Archive for August 31, 2016

Canine Angel

You’ve heard about “therapy dogs,” but have you ever seen one in action?  Nala, a teacup poodle, is sensitive to people’s needs and chooses whom to visit at this Minnesota nursing home.

Warning: This video may cause clouding of vision.

 

 

Your Music = Your Personality

I ran across an interesting study indicating that the music you listen to reflects your personality. Adrian North, a UK professor, carried out his research with 360,000 people in 60+ countries and looked at a large variety of music styles. Here are his conclusions:

Blues fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle and at ease
Jazz fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing and at ease
Classical music fans have high self-esteem, are creative, introvert and at ease
Rap fans have high self-esteem and are outgoing
Opera fans have high self-esteem, are creative and gentle
Country and western fans are hardworking and outgoing
Reggae fans have high self-esteem, are creative, not hardworking, outgoing, gentle and at ease
Dance fans are creative and outgoing but not gentle
Indie fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard working, and not gentle
Bollywood fans are creative and outgoing
Rock/heavy metal fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard-working, not outgoing, gentle, and at ease
Chart pop fans have high self-esteem, are hardworking, outgoing and gentle, but are not creative and not at ease
Soul fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle, and at ease

 

I just thought this was an interesting tidbit to pass on to you. For more details, read Preferred Music Style Is Tied to Personality. Before clicking on that link, though, be sure to put on those headphones and rev up your tunes.

 

 

Epipen’s Cost to Us All

I admit.  I have a vested interest in the issue–a granddaughter with a peanut allergy.  I want her to keep carrying a non-expired Epinephrine-dispensing device that can save her life.  Most people know the device as an Epipen (although there is a cheaper alternative a doctor might prescribe, Adrenaclick).

I don’t get it.  Pharmaceutical companies always issue a new product at a high price because “we need to make up for all the money that went into its research and development.”  Then, shouldn’t the price go down rather than up — or  at least stay the same — after almost ten years of their recouping their investment?

Look at the Epipen, at what PHARMACIES have paid over the years for each set of two pens: $100 (2007), $103.50 (2009), $264.50 (July 2013), $461–up 75%! (May 2015), $608.61 (May 2016).  And the price from the pharmacies to consumers, of course, is much higher.

Now Mylan, who makes the Epipen, promises to offer a generic Epipen for around $300 for a two-pack, but that’s the cost to the pharmacies, not to us.  It’s still a lot of money for something that started out at a price of $100, which Mylan figured would cover their R and D costs.

Also, people with such allergies should, to be safe, have two pens with them at all times (in case a second dose is needed), plus two at home and two in in any other home they spend much time in (such as a divorced parent).

Oh, and those pens expire in 12 months.  Expired ones should not be used because the Epiniphrine degrades, making it less effective or totally ineffective.

Yes, insurance covers the pens. There are two hidden costs there, though: the patient’s co-pay and the rise in insurance rates due to such unreasonable medication costs.  A third, devastating cost is in lives lost because a family can’t afford the co-pay or an insurance plan that covers such medications.

I want my granddaughter, and everyone else’s family members, to be taken care of, not to be taken advantage of!

 

 

Enjoy a Climate-Friendly Yard

Are you thinking about redoing part of your yard, or even all of it?  Now is a good time to do some eco-thinking.  The right yard can be friendly to our planet, easy to keep up, cheap to maintain, and beautiful, all at once.  Before reaching for your gardening tools or taking a trip to the local plant nursery, consider what is in the article How to Put Your Yard to Work for the environment.”

 

Women, Make this 96th Anniversary Count

Today is Women’s Equality Day, the 96th anniversary of the adoption of the 19 Amendment, which gave women the right to vote. It was a hard-fought battle that began in 1848 at the Seneca Falls Convention, where 200 women gathered to discuss women’s rights. From there they spread out through the country to give speeches, get petitions signed, and gain support, all with little backing, financial or otherwise. Finally, in 1920, the Amendment, which was proposed the previous year, managed to be ratified–barely. And who was the person who put it over the margin needed for ratification? A young legislator (age 23) who was won over to the cause by his mother.

This is a classic story of American dedication and perseverance. But it doesn’t matter if women don’t vote.

Women, let the spirits of those who came before us inspire us. If you aren’t yet registered to vote, do it today. And, come November, VOTE. Women have the heart and power to steer our nation in the direction of what is right and just for all of its citizens!

 

 

A National Expensive Disgrace

What is both a national disgrace AND costing our country a bundle of money?  Racism.  Read the article Racism costs U.S. billions every year.  Part of it says,

“Closing the income gap between whites and minorities, would boost earnings by 12 percent, an economic windfall of $1 trillion, for a nation burdened by debt and an anemic job market, according to a recent study by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Altarum Institute…..

“Minorities make up 37 percent of the working age population now, but they are projected to grow to 46 percent by 2030, and 55 percent by 2050. Closing the earnings gap by 2030 would increase GDP by 16 percent, or more than $5 trillion a year,” stated the report. Federal tax revenues would increase by over $1 trillion and corporate profits would increase by $450 billion.”

Read the rest of the article.

 

 

Come on, Ryan–Man Up!

It’s bad enough that an athlete representing the United States should vandalize and act like a jerk in another country.  But Ryan Lochte himself shouldn’t have made things worse.

Maybe he was encouraged by the people who were urging everyone to “give him a break,” because the swim team were “just kids” doing “mischief.”  KIDS?  At their age?  MISCHIEF?  Destroying and urinating on other people’s property?

Ryan hasn’t actually apologized to Brazil yet.  His explanations relate to himself, not to others:  “I should have been more careful” – “I made a mistake. – “I learned a lesson.”  He admits to immature behavior and “over-exaggerating” the facts. And his excuse is that he was drunk.

But there’s no apology to the Brazilians–or to the American people,  whom he disgraced.

Come on, Ryan.  You’re 32.  Grow up.  And man up.

 

Stop the Deep Sea Mine

Imagine a deep-ocean mine, right next to a very rich eco system, run by a failing company with no experience on this large a scale, one that  just might be tempted to take chances that would destroy that eco system and do further harm to our already already-fragile, dying oceans.  Who in their right mind would allow it?

The Canadian mining company I just described has actually been given a licence to do deep-ocean mining off the coast of  Papua New Guinea, near a treasured eco-system.

It is possible to stop it, though.  The financially troubled company is seeking investors.  If enough pressure is put on these investors, the project will not go through.

Go to Papua New Guinea: Stop the deep sea mine to read more and sign a petition that will be sent to potential investors.

 

 

Therapy CHICKENS?!

I’ve seen (and petted) therapy dogs visiting patients  in hospitals and thought it was a great idea, especially as I observed patients perk up their spirits and calm down their bodies as they petted the animals.  But, until recently, I’d never heard of therapy CHICKENS.

There is a program using chickens to help patients overcome anxiety.  They care for the animals and even get a small stipend.  It’s an effective way to improve the lives of some vulnerable people.

Read more at “How Therapy Chickens Are Helping Patients With Anxiety.”

What’s in a Smile?

It’s tiny, sometimes bubbling up from within us, sometimes called up because we think it would be appropriate.  No matter.  As today’s Thursday Thought quote illustrates, it has great power.

“WHAT SUNSHINE IS TO FLOWERS, SMILES ARE TO HUMANITY. THESE ARE BUT TRIFLES, TO BE SURE; BUT SCATTERED ALONG LIFE’S PATHWAY, THE GOOD THEY DO IS INCONCEIVABLE.”  — JOSEPH ADDISON