Thursday, February 26, 2015

Two Very Different Companies

My husband dropped and broke his cell phone.  He went to Verizon to get another one.  They convinced him to get a different brand than his old phone.  He took it and called me.  The thing echoed my voice back at me.  And it picked up all the background sounds. He told the salesrep.  The salesrep told him that for $35, he could give it back and get the same model as his old one. $35? $35!  My husband asked to talk to the supervisor.  The supervisor repeated – my husband had to pay $35 to return the bad phone.  Again, my husband asked to talk to a supervisor.  The current supervisor told him to call 611.  At 611, the representative said, “They did what?”  Then she said that if my husband will pay the $35 she would refund it.  So, my husband gave back the phone, paid the $35, and we’re waiting for both the refund and the arrival of his new phone.  If it wasn’t so expensive to get out of our contract, he’d have dumped them on the spot. 


Meanwhile Drag N Drop Illustrator crashed my computer during installation last July.  Nothing I did could make it work.  I contacted the company. They refunded my money instantly.   A few days ago, they emailed me.  They have been fixing bugs in the program and they’d like me to try it again.   They did not ask for more money.  I downloaded it and installed it.  This time the software works.  This is how companies should behave.  

Friday, February 20, 2015

At My Father's 95th Birthday Bash

To put it simply, I cannot remember a time when my father and I got along.  He always complained that I “was born a rebel.”

He on the other hand stated, “Anyone can have a family. I have a career.”

He divorced my mother.  

I moved out as soon as I could – when I was 17 and had a minimum wage job and a motorbike.

At his bash, one of his long-time admirers got up and said there were three things my father loved.  “His wife, his chocolate and his cats.”  (This refers to wife #3. The cats are hers. He was anti-pet until he married her.)

He got up to correct this speaker: “That’s not right.  I have one love: Science.”  His current wife just sat there and smiled.

Nevertheless, men who had known my father since before I was born got up and talked about how they had enjoyed his intellect over the years.  At 95, my father is still capable of having concise conversations about the latest scientific developments.

For the most part, I didn’t recognize the man they talked about.  Neither did my brother.  And I think the man who sat at my sister’s table said it best. “I didn’t know he had children.”  

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

We Have to Make Our Own Diet Guidelines

I used to think doctors knew about the latest medical research and that they could be relied upon for advice about health.

For starts, they give diet advice.

Here’s an article no doctor I know of has read:

http://jn.nutrition.org/content/134/11/3100.long

It’s a study of vitamin K2 in the diet.  Vitamin K2 is found in meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy, and in a fermented tofu product available in Japan.

Everybody eats calcium.  The calcium can form our teeth and bones and make us strong. The calcium can deposit in our arteries and make us weak.

According to this study in the Netherlands, our intake of vitamin K2 helps determine which will happen in our bodies.  If we get adequate K2 in our diets, we’ll have stronger bones and teeth. If we don’t, we are prone to calcification of the arteries.

“The results of this study suggest a protective effect of dietary menaquinone intake against CHD in older men and women. As indicated by the inverse association with all-cause mortality, high intake of menaquinone does not increase the risk for other major diseases, such as cancer.”

It looks like it is safe to ignore any doctor who says to avoid meat, cheese and eggs.  These are the foods that are protective.

The seniors who ate meat, cheese, and eggs in this study did not otherwise have a healthy lifestyle. 

Note: phylloquinone is found in green veggies.  Menaquinone is found in meat, cheese, and eggs.

“In contrast to phylloquinone, intake of menaquinone (mainly MK-4 from eggs and meat, and MK-8 and MK-9 from cheese) (19) is not related to a healthy lifestyle or diet, which makes it unlikely that the observed reduction in coronary risk is due to confounding.” 

In addition, high cholesterol is protective for women – as shown in these studies (which no doctor I’ve met has read):

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15006277

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3303886/
or
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3303886/pdf/jep0018-0159.pdf

It looks like we're going to have to educate our doctors so they can help their other customers.

I refuse to call doctors' customers patients.  I have become highly impatient.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Dressing for a Birthday Party

My family can’t do anything without disagreeing.
It’s true. When you have two Jews in the room, you have at least three opinions.
The latest concerns how to dress for my father’s 95th birthday party.

We are a family of individualists, of all persuasions.  Any topic can raise debate.  The first suggestion was ties.  So, of course a family member asked – “should both genders wear them?” And then one man said he doesn’t own any. And then someone else suggested tying them in the middle instead of around the neck, so they’d be more comfortable.  And someone suggested Hawaiian shirts instead, if the point is to be comfortable.

At the moment, we seem to have a decree from my father that dress style will be “slightly dressier than normal.”

Since my father is celebrating his birthday on one of his unbirthdays, it is a two-day event. The 1st day, the normal dress day) is Feb 14. The debate began about how to dress for that.  This one had far fewer suggestions.  It will be a red version of Saint Patty’s day in school.  Everybody should wear something red.  I hope people who forget don’t get pinched.

I always wore a ring with a peridot stone (that’s a green stone, for those of you who aren’t rock hounds.)  That way if somebody pinched me, I got pinch-backs.  I didn’t want pinch-backs – I didn’t want to get pinched and I didn’t want to wear green. This was a compromise.

So, for Valentine’s day, I’ll wear my Wonder Woman shirt.  I don’t think anybody will want to disagree with that.