wives of the apostles."

"One of the opossums was St. Matthew who was also a taximan."

"St. Paul cavorted to Christianity. He preached holy acrimony, which is another name for marriage."

Now, while we pause for a moment to wonder which of these authors will be filling our prescriptions and writing our wills when they reach adulthood, let's also consider that some of them could have a great future in punditry. Here's a likely candidate:

"A Christian should have only one spouse. This is called monotony."

Ba-da-boom ... or however a rimshot is spelled.

Milk Goats - Know Thy Enemy

Patience may be a virtue, but laughter is the only way to survive goat milking. You can strive for the perfect fencing. You must aim for good nutrition. But, don’t kid yourself. When it comes to milking, you do not get the last word.

When I decided to add milk goats to my backyard farm I envisioned pitchers of milk cooling in the fridge while cheddar rounds age in my cellar. Spirit, my first nanny, had other ideas. There is an old saying I just made up: “Don’t expect instant gratification from your very first dairy goat lactation.” Like dating, expecting nothing is the first step toward not being let down. Perseverance is the next step toward surviving goats with your sanity moderately intact.

Spirit proved mutinous in milking. Even with twins at her side, she had ample milk to share. Generosity was simply not her forte. However, like falling off a bike or getting thrown from your horse, when you find a goat leg lodged in your right ear, you must climb right back on.

To help other potential farmers deal with inevitable frustration, I have provided the following journal. It documents my first full month of milking Spirit. From this draw hope. There is light at the end of the nipple.

Day 1: Leashed goat runs around tie post kicking and bucking. Never got near the teat.

Day 2: Build "EZ One Hour Goat Milking Stand" from online instructions. Define five hours in hell.

Day 3: Adjust Goat Milking Stand so goat’s big fat head will fit through the stocks into the feed box.

Day 4: Adjust Goat Milking Stand so goat’s skinny little head will not retreat from feed box out through the stocks.

Day 5: Collect 3.5 tsp. milk from flailing goat on milking stand.

Day 6: Dido.

Day 7: Tether goat’s leg. Goat kicks loose in .3 seconds.

Day 8: Tether goat’s leg better. Goat kicks loose dumping over 3.5 tsp. of milk.

Day 9: Try new tethering technique. Collect entire ounce of milk. Goat’s effort to kick loose succeeds only after she sheds 3.5 tsp. of hair into the shot glass of milk.

Day 10: Go to store. Buy milk.

Day 11 – 14: Discouraged. Just squirt some milk straight onto the milking stand so that the apparently dwindling right teat stays active.

Day 15: Goat now standing still while I collect three ounces of milk. Then the cantankerous witch sticks her foot in it.

Day 16 – 18: Dido, dido and dido.

Day 19: Right teat has all but vanished.

Day 20: Right teat empty.

Day 21: Spirit’s legal team serves me with papers declaring her functional left teat off limits and for her babies only.

Day 22 – 23: Practice milking technique while coaxing droplets from withered right teat.

Day 24: Have mastered milking with right hand while my left hand holds the receptacle up, dodging the maniacal wenches attempts put her foot in the milk. Net bounty from flat tit approx 1.4 oz. Note: Goat still shedding.

Day 25-26: Milk rations slightly increasing. Goat and cottonwood trees now both shedding into the milk receptacle.

Day 27: Babies distract me by biting my shirt while I am milking. Spirit’s foot returns to the milk receptacle.

Day 28: Babies adamant about eating my clothes while I milk. I steal milk from their precious left teat.

Day 29: Babies try to distract me by eating my hair. I try to ignore them. Goat flinches. My foot avoider reflex overcompensates, hurling the milk directly inside my protective LASIK goggles. Startled by my French, both babies run off in opposite directions with my hair still in their mouths.

Day 30: And the beat goes on.

Day 31: Average daily yield now totals around 10 oz. Source: two milkings per day from 1.2 tits.

Remember, when the day comes, and it will, where you just walk up to your nanny and quickly squirt a little milk straight into your morning coffee then wander off sobbing, bear in mind with a little patience, all this can be yours.

Everybody is Happy in Their Own Way

Morning. I’m running late to work as usual. I’m rushing out of the door, buttoning myself up on my way. There’s Ivan Kuzmich sitting on the bench. Everybody calls him Grandpa Kuzya, he is about 80 years old, but his mind is not that of an old man at all.
- You’re in a hurry again? – the old man asks.

- Yeah, no happiness in personal life, - I reply finishing buttoning up.

- That’s because you don’t know what happiness is, - he reproaches me.

It’s hard to put up, pay no heed that being 49 something I haven’t known happiness.

I stop short, realizing that now I’m sure to be late. But to catch the old man in his overweening delusion is far more important that telling-off at work. What could an elderly person know about happiness? If he ever had it, it was forgotten long ago.

- Ivan Kuzmich, and do you know what happiness is? Did you have a cool Mercedes, sexy mistress, pretty wife? And maybe you used to be The Party’s Secretary General? Or a major research worker? Maybe you found and proved the formula of happiness? Tell me. What is this all about?

- I’ll tell you just in a word as you’re in hurry. Just briefly and understandably.

Listen. Being at work do not think about alcohol and holidays. Celebrating a holiday do not think about work. Being next to your wife, do not think about mistress, while being with your mistress do not think about her husband. Don’t talk to a policeman about money and with kids and neighbors about your problems as the first won’t understand while the late will be glad. Don’t lend money, in the evening don’t borrow salt, don’t throw out garbage. Bring your salary home, don’t be jealous about your wife, check your kids’ marks, walk your dog sometimes. And the main thing – always think before you say something. Don’t say anything just to say. You know, a word spoken in past recalling. And for the head working well eat cereal in the morning.

- So you want to say that if I think only about my wife, don’t think about vodka, don’t talk about money with cops, don’t borrow salt from my neighbor and eat cereal in the morning, I’ll be a happy man? Is that you formula of happiness?

- That’s it, that’s my formula of happiness, - the old man replies with joy, - and you should find yours yourself. When you find it, you’ll feel like a happy man.

- Hey, it looks like you’re talking just to kill time. Cereal, vodka, cops… why should you tell me all this?

- Well… yesterday I’ve been to a dentist. Been installed new dentures. He said that I should speak a lot to get used to them. And here you are, I talked to you and seem to get used…

Chicken Rearing 101 – How Not to Raise Chickens

Chick: A hatchling

Capon: A castrated male used for meat. (How much could that yield?)

Pullet: A female chicken under one year old.

Hen: A female chicken over one year of age

Rooster: A male chicken over one year of age.

Raising Chickens for the first time can be intimidating. When I first called the Feed Shop, I was trying to sound like a pro. I asked, “Do you sell pullets?” “Yes”, the man replied. “Are they all females?” It’s been an uphill battle ever since.

Pullet parenthood is an much of an adventure as child rearing, only with more feces per pound of body weight. However, I’ve been reading quite a bit on poultry matters. (Yes, my coolness just turned over in its grave.) So if I am correct and I am quite certain I am not, here is how chicken rearin’ goes.

Go to your local feed store and purchase $10.00 worth of chicks and $50 worth of food and supplies. Don’t forget the water dispensers. Buying the metal ones, never plastic is always advised. I have yet to see a metal one.

Next, place the chicks somewhere sheltered, like a bedroom closet. Toss in some highly flammable straw or wood shavings and promptly dangle a glowing heat lamp just above them. Note to self: Update homeowner’s policy.

