Miscellaneous Topics

Self Referentiality....
"Boy, I had a tough weekend..."
"Me too, my Mother In Law was murdered, this weekend, my kids were off the charts, couldn't get my job out of my mind, I just hate it, and worst of all I had nothing but work, work, work all weekend."
"My house burned down..."
"Brother, we had a fire too, out in the garage, but I got it early. The fire guys showed up and gave me hell. And all weekend after that my wife wouldn't get off my back about smoking cigars in there... shish! When is a guy to relax, after all?
"My wife and kids were killed..."
"Yeah, but that stupid car of mine was on the fritz. I was down at the center, broken down in front of everyone, oil everywhere, I was a mess. And then when the garage showed up finally, I had no money, no cards, nothing. Thank goodness they knew me or I'd have really been screwed."
"I'm alone and thinking about killing myself...."
"By the time I got back to the house, the game was over, dinner was cold, and every body was mad because I didn't get the kids to their games. But then, with the power failure, the rest of the night was boring and everyone was whining and moaning. If it hadn't been for that last cigar out in the garage the whole weekend would have been a bust. My last thought was that I couln't wait to get to work on Monday, at least everything is under control there. Right? Hey, where are you? Hey, Bob! He's a funny guy. Never says much. He is a pretty good listener, though."

The humble fly. Researchers looking into the possibilities of expanding the life span of human beings recently extended the life span of the humble fly, over and over, by giving it a human gene that enhances its ability to remove wastes from its cells. The result was quick: a 40% longer-living fly (that would expand your expected life span to roughly 112 years or more). Now the biology of flies is such that this almost-instant result, also immediately passed along to subsequent generations, is truly phenomenal. It offers the clear and promising potential to stem the ravaging effects of aging and disease in humans. The gene was injected into the insect's neurons that control motor movement. "We were really surprised," stated Garbielle Boulianne, a professor of molecular biology at the University of Toronto. "We never expected this." The findings indicate that the aging process and the means to control it might be much simpler than scientists have ever suspected. So, if you're considering this, think of ways to ease the elimination of wastes from your system while we wait for the scientists' cure. Eat right. Exercise. Avoid (1) things that are difficult to digest, and (2) toxins and other substances that are clearly tough on you. You deserve a break today. Definitely no fries with that, though.

The size of things: They're getting bigger and bigger. Let's consider this issue calmly and carefully, utilizing the newest edition to the fleet of Love Boats as our metaphor....
There she is, The Grand Princess: 951 feet long, 201 feet high (50 feet higher than the Statue Of Liberty, so when she comes into New York, passengers will be looking DOWN on the Statue for the first time), capable of carrying 2,600 passengers, and 109,000 tons of stuff for them. She is the largest cruise ship in the world and she cost only $450,000,000 to build. She is TWICE the size of the heroic and epic-and-cinematic-sized Titanic. Twice the size of the Titanic. And, she is not going to be the biggest for long: Royal Caribbean is planning to launch two ships capable of carrying 3,100 passengers and 136,000 tons of stuff. On board the Grand Princess there are seven theaters including The Princess Theater, seating 748 people, a dozen bars and cabarets, five swimming pools including one with a retractable ceiling for moonlight swims, a virtual amusement park (one of the most popular sites), a discotheque with a glass sky walk, a one-third of a mile running track around the Promenade, and a chip and putt 9-hole golf course. This is not to mention the food, food, food that the ship serves every day: 862 pounds of shellfish (mostly lobster), 1,170 pounds of potatoes, 1,600 pounds of beef, and enough booze to fill the ocean surrounding the ship to a depth of 75 feet every day. Most of the customers are repeat customers. Now that's big.

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