For the next several weeks feed them 3 lbs of food per day and remove 4 lbs of sh*t per day from the closet. Despite all logic the birds get bigger. As the adult feathers grow in be sure to clip one of their wings. That is one per bird, not just one wing total. If clipping is done late chicks will nest in your toilet. This is a bad thing.

Clipping can be accomplished by tossing your scissors and your body into the heaping mound of chicks, poop and straw. Grab a wiggling screeching bird from the bile pile. Restrain it with one hand. Stretch the wing out with your second hand. Clip off 50% of the wings outer ten feathers with your third hand.

As the birds grow adjust the heat light temperature down by one degree per day. No, this is not actually possible. That’s not my point. You start at 100 degrees for hatchlings then continue down by one degree per day until your bedroom is a minimum of 3 degrees cooler than the spring blizzard outside your window.

Once you have frozen your ear to your semi-cannibalistic down pillow and the chicks have grown their adult feathers, they can be moved outside to the coop. I estimate the initial closet rearing stage to have taken five years.

Before the move, experience the Joy of Wing Clipping one more time. Feather clipping never works the first time. No one knows why. Still, after all the hassle you probably don’t want them to fly the coop in under sixty seconds. Of course, if you’re like me, by this time you may be inclined to pack them each a lunch and leave a stack of Greyhound tickets by the open coop gate.

Regarding habitat construction: Hen houses and chicken coops are a competitive art form. There are a myriad of web sites showing off architectural designs from Chicken Chateaus to Bird Bordellos. The meticulous craftsmanship makes my own home look like – well – like a chicken coop.

Always fashionable, I went with a shabby chic motif for my coop. The nesting boxes are an eclectic mix of stolen milk crates affixed to the wall by anything in arms reach. As for the coop itself, there is a gift for tight chicken wire, which eludes me. Quite frankly, my first attempt at a coop looks like Dr. Seuss dropped a hit of acid, blasted some Jefferson Starship and rolled around on the wire with every Who in Whoville. I think I’ll keep it.

Inferior design aside, I ultimately learned a thing or two. The nesting boxes are supposed to be up off the ground. That is correct. For those of you keeping score you just spent two weeks cutting back the birds flight feathers only to hang their houses in the sky. It’s just sick.

Higher than the nest boxes, you are to build a roost. This is where the birds crap at night so they do not crap on your breakfast eggs. Of course the roost is usually OVER the nesting boxes, so whatever you do, don’t use those perforated plastic milk crates.

For young birds maintain a heat light in the hen house. Then on cooler nights an animal with a brain the size of an bulimic toe nail clipping will make the conscious decision to forgo your nest boxes, bypass the instinctual roost and leap into a tanning bed.

And finally there is the feed regime. I asked several experts and read up on feeding as well. Make sure to give your chickens, starter formula, mash, growth formula, start & grow, brood formula, grit, no grit, scraps, no scraps, goat placenta, nothing suggested on the internet, tetramyaicn, no antibiotics, medicated starter, non-medicated starter and never ever switch in-between.

I may not be Queen of the Coop yet, but I’m working on it. Though I am still a zoologist and I still know Birds 101. Here are two myths I can help with. First, you do not need a rooster to get eggs. Most folk, especially those who have never owned chickens, will advise you on chickens. Each will insist you need a rooster for a while to do his manly duties, then you can slip him in the pot. As appealing as this concept is, your pot is a separate issue.

Roosters are only needed to make fertile eggs. Hens are all that is needed to make breakfast eggs. Fertile eggs are just peachy if raising chicks was such a joy the first time you want to repeat the whole freakin’ process. In addition there is always the risk of breaking a fertilized egg open and finding a 50% formed chick fetus hitting your hot skillet. Yum! Years of therapy will follow.

To keep it straight in your mind consider this: You are going about your life. Suddenly massive balls of calcium start stacking up inside your abdomen. Are you going to hold on to them just because you have not had sex lately?

The second bird myth is totally unrelated so I thought I would mention it. Penguins occur in nature from the Equator on Southward. That is down to the Antarctica, not the Arctic! No, they do not hang out with Polar Bears who live in the Arctic. No, you did not see them when you worked in Alaska, in the Arctic. Those were puffins. No, I am not sorry you look stupid to all those folks you told penguin tales to.

Yes, some penguin species even reside on the Galapagos Islands at the equator (Cold weather would kill them), not floating around on icebergs - and not in the Arctic! Yes, I realize my eggs are not all in one basket. Delusional, close-minded people who insist you need a rooster to fertilize your penguin eggs so polar bears won’t loose their food supply drove me crazy!

Black Humor, College Humor, Blond Jokes, funny pictures

I have had over the years (48 of them) a lot of time to review and participate in many different styles of humor and have studied their various effects on the human psyche. I will convey many of my observations, thoughts and ramblings where humor is involved. Over the next few months I will write on the following topics Cold Humor, Fat Humor, Bad Humor, Tasteless Humor and others.

Black Humor: This is the type of stuff that doesn’t quite make the Darwin’s but leaves the participant alive. In my findings, if it doesn’t kill you, it’s funny. Let me elaborate; as you have no doubt seen some of the horrendous accidents portrayed in the evening news, each of which I think to myself what were they thinking about. It’s clear to me that they aren’t thinking about what they are doing. Let me tell you of one such case I heard several years ago. Several guys were sitting around on the back porch, drinking beer as sometimes guys will do. They were also shooting 22’s at anything that moved. They had been doing so for some time as the local wildlife lay strewn about the place along with the empty beer cans when one of the drunken participants spotted a skunk. Now if you know anything about skunks you know that they are not the perfect prey; they shoot back and although a direct hit by the skunk will not kill, it does take awhile to explain to your significant other the events of your day. I digress; back to the story. The skunk avoided the first 100 to 200 rounds fired by the drunken lot and eventually found haven within a culvert placed in the ground at some angle enabling the skunk to travel back and down in the ground out of the reach of the drunken group. One of the drunkards decided to get the skunk to voluntarily leave his haven by smoking him out. So the drunkards start stuffing the culvert with dried grass and newspaper and lit it afire. The skunk however did not relinquish his hiding space, he stayed in the culvert. The drunkards then thought that because of the angle of the culvert that the smoke had likely not reached the skunk so they decided to make another attempt by pouring gasoline into the culvert. They gathered up the 5 gallon gas can and poured the entire contents into the culvert. Having the gas poured in they attempted to ignite the gas by throwing lit matches into the culvert after the gasoline. The lit matches would burn out before igniting the gas and so one of the drunkards, specifically the one that this black humor is written about, decided the best method of igniting the gasoline would be to climb into the culvert prior to igniting the match, so down he goes. At last he gets the gasoline ignited and what happens next is a thing of beauty. I will paraphrase the newswoman’s interview with witnesses. “He came out of that culvert like he was shot from a cannon, with his hair on fire, leaving a smoke trail that went from the culvert, over the back porch the drunkards had been enjoying all afternoon into the front yard where he lay, clothing smoldering, hair gone and burnt to second and third degree burns about his face and upper torso.” Now that’s funny!

If you would like to see other funny things I have accumulated over those 48 years go to my website and check them out http://www.TheDailyQuip.com/ and please have a humorous day, it’s the only way your going to make it out sane…

Birds of a Feather

Birds of a Feather

1. Which is not a group term for birds?
A. Flock
B. Flight
C. Volery
D. Swarm

D. Swarm
TBD: Various insects can collectively be called a swarm but not birds!

2. Which of these is a fear of birds?
A. Alektorophobia
B. Astraphobia
C. Ornithophobia
D. Ouranophobia

C. Ornithophobia
TBD: Although alektorophobia was close, that is a fear of chickens! Astraphobia is the fear of lightning and Ouranophobia is the fear of heaven!

3. Which bird is NOT a bird of prey?
A. Falcon
B. Francolin
C. Hobby
D. Kestrel

B. Francolin
TBD: Any of various Eurasian or African birds of the genus Francolinus, related to and resembling the quails and partridges, which are actually the intended victims of birds of prey!

4. What is the collective name for crows?
A. A murder
B. A clutch
C. A clutter
D. A Sleuth

A. A murder
TBD: You can have a clutch of chicks, a clutter of cats, and a sleuth of bears, if anyone was wondering.

5. What is the largest living species of bird?
A. Condor
B. Eagle
C. Ostrich
D. Emu

C. Ostrich
TBD: Did you know they are omnivorous, eating grass, foliage, and any small animals they can chase down?

6. The Trochildae family of birds shares what trait?
A. They are the smallest birds
B. They are flightless birds
C. They are birds of prey
D. They are featherless birds

A. They are the smallest birds
TBD: This family includes the hummingbird.

7. Which is NOT a proper name for a group of ducks?
A. Brace
B. Flock
C. Skein
D. Team

C. Skein
TBD: Actually that was pretty tricky as you can have a skein of geese…

8. How many eyelids do birds have?
A. None
B. One
C. Two
D. Three

D. Three
TBD: They have an upper lid resembling that of humans, a lower lid that closes when a bird sleeps, and a third lid, called a nictitating membrane, that sweeps across the eye sideways, starting from the side near the beak. This lid is a thin, translucent fold of skin that moistens and cleans the eye and protects it from wind and bright light.

9. Seabirds have the longest migration patterns. How long can these trips get?
A. 20,000 miles
B. 10,000 miles
C. 5,000 miles
D. 1,000 miles

A. 20,000 miles
TBD: That's further than many humans travel in their lifetime!

10. Can you guess how many known species of birds there are?
A. 100
B. 1,000
C. 10,000
D. 100,000

C. 10,000
TBD: This includes all modern or recently extinct species.

We Have Two Kidneys But Only Need One Kidney To Live

Organ donation is a gift and it should come from the heart, not by emotional coercion. Kidney transplants are the most common organ transplant that happens. Kidney transplants paved the way for surgical teams to develop successful transplantation of other organs including heart, lung, pancreas and liver.

People who do not have good kidneys are very sick. Kidneys do many things that are important to stay healthy. Normal kidneys perform several important tasks that keep the body in good health:

Clean your blood and remove waste products through the formation of urine
Balance fluids in the body by controlling water and salt concentrations
Maintain the balance of the bodys chemicals (potassium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus)
Control blood pressure
Supply elements used to make red blood cells, which carry oxygen in the blood
Help sustain strong bones.

One kidney, functioning at 20% capacity, can do all of the above. The kidneys produce urine that drains through narrow tubes (called ureters) into the bladder. Every day the kidneys filter 160 quarts of fluid from the bloodstream, removing about 1-1/2 quarts of waste in the form of urine.

There are two ways to replace the kidneys: dialysis and transplantation. Dialysis is when doctors use a machine and medicines to do the work that kidneys do. A better way to do the kidneys work is to give the person another kidney. To be a candidate for immunotherapy, the patient must be in good general condition, have adequate function of vital organs (such as the heart, lungs and kidneys) and have no brain metastasis.

For those with kidney failure, kidney transplants are preferable to treatment by dialysis. Kidney transplants are designed to treat patients whose kidneys are failing, making them unable to process body waste products. Transplants done relatively soon after starting dialysis are on average more successful than transplants performed two or more years after a patient starts dialysis. Patients who receive live donor kidney transplants usually have much shorter waiting times than those who receive kidneys from deceased donors. Transplants of kidneys from younger donors tend to survive longer than transplants from older donors.

Kidneys are allocated based on, among other considerations, the match between the donor and recipient blood groups and genetic type (called the tissue type or HLA type). Kidneys taken from living donors often begin to function immediately, while those from cadavers may take up to two weeks for tissues to adjust and become functional.

Unlike the backlog of patients in other medical areas, renal transplants happen when the donor kidney becomes available. On average, patients who are listed for a deceased donor transplant wait approximately three years, but there is a great deal of variability in this. For example, for a patient with a rare tissue type, there will be fewer donors with a tissue type that matches that of the patient well, compared to patients with more common tissue types. Furthermore some patients have antibodies directed against certain tissue types, which means that some, or even most, donor kidneys are not suitable for these patients.

After surgery, patients can expect to be hospitalized for approximately 7 to 10 days. After being discharged patients are seen daily as an outpatient for approximately four weeks. After the daily outpatient visits patients are instructed to do no heavy lifting or exercise for 8 to 10 weeks. Patients who do not smoke or give up smoking, maintain a good body weight and exercise regularly are more likely to have many years of good quality life with a well functioning kidney.

The Quest for Truth and the Meaning of Life

All too often, the quest for truth – which admittedly can only yield a qualified success in the best case scenario – is tainted with laxity and fancifulness, and hence is doomed to a pitiable result, not to say failure.

Strangely enough, Blaise Pascal, a famous mathematician and philosopher, is also the eccentric author of a wager according to which the belief in God (or more precisely in heaven as a divine reward for virtue) is defensible to the extent that it is desirable, even though it cannot be proven. Actually, it is supposedly defensible because not only cannot it be proven, it also cannot be disproven. So desirableness is considered a valid foundation for belief, absent provableness and disprovableness! The door is open to every wild fancy, as long as we lack the empirical means of discrediting it.

— Who have you invited to dinner, dear?
— Some fabulous folks, my love.
— Great! And who exactly are these folks?
— I don’t know, but they’re fabulous.
— Hum! How can you say they’re fabulous if you don’t know them?
— Our neighbor across the road told me so.
— Forgive me for asking, dear, but isn't that neighbor somewhat loopy? The story about angels watching over us sounds like wishful thinking to me.
— This loopy neighbor, as you say, is more fun to listen to than your professor friends, with all due respect.
— But don't you think…
— Forget about thinking; I’m in the mood for a dinner with some fabulous folks.

(If you feel this is a bit of sexist humor, note that I have made no mention of genders. The prejudices that offend us are sometimes very much our own. Remember also that Blaise Pascal was a man.)

Personally, I am not willing to forget about thinking. However attractive a claim may be, this attractiveness must be accompanied by credibleness – which is a function of provableness and trustworthiness – before I let it shape my view and govern my life. When credibleness is wanting, I reserve judgment until further notice and meanwhile accept reality as it appears to be, judging from facts and solid arguments, even if this appearance is not consistent with a so-called ideal world. Call me austere (not ready to indulge in the luxury of extravagant beliefs), a man of reason who associates his intellectual austerity with intellectual integrity.

Having said this, the reverse attitude is common, especially in matters that are beyond the realm of experience and hence can neither be proven nor disproven. For example, as regards their future – here below or in the hereafter – many do not reserve judgment or keep their minds open to all possibilities, ranging from disastrous to glorious. Instead they believe a heavenly tale because they fancy believing it and often also because a charismatic fortuneteller or spiritual leader, allegedly endowed with supernatural powers, is the originator of this tale.

In its wildest and blindest form, optimism coupled with faith is illustrative of this attitude. Is it fanciful and naïve, or even foolish? I am tempted to say yes, and yet I will resist this temptation. There is no denying that the inveterate optimists-believers derive significant enjoyment from seeing their future through rose-colored spectacles. In view of this enjoyment, a sophisticated better like Blaise Pascal will argue that these spectacles are worth wearing, at the risk of laboring under a delusion. I myself lack the grace or the guile of innocent or calculating souls to whom ignorance is bliss.

I am all the stauncher as a committed realist since life in itself – without fables and despite the adversities that are part and parcel of it – has meaning to my mind. Furthermore, I contend that religion (as a provider of a questionable but meaningful myth that makes a blissful afterlife the purpose of life) is often a poor substitute for wisdom. It is designed to offset the feeling of dissatisfaction that shadows the foolish if often profound concept of existential absurdity. The more deficient in wisdom, the more avid for religion (as defined above) one is.

Now, what is the content of this wisdom, or what is the meaning of life within the limits of life? I have answered this question to the best of my ability in my book A REASON FOR LIVING; and my answer – like any answer to this question – is sure to be both at odds and in keeping with yours. But then, the antithesis of statements and disagreements can usefully stimulate the intellect to resolve the oppositions and achieve a new and superior synthesis.

Be that as it may, this antithesis betrays the imperfection of individual wisdoms. At best, they are true up to a point, and we can persistently overpass this point while the complete truth indefinitely recedes like the horizon as we advance toward it. There are as many wisdoms as there are individuals; nevertheless their subjectiveness admits of much intersubjectiveness or deep intellectual kinship.

Let us explore a number of cardinal facts and logical assumptions based on facts.

1) The observable universe is the obvious manifestation of a tendency toward order. Ordered things and beings (that show their attraction for a particular inert or living state), ordered behaviors and thoughts (that aim at specific achievements and feelings in preference to others), all this testifies to the tendency in question, which can be called the principle of universal order. The oneness of this principle is not merely nominal. It is fundamental, as demonstrated by the unitary if complex human nature, which comprises every physical and nonphysical aspect of the observable universe.

2) The observation of the universe relates to observers: humans, in the present instance. It is limited to the observable manifestations of this universe, or provides a basis for knowledge only within the limits of these manifestations. Everything beyond these limits – that is, everything that is not observably manifest – transcends our ability to know it. Nevertheless, as Kant pointed out, our inability to know it does not suppress our curiosity. Whereas some accept the limits of knowledge, many don’t. Their effort to penetrate the transcendental mystery ought to yield nothing except fancy.

3) There are, however, various degrees of fancy. At one extreme, fancy is grossly unfounded or rests on the highly suspicious claims of inspired visionaries regarding the great beyond. At the other extreme, fancy is very much tempered with reason. It is reminiscent of poetry, which assimilates certain things to kindred things through metaphors and similes.

Take for example the predictions of learned and intuitive futurists about the distant future of humanity. They clearly overstep the limits of knowledge, and yet they are believable to the extent that they are conceivable, given the way this knowledge represents humans and the world they inhabit. Take also for example the conjectures of learned and intuitive philosophers about the intimate nature of nonhuman beings or things beyond their observable characteristics. Like the above-mentioned predictions, they clearly overstep the limits of knowledge, and yet they are believable to the extent that they are conceivable, given the way this knowledge represents humans and nonhuman beings or things.

4) With respect to our human nature, observations include introspections and reveal both the spiritual and material aspects of this nature. Since we measure the value of life in terms of pleasure (sensual, intellectual, or moral), it is safe to say that the spiritual aspect is preeminent.

By underscoring the pleasure principle in moral matters, I imply that even the most edifying proof of nobility comprises an element of self-interest. Indeed, nobility is an ideal in the pursuit of which the noble soul takes pleasure – not the low sort of pleasure that one derives from such activities as feasting on a palatable dish or having intercourse with a seductive lover, but the most elevated sort. Therefore, self-interest and nobility are not mutually exclusive. When they come together, the former is exalted by the latter.

5) As we fathom our human nature, we ultimately acknowledge the principle of universal order as the essence of our being, which can normally acquire habits – of thought or behavior – that are conducive to well-being. And so gratitude adds to the acknowledgment, though misery may reverse this attitude when it plagues us despite ourselves.

Why such misery? There is no answer to this question. We can ascertain the possibility of misery; we cannot explain it. Saying that the principle of universal order is such as to permit the occurrence of misery is like saying that misery is because it can be, which is no explanation. In short, misery is a mystery; and the best we can do is fight and overcome it, or resign ourselves to it when it is insuperable.

Actually, we can do better. We can regard misery as a precious opportunity for courage and merit, whereas an absolutely blissful and effortless life would require no courage and hence afford no merit.

But what about extreme cases where we are truly miserable and helpless? We can then take comfort from the knowledge that the principle of universal order is the essence of our being. Each of us is a single human incarnation of this principle among countless other like incarnations, which offer the prospect of a meritorious happiness through considerable effort.

The Madness of Playing Games

If a lone, unkempt, person, standing on a soapbox were to say that he should become the Prime Minister, he would have been diagnosed by a passing psychiatrist as suffering from this or that mental disturbance. But were the same psychiatrist to frequent the same spot and see a crowd of millions saluting the same lonely, shabby figure - what would have his diagnosis been? Surely, different (perhaps of a more political hue).

It seems that one thing setting social games apart from madness is quantitative: the amount of the participants involved. Madness is a one-person game, and even mass mental disturbances are limited in scope. Moreover, it has long been demonstrated (for instance, by Karen Horney) that the definition of certain mental disorders is highly dependent upon the context of the prevailing culture. Mental disturbances (including psychoses) are time-dependent and locus-dependent. Religious behaviour and romantic behaviour could be easily construed as psychopathologies when examined out of their social, cultural, historical and political contexts.

Historical figures as diverse as Nietzsche (philosophy), Van Gogh (art), Hitler (politics) and Herzl (political visionary) made this smooth phase transition from the lunatic fringes to centre stage. They succeeded to attract, convince and influence a critical human mass, which provided for this transition. They appeared on history's stage (or were placed there posthumously) at the right time and in the right place. The biblical prophets and Jesus are similar examples though of a more severe disorder. Hitler and Herzl possibly suffered from personality disorders - the biblical prophets were, almost certainly, psychotic.

We play games because they are reversible and their outcomes are reversible. No game-player expects his involvement, or his particular moves to make a lasting impression on history, fellow humans, a territory, or a business entity. This, indeed, is the major taxonomic difference: the same class of actions can be classified as "game" when it does not intend to exert a lasting (that is, irreversible) influence on the environment. When such intention is evident - the very same actions qualify as something completely different. Games, therefore, are only mildly associated with memory. They are intended to be forgotten, eroded by time and entropy, by quantum events in our brains and macro-events in physical reality.

Games - as opposed to absolutely all other human activities - are entropic. Negentropy - the act of reducing entropy and increasing order - is present in a game, only to be reversed later. Nowhere is this more evident than in video games: destructive acts constitute the very foundation of these contraptions. When children start to play (and adults, for that matter - see Eric Berne's books on the subject) they commence by dissolution, by being destructively analytic. Playing games is an analytic activity. It is through games that we recognize our temporariness, the looming shadow of death, our forthcoming dissolution, evaporation, annihilation.

These FACTS we repress in normal life - lest they overwhelm us. A frontal recognition of them would render us speechless, motionless, paralysed. We pretend that we are going to live forever, we use this ridiculous, counter-factual assumption as a working hypothesis. Playing games lets us confront all this by engaging in activities which, by their very definition, are temporary, have no past and no future, temporally detached and physically detached. This is as close to death as we get.

Small wonder that rituals (a variant of games) typify religious activities. Religion is among the few human disciplines which tackle death head on, sometimes as a centrepiece (consider the symbolic sacrifice of Jesus). Rituals are also the hallmark of obsessive-compulsive disorders, which are the reaction to the repression of forbidden emotions (our reaction to the prevalence, pervasiveness and inevitability of death is almost identical). It is when we move from a conscious acknowledgement of the relative lack of lasting importance of games - to the pretension that they are important, that we make the transition from the personal to the social.

The way from madness to social rituals traverses games. In this sense, the transition is from game to myth. A mythology is a closed system of thought, which defines the "permissible" questions, those that can be asked. Other questions are forbidden because they cannot be answered without resorting to another mythology altogether.

Observation is an act, which is the anathema of the myth. The observer is presumed to be outside the observed system (a presumption which, in itself, is part of the myth of Science, at least until the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics was developed).

A game looks very strange, unnecessary and ridiculous from the vantage-point of an outside observer. It has no justification, no future, it looks aimless (from the utilitarian point of view), it can be compared to alternative systems of thought and of social organization (the biggest threat to any mythology). When games are transformed to myths, the first act perpetrated by the group of transformers is to ban all observations by the (willing or unwilling) participants.

Introspection replaces observation and becomes a mechanism of social coercion. The game, in its new guise, becomes a transcendental, postulated, axiomatic and doctrinaire entity. It spins off a caste of interpreters and mediators. It distinguishes participants (formerly, players) from outsiders or aliens (formerly observers or uninterested parties). And the game loses its power to confront us with death. As a myth it assumes the function of repression of this fact and of the fact that we are all prisoners. Earth is really a death ward, a cosmic death row: we are all trapped here and all of us are sentenced to die.

Today's telecommunications, transportation, international computer networks and the unification of the cultural offering only serve to exacerbate and accentuate this claustrophobia. Granted, in a few millennia, with space travel and space habitation, the walls of our cells will have practically vanished (or become negligible) with the exception of the constraint of our (limited) longevity. Mortality is a blessing in disguise because it motivates humans to act in order "not to miss the train of life" and it maintains the sense of wonder and the (false) sense of unlimited possibilities.

This conversion from madness to game to myth is subjected to meta-laws that are the guidelines of a super-game. All our games are derivatives of this super-game of survival. It is a game because its outcomes are not guaranteed, they are temporary and to a large extent not even known (many of our activities are directed at deciphering it). It is a myth because it effectively ignores temporal and spatial limitations. It is one-track minded: to foster an increase in the population as a hedge against contingencies, which are outside the myth.

All the laws, which encourage optimization of resources, accommodation, an increase of order and negentropic results - belong, by definition to this meta-system. We can rigorously claim that there exist no laws, no human activities outside it. It is inconceivable that it should contain its own negation (Godel-like), therefore it must be internally and externally consistent. It is as inconceivable that it will be less than perfect - so it must be all-inclusive. Its comprehensiveness is not the formal logical one: it is not the system of all the conceivable sub-systems, theorems and propositions (because it is not self-contradictory or self-defeating). It is simply the list of possibilities and actualities open to humans, taking their limitations into consideration. This, precisely, is the power of money. It is - and always has been - a symbol whose abstract dimension far outweighed its tangible one.

This bestowed upon money a preferred status: that of a measuring rod. The outcomes of games and myths alike needed to be monitored and measured. Competition was only a mechanism to secure the on-going participation of individuals in the game. Measurement was an altogether more important element: the very efficiency of the survival strategy was in question. How could humanity measure the relative performance (and contribution) of its members - and their overall efficiency (and prospects)? Money came handy. It is uniform, objective, reacts flexibly and immediately to changing circumstances, abstract, easily transformable into tangibles - in short, a perfect barometer of the chances of survival at any given gauging moment. It is through its role as a universal comparative scale - that it came to acquire the might that it possesses.

Money, in other words, had the ultimate information content: the information concerning survival, the information needed for survival. Money measures performance (which allows for survival enhancing feedback). Money confers identity - an effective way to differentiate oneself in a world glutted with information, alienating and assimilating. Money cemented a social system of monovalent rating (a pecking order) - which, in turn, optimized decision making processes through the minimization of the amounts of information needed to affect them. The price of a share traded in the stock exchange, for instance, is assumed (by certain theoreticians) to incorporate (and reflect) all the information available regarding this share. Analogously, we can say that the amount of money that a person has contains sufficient information regarding his or her ability to survive and his or her contribution to the survivability of others. There must be other - possibly more important measures of that - but they are, most probably, lacking: not as uniform as money, not as universal, not as potent, etc.

Money is said to buy us love (or to stand for it, psychologically) - and love is the prerequisite to survival. Very few of us would have survived without some kind of love or attention lavished on us. We are dependent creatures throughout our lives. Thus, in an unavoidable path, as humans move from game to myth and from myth to a derivative social organization - they move ever closer to money and to the information that it contains. Money contains information in different modalities. But it all boils down to the very ancient question of the survival of the fittest.

The Essence of Freedom

Life is too hard and too risky in the eyes of many. By contrast, others are such proponents of a virile existence, demanding great courage and giving great pride, that they are ready to leave the coziness of their home to scale Mount Everest and breast the elements for the sheer joy of conquering the summit. Whatever the perspective, the nature of things remains unchanged. There are rules, necessities and duties, and limits, possibilities and impossibilities. Until doom, one can accept them and make the best of them, much to one’s pleasure and honor, or one can do the opposite and suffer the consequences. The choice between these two options is the very essence of freedom. Personally, I have no use for the second option: a self-inflicted misery that is without the slightest doubt a pitiable way of life.

The first option, on the other hand, is a pleasurable and honorable alternative that I find compelling, though uphill. It is applicable to any situation encountered in the course of one’s living venture, provided one is not unfortunate to the point of being hopelessly unable to cope. The range of this applicability corresponds with the range of one’s adaptability. It is normally considerable, despite the tendency to cling to old gratifying habits even after they have become impracticable or unsuitable, owing to a change of situation. One can be weaned from such habits onto new gratifying habits, in the same way as a baby can be weaned onto solids. The more the change is significant and one is reluctant to adapt to it, the more the weaning process is difficult and long in producing the desired effect. Again, the only option worthy of one’s attention consists in taking things as they come and making the most of them, for one’s sake and that of others. The reverse is foolish and harmful, a deplorable waste of humanity.

On the whole, the power to live in a well-adjusted and high-minded way and the freedom to choose this way in preference to the alternate, illegitimate, way are the foundations of the life one builds. The exercise of this power does not necessarily imply a principled resignation toward the status quo. One may be faced with a remediable evil that calls for a struggle to remedy it, effectively and rightly. In that case, living in a well-adjusted and high-minded way entails accepting the need for this struggle and the means of waging it, and sparing no effort to attain one’s end. Ills are a test of will, an opportunity to show dignity.

They are also an opportunity to probe and appraise one’s inner resources. Over the years, I have improved my situation and especially my attitude, whose negativity was the most unfavorable and improvable aspect of my life. In so doing, I have discovered my true richness. Nature has endowed me with an adaptable capacity for happiness within the limits of my changeable reality. According to my observations, this capacity is not unusually great, compared with that of most people. I am even tempted to think it is somewhat lagging behind. Eleven years plus to adapt in triumph to my physical disability is no feat for the Guinness Book of World Records!

During that time, the riddle of life had more or less baffled me. Yet, laboriously, with the help of many books and much thought, I had managed by degrees to clear it up, enough to find a meaning to my life. This riddle is comparable to a mire: The slower you go through it, the deeper you get into it. Perhaps thinkers are commonly untalented in the art of living and their saving grace is their dogged determination to redeem this lack of talent by dint of studying the human soul. Amusingly enough, these untalented individuals are often perceived as gifted, once they have seen the light and reflected it with the numerous mirrors of an elaborate analysis, after a tentative and protracted search in the dark.

This sort of overcompensation is typical of people who experience difficulties in a certain area, but refuse to admit defeat. While some fare well in this area with a minimum of effort, they try hard to overcome these difficulties, with the result that they often fare better than the others. Their redeeming feature is their willpower in the face of their shortcoming, which they use as a reason to redouble their efforts, not as an excuse to throw in the towel. This is a recipe for a worthy success. They discipline and surpass themselves, and thus proudly turn things around.

Friday's Girl

A centuries-old mystery has crossed my path again ...

I mentioned in a recent article that there was a dispute in many academic quarters regarding the actual Viking deity being honored by the name, 'Friday.' The cold, hard fact is that unless someone unearths a runic stone that confirms the issue --- and that's not likely --- only a preponderance of circumstantial evidence is going to carry the day in any such debate.

So, while others while away their time contemplating world peace, I've returned to the search for Friday's inspiration.

If you'll recall, four of the seven days of the week are named after Norse gods:

- Tuesday is for Tyr, the god of truth and war,

- Wednesday is for Odin, the Allfather of Viking gods,

- Thursday is for Thor, the god of thunder,

- Friday, however is cloaked in ambiguity.

I'd always heard the day's name-origin came from Frigg, Odin's elder wife --- he had more than one --- and this is supported by the most scholarly of English references, such as the Oxford dictionary. Others say it was for either Frey or Freja, who were brother and sister in the Vanir clan. Frey was the god of fertility, so it was considered essential to keep him happy; Freja was the goddess of love and beauty, so it didn't hurt to keep on her good side, either.

Frigg's duties were to be the goddess of the sky. It was a subtle job, but someone had to do it.

Turning to cyberspace for resolution, I happened on an excellent guide in Norse matters, The Viking Answer Lady. She is so meticulous in her material that I felt the possibility of her bringing light to the issue was quite good. So, I contacted her. To say she did her research is an understatement. Here's her reply to me:

"Since Western Europe all originally derived from Indo-European tribes, we find that there were a lot of correspondences between the various branches --- not exact, one-for-one identity, but concepts are clearly related. So it's no real surprise to find that the naming and symbolism of the days of the week, and the number of days in a week, might be pretty much the same in all the descendants of the Indo-Europeans.

"You can see the day-name correspondences in other languages that descend from Indo-European:

"Ancient Greek has: hemera selenes (moon day), hemera Areos (Ares' day), hemera Hermu (Hermes' day), hemera Dios (Zeus' day), hemera Aphrodites (Aphrodite's day), hemera Khronu (Chronos' day), hemera heliou (sun day)

"Latin: Lunae dies (Moon-day, Monday), Martis dies (Mars-Day, Tuesday), Mercurii dies (Mercury's day, Wednesday), Jovis dies (Jove's day, Thursday), Veneris dies (Venus' day, Friday), Saturni dies (Saturn's day, Saturday) or alternatively Christian Sabbatum or Sabbati dies (Sabbath day), Solis dies (Sunday)or alternatively Christian Dominicus dies (Lord's day)

"Unsurprisingly, the Romance languages clearly derive their day names from Latin, except for Portugese, which numbers the days:

"Italian: lunedi, martedi, mercoledi, giovedi, venerdi, sabato, domenica

"Spanish: lunes, martes, miércoles, jueves, viernes, sábado, domingo

"French: lundi, mardi, mercredi, jeudi, vendredi, samedi, dimanche

"Romanian: luni, marti, miercuri, joi, vineri, sîmbata, duminica

"Portugese: Segunda-Feira (2nd day, Monday); Terça-Feira (3rd day, Tuesday); Quarta-Feira (4th day, Wednesday); Quinta-Feira (5th day, Thursday); Sexta-Feira (6th day, Friday); Sábado (Sabbath, Saturday); Domingo (Lord's Day, Sunday)

"The Celtic languages have taken and preserved the Latin names of the days, and also borrowed heavily from Christian concepts:

"Welsh: Dydd Llun (moon/Luna day), Dydd Mawrth (Mars' day), Dydd Mercher (Mercury's day), Dydd Iau (Jove's day), Dydd Gwener (Venus's day), Dydd Sadwrn (Saturn's day), Dydd Sul (sun day)

"Gaelic: Di-luain (moon day); Di-máirt (Mars's day); Di-ciaduinn or Di-ciadaoin (day of the first fast of the week - Friday being the second fast); Diardaoin (the day between the two fasts of Wednesday and Friday); Di-haoine or Dia-aoine (day of the fast) Di-sathuirn (Saturn day); Di-dómhnuich (Lord's day)

"Irish: Dé Luan (moon/Luna day); Dé Mairt (Mars' day); Dé Céadaoin (day of the first fast of the week); Déardaoin; Dé h-Aoine (the day between the two fasts of Wednesday and Friday); Dé Sathairn (Saturn's day); Dé Domhnaigh (Lord's day)

"The Germanic languages, however, are also related. Ares/Mars was equated with Týr as a warrior god. Zeus/Jupiter was equated with Thórr as the god who hurled lightnings. Mercury was equated with Óðinn, since both had a role as psychompomps, the one who leads the dead to their afterlife. Aphrodite/Venus was equated with Frigga and Freyja.

"German: Montag (moon day), Dienstag (Týr's day), Mittwoch (Mid-week), Donnerstag (Donner's/Thórr's day), Freitag (Freyja/Frigga's day), Samstag (derived ultimately from Latin Sabbatum), Sonntag (sun day)

"Dutch: maandag (moon day), dinsdag, woensdag (Woden's/Óðinn's day), donderda (Donner's/Thórr's day), vrijdag (Freyja/Frigga's day), zaterdag (Saturn day), zondag (sun day)

"Norwegian and Danish: mandag (moon day), tirsdag (Týr's day), onsdag (Óðinn's day), torsdag (Thórr's day), fredag (Freyja's/Frigga's day), lørdag (washing day), søndag (sun day)

"Swedish: måndag (moon day), tisdag (Týr's day), onsdag (Óðinn's day), torsdag (Thrr's day), fredag (Freyja/Frigga's day), lördag (wash day), söndag (sun day)

"Old English: mondæg or monandæg (moon day); tiwesdæg (Tiw's day, Týr's day); wodnesdæg (Wotan's/Óðinn's day); thunresdæg (Thórr's day); frigedæg (Frigga's/Freya's day); sæterdæg or sæternesdæg (Saturn's day); sunnandæg (sun day)

"Middle English: monday, moneday, or monenday (moon day); tiwesday or tewesday (Tiw's day, Týr's day); wodnesday, wednesday, or wednesdai (Wotan's/Óðinn's day); thursday or thuresday (Thórr's day); fridai (Frigga's/Freya's day); saterday (Saturn's day); soneday, sonenday, sunday, sunnenday (sun day)

"North Frisian: monnendei (moon-day); Tirsdei (Týr's-day); Winsdei (Wotan's/Óðinn's day); Türsdei (Thórr's day); Fridei (Frigga's/Freyja's day); sennin (sun-evening); sennedei (sun day)

"Etymologically, it's impossible to tell for certain whether the 'Friday' words derive from Frigga or Freyja (at least so I am told, I am not a philologist or linguistics expert). We can tell by the cognates that the name is from a goddess equated with Venus and Aphrodite.

"We get into further problems in that 'Freyja' is derived from roots meaning simply 'lady' while 'Frigga' comes from roots related to 'beloved.' There have been several scholars who insist that Frigga and Freyja are just different titles for the same goddess.

"None the less, undoubtedly 'Friday' comes from the name of one of these two goddeses, and not from the name of the god Freyr."

Now, that's the sort of studied thoroughness that can achieve Master's degrees. It's a preponderance of evidence that can carry the day in a court of law. Even though she only eliminated one of the three contenders to the title of Friday's Namesake, the Viking Answer Lady has gone above and beyond the call of duty to provide me with the information I requested.

I'm sure glad I didn't tell her I was just trying to win a bar bet.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Some Reasons Why Babies Cry

Crying is a normal event in the lives of all babies. When a baby comes out of the woomb the first thing to do is crying. By the first cry he will take some air in to the lungs for the first time in their life.After delivery if the baby does not cry then it should be initiated by slightly pinching or gently stroking the feet. From this it is clear that the healthy baby should cry and it is a normal physiological event ,still some times it can upset the mother or family members.

We all know that a baby can't tell his needs or troubles in words. The only way for him to communicate with others is by crying.Babies show some other signs like feet kicking,hand waving and head turning ect.But the best way to take the attention of others is by crying.

Excessive crying may not have a firm definition because the crying habit changes from baby to baby and some babies can be calmed easily but some are difficult to sooth.If crying is distressing for the mother and home nurse it can be called excessive.Many a times baby become quiet by giving breast milk or by carrying with a gentle rocking.Sudden onset of excessive crying means baby is distressed and needs attention.The causes of crying extends from simple reasons to life threatening conditions.Hence crying of a baby should not be ignored.

Most of the time it is difficult to find the cause of the cry. Common causes are discussed here for awareness.

Common reasons for crying:

1. Hunger:--

A hungry baby will cry till he gets the milk. Here the old saying comes true'crying baby gets the milk'.

2. Wetting:--

Urination and defecation causes some discomfort and results in crying till his parts are cleaned and made dry .

3. Company:--

Majority of the kids need somebody near. If they feel lonely they cry.When their favorite doll slips away from the grip they cry for help.

4. Tired:--

When the baby is tired after a journey and unable to sleep just cry simply.They feel tired in uncomfortable surroundings and due to unhealthy climate.

5. Heat - Cold:--

If they feel too hot or too cold they become restless and cry. Child is comfortable in a room with good ventilation.

6. Tight Clothes:--

Tight clothes especially during warm climate is intolerable for kids.Tight elastic of the the dress can also produce soreness in the hip region.

7. Dark room:--

When the baby wakes up from sleep he needs some dim light.If there is darkness he will disturb the sleep of parents by crying.Of course he will be irritated by strong light resulting in cry.

8. Mosquito:--

Yes, these creatures disturb the sleep by their blood sucking and makes the baby cry.

9. Nasal blockage:--

Child may not be able to sleep when they have a cold and go on crying till the passage is open.

10. Phlegm in throat:--

This also causes difficult breathing resulting in cry.Often a typical sound can be heard with each breath.

11. General aching:--

Generalized body ache with restlessness is seen in flu and prodromal stages of some infectious diseases can result in continuous cry.

12. Habitual Crying:---Some babies cry without any real cause ending the parents in agony.Many a times doctor is called for help.

13. Nappy rash:-- If a tight and wet nappy is kept for a long time results in this conditon.

Rash can also be due to some allergic reaction to the elastic material of the nappy. When the rash appears it causes soreness and baby become sleepless and cry. All other skin lesions like eczema,ecthyma ,candidiasis ect also causes same problems.

14. Ear Ache:--

Ear infection is common in wet climate.The infection may spread from the throat. Ear infection can result in rupture of ear drum causing discharge of pus. Ear ache usually becomes worse at night when lying down. Child will become restless with cry and may not allow you to touch the ear. Some children with earache rub the affected ear frequently.

15. Colic:--

When the baby cry continuously most of us diagnose it as colic.This roblem is still a topic for debate because exact cause for colic is not known and diagnosis is also difficult to confirm.Colic may be associated with rumbling and distention of abdomen.Child often feels better when lying on abdomen.Some children may not allow you to touch the abdomen.If the child cries continuously doctors help is needed.

16. Infections:--

All infections causes some kind of pain or irritation resulting in cry.Infection may be anywhere in the body.Usually it is associated with fever, redness and swelling.

17. Reactions to certain food:--

It is said that one man's food is another man's poison. Some food articles can produce some allergic reactions. Allergy is manifested in the form of redness, breathlessness,gastric symptoms and continuous cry.

18. Hard stools:--

Constipated babies with hard stools may cry when they get the urge for stool.Some children hesitate to pass stool because of pain .

19. Gastroesophageal reflex:--

Here baby cries with spilling of food after feeding.If this continues it may be due to gastroesophageal reflex. This is due to failure of the lower part of esophagus to close after food causing regurgitation from the stomach.It is difficult to diagnose this condition and can be confirmed by giving antireflux medicines.

20. Dentition:--

During dentition child becomes restless with crying. Often associated with gastric troubles and diarrhea.

Some rare reasons

1. Bowel obstruction:--

Bowel obstruction is associated with severe pain and vomiting.Abdomen is distended with rumbling sound.Baby is constipated with absence of flatus.

2. Septicemia:--

Invasion of pathogenic micro organisms in to the blood is called septicemia.Fever is associated with this condition.

3. Torsion of testes in male kids:--

When a male baby cries continuously his scrotum should be examined.Torsion of the testes produce severe pain which will be worse by touching the affected testes.When the testes is pressed upwards pain is relieved.If this is not treated properly it can damage the affected testes due to lack of blood supply.

4. Meningitis:--

Initially there may not be fever,hence crying baby with alternate vacant stare and irritability should not be ignored. Fontanel is bulging. Neck rigidity and seizures may appear later.

5. Retention of urine:--

Children with retention of urine will have agonizing pain making them restless.

7. Major injuries:--

Major injury to any parts of the body causes pain.Occasionally children will fall while carrying and results in head injury. Head injury is associated with reflex vomiting and convulsions.

Safety Tips - Important In Careing For Babies - Part 2

What You Should NOT do

1. Never shake the baby, it can cause damage to the brain.

2. Don't leave any small articles near the baby .

3. Sharp pointed articles like pen, pencil, ect should not be kept away from babies.

4. Avoid entry of water in to the ear while giving a bath.

5. Food should not be given forcibly when the baby is crying or coughing continuously.

6. Do Not overfeed the baby.

7. Articles like mosquito repellents, moth balls,ink,gum,medicines,ect should be kept away.

8. Avoid tight clothing.

9. Should not be placed near the edge of the bed.

10. Should not give the baby to strangers and avoid close contact with others.

11. All electrical instruments should be kept away, and bed should not be arranged near electrical sockets and wires.

12. Kitchen is a dangerous place for children. Don't leave them alone in the kitchen.

13. Water level in the bath tub should be minimum and don't go for any other works(to attent phone call or calling bell ect) when the baby is in the tub.

14. Avoid smoking inside the house.

15. Should not allow pet animals to be in very close contact with the baby.(anti rabies injections should be given to pets and cut their nails properly)

16. When the child starts walking should not be kept alone on the upstairs and should not allow them to climb the steps.

17. Strong light should be avoided in the room.

18. When you are travelling don't give the food articles given by co passengers.

19. Baby should not be allowed to crawl on the soil.

20. If you are sick, or someone else is sick, keep away from the baby.

21. Don't take the baby to hospital wards, crowded market places, and polluted dusty areas.

22. Table lamps should not be kept near the kids, this will attract insects at night and cause problems.

23. Other medicine should not be given to the children.

24. Medicine which has passed the expiry date should not be used.

Safety Tips - Important In Careing For Babies - Part 1

What You Should Do?

1. Always keep the baby neat and clean.

2. Cut the nails properly with utmost care.

3. Wet nappy should be removed and parts should be cleaned with soap.

4. Take care of the genitals because fungal infection is common in that area. Parts should be kept dry.

5. Care of the scalp is very important.Fungal infections, dermatitis ect can be prevented by proper cleaning.

6. Tight dress can cause irritation, hence dress should be loose and should allow entry of air.

7. Room should have sufficient light and ventilation.It should be free from dust and insects.

8. Seperate bed preferably water proof is needed for kids .It should be arranged near mother's bed.

9. Always keep some music making toys near the baby.

10. While carrying the baby, support the head with hand. Since the neck muscles are weak sudden fall of head can be dangerous.

11. Mothers milk is the best nutrition for the baby,it also gives emotional attachment.Breast milk should be given as per the babies need preferably in mother sitting position.Proper cleaning of nipple is also necessary.Mother should take good nutritious diet throughout lactating period.

12. If there is some contraindication for breast feeding cows milk can be given.Feeding bottle should be cleaned with warm water and should be kept dry till next use.

13. Cows milk should be boiled and cooled.Some diseases like bovine tuberculosis,brucellosis ect spread through raw milk.

14. Some children are allergic to some substances like food,milk,dress,cosmetics ect.. Try to find out the material causing allergy and avoid such things.

15. Mosquito nets should be used regularly.Diseases like malaria,dengue ,filariasis,yellow fever and ect spread through mosquito bites. Mosquito bite can also produce skin eruptions with some allergic reactions.It also disturbes sound sleep.

16. A calm atmosphere should be maintained for a good sleep.Compared to adults infants need more sleep.It is said that growth hormone secretion is activated during sleep.

17. Growth developement,behavioral developement,motor developement,personal social developement,language developement ect should be noted down in relation to age. However parents need not be over anxious because slight variations are seen from individual to individual.

18. Assessment of growth by measuring height and weight is necessary.

19. In the early months of life infant may defecate after every feed.Proper toilet training should be given when the infant grows.The infant can be placed on the toilet seat by the age of ten months.

20. The toilet seat (potty seat) should be cleaned with antiseptic liquid before and after use.It should not be shared by other children.

21. If the baby shows some signs of distress like excessive crying,convulsions,fever with rigor,stiffness of neck,frequent vomiting and diarrhoea,bluish discolouration of the body,difficult breathing with grunting, ect pay attention and consult your doctor.

22. A first aid box should be kept in the room ,which should contain sterile cotton,dressing materials,antiseptic lotion and ointment and forceps.Seperate book should be maintained to note down the phone numbers of doctors, ambulance,police ect.

23. Child's medicines should be kept in seperate box.Information regarding dose and mode of administration should be written in a paper and affixed on the box.

24. While driving keep the baby in seperate seat belt.

25. When you are going out with the baby keep an identity card with your phone number and address inside his small pocket.

26. When the infant starts walking always accompany him to prevent a fall and injuries thereby.

27. In emergencies take the first aid measures and take the victim to nearby hospital.

The baby may swallow some solid objects and cause obstruction. Immediately make the baby to lie on the abdomen in head low position and press the abdomen backwards and towards the chest. Stroking the upper back is also useful. If no result call a trained person to take the material with the help of forceps.

Accidental poisoning:
Try to takeout the poisonous substance and induce vomiting (except kerosine & acids). Wash the body with water to reduce absorption through skin.Identify the pioson and take the victim to the hospital.

First of all remove the source of heat and put clean cold water. Burned cloths should not be removed immediately. Cover the wound with sterile cotton and take to nearby hospital.

Clean the wound with clean water and stop the bleeding by compressing, raising the wound above the level of heart or use a tourniquet to compress blood vessels. Then dress the wound with sterile cotton, bandage and consult a doctor.

Drowning in bath tub:
Take the baby immediately and keep the head in a low position, press the abdomen gentely or give a mouth to mouth sucking till the air way is clear. Give mouth to mouth breathing and cardiac massage and take the victim to the hospital.

Electric shock:
Stop the source of current. Then observe the victim,if no breathing give mouth to mouth breath along with cardiac massage and take to the hospital.

28. And the last but not the least, give your child maximum care, love and support to make him/her healthy and happy for ever.

Stress at Work

Working for almost ten hours a day everyday for five days (sometimes even more) can be truly stressful. Each day, you wake up in the morning, getting a bit harried since you're going to be late. You eat a bit of breakfast, drink lots of coffee, and quickly do errands on the way to work. Once you get to the office, the world seems to be different. A whole new scenario away from your comfort zone, the workplace would be your “home” for the whole day.

In the office, there is nothing more to do but work. Of course, work can be fun, if you want it to be. More often than not, work means business. And with this comes stress and anxiety. It is fairly common for people to experience such stress and anxiety when at work, since they are bound by projects, deadlines, reports, and other work related issues for the rest of the day. Stressing about deadlines for example, can give the person a feeling of worry and fear. It means that stress is usually accompanied by anxiety as well. Unfortunately, they go side by side in giving the person more headaches and thus having poor input on their work productivity.

Stress management is critical for people who work tirelessly, also known as workaholics. They are more vulnerable to stress and anxiety, since they are really into their work. These people really give all their best in committing to the best work performance and productivity. Such feelings of heaviness and being tired and worrisome can result in sickness absences in work. By practicing stress management, one can reduce such absences, increase on employee's commitment to work, increase staff performance and productivity, staff recruitment and retention, staff turnover or leave intentions, good customer satisfaction, and overall organizational reputation and image.

Stress and anxiety cannot be avoided, especially in the workplace. Employees suffering from these feelings are apt to smoke or drink excessively, doing several jobs all at once, missing breaks, rushing, hurrying, being available to everyone, eating on the run, taking work home, and having no time for exercise or relaxation.

Stress management can be easy if all the employees in the workplace support and contribute to the prevention of stress in the office. A simple stress policy, for example, can help in reducing such stress during office hours. The company implements a stress policy by identifying all the workplace stressors and give out risk assessments to stop stress, providing training in good management skills for all supervisory staff, giving confidential counseling for staff affected by stress and anxiety, among many others. This kind of policy can decrease stress in the workplace, if properly executed.

Supervisory personnel could also help an employee suffering from stress and anxiety in the workplace. By understanding his/ her current situation, giving support, and developing a plan to deal with the pressure and stress, they can ensure good employee performance by working together in omitting stress and anxiety at work. Remember, a happy worker is a productive worker